In case you haven’t heard there is a new version of Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro. "Connect" is a cornerstone of Adobe’s K-12 and higher education solutions for web conferencing, online collaboration, and e-learning. Previously, in a meeting room Share pod you were able to upload and deliver SWF, JPEG, MP3, FLV, and PPT content. Support for PPTX (Microsoft PowerPoint 2007 and later) was spotty and if you wanted to share other types of files – say a Word document or a PDF file – you had to share your desktop.
Good news! The current version of "Connect" supports both PPTX and PDF in a Share pod. Since you can convert pretty much any file type to PDF, you can now upload and share it live or make it available on-demand in a meeting room. When you share a PDF you can flip though multiple pages, zoom in/out, move around within a magnified document, rotate, and even initiate a Whiteboard session using the file as a backdrop.
Every navigation option you choose within the shared PDF will be synchronized on attendees’ screens. What’s even better is that you can "unsynch" the file and attendees can interact with it independently on their computers. They even have the option to download the PDF locally to their computer. One last thing – the PDF files you share will not only maintain visual fidelity, but also preserve any web hyperlinks that were added.
We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog like to think of ourselves as amateur photographers (except for Rick—who is a real photographer, but the rest of us try to keep up). We are all VERY excited bout the next release of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom—version 3 BETA, and you can see it yourself on Adobe labs: (link to the Labs Lightroom 3 BETA site)
Some of the new features included for you to play with in the Lightroom 3 beta are:
Brand new performance architecture, building for the future of growing image libraries
State-of-the-art noise reduction to help you perfect your high ISO shots
Watermarking tool that helps you customize and protect your images with ease
Portable sharable slide shows—with audio—designed to give you more flexibility and impact on how you choose to share your images, you can now save and export your slide shows as videos and include audio
Flexible customizable print package creation so your print package layouts are all your own
Film grain simulation tool for enhancing your images to look as gritty as you want
New import handling designed to make importing streamlined and easy
More flexible online publishing options so you can post your images online to certain online photo sharing sites directly from inside Lightroom 3 beta
Read on for more resources and information about the next release of one of our Adobe favorites:
If you’ve never visited Adobe TV before or haven’t been back for awhile, I highly suggest checking it out. Adobe TV is your “one stop shop” for free Adobe tutorials, demos, tips & tricks, and general design inspiration. There are various channels which are comprised of different programs, each with multiple episodes (short videos) to choose from – most are less than 5 minutes in length.
We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog use this stuff all time. Attend tomorrow’s eSeminar to find out how you might:
Hear how Acrobat.com can make you more collaborative from the visionary behind the product. Webinar: Wed, 6/24, 12-1 pm PDT
Meet Erik Larson the visionary leader behind Acrobat.com. We at Adobe have embraced Acrobat.com because it makes us more competitive and just makes work more enjoyable. Erik will share how Acrobat.com provides a fundamentally different and better way to work through stories and real-world examples. Come hear about the future of Acrobat.com and the vision behind the product. This will be an interactive session; Bring your questions and thoughts.
Adobe Captivate 4 has a new feature called “Widgets” which are a collection of Flash-created SWF files that you can add to your projects. Captivate ships with a bunch of them, and one of them in particular—the Certificate widget—is pretty fun. With it, you can offer a certificate to someone who passes a quiz you have created. There is even a button to print the certificate so you can proudly display your certificate of completion. We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog built one called the Certificator, and you can see it in action by clicking the following link (link to the certificator: http://se.adobe.acrobat.com/certficator/). To learn more about how this was created, grab the Captivate project files, and start learning how to create your own widgets, read on. . .
One of the goals of the Adobe Education Technologies blog is to provide access to Adobe resources in a concise form. Adobe.com has many great resources to help education IT departments deploy Adobe Creative Suite 4 across their enterprise, yet this information is not consolidated. So here you go:
Adobe, in partnership with Knowledge Network Solutions (KNS), is offering expert, instructor-led workshops that focus on integration of Adobe tools into all academic curriculum. The curriculum integration workshops include the use of Adobe Creative Suite and Adobe Digital School Collection software for innovative teaching of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) topics as they relate across the academic curriculum. A staff development workshop addresses the use of Adobe Acrobat Connect and Adobe Presenter software to create and deliver your own rich, interactive staff development to widely dispersed educators. To learn more about this new offer along with terms and conditions please review our professional development web page and datasheet.
There is a storm brewing, folks, and it isn’t going to just blow over. As fuel prices (here in the US anyway) start the uphill, summer climb, budgets for travel sink lower, and the amount of work we need to accomplish at very best stays the same, we need to figure out how to do our jobs while working with our colleagues around campus or around the globe. We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog have been asked to do more of our work from home, and we love it! However, it is difficult to confer and present with colleagues because we often need to edit the presentation together, yet there is no way to justify the trip across the country to do so. When the economy turns around, among the strewn bits of jetsam that any storm leaves, we need to find a better ways to work corroboratively, pick them up, and use them make our work more efficient in any economy.
Adobe is noticing this along with everyone else—and we are doing something about it. The latest effort has me floored. It’s called Adobe Presentations and it’s a true software as a service (SaaS) product. If you have ever worked with PowerPoint or Keynote, then you will know what it does. However, it’s the “how-it-does-it” that has us floored. First off, you can give it a spin by going to the new labs site of Acrobat.com. Link to Adobe Presentations. Take a look at the Welcome presentation sample that you can use to get started (this a PDF exported from that presentation and uploaded to SHARE):
However, to understand how this will become a new port in the coming storm, read on.
We here at the Adobe Education Technologies blog are happy to announce an update to the Closed Captioning Pod that is freely available at the Connect Exchange on Adobe.com (link to the exchange). The Closed Captioning Pod now offers people who want to use freelancers with the WGBH CaptionKeeper software to provide line-21 caption data to the pod. Get the details and grab the pod here: Link to the pod page.
OK. Let’s face it. Money is in short supply. As we face one of the most significant economic challenges we as a country have ever faced, we need to look beyond hoping things get better so we can just get back to business as usual. Moving to electronic workflows seems like an attractive option, but the key is your workflow–not just the fact that you are using something electronic. Remember, electrons cost money and use power as you corral them for your use. Have a look at the enterprise sustainabililty white paper co-produced by the Institute for Sustainable Communication. Link to the white-paper landing page.