Ed News Ticker #9
Parents addicted to Spying on their Kids
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Google Hangouts on Air for everyone
Today we’re excited to launch Hangouts On Air to Google+ users worldwide. So if you have something to say—as an aspiring artist, a global celebrity, or a concerned citizen—you can now go live in front of a global audience. With just a few clicks, you’ll be able to:
- Broadcast publicly. By checking “Enable Hangouts On Air,” you can broadcast your live hangout—from the Google+ stream, your YouTube channel or your website—to the entire world.
- See how many viewers you’ve got. During your broadcast, you can look inside the hangout to see how many people are watching live.
- Record and re-share. Once you’re off the air, we’ll upload a public recording to your YouTube channel, and to your original Google+ post. This way it’s easy to share and discuss your broadcast after it’s over.
Text Message is 20 years old, 4 billion people use it
Two-thirds of the world’s population – that’s over 4 billion people – have access to it because that’s the number of people who have mobile phones, and even the cheapest, clunkiest handset can send SMS messages. It’s had a much bigger impact on people’s lives than anything dreamed up in Silicon Valley.
As the author of the post John Naugthon points out: We need to stop being dazzled by the tech sensation du jour (Facebook, Twitter, Angry Birds, OMGPOP etc) and focus instead on something mundane that really works, reaches everyone, provides valuable services for poor people, exploits nobody and is based on a sustainable business model.
Source: The Guardian
Kinect used for holographic 3D video conferencing
A team at Kingston, Ontario’s Queen’s University is developing a device called a Telepod that replaces video chat with 3D holograms. The system consists of a 1.8-meter-tall cylinder with six Microsoft Kinect cameras placed around the top, along with a 3D projector inside. While talking, each person stands in front of their own Telepod, which is able to capture and track their movements in three-dimensions — the result is a 3D holographic image projected inside of the cylinder that you can walk around and view from the back and side.
Source: The Verge
KinderTown’s Educational App Store For Parents Doubles Users, Adds Apps For Bigger Kids
The service will bump up its supported age range from 3-6 to include children ages 7 and 8 as well. To kick off the launch, 125 new apps aimed at older children have been added to service, and more will be added every week.
The company is also starting to see some growth, doubling the total number of users in April. In fact, KinderTown reports that it added more users in April than it did in the five previous months combined.
Returning users also increased by 300% during this time, KinderTown CEO (and DreamIt Ventures co-founder) Steve Welch says.
DocTrackr lets you control your documents — wherever they are
DocTrackr’s new service, which lets users retain control of Word, Excel, PDF or other documents even when they’ve been emailed to others or put into cloud storage.
“You can even destroy your digital documents,” DocTrackr CEO Clement Cazalot said Thursday at TechStars Boston Demo Day. Cazalot, who leapt onstage as the theme from Mission Impossible played, said the company logged $150,000 in revenue last year (“more than Instagram.”) from clients including Bouygues, the giant French contractor and SCNF, the company behind France’s high-speed railway. More than 80,000 customers are using the beta.
Move to Outsource Teacher Licensing Process Draws Protest
Sixty-seven of the 68 students studying to be teachers at the middle and high school levels at the Amherst campus are protesting a new national licensure procedure being developed by Stanford University with the education company Pearson.
The UMass students say that their professors and the classroom teachers who observe them for six months in real school settings can do a better job judging their skills than a corporation that has never seen them.
They have refused to send Pearson two 10-minute videos of themselves teaching, as well as a 40-page take-home test, requirements of an assessment that will soon be necessary for licensure in several states.
Source: New York Times
Car kills Univ. of Colorado-Boulder’s famed ‘falling bear’
A black bear made famous when it tumbled tranquilized from a tree on the University of Colorado-Boulder campus last week has been struck and killed by cars in a wilderness area, The Daily Camera reports.
The 280-pound “falling bear” had been relocated to the more remote area about 50 miles west of Boulder.
Source: USA Today
Obama pulls out all stops on campuses to reclaim support
After winning the youth vote in 2008 by nearly 2-to-1, the Obama campaign has doubled down on efforts to expand the base of young voters who were key to propelling the president to the White House.
Obama holds a commanding 64%-29% lead over Romney among registered voters ages 18-29, according to a Gallup Poll released last week. But the same poll found only 56% of young voters said they will “definitely” vote — a lower rate than any other age group.
Source: USA Today
A Video Game Where Players Help Real Doctors Diagnose Malaria
University of California researchers have developed a free, Internet-based pattern recognition game based on images of real life blood cells. Researchers hope the online tool will cut down the amount of time it now takes to distinguish infected red blood cells from healthy ones.
So far, untrained volunteers at UCLA have managed to diagnose malarial blood cells with about as much accuracy as a trained pathologist, according to the researchers. With a 1.25 percent variation in accuracy compared with a real health professional, crowdsourcing a way toward better malaria treatment seems like a realistic future.
Source: The Atlantic
Are Parents Addicted To Spying On Their Kids?
Safely, a company that provides monitoring software that parents can put on their kids’ phones, did an analysis of how often parents using their product around the country check their children’s whereabouts. Most parents using their software geolocate their kids about 100 times a month. But in a small town in Missouri, extreme users check their kids’ location 7500 times per month. Maybe it’s time to change the motto there from The Show Me State to the Show Me Where You Are State. Those parents are tracking their kids 250 times per day. Given that kids are probably out of their parents’ sight for 10 hours at most per day, that’s 25 times an hour.
From May 7 through May 31, students, former students and parents are invited to visit the Cards For Teachers site and send digital thank-you notes to teachers and school staff who have made a difference in their lives. The messages will be displayed on the Cards For Teachers virtual wall of thanks, and emailed to the deserving educator with a digital badge they can display with pride on Pinterest and other social media outlets. From those who are recognized, StudyBlue will randomly select 300 educators to receive a gift card for a free latte. To thank a teacher who has made a difference in your life, visit cardsforteachers.studyblue.com.