Episode 182 – Cheap Phones

A fantastic episode we talk about distance learning in the fall, learning management systems and how they are not adequate for distance learning and some great ideas of how to make it more successful. As always be sure to subscribe to us on Apple Music or your favorite podcasting app.

Tony’s new phone (Moto G Stylus), Patrick’s desk project & Fred Willard RIP

  1. Learning Management Systems are not Distance Learning Systems
    1. LMS is built with a linear perspective
    2. You can’t prevent cheating
    3. Examity.com
    4. Modify your LMS (if you can)
    5. Teacher website (MS and up)
    6. Project based learning instead of Assessment
  2. Azure and G-Suite Connecting Provisioning and SSO
    1. https://itbabble.com/2020/05/13/azure-and-g-suite-connecting-provisioning-and-sso/
  3. Distance Learning in the Fall?
    1. Using Curriculum map as road map
    2. What have we heard?
    3. Possible options
      1. Hybrid systems
      2. High school take some classes completely online
    4. What should teachers do?
      1. Start recording your lessons ahead of time
      2. Focus on flexibility
    5. What should schools do?
      1. The free products are gone
      2. Make sure your services are good to go in the fall
      3. Document cameras – https://www.ipevo.com/
    6. V2 Stand – https://ipaddocumentcamera.com/pages/justand-v2

You can download the episode here!

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Azure and G-Suite Connecting Provisioning and SSO

Tony DePrato | Follow Me on LinkedIn

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Streaming in the classroom: Barco ClickShare

Not too long ago I reviewed the Barco WePresent and found it pretty good especially at its price point. Now we are taking a look at the ClickShare. Barco offers a few options with their ClickShare product and this one is the CS-100, the current entry level. This can be managed remotely with additional software from Barco at an additional price, but we did not have access to that for our review unit. So let’s get into it!

There are newer models on the horizon but I am not sure if they are available for sale yet.

Price

$1000 for this unit. Yep – that’s a lot. I looked the price up at a number of different retailers and for the average Joe that’s what you’ll need to shell out. Barco is really focused for the corporate world and I am not sure they have an educational discount. The unit has a receiver and one button one transmitter. Also remember that this is the entry level model as well.

For that money you will get one base station, one button and a power adapter.

What can it do?

It will mirror your screen to a projector, monitor or television with just a click of the button. The BenQ Instashow and the ClickShare seem to work the same way. The receiver and transmitter create their own private network and transmit all the data over it. This reduces stress on the school’s network and usually keeps a much more solid connection since no other device is on it.

The base station has all the standard ports you would come to expect.

It has a power port (no power over ethernet here), a port for the included power adapter, a network port and an audio port for audio out. I like this and I don’t think we’ve seen it on any other device thus far. It’s a small thing (no pun intended) but I like it. There is also a USB A connector on the back and one on the front. I believe these are used to pair other buttons to the base station.

The button is small, plugs into the USB port of a computer and has a satisfying click when pressed. Mine was USB A but the latest models has a USB C option. In my testing, the USB A worked just fine with a standard USB A to C adapter and never felt like it was going to fall out of my laptop.

Set up was ridiculously easy. Simply plug the base station into power and then connect it to a display via an HDMI cable. Wait for it to boot up, then plug the button into your computer and wait a few seconds for it to boot up, then click the button and you’re connected! If you ever forget the default Barco screen displayed will guide you through it all.

Here is a video of of me connecting the button. It seems to take a long time, but once you press that button you are connected with no hesitation. Then when you press it again, you are disconnected. It is fast.

I do believe you need to install the software each time you plug the button in. I may be wrong about this, but I do find that a little annoying.

Another thing to keep in mind is that you can only mirror your screen and not extend it. For most teachers I don’t think this would be a problem. A lot of teachers I know don’t seem to care about that and prefer mirroring to the extended set up, but if you rely on it then it will cramp your style for sure.

As you can see in the image above, it even has iOS and Android apps. It even works fine with a Chromebook [need to check this out.]

Streaming Video

OK – with all of these reviews – this is one of the most important factors. Can it stream video well. This is what teachers want to have. Mirroring their screen is nice, but teachers are demanding more now and we have been searching for something that can rival the Apple TV. So check out the sample below from another TED Talk.

It’s not good at all. Every few seconds it seems to drop frames and audio for a moment. It is jarring and not acceptable in any situation. In a classroom just showing a slideshow, webpage, or some documents, this is fine. If you want to stream even a short video, this is not going to work.

Issues

Outside of streaming video and the high cost, there really aren’t any. I mean the setup is super simple, connecting to a computer or device is very easy and secure. It does require a power cord and I really wished it had power over ethernet and who knows – maybe the next generation of ClickShare will. I also wish the base station was a little smaller. We have projectors and they are a little bulky sitting on top of it, but I imagine you could easily mount it or even stick it to the ceiling.

