SmartClassroom :: Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Presentation & Display: The Challenge of Next-Generation

By Will Craig

In this article we explore the state of LMS accessibility and provide both a broad review of LMS accessibility and the practice of site and tool design, and attend to the successes and challenges of LMS accessibility.

Changing Design Practices

For her presentation at a private liberal arts college, a presenter confidently pulled out her laptop and set it on the table. Grabbing the handy VGA cable on the podium, she pulled it across to the table and pushed it against the back of her computer, but it didn’t feel quite right. Examining the back of her laptop, she discovered that her new laptop did not have a familiar VGA output after all; it had a DVI connector. Tech folks and staffers ran here and there, trying to find an adaptor. In the end, the presentation began 15 minutes late.

At a city council meeting, a civil engineer plugged his laptop into the city council chamber’s presentation system. His computer image appeared on all of the council and audience monitors, but not on the 17-inch annotation monitor built into the podium. Alas, the monitor could not handle the wide-aspect image from his laptop.

An architect designed a videoconferencing room with the instructor standing at a podium in the center of the room, directly in front of two rear projection screens. Now, the instructor is blinded by one or the other of the projectors, has no nearby whiteboard space on which to work, and the camera in the back of the room cannot pick up any detail of the instructor’s face because of the brightly illuminated background. Because all the directional lights face the audience, there are only about 15 foot-candles of light on the instructor’s face (when the projectors aren’t blinding him), so the camera in the back of the room d'es a poor job of resolving facial detail for the distance education broadcast. How unfortunate.

These three examples, all true stories, highlight some of the greatest challenges in working with this latest generation of presentation and display systems. The same trends that are leading to the next generation of systems are creating hurdles to be overcome in current product usage. So, let’s look at the trends and how they will impact (and be affected by) current technologies, then let’s look ahead to the next generation of presentation and display, and what you will need to know to get there...

Read Complete Article | Send Comment | Back to top

News & Product Updates

House Approves Extension of Higher Education Act…Again

Every three months for the past year, Congress has approved a bill to temporarily extend the Higher Education Act...

Read more

Anti-Cheating Software Doubles as Peer Review System

A vendor of cheating-detection software claims the use of Turnitin reduced the incidence of plagiarism on campuses using the system to less than 14 percent of all work over the course of five years...

Read more

Senators Introduce Controversial Student Tracking Bill

Fourteen U.S. senators formally introduced a bill to authorize spending to set up databases to track college students’ educational progress and to produce more scientists and engineers...

Read more

Case Study

Storing Lots of Classroom Content at Fitchburg State

By Linda L. Briggs

Most of today’s splashiest new classroom technologies have at least one thing in common – they tend to require lots of storage space on the campus network. Audio/video presentations, the use of document cameras, and podcasting, for example, all call for large amounts of file space, both for storing the initial content, and for backup purposes.

At Fitchburg State College, a relatively small state college about 50 miles west of Boston, CIO Charlie Maner has dealt with the classroom content storage issue through a new iSCSI storage area network (SAN). The new system serves as the infrastructure for all campus technology projects, including Fitchburg’s aggressive podcasting initiative...

Read Complete Article | Send Comment | Back to top

Tech Notes

How Ready is Ready?

By Mikael Blaisdell

Hard to believe it is little more than a year ago that the U.S. higher education community faced a rude awakening in the form of Hurricane Katrina. As levees ruptured, winds raged, and flood levels rose, college and university CIOs and administrators discovered how quickly a campus can lose all access to telephone and cell phone communication, computers, and data. In such a disaster, students and faculty may be scattered locally or regionally with no way of contacting one another, communicating their status, or knowing if the campus is safe or imperiled. E-mail and Web sites may be down, and phones may be inoperable. Communication among administration, faculty, students, and their families can be lost in a heartbeat, just when the need for a source of reliable information is greatest. And administrative computing resources can come to an abrupt halt, meaning no expediting of services, no payrolls, bills paid, or accounts received. Katrina proved it could happen. Now, a year later, how are schools preparing for the possibility of other catastrophic events?... (Campus Technology)

Read Complete Article | Send Comment | Back to top

Reader Response

We want to hear from you!

What d'es "smart" classroom technology mean to your campus? Share your viewpoint, experiences, and questions with your peers by writing to us at

Send Comment | Back to top

comments powered by Disqus

Campus Technology News

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.