Friday, March 28, 2008

The Future of Healthcare According to Microsoft

While the following video is far from anything we're using right now, it's an interesting view into Microsoft's version of the future of healthcare.

Posted at 02:23PM Mar 28, 2008 by bdigman in Tips & Tricks

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The Jing Project

One of the first problems many online instructors run up against when beginning to teach web-based curriculum is how to convey processes or instructions to students and ensure that their directions are as clear as possible. It's inevitable that conveying directions by text can be cumbersome and nothing is more frustrating than spending too much time typing messages that are misunderstood in the end.

One great remedy for this problem is screencasting. Screencasting involves using a screen capture program to record events on your computer and saving them for playback by others. This process allows instructors to walkthrough a series of directions while their action and narration is automatically recorded for students to playback. These files, once recorded, can be stored in online classes for download or uploaded to various screencasting sites for streaming playback.

By far, one of the simplest and most user-friendly screen capture tools currently available is the Jing Project. This project was created by TechSmith, a company responsible for other screencasting technologies, most notably Camtasia. Using the Jing Project, an instructor can download a small program that runs on their computer in the form of a small, floating sun that resides on their desktop in a very unobtrusive manner, allowing easy access at any time to create a screen capture. In just a few clicks, a user can create, save and publish a screencast for student use.

In addition to easy creation, the Jing Project also provides users with free space on where screencasts can be stored and streamed to viewers in a lightweight, flash-based form that simplifies the process of getting a screen capture from your screen to theirs. Additional features include the ability to create still or video screencasts and to record audio along with video. In the case of still captures, users can edit the images to include markers and notes for easy instruction.

For more information, check out the Jing Project's website, Frequently Asked Questions, and blog.

Posted at 12:29PM Mar 26, 2008 by bdigman in "Tools of the Trade"

Introducing "Tools of the Trade"

In an effort to broaden the palette of instructors and introduce some of the great educational tools out there, we'd like to introduce the Tools of the Trade feature of our blog. It's often a huge pain to sort through the many web apps and programs floating around the web to discern what is useful and safe to use and what is a waste of time and possibly harmful to your computer. Hopefully, this feature of the TLT blog will serve as a bit of a guide that will improve your courses and allow you to focus on the more important aspects of instruction.

While the tools we discuss can be useful and improve the educational experience for both faculty and students, we do understand that they won't be everyone's "cup of tea." While we will try to focus on simple, easy-to-use programs, some users may find them too complex for day-to-day use or may simply not have the time to test and learn new technology. This feature is simply guide to what's available and should be utilized by faculty who feel comfortable exploring technology independently and want to keep on the forefront of technology in education. For these reasons, KUMC does not provide technical support for these software initiatives unless otherwise noted.

Posted at 11:36AM Mar 26, 2008 by bdigman

Friday, March 21, 2008

Chalk Version 3.0

All University of Kansas Medical Center users who log in to Chalk will soon notice a new look as the online compliance training system moves to version 3.0.

Some of the major features users will notice as a part of this upgrade are:

  • Integration with CAS, the KUMC Central Authentication Server.
  • A new look and feel designed to improve consistency with other KUMC web resources.
  • New tabs to let you track in-person training and form signoffs.

Preview the new site today at

Posted at 02:17PM Mar 21, 2008 by pwilhauk

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Ten Habits of Highly Effectively Online Moderators

If you missed the live webinar on "Ten Habits of Highly Effectively Online Moderators", a recorded archive of the session is now available at:

Posted at 06:48AM Mar 01, 2008 by dantonacci