Friday, January 28, 2005

Florida Educational Technology Conference 2005

We were finally able to organize some of our teachers and provide them with time to work on webpages. For the most part, Angelfire was the program utilized for our teachers. This is a free, internet based site which allows users to use templates to create their pages or enter their own html code. Three of us took advantage of a free offer by School Fusion and signed up for their program. These options allowed teachers to design their classroom webpages and experience success almost immediately. It is wonderful to see teachers actively engaged with our technology. Once they had webpages up, they couldn't wait to grab digital cameras and start posting photos.

One of the main reasons we were attending FETC in Orlando was to meet up with ISTE and make a presentation about the plan we originated back in June. Although we were looking forward to meeting up with members of the cohort we formed in June, our group was the only one able to attend FETC and make a presentation. We had been hit hard by the hurricanes, but so were many other members of the cohort we joined in New Orleans.

Our presentation went well and we got alot of laughs. This was thanks to the "Geek" of our team who is wonderful when speaking in front of others. Her grasp of the English language and its idiosyncrasies amazes me, while creating a wonderful atmosphere for listeners.

While there, we felt it was important to attend sessions on handhelds as well as talk to promoters at the exhibit hall. We wanted to speak to representatives of Pocket PC's to learn more about the products offered and the specifics of items that went with them. While in the exhibit hall, we went to the Palm One area to discuss our concerns about the memory loss on battery discharge. To our surprise, we learned that this problem had been taken care of in the newest family of Palm OS handhelds that were just out on the market. The representative introduced us to the Tungsten T5 handheld and explained about its new memory system.

Needless to say, the "willow" was bending in yet another wind that was blowing. On the drive back to our town on the east coast of Florida, we discussed the new and improved Palm OS, specifically in the Tungsten T5 model.

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