by Megan - Thursday, September 26, 2013 - Permalink
Wired Educator, the go-to source for tips on the latest and greatest software in the educational realm, is getting back into the swing of things now that school is back in session. They are giving educators the inside scoop on the best school-friendly software to use for the 2013-24 school year, and luckily for us, Boinx is on the list! Click on over to their full “Back to School with Boinx” post, or read on for a quick synopsis of the post.
Wired Educator uses Mouseposé (more info) for classroom and auditorium presentations. Mouseposé allows the user to focus on a specific part of a photo, dimming the rest of the screen and putting a spotlight on the main feature. “If I am doing any type of demo, I am using Mouseposé,” Wired Educator says. “It is better than any other similar program. Want your presentation to look great and be effective? This is it!”
They also use iStopMotion (more info) to create memorable video introductions and highlights. “iStopMotion is an amazing stop motion animation application that is easy to use,” says Wired Educator. “To get my students’ and audience’s attention, I will create a short iStopMotion animation introduction or segment to spice up what I am talking about. You can actually see the wonder on people’s faces as it plays.” Wired Educator’s students use iStopMotion with their digital storytelling productions, and they come out fantastic!
“Boinx’s FotoMagico 4 (more info) makes all the pictures I take during the school year look like the most professional slideshow you have ever seen,” Wired Educator says on the popular media-showcasing app. Until they demoed the program, they didn’t think they needed a new tool for slideshows at school. But after seeing FotoMagico’s high tech transitions, sound, and amazing customizations, Wired Educator had one word: “Wow!” I guess there really is nothing better to keep a student’s attention than technology!
Wired Educator’s highest praise goes to BoinxTV (more info), the complete studio video broadcaster. They say that it’s a must-have software for schools, and that “it brings together all of the skills students are learning in English, math, and school in general to make something powerful – a professional production for your school.” Wired Educator suggests using BoinxTV for creating a school television program, educational webcasts, professional video of live events, and more. “BoinxTV makes your videos look AWESOME and the user interface makes it easy to use … have your school purchase this software and put it to use. It pays for itself with the first production.”
Looking for some ideas to add Boinx to your back to school lineup? Try these fun projects in the classroom to give your students a fresh take on new subjects.
• Use iStopMotion to create an educational stop motion film. Have your students animate processes in the subjects they’re learning, such as photosynthesis, a scenario that explains a math problem, a scene from a history book, or character development in an English novel.
• Have your students prepare a presentation of their summer adventures with FotoMagico. Learning a new language? Students can include titles in the language they’re learning and give the FotoMagico presentation in that language as well. Additional Boinx apps such as Mouseposé might even help the other students see the focus of the presentation better.
• Use BoinxTV to put on a student production. Students can put together a news report outlining a notable scene from a book as if it were happening present day or they can act out that scene themselves and broadcast it to their peers! BoinxTV is a great way for students to learn how to communicate effectively, work together, storyboard, and much more. The possibilities are virtually endless!
Do you have another idea that’s not on the list, or that you’ve tried out in the classroom with success? Let us know, and share your projects! Plus, check out the video above from the Chilmark School in Martha’s Vineyard to find out how they are using iStopMotion for iPad to not only teach children about film literacy, but the serious issue of bullying and how to stop it.
by Megan - Monday, September 23, 2013 - Permalink
Unless you've been taking a digital hiatus, you're probably aware of Apple's recent big announcements, including exciting new updates for iPhone users worldwide. Introducing the iPhone 5S, iPhone 5C, and iOS 7: two brand-new phones and an improved operating system that aim to better everything we once knew about the smartphone. Here's everything you need to know about the latest additions to the Apple family.
The iPhone 5S has a new design that makes it 7.6 millimeters thin and 112 grams light, an incredible 18% thinner and 20% lighter than the iPhone 4S.
The most groundbreaking new feature of the iPhone 5S is the new touch identification passcode, located right on the home button. The surface of the button reads your fingerprint using a capacitive touch center so only you can unlock your iPhone.
It also boasts faster performance and graphics through its new coprocessor, A7 and M7. The A7 chip is designed around 64-bit architecture; it’s the first smartphone to ever incorporate such desktop-class processing power. The M7 chip makes the iPhone 5S even more efficient by offloading work from the A7 chip to result in using significantly less power, sparing battery life. In all, the new processing system makes the iPhone 5S up to 2x faster than the previous generation. That means it has 40x faster CPU and 56x faster GPU than the original iPhone. Incredible!
A 15% larger sensor has also been added to the camera. This allows the individual pixels of a picture to become larger, making for a clearer picture. The aperture has been increased to ƒ/2.2, giving the iPhone 5S 33% greater light sensitivity. Also a new addition, True Tone flash figures out exactly how much light your shot needs to give your picture the greatest quality yet. And for the first time, you can now shoot videos in slow motion.
The new iPhone 5S also comes with a fitted leather case that allows for easy access of the phone’s outer buttons. It’s available in six colors, infused in the leather with pigment-rich dye.
Apple is also releasing the iPhone 5C, a colorful addition to the iPhone family. The phone is a simpler version of the iPhone 5S that comes in five vibrant colors: green, blue, yellow, pink, and white. It’s made of sturdy plastic reinforced with steel that also acts as an antenna. Both the phone itself and the screen wallpaper are customized perfectly for those wishing to give their most-used accessory an exciting new look.
The new iOS 7 operating system has been simplified, removing any clutter and unnecessary ornamentation. This allows for the user to focus on what matters the most: their content. Check out some examples of the new interface here.
