Thu 26 Feb 2009

Product Spotlight: Pulse Smartpen

Pulse SmartPen

The Pulse smartpen revolutionizes the act of writing by recording and linking audio to handwriting, so users never miss a word.  Missed something? Tap on your notes or drawings with the tip of your Pulse smartpen to hear what was said while you were writing. That’s right — this little pen records what it hears, which makes it great for students who need to review lectures.

$199.95Buy This Product Today![More]

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Sun 27 Jul 2008

Nicholas Negroponte - Update on the One Laptop per Child Project

One Laptop Per Child

I’ve recently become a fan of TED Talks which is a repository of “inspired talks by the world’s greatest thinkers and doers.” Today, I found a 16.5 minute talk by Nicholas Negroponte, the founder of the MIT Media Lab, in which he discussed the progress of the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project. The talk took place in December of 2007 (but was just posted in June of this year), two years into the life of the project.

Here is the video of his talk:

A few points of his talk which especially interested me:



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Tue 14 Aug 2007

August 14 Link Roundup

Here are a few links I’ve found today which might be of interest to the readers of this blog:

Children’s Reviews of OLPC XO Technology
What selected children are saying about the One Laptop Per Child project.
Source: One Laptop Per Child News blog.

Best Back-to-School Gadgets
A wrap-up of the perfect tech package for the classroom from Yahoo! Shopping.
Source: Yahoo! Shopping

Taking Gadgets To School Could Increase Bullying Risk
Internet safety co-ordinator and usage policies needed to improve ‘e-safety’.

SIM-Sponsored Summer Camp Teaches Kids about Technology
Teen Tech Camp is one of a number of programs sponsored by professional technology organizations whose goal is to teach K-12 students about technology and careers in IT.

Happy Surfing!

Sun 28 Jan 2007



I was reading the BetaChurch blog a couple of days ago and came across this article about IMSafer, a new service which helps keep our children safe when they are using instant messaging applications in their computer.

The service will notify parents of IM conversations which our children are having with potentially dangerous people. Here is part of what IMSafer says about their solution:

IMSafer monitors the instant messenger conversations of your children to help you balance protecting your children and respecting their privacy. The IMSafer service will only notify you when your child is engaged in a potentially dangerous conversation on IM.

At IMSafer, we have worked with law enforcement officials to learn how potential predators initiate, develop and maintain inappropriate online relationships with children. We are always working to fine tune and update our analysis engine.

My 11-year-old-daughter doesn’t yet use an instant messaging app (we’re a bit behind the times, I know), but I know that she will want to soon. So seeing this service was timely for our family. We’ve signed up and I’ll be talking to our daughter about it and how it can help keep her safe in the online world.

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Sun 14 Jan 2007

Disney Mix Sticks

Disney Mix Stick

A few weeks ago, my daughter came home with a Disney Mix Stick, a small MP3 player for tweens.

At first, I wanted to tell her that she should have asked me before she spent her Christmas money on an MP3 player (thinking she would have done better if she had saved enough money for an iPod shuffle or an iPod nano). But the more I’ve thought about it, I’m not quite as disdainful of the product as I was originally.

She paid about $50 for the Disney Mix Stick and another $18 dollars for a mix clip (a sort of music cartridge that fits in the Mix Stick). It plays either from a mix clip or you can download music in either WMA or MP3 format. Beyond the mix clip, it will hold up to 60 songs in WMA format or up to 30 songs in MP3 format in its 128MB onboard memory (expandable up to 1GB). The Mix Stick comes in a variety of models (although the specifications are the same for each - the different models simply represent different “skins” for the unit): Little Mermaid, Tink, High School Musical, Mickey, Princess, Cars, Jack Skellington, and Pirates. Each model comes with stereo earbuds, a lanyard, and a Windows Media software CD. One of the cooler features is that the bottom of the unit slips off to reveal a USB connector that can be plugged directly into the USB port of a computer (either for recharging the unit or to download music files to the unit).

While it’s not the most sophisticated MP3 player on the market, it serves as a nice introduction to digital music for my daughter and since it carries the Disney brand, it has some amount of familiarity for her.

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