Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Excel Survey App

At Georgia College, all faculty, staff, and students have a OneDrive (used to be called SkyDrive) account with 25GB of storage.  It is similar to the free OneDrive account, except the business account has additional security features agreed upon with a University of Georgia System contract.

When reviewing the OneDrive for Business features this past weekend, I discovered the ability to create a survey using Excel Survey - from the listing of new file types.  Initially, I was really excited about the alternative for Google Forms, which does not provide a secure environment.  However, once I explored Excel Survey, I was immediately disappointed!  I cannot believe that Microsoft engineers released the app!!!  I know that they have the ability, because the forms feature was a part of Frontpage web design software many years ago.
  • Unlike Google forms, the designed has only one opportunity to design, edit, and obtain a link to share the survey. 
  • The designer can give the survey a title and subtitle, but the number of characters and lines is limited.
The survey does provide different answer types.  When data is entered, like Google Forms, it shows up in a spreadsheet.  The two bullet points above are the weaknesses of the survey tool.  SurveyMonkey and Google Forms are better free alternatives.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Giving a Presentation with an iPad

TCGeeks has a very good article on how to give a presentation with the iPad at http://www.tcgeeks.com/how-give-presentation-your-ipad/

I should have taken my iPad or other computer to the most recent conference where I was giving a presentation.  The problem was that I brought the Microsoft Surface tablet instead.  The problem was not the tablet - rather the fact that I have not received the 9-pin adapter necessary to connect the tablet with an overhead projector.  I had all of my slides in the cloud and on flash drives, but at this particular conference, presenters had to use their own computer.

Bottom line is to plan and test the ability to give a slide presentation before you leave on a 2-hour flight to another city.  Lesson learned. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Microsoft OneDrive for Business - Very Nice Additonal Cloud Storage App!

Believe I have figured out OneDrive for Business!  I have used OneDrive for many, many years (used to be called SkyDrive).  However, I was confused between the two apps. All of our University faculty, and staff have OneDrive for Business now.  I had go to my unify account and open my faculty email to see the OneDrive for Business app.  I played with the app - found it easy to drag files into it, make new files, and to create folders.  Since it is secure storage, I will be able to mirror my computer with it. 

Afterwards, I downloaded the OneDrive for Business to my iPad and Microsoft Surface tablet. 

I still have my old OneDrive account and Dropbox.  At work, we are transitioning to moving all university files over to OneDrive for Business.  Dropbox will be only for personal files.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Microsoft Surface

Well I gave up on the Dell Venue Pro.  Apparently the model that I attempted to use was the problem.  I exchanged it for a Microsoft Surface at the end of last week.  Life is good!  The small screen is good for portability, but it is small. 

I finally learned how to use the pen today!  I "knew" it had to have some added value.  In OneNote, I can write just as I would with paper and pen.  I can also "erase"  using the end of the pen - as well as have the written info converted to text.  I am concerned that it might be easy to lose the pen when only attached at the magnetic point on the side of the tablet.  I'll have to be careful.

Like the Dell, the battery life is fairly short.  It almost lasted the 4 hour meeting this afternoon.  Of course, I have everything "turned on" that uses battery life. 

I am using it as my only computer on the Sloan-C/MERLOT Emerging Technologies in Teaching Conference here in Dallas.  The tablet fits easy in my purse.  The next step is to finish building it and to transfer files from the old laptop.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Dell Venue Woes

The model of Dell Venue Pro I attempted to use for 2 months is flawed.  Notice - I said the MODEL, not all of the product lines.  I worked with Dell Support, DellCares, and University IT support for 2 months.  Dell sent a replacement 2 weeks ago  - many of the same problems persisted - sleep/turn off/would not wake up, touch screen suddenly stop working (corrected by undocking and redocking), USB intermittently not working, etc.  I returned it today to IT :-(  The problems were so significant that I did not take it to the ANIA meeting last week.

IT gave me a Microsoft Surface as a replacement. I finally have a product to replace my OLD Dell 630 laptop.  Have lots of work ahead of me to rebuild this tablet.  I will plan to take this tablet to the MERLOT meeting next week. 

I have so many things to report from the ANIA meeting last week!  It was a fantastic meeting.  Loved the ANIA app for the iPhone.  Like many others, the "goody bag" was not used.  We are more and more digital.