Sunday, September 30, 2007

More Great Video and Audio for Instructors

KQED in northern California produces a large amount of content for public television and public radio.

They have made available a large number of video and audio segments available to the public. Curriculum guides are also available for instructors.

Check out the page for educators, and then click the TV/RADIO tab to begin exploring the media content.


Monday, September 24, 2007

Video Feedback with $100 Point and Shoot Camera

When critiquing work or collaborating, sometimes there is no good substitute for "face to face." However, with $100 point and shoot digital camera, you are pretty close.

In the following video clip - my best friend Chris Snow came up with some music for lyrics I had previously sent him. He's squashed down the video to about 4MB so that he could send it through email - but his $100 camera actually renders pretty good video and audio when uncompressed.

Consider this as a great way that you could give feedback to students on projects and papers. What about students using video for collaborations and peer critiques (as demonstrated here)?

Incorporating video technology into your online class does not need to be expensive or complicated.

Click on the picture to launch the video feedback file.

movie clip of Chris Snow

American Election Song
Lyrics by James Falkofske
Music by Chris Snow (

There are times when I question, what is right and what is wrong
But in this presidential election, I’m just prayin we can get along
There are too many problems, that aren’t just red or blue
Gotta find a uniter, a leader who can pull us through

   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca
   Open up your arms, and embrace the world
   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca

We all live on this one blue marble, just a fly speck in the universe
Global warming, ozone depletion, oil energy becomes a curse
Making babies, making buildings, making vehicles without restraint
We believe the patient is thriving, even though the pulse is getting faint

   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca
   Open up your eyes, and save the world
   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca

We no longer love our neighbors, we make no effort to connect as friends
And our children become strangers, watching T-V from birth to Depends
We build our private castles, becoming prisoners within the walls
If we need to talk to a fam-i-ly mem-ber, we grab the cell to place the call

   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca
   Open up your hearts, and love the world
   A-mer-i-ca, A-meri-ca, A-meri-ca

What will our great-grand-chil-dren, think of what we leave be-hind
Mortga-ging our whole exist-ence, acting as though we lost our mind
Instead of working sixty-hours, and falling asleep in-front of the television set
Reduce, re-use, recycle, and live within the pay we get

   America, America, let’s save the future, from our selves
   America, let’s lead the way again
   America, America, America
   Open up your minds to another way
   America, America, America

Friday, September 21, 2007

New Free Music Service with a 30-day "hitch"

There is a new online music service that is delivering music and video content for FREE, however, you are obligated to view their website (and their advertising) on a regular basis in order to keep the music playable.
Screenshot of the Spiral Frog website

As quoted from the SpiralFrog website:

How come there's no cost – what's the catch?
SpiralFrog is an ad-supported Web site. We sell ads on our pages to advertisers who want to talk to you. And we give the majority of that advertising revenue to the music publishers and labels who own the music you're downloading.
Most of our song and video downloads take a short, consistent amount of time to complete, during which we encourage you to keep discovering new areas of the Web site. Every page you visit allows us to serve more advertising, thus building the revenues we can pay to the content creators.
We do NOT ask you for a credit card. But we do ask for your time and attention. And, for that, we thank you…

You are required to log in every 30-days to keep your account active, and there are currently no limits to the number of songs you can download. If you fail to renew your membership every 30 days - your files become inaccessible after a total of 61 days. And -- SpiralFrog is sharing advertising revenues with music publishers -- so everyone wins (advertisers get verified exposure, publishers and musicians get paid, and users get free music and video).

This is a great concept that is likely to catch on with users.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

UPDATED - Video Prompter Macro Script for Word

NOTE: Someone sent a message asking "where does the macro go?"
In Microsoft Word 2003, go into TOOLS > MACROS > MACRO > EDIT (an existing macro) and then paste in the script to the new "computer coding" window that appears. Then do a FILE > SAVE on that window and close.

To run the script, you go back into TOOLS > MACROS > MACRO > (name of your macro) > RUN.

For more information, consult Microsoft's tutorial for Word 2003 at:

Here is the updated script I have for Word that serves as a Video Prompter.

The features now include:

  • Choose the scroll speed
  • Choose the font size
  • Automatically change to screen-width document display
  • Automatically change to white font on black background

Sub DownBit()
' Created by James Falkofske

Dim PauseTime, Start, Finish, TotalTime
Dim i, iMax As Integer
Dim i1, i2, i3, i4 As String
Dim fTiming, fFontSize As Double

i1 = InputBox("Enter number of Lines to Move", _
"Teleprompter Motion", 100)
iMax = CInt(i1)

i2 = InputBox("Enter Delay seconds between moves", _
"Movement Timing", 0.35)
fTiming = CDbl(i2)

i3 = InputBox("Enter the font size in points", "Font Size", 32)
fFontSize = CDbl(i3)

With Selection.PageSetup
.LineNumbering.Active = False
.Orientation = wdOrientPortrait
.TopMargin = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.BottomMargin = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.LeftMargin = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.RightMargin = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.Gutter = InchesToPoints(0)
.HeaderDistance = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.FooterDistance = InchesToPoints(0.5)
.PageWidth = InchesToPoints(8.5)
.PageHeight = InchesToPoints(11)
.VerticalAlignment = wdAlignVerticalTop
.TwoPagesOnOne = False
End With

ActiveDocument.Background.Fill.ForeColor.ObjectThemeColor = _
ActiveDocument.Background.Fill.ForeColor.TintAndShade = 0#
ActiveDocument.Background.Fill.Visible = msoTrue

Selection.Font.Size = fFontSize
Selection.HomeKey Unit:=wdStory
ActiveWindow.ActivePane.View.Zoom.PageFit = wdPageFitBestFit

For i = 1 To iMax
PauseTime = fTiming ' Set duration.
Start = Timer ' Set start time.
Do While Timer < Start + PauseTime
DoEvents ' Yield to other processes.
'Move down a small scroll increment
ActiveWindow.ActivePane.SmallScroll Down:=1
Next i
End Sub