Web/Tech Feed

Wish List: Clear Touch Interactive Board

I love this board!


Because of my job, I attended the FAMIS (Florida Association of Management Information Systems) Conference in Tallahassee in June of this year. At this conference, information is shared regarding information technology and issues affecting K-12 public schools throughout the State of Florida. The conference agenda included the typical informational sessions spearheaded by Florida Department of Education staff and offerings by several vendor of technology products. Since I embrace being a technology gadget geek, I was immediately drawn to the Clear Touch Interactive Board prominently staged at the entrance to the hospitality area. 

On the upper left portion of the screen was the MC Hammer video “Don’t Touch This”. The rest of the space was available to write… draw…and do a number of creative things. It was awesome. When the MC Hammer video was followed by a full screen video of scenes from Australia and other countries, the potential for out-of-the-box teaching and learning was apparent and overwhelming. I could envision children in some of the most economically challenged areas in my community being exposed to virtual travel around the world as well as an array of cultural activities. Education liberates minds and transforms lives. One of the things I liked most about this board was that it was self-contained; there was no separate projector as in other interactive boards I’ve used. 

Unfortunately I didn’t take a picture or record a video of the presentation. Quite frankly, the videos of the unit I’ve seen on the web, even the company’s website, don’t do it any justice. Unless the technology improves significantly over the next two years, when I retire, I will definitely purchase a Clear Touch for use with my non-profit organizations and community activities.

If you have any questions about the Clear Touch Interactive Board, contact Keone Trask at [email protected]




Venus and Serena in New iPhone Ad [VIDEO]

Ok, all my friends know I am totally geeked when it comes to Apple products. I was a Crackberry addict for many years and a shift due to the convenience of accessing my work emails on the iPhone and I've not looked back at BlackBerry phones. Sorry, RIM.

I learned quickly not to get too attached or go ga-ga over my Apple devices. As soon as I purchased one, a newer version would be released shortly thereafter. Thus far I've resisted the urge to purchase each iteration of the iPhone, iPad, iPod, etc. It's difficult not to but I have. I really want the iPhone 5 but the difference in the screen size and better screen resolution are not enough to make me upgrade my iPhone 4S. I've updated the operating system software and I hope that holds me until May or June when the iPhone 5S or iPhone 6 is rumored to be released.

Then I saw this really cool iPhone 5 commercial starring the Williams sisters - Venus and Serena. I continue to remind myself that May and June are just arround the corner and I can wait for the new iPhone. I did the same thing until I saw that Samuel L. Jackson iPhone 4S/Siri ad. Lord, give me strength.



Scammers, Go Away!

The energy folks put into trying to scam folks out of personal information is amazing. The e-mail below was sent to me with the expectation that I would send my personal information, including the password to my e-mail account.


Be very careful if you receive this e-mail message and don't disclose any personal information. We are fast approaching the holiday season and the crooks willbe out in force soon. Be careful on the internet and in person. Just be careful.

Cuban Blogger Abducted and Assaulted

Yoani_sanchez Today’s posts from most bloggers throughout the United States will likely be about the passage of the health care reform bill in the U.S. House of Representatives. I’d planned to write about that also and then I opened an e-mail about the kidnapping and assault of a blogger, Yoani Sánchez, in Cuba.

Sanchez, a brilliant and well-educated woman, is a thorn in the side of the Cuban government. She received tremendous media coverage recently as she and a friend were abducted and assaulted. Of course, Sanchez took to the blogosphere after the horrendous encounter.

Yoani Sánchez is also incredibly courageous. Here, in the United States, many of us probably take for granted access to the many methods of communicating with others and also the right to free speech we so quickly choose to use when we are angry about an issue or situation.

Check out her blog, Generacion Y, and her network of fellow bloggers in Cuba. Those folks go through a whole lot of trouble just to have access to the internet and share their opinion with others.


The Union of Two Addictions: TwitterBerry for BlackBerry


I downloaded TwitterBerry, a Twitter application for BlackBerry, to my BB Bold and I love it. I can read and send tweets without using the browser which is slower.

TwitterBerry is a third-party application made by Orangatame Software. It took a couple of minutes to check the app’s features via its menu; it’s very user friendly. The app’s affect on the battery life of my BB is a concern but I don’t think it would diminish my delight in the product.

If you're a BlackBerry user on Twitter then you want TwitterBerry. Try it out and let me know what you think.

Download TwitterBerry from your BlackBerry. Visit http://orangatame.com/ota/twitterberry/ on your BlackBerry.


© 2009, Vanessa: Unplugged!, www.vanessabyers.net

Vote for this blog for Best Political Blog and for Best Blog Design in the 2009 Bloggers Choice Awards.


Obama’s Gift to the Folks at BlackBerry and the Windows Switch

It seems that in a few more days, President-elect Barack Obama will have to give up his trusty BlackBerry for a humongous Windows-based gadget. While the folks at RIM (Research in Motion) are happy for the free publicity that Obama has provided their company through his chronicled obsession for their product, quite frankly, they'd be pleased if he actually stopped using it now.

