We all need to be doing things like this in our classrooms. Great activity to integrate technology, character ed, and with all the things going on in the world today, a well needed activity to show our students that people still care.
So Amazon wants to make sure schools give Amazon Kindles a second look. Up until now, at least with the purchasing of content, Amazon played second fiddle to Apple and Barnes and Noble in the way they could setup devices to purchase content. Now, though, they want to make sure they get a piece of the action in introducing their Whispercast.
It definitely provides some good features. For starters you can centrally manage your Kindles. Barnes and Nobles centrally manages, but they do the managing. It appears Amazon gives you a webpage to do this from. Similar to what we’re looking for with the Chromebooks on the Google Apps for Education dashboard. It will then allow you to configure all of them, saving time from doing one at a time, including sending your wifi settings. If you use your own connectivity, then obviously you will be able to use your own filtering software. Do you send them home though? With Whispercast you can block things like Facebook and Twitter or allow them. And then of course you can manage the Amazon content, which is really what you (and Amazon!) want from the deal. Any easy way to purchase content for multiple devices and keep track of it.
From my role with 15 schools and 8,600 students to manage, the more ways we can centrally manage our devices, the better. Amazon knows it needs to get competitive to the Apple and Google offerings, and with more and more MDMs (mobile device managers) and Windows 8 coming, the time is now.
At least in the UK. Nice to see Apple get brought back to earth from their enormous egos. Ok, that is just a little journalistic opinion, but I enjoyed seeing Apple get slammed by the judge for their smart alec reply to the order an apology on their website. For those not in the loop, Apple, the company that is ‘so in support of education’ (sarcasm:mine) acted like a small child by saying they apologize for Samsung not being as cool. Well, the judge had none of that and ordered them to redo. Apple said it would take weeks, and the judge, good on him, said ‘You’re Apple, you can’t quickly change some html?” (paraphrase:mine).
So now Apple finally re-did it. What do they do? Fess up and act like grown-ups? Try to capture even a little bit of credibility? Of course not. They make the portion of the page with the link to the redone apology below the screen’s resolution so you only can see it when you scroll down. So, so lame. This is the company that wants you to ‘think different.’ This is the company that ‘gets education.’ No no thanks. With each lame move like this, all they do is strengthen my resolve to never use their products.
So this laptop was weeks (8+) in the making, but I finally get to type my first blog update on it. The Lenovo x1 Carbon ultrabook. i7 Processor. 8gb of yummy RAM. Chicklet keyboard. Very, very nice! So I want to use it for my primary machine, obviously, but also for testing ROMs, like Android via VirtualBox. Got to transfer settings from my old one though, then I can play with this one more!