Thursday, May 3, 2012

Copyright & Creative Commons Explained by Common Craft

Whenever I give a presentation or run a workshop about student video projects, I encourage the use of Creative Commons licensed media when it is not possible to create your own images and sounds. I often have to explain what Creative Commons licensing is and its benefits for consumers and producers of media. Recently, I remembered that Common Craft has a good explanation of Creative Commons licenses and what they mean for consumers and producers of media. I've embedded the video below.

Applications for Education
Copyright and Creative Commons Explained by Common Craft can be very useful in helping students understand why they cannot simply copy and paste whatever images they like that they find online.

For my Canadian friends the rules of copyright are different than they are for me in the United States. David Wees has a good presentation about Copyright for Canadian educators.

Common Craft videos can be viewed for free online but to download them or embed them you do have to be a subscriber to their service. In the interest of full disclosure I will tell you that I have an in-kind relationship with Common Craft which means that I have received a subscription in exchange for advising Common Craft on some product offerings.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Holy Fonts, Batman! Google Docs Gets 450+ New Fonts

According to their latest product blog post Google Docs, which is now a part of Google Drive, now has more than 450 fonts available to all users. To access all of these new fonts select "add fonts" from the bottom of the font selection menu that you've always used. Selecting "add fonts" will open  up a new menu in which you can mix and match fonts to your heart's content.

Provide Tech Help Remotely via Chrome Remote Desktop

Yesterday, I received an email with a question about how to remotely help students and teachers with the Chrome browser and with Chromebooks. Almost as if he was reading my mind, later in the day Fred Delvental shared a bookmark for the Chrome Remote Desktop App. Using the Chrome Remote Desktop App (still in beta) you can grant access to your computer to another person who also has the Chrome Remote Desktop App installed.

If you want to share your desktop just click "share now" and Chrome Remote Desktop will generate an access code to give to the person who will access your computer.

To access and control another person's computer you just need to enter the access code that they provide to you.

Applications for Education
The Chrome Remote Desktop app could be very helpful in aiding teachers and students when they get stuck trying to accomplish a task on their computers.

Nine Shel Silverstein Stories Animated

Last year I shared an animated video of Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree. Yesterday, through an Open Culture post, I discovered eight more short animated versions of Shel Silverstein's works. The videos can be found on the Shel Silverstein Books channel on YouTube. I've embedded Ickle Me, Pickle Me, Tickle Me Too! below.

Download Sound Effects from Sound Clips is a gallery of free sounds that I just learned about from Stephen Ransom. is a community-powered site on which you can upload sounds to share and download sounds shared by others. I was able to download sounds without registering on the site. To upload sounds you do need to register on the site. The video below gives a short overview of the site.

Applications for Education
If you're looking for a new source of sounds that your students can use for their multimedia projects, might just be what you're looking for. Remind students that they should credit the source of the sounds that they download and use in their projects.