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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Fun Weekend DIY Science & Tech Projects

Three weeks ago I featured an episode of Sylvia's Super Awesome Maker Show in which she shows you how to make your own squishy circuits. For more fun and educational hands-on science and technology projects I also recommend checking out the 46 pages of projects listed on the projects section of Makezine.com.

Applications for Education
Whether you're looking for a fun learning activity to do at home with your kids (or by yourself like I do) or you're looking for a classroom project that will spark your students' creativity and imagination, Make Projects has something for you.

My Favorite Online File Conversion Tool

I'm frequently asked for recommendations for free file conversion tools. Often the request is for a tool that can handle video and audio conversion. The tool that I recommend nine times out of ten is Online-Convert.com.

Want to convert a video to a new format? Online-Convert does that. Do you need to convert an audio file to MP3 or WAV? No problem, Online-Convert has you covered. Need to convert a document to HTML from PDF? Online-ConVert does that too. Those are just a few of the many conversions that you can accomplish with Online-Convert. And you can do all of this without ever entering your email address, Facebook credentials, or any other form of registration.

One of the features of Online-ConVert that I really liked is found in the video conversion tool. Not only can you change the format of the video, but Online-Convert also allows you to specify the display dimensions of the video you're converting.

Applications for Education
Online-ConVert can be a great resource for teachers who work in schools that use multiple operating systems and need to make media available to all of their students and colleagues regardless of which computer(s) they use. Online-ConVert could also be useful when a student comes to you with a flashdrive containing a document that you cannot open. 

The Week in Review Featuring Norman the Newt

Good morning from Maine. This week's Week in Review post is brought to you by Norman the Newt. Norman appeared in the road near my mailbox on Wednesday afternoon. His coloring was so remarkable for an animal in Maine that I couldn't let him risk crossing the road on his own. I escorted him across the road and he's now living free somewhere near the stream that crosses my yard.

This week Google rolled-out a couple of major product updates for Google Docs and Google Search, as you might guess those were popular posts this week. If you missed those posts or you want to know what else was popular this week, check out the list of this week's most popular posts.

Here are the most popular posts of the week:
1. 7 Great Note-taking Tools for Teachers and Students
2. Map CIA World Factbook Data with KML Factbook
3. Google Introduces a New Knowledge Graph
4. Meetings.io - Web Conferencing without Registration
5. Search the Web Within Your Google Documents
6. An Interactive Explanation of Body Mass
7. View a Cleaner YouTube Without Installing Extensions


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LearnBoost provides a free online gradebook service for teachers.
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ABCya.com is a provider of free educational games for K-5.
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