Monday, May 25, 2009

Computational Knowledge Engine - Wolfram Alpha

WolframAlpha is really cool! Enter a date and the site will reveal all kinds of facts about that date. Enter a question: What is the meaning of life? It gives you the answer as revealed in the movie Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (42). Enter a math formula. Wolfram Alpha will graph it and provide the derivative, integral and other interesting math facts about it. Enter a city. Wolfram Alpha will report data about that city. Enter a name. Find out the history and popularity of that name.

Watch the introduction video for other questions Wolfram Alpha can answer.

I entered and received the following information about the website.

Creating Slide Shows Using Online Applications

My previous post involved sharing slide shows that have already been created. What if we want to create one with the WOW computers? Open Office is available on the computers, but there are other online options as well. Recently, Jose Picardo, a modern languages teacher at Nottingham High School posted information on his blog regarding five different applications for creating presentations. The applications he reviewed are Empressr, Google Docs, Prezi, Slide Rocket, and Zoho Show. At his site, he lists the pros and cons for each program. There are two obvious advantages to using any of these applications. One is that the presentation is accessible from any computer. The other is that presentations can be created collaboratively. Click here to view the Box of Tricks post.

Sharing Presentations Online

Slideshare is an easy way for teachers to post their PowerPoint, OpenOffice, and Pdf presentations online for students to access. Simply upload presentations at Presentations may be made public for everyone to view or private for just a few viewers. Share presentations with others either by copying a link or embedding the presentation in a blog or website. Assign tags for organizing and to facilitating a search for content. Slideshare also keeps statistics on how often the presentation is viewed. This gives the teacher information on whether or not the presentations are actually viewed. Above right is a snapshot of a slide show with information on the number of views and the tags that apply to the content of the presentation.

View the presentation below for more information on using slideshare.