Managing the ClickShare

This can be done remotely but like I mentioned earlier it requires additional software to be installed on a server and we did not have access to it. I am sure it will allow you to update the base station, add more buttons to a base station, turn it off and on again if necessary all from the comfort of the IT office, but really, these things are pretty bullet proof.

They don’t seem to need much in the way of maintenance. I imagine updating the firmware could be done via USB or even remotely if you connect to the device itself and push it from your computer.

Would teachers like it?

If it is a BYOD environment then yes. I think they would though the BenQ Instashow is the same amount of money, works pretty much the same way and is vastly superior than the ClickShare. Of course, you  may not have access to the Instashow but there are good chances you do have access to the Barco. Of course the money is the real sticking point here. $1000 per unit is nothing to sneeze at and you may be able to cobble together a cheaper solution that works pretty well.

Will it replace our Apple TV’s

No – there is no way. Teachers want to stream video and for the money the ClickShare cannot touch the Apple TV in that regard. While the Barco product creates a near perfect connection each time and doesn’t rely on our network, teachers will trade away that stability to better streaming each time.

I do like how customizable the Barco ClickShare is and I can see the appeal from an enterprise perspective but not an educational one.

This is clearly a product that was developed for enterprise and is not a 100% fit with education. It is like an octagon fitting into a round hole. It will fit with a little force but there are better options out there that fit a lot better.

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Episode 181 – Zoom

Tony and Patrick are back talking about distance learning, recommendations about video conferencing (including Zoom) and a lot more. Please subscribe to our podcast from Apple our searching for us on your favorite podcasting app.

  1. Happy Easter/Spring Break
  2. Zoom
    1. Zoombombing
    2. Zoom and privacy
    3. Zoom alternative
      1. Microsoft Teams
      2. Google Meet
      3. Skype
    4. Recommendations
      1. Zoom Basic (non-compliance) vs. Zoom K-12 (FERPA, COPPA, HIPPA compliant)
  3. Cybersecurity Part 5 – Where Did Your Resources
    1. https://itbabble.com/2020/04/12/cybersecurity-part-5-where-did-you-put-your-resources/
  4. Graduation 2020?
    1. July in person graduation
    2. What does a virtual graduation look like?
      1. Not popular
      2. Not a good product
      3. Think about music, time, speeches

Download this episode HERE

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Microsoft Teams Better Meeting Management with Attendee Mode

Microsoft Teams Better Meeting Management with Attendee Mode # #microsoftteams #o365 #onlinelearning

Tony DePrato | Follow Me on LinkedIn

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Microsoft Teams for OS X Send Your Audio and Sound to your Audience with Soundflower

By Tony DePrato | Follow Me on LinkedIn

This video explains how to set up your Apple hardware to stream audio from Youtube and other sources to your Teams Meeting.

Get Soundflower: https://github.com/mattingalls/Soundflower/releases/tag/2.0b2

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Cybersecurity Part 5: Where Did You Put Your Resources

Tony DePrato | Follow Me on LinkedIn

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Episode 180 – Empty shelves empty seats

Tony and Patrick are talking the school closures and what schools are doing, video conferences, and so much more. As always be sure to subscribe our podcast on Apple Music or your favorite podcasting app.

  1. No school!
  2. Distance Learning Plan
    1. So much to talk about here
    2. Be asynchronous 
      1. Front load the content
      2. Elementary and Early Childhood – Choice boards
    3. How is Microsoft Teams?
    4. What do we think doesn’t work?
    5. Attendance?
  3. Great resource from Mark Stone and Elvin Aliyev in Azerbaijan 
    1. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-mRNFvwZ17xLmWRTkCoO7lPQakAW6SzBy7tZEm1cgdQ/edit
    2. Distance Learning Resource
  4. Video Conference Options
    1. Zoom
    2. Teams
    3. Google Hangouts Meet

Download it HERE

 

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Distance Learning ? – Check out these resources

I am sure many of you are teaching from somewhere other than your classrooms. If that is the case, then flexibility and leveraging other websites for services and content is something you are keenly aware of and possibly in search of. This list of resources has been bouncing around social media and thought I would share it here!

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Covid -19 – We’re closed :(

Like many other schools around the world we have closed due to the Coronavirus. In light of these circumstances I thought I would share our school’s Distance Learning Plan. I’ve embeded it below, but if you would like a link to the Google Doc please click here. From there you can make a copy.

Hopefully this plan can help you in this unusual time or even in the future. I’ve gone ahead and changed our schools name in the plan and have removed all names as well so there may be some parts that sound a little odd. Here is what you need to know about our school.

  • We are pre-school to grade 8
  • We are 1:1 devices from grades 5-8
  • We have an LMS and school portal for parents and students
  • We utilize G-Suite for Education
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