Why? Well, quite simply, their system becomes the target of hackers from other countries. Who wants their security system constantly under attack, right?

Anyhoo, it seems that all the Obama-BlackBerry coverage has been valued at $50-$100 MM. The Obama effect on merchandise sales has totally eclipsed the madness of an Oprah endorsement. Ben's Chili Bowl probably can't keep enough chili and hot dogs. It's incredible.


Obama's New Smartphone

(Click photo for more info.)



© 2009, Vanessa: Unplugged!, www.vanessabyers.net

Vote for this blog for Best Political Blog and for Best Blog Design in the 2009 Bloggers Choice Awards.



Palin E-mail Hacker Arrested

David Kernell, son of Tennessee congressman, Mike Kernell, has been arrested for hacking into the e-mail account of Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin.    David Kernell faces 5 years in prison and $250,000 fine.


© 2008, Vanessa: Unplugged!, www.vanessabyers.net

Vote for this blog for Best Political Blog and for Best Blog Design in the 2008 Bloggers Choice Awards.




The Hijacking of Vanessa: Unplugged!

For the last three days I've been dealing with capturing and securing my site's domain. I am not a techie so I still don't understand the details; perhaps some of you have experienced this or can provide an explanation, in English as to how this happened.

Anyhoo, on Monday evening, I tried to access my blog. I typed in the URL and was directed to a "This site is under construction page." I was certain that I must have typed the wrong URL but that couldn't be true because I the address was already in the computer's memory. I tried to check my e-mail and couldn't get to that because the page was down. The first I thought was, "See, Vanessa, you shouldn't have written all of those negative posts about the Clintons."

To make a long story short, Network Solutions deactivated my domain and my mailbox. After a couple of cryptic messages --- I really hate that crap just tell me the deal up front --- I found out that more than 40,000 e-mail messages had been sent using my e-mail address and Network Solutions received complaints. 40,000? Although the folks at Network Solutions didn't say it, those messages must have been some porno shiggity.

After several calls and e-mails; I am back on track. I do feel somewhat violated. If you sent me an e-mail message within the last two days, it may have bounced; please try again. In the meantime, I have changed passwords on my accounts and sent myself a reminder to change them every month.

This has been an interesting experience; the folks at Network Solutions were apologetic. It seems that everything is in order and I will continue to post what I think is the truth. And to the folks who hijacked my domain, [insert the appropriate expletive], I'm back!

My Crackberry Blues, Part Deux

I received my replacement BlackBerry Pearl on Monday as I sort of figured I would. Getting back up to speed would take me a couple of hours between my various at projects. I was proud that I'd replaced the both the SIM card and the media card all by myself. I'd asked the only guy in our office to help but he was pulled to do an assignment and I was way too impatient to wait for him --- sorry, I really am working on that but I'm a Crackberry head and I wanted needed to be connected to my e-mails from a lot of people that I've never actually met before. Go figure.

The AT&T folks didn't send an entire phone; they sent the phone minus the battery cover. It looked really weird but I understand the possible production cost savings and potential revenue from selling replacement covers.

Everything was cool except I think I lost some of my ringtones. No big deal in the grand scheme of things. Things got a little weird waking up Tuesday morning to e-mails invading my BlackBerry at a speed you could never imagine. No, I hadn't become oh, so, popular; many of these messages were old and re-appearing in my box. What's old? How about four and five months old?

After several AT&T customer service and tech folks, I ended up speaking to a guy at RIM {Research In Motion, the actually BlackBerry folks – the Crackmasters!). He talked me through a few fixes to no avail. He said a few of their customers were experiencing the same problem but assured me it would be corrected within the hour. How'd he know that?

At that point, there were over 7,000 unopened messages on my Berry. Keep in mind that I'd already deleted a few hundred throughout the day and there were old messages on there also. I tried waiting to see if the unit would explode. It didn't.

The problem was corrected was promised and then I was left with thousands of messages. I learned a new option on my e-mail message menu. It read 'Delete Prior'. That meant I could delete all messages prior to a certain date. Of course I took advantage of that and emptied the inboxes for all of my accounts.

I've been better about getting to my e-mails but I'm still at 622 unopened messages as I type this. I still love my BlackBerry Pearl; now I just need to learn how to use all of the unit's features.



Fake MySpace Friend Led to Suicide

Did you hear this one about the 13 year-old girl that committed suicide back in October of last year? It seems that she suffered from ADD and depression and was the victim of a hoax not just by other kids but the mother of one of the kids was involved also.

A fake MySpace profile was created for "Josh Evans" and he corresponded with Megan Meier for more than a month. After gaining her friendship, it was abruptly ended and he began posting hateful messages about her on the internet. Megan Meier hanged herself. She was found but died the next day.

No charges have been filed because law enforcement doesn't really know what charges to levy. This seems all too unbelievable but it's the world we live in.

Click here to read the complete article.