Ok, the Raspberry Pi 3 just keeps getting better … especially for kids.
One of the latest updates along with the PIXEL user interface is the new update that added the Chromium browser AND an Adobe Flash Player plugin! This is better than using Iceweasel which was changed to Firefox recently. The resulting change drives the processor to a bit above 50% when playing videos, but the bang you get out of these new features is awesome. Also notice you can easily switch from HDMI or Analog Audio output with the right mouse click on the speaker icon in the system tray.
I tried out the new combinations with YouTube and Starfall (my kids loved this site growing up).
If you want the flash components to automatically start you need to check this box on the browser plugins setting page, otherwise you have to right mouse click on the flash puzzle icon and say run every time flash is used.
Starfall.com interface below … I’m thinking about how our local Montessori school can use some Raspberry Pi 3 computers to start teaching keyboarding and mousing skills earlier since almost all standardized school testing requires computer proficiency now.
I’ve heard some studies say that one of the most important activities you can do with your children is to read to them.
Well, I’ve been traveling quite a bit for work lately,and as of this writing I’m averaging about 2 weeks of work travel a month now. That’s about 8 evenings a month I don’t get to read to my kids (at least mom picks up the slack when I’m not home).
Through the use of available recording technology, here is a little something a traveling parent can do so your child can hear you reading to them whenever you are on travel (or when they want to hear your voice). The cost is minimal and there are numerous positive benefits. I did this for my boys so they could hear me reading to them whenever they wish.
Purchase a headset to connect to your laptop or computer (analog or USB is good, see my AV gear page)
Install & Use some audio recording software to record your voice (I use Audacity)
Read your children’s favorite books and record the audio (a WAV file would be nice to input to the Levelator)
Make a MP3 from the recorded and leveled audio.
Purchase a set of computer speakers (about $12) and a low end MP3 player (about $28), both pictured above
Put your recorded MP3 “audiobooks” on the MP3 player
Put the speakers and MP3 player and speakers in your child’s room where they read
Show your child how to select the audio for a book they want to read
Press play and let them read along with the audio (or just listen)
I know this in no way substitutes for real in -person reading with your child (so much more is communicated to your child through non-verbal language and touch), but it’s a great alternative for the traveling parent to invest some up-front time recording to allow your child to hear your voice later. My little $40 investment in each of my boys will have future benefits that can’t be measured.
Here’s a small audio sample of a book I recorded so my kids can play and read along when I’m away from home.
PodCampAZ 2010 was a great event with many people wanting to share their learning & experiences. Well worth the effort to travel to Phoenix from Albuquerque. Even though there were less people this year, I renewed many friendships from last year and made many new ones as well.
This year I had the great opportunity to “bask in the awesomeness” of the following speakers:
Chris Hewitt – Forget the Experts…
Derek Neighbors – New Media is a Connection Point not a End Point
Video Genius Panel – Izzy, Clintus, Dave, & Jacqui
Jeremy Vaught – Zero to Hero
Israel Hyman (Izzy) – How to make a living as a full time podcaster
WordPress SEO Genius Panel – Chuck, Charlene, & Sam
Kevin Kitteridge – Do It Live!
Some of the more important ideas that I walked away with were:
Digital interactions can not replace In Real Life interactions
A 3 product approach to developing a viable information product based business
A couple new WordPress/SEO plugins to take a look at
I also had the opportunity to jump in, on the last day, and present what I wanted to share with regard to Media & Time Shifted Learning in a Corporation. The presentation went well, very informal as usual with a couple tangents based on questions. I have re-recorded the content, I posted it in video format in case you happen to have missed the session or did not attend the conference. Just a reminder, these are my opinions and are not opinions of my employer.
Here is the link to the downloadable MP4 video file, it’s 22 minutes long and about 34 MB in size and can be played with the Apple QuickTime Player.
In summary, a great weekend, looking forward to what next year will bring.
One of the challenges of recording any kind of content (video or audio) to be distributed on the internet or a intranet is getting a good natural sounding “take”.
I came across this nice Camtasia audio article by Lon Naylor on capturing multiple attempts of the same audio to get a really natural “take” to be mixed or added to a longer audio sequence later. The included youtube video is a great example of this (I’ve also included this video below). The video also shows great microphone and pop filter placement.
This makes a lot of sense, once a person reads a script and gets comfortable with the content or phrase, repeating it will sound more natural the next time (also any nuances or word emphasis would be worked out by hearing yourself). By the 3rd attempt it should sound good.
Thanks for the article and pointer to the youtube video Lon.
In my Audio & Video learning over the years, I discovered this little nugget to improve audio quality when recording video. I’ve only recently remembered to create a video on it.
Here is my setup: Sony HDR-SR11 HD video camera with a 1/8 microphone input, an unbalanced lapel microphone with a 1/8 mono connector, & the AC/DC power cable for the camera. This is a general problem with unbalanced microphones and when transformers are in close proximity. Take a listen to the video to see the improvement in action.
* For better video & audio quality watch the 720p HD version.