So, what does all this mean for Boinx? You’ll just have to wait and see!
by Megan - Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - Permalink
Brian Kolm first used iStopMotion in 2005 at the Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek, California, for an event around one of their exhibits. An artist, designer, and educator, Brian selected iStopMotion because it was simple enough to use with kids in 2005. Since then, the program has been a constant in his life. He uses it to educate both adults and children at different events.
More recently, Brian has used iStopMotion at the Cartoon Boot Camps at the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, California. He has taught multiple classes in both pencil testing and stop-motion. These camps are a week-long art extravaganza where children can learn how to create unique forms of art. Brian’s most recent stop-motion class taught kids about time-lapse, paper cut-outs, puppets and objects, and of course, the basics of telling a simple story so a stop-motion idea can come to life. Take a look at what the students created with iStopMotion in 2012 above!
Brian also works with whiteboard stop-motion animation, a unique and mind-blowing take on the art form. The stop-motion video starts with a bit of animation drawn by an artist on a whiteboard, and as each new artist contributes with their own drawings, a sequence of moving whiteboard creations is formed. Check out a whiteboard stop-motion animation that Brian worked on with iStopMotion at the CAM-JAM artist events at the Cartoon Art Museum here!
During his second Paper Monster Party in May, Brian used iStopMotion’s iPad version for the first time. Artists of all levels and ages got to customize paper toys into monsters or superheroes, the theme in honor of the Superman 75th anniversary exhibit at the Museum. The creations were then animated in stop-motion form, resulting in a colorful, fun video packed with frighteningly creative monsters and big, buff, papery superheroes. Find out who wins the battle … check out the iStopMotion video!
Find out more about Brian Kolm and his extensive animation skills at his website, atomicbearpress.com. Be sure to take a look at his daily drawings, and get inspired!
by Megan - Monday, September 09, 2013 - Permalink
With hundreds of photos and videos saved in your iPhone or iPad’s media library, it’s likely that, when showing these images to a specific group, there are many files you’d like to keep out of the presentation. Enter PhotoPresenter for iOS, a brand new app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch from Boinx Software. And from now until September 15th, PhotoPresenter for iOS is on sale for just 99 cents, 50% off of its original cost of $1.99.
PhotoPresenter is perfect for the ad hoc show and tell session. Users need only to hook an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to an HDTV set or a projector with HDMI or VGA, or via AirPlay. They then browse the device’s photo library to find the media they want to display and click on the image or video to display it on the second screen. The audience sees only the image or video selected - nothing else - keeping the presenter’s personal media personal. Presenters can jump freely between media files, allowing them to show images on the fly without being restricted to any particular order. Have multiple images of the same subject matter and want to select the best one? There’s a preview mode for that.
PhotoPresenter for iOS is an app that can be used in many different scenarios. Regardless of whether it’s used for professional or personal reasons, it’s a great app many will find useful. Some hypothetical situations include:
• You recently went on a great holiday with your closest friends, and your grandparents would like to see some of the photos you took of the beautiful location. There were certainly some photos you’d prefer they didn’t see.
• You are showing your portfolio to a client or potential employer. You’ll need to choose specific photos and/or videos for them to view, and want to put your very best work on display.
• Imagine working with your team on creative concepts. An enthusiastic discussion keeps you jumping back and forth from one media file to the other; not being limited to a specific slideshow order is an invaluable creative tool that helps keep the discussion and ideas flowing.
Visit the FAQ page to learn more about PhotoPresenter for iOS. Have some awesome ideas for how Boinx can continue to develop this app to be its very finest? Simply fill out this short survey.
PhotoPresenter for iOS - Special Pricing for a Limited Time Only!
PhotoPresenter for iOS is available now for just 0.99 USD on the App Store; promotional pricing ends September 15, 2013, when the app will return to its regular retail price of 1.99 USD.
by Megan - Thursday, September 05, 2013 - Permalink
For Tim Ziegler, educating people on animation through the use of iStopMotion has become an enjoyable hobby. Tim has worked in the fields of online journalism and education since the mid-90s, and since then, he’s found that iStopMotion is the best program to suit his educational project needs.
“A friend recommended it,” he says about the animation program. “He said it was the best one. I agree … I’ve tried a lot of them.”
Recently, Tim has used iStopMotion to create all kinds of animations, including building a 3D printer, for his educational teachings. He has done animation projects at two Maker Faires, an event created by Make Magazine to "celebrate arts, crafts, engineering, science projects and the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) mindset." About 250 people participated in each event.
Tim picked up on the positive initial responses from all age groups involved. “The kids just jumped right in and used it without saying anything,” he says. “A lot of the adults commented on how easy it was to use, how cool it is … I think a lot of them had never used a program like this before. They were surprised at how intuitively useful the onion-skinning is.” Tim thinks that it’s especially fun to show the kids how moving pictures work by creating animations in iStopMotion. He has learned that most never give it much thought until they make their first animation, and then the light bulb in their head goes off. Many of the kids at the Maker Faires stayed at Tim’s stations for a long time to continue crafting their own animations.
On using animation techniques like stop motion animation for educational purposes, Tim thinks it’s wonderful. He comments particularly that time-lapses can be really helpful in documenting educational projects. He also notes that instructional whiteboard animations have great appeal to children, especially to his 11-year-old son. “[They’re] a great way to have kids digest and truly understand ideas well enough to spit them back out as a drawn story … it gives them creative satisfaction,” Tim remarks. “Having to re-tell what you’ve learned is the best way to truly store new knowledge.”
With Tim’s guidance, over 100 new Maker Faire animators were able to create their own stop motion art using iStopMotion for iPad. Check out some of the animations above!