03 January 2009

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

At long last, it finally happened. I did not have to engage in anything morally ambiguous, as it turned out. Some patience and good fortune scored me a beta testing login to Zuiprezi. I stayed up well past my bedtime last night to learn and play a bit. I took a chunk of a presentation on grading and used it as source material to see how this new software might be used.

So far, I'm generally satisfied. The interface (the "paw" looking thing in the upper lefthand corner) is easy to navigate. It's just a more visual way to display the contents of a tool bar than what we typically have. I like being able to easily resize text and graphics...position things however I like...and then connect the pieces in any sequence. The only drawback I can see at this point is that any graphics which aren't of a very high resolution appear quite pixelated when the presentation is running---far moreso than in Powerpoint. I won't say that the screenshot above represents fine design, but for a first attempt, I'm feeling pretty good about the possibilities.

I really hope that the developers for this tool are able to make a go of things, considering current economic conditions. I have to say, though, that I would definitely be willing to pay for access. I think it's an excellent tool with some great potential for the classroom. My plan for first using this tool for a grant-writing workshop I'll be doing in the coming weeks. If this style of presentation is better suited for text, then perhaps this will be the perfect opportunity to give things a try.

Mind you, my job assignment is shifting a bit. In fact, I was cc'ed on an e-mail yesterday requesting the keepers of the website to add my credentials to the "Science Ass Main Page." I didn't have the heart to tell them that I'm really only half-ass(essment), according to my contract. I am grateful to have some better job security, a raise, and access to better benefits. So if that means doing some big ass science, count me in. And with a tool like Zuiprezi in my back pocket, perhaps some of the other good things I've been waiting for will appear.


Michaele Sommerville said...

Big ass science- LOVE IT!

Happy New Year, wanted to let you know I'll no longer be updating the "Tending the Eclectic Kinder-Garden" site but have all of my content at Kindergarten's 3 R's from now on- thought you'd like to know if you were updating your blogroll!


Mr. Buell said...

Presi looks so sexy! I want to show a huge concept map of all the science concepts I teach in a year. Then when we start a new concept I can show the whole thing and how they're all related, then zoom in to the concept to get to the details.

I signed up for an invite. I think if I was a history teacher, a really giant timeline would be so cool. Not to say I couldn't do that in science too....

The Science Goddess said...

Michaele---Thanks for the reminder! I did update my RSS feed in Reader---but no doubt readers here will want to be able to find you. :)

Mr. Buell---Sexy is indeed the word for this little piece of joy. Have you seen some of the timeline builders that are out there? E.g. TimeRime, WiseLine, All of Me, Mnemograph, or Dipity? There may be more out there. Even though, scoring a Zuiprezi login would be an awesome addition! Here's hoping your time on the wait list is shorter than mine (~4.5 months).