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Knowledge is Power

Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Fall in Love with OCR Terminal

Posted by grizzlymedia on May 1, 2009

OCR Terminal: Free Online OCR – Convert PDF to word, jpeg to word, scanned images to editable text via kwout

I just have to tell you about what is probably my favorite Web 2.0 tool yet, thanks to Lisa Nocita, a library media specialist in Kansas. And if you ever need to convert PDF files to .doc files aka Word documents or .rtf files, you are going to thank your lucky stars that you are my friend and that I was the one who introduced you to OCR Terminal. And I am about to save you the $449.00 you would have to pay for Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro that you may only need occasionally to convert the odd file, when all you need to do is highlight it or work with it more easily. Now if you are doing a lot of work with PDF files, then by all means, go ahead and buy Acrobat 9 Pro, it is a great product with many more capabilities, but if you are like me, just going to graduate school, needing to read a paper you’ve saved, want to be able to highlight a few points for your own use, maybe cut and paste the important parts to a new file (note: don’t steal other people’s work; remember we’re talking about using this for citation purposes, not plagiarizing!) or delete the stuff you know you won’t use, then OCR Terminal is perfect, and it even looks good in most instances. You can even convert scanned files to text easily with OCR Terminal. You can convert up to 30 pages a day for free, so I guess if you’re busy one day, you may have to wait until the next day to convert all of your files. Actually, I don’t think they notice if you log out and login again that you’re doing over 30 pages a day. I think it is actually 30 pages per login. You may also be thinking to yourself, “How can I convert my files to PDF format for free?” Well, you can use CutePDF to do that. You have to download the software, but it is free. It acts like it is one of your printers, but it isn’t, obviously. When you select it as the printer, all it does is convert the selected document to a PDF file. You can also do this with Zamzar, and supposedly Zamzar goes both ways–PDF to .doc and vice versa, but I did not have good results being able to work with my file once I converted it from PDF to .doc or .rtf. So my advice would be to stick with OCR Terminal for that. And if you just can’t think of anything else to do with your $449, email me and I’ll send you my address so you can send me a check. 🙂

Posted in Technology, Web 2.0, Websites | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Poetry, 21st Century Style

Posted by grizzlymedia on April 28, 2009


I’ve been a bit remiss on posting any tributes to the Academy of American Poets and their amazing celebration of National Poetry Month. Today’s selection is History of Hurricanes by Teresa Cader, published by Northwestern. Go to the website to read the poem here. You can also read an interview with Teresa here at Web del Sol. I’ve created a Wordle using the last stanza of the poem for you. Don’t forget to visit the Academy of American Poets’ website at where you can find Poetry 101–resources and tips for beginners and also poetry you can download to your mobile device at where you can access the site’s collection of over 2,500 poems in the palm of your hand.

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Use GoodSearch to Support a Good Cause

Posted by grizzlymedia on December 2, 2008

Here’s a great idea I learned about on Twitter–the new source of all good things! It’s a search engine called GoodSearch. GoodSearch is powered by Yahoo, so you know you get good search quality. But you also get something else: money to support a cause you believe in–Creekview High School, perhaps? Just go to GoodSearch, type in the name of your favorite school or charity in the appropriate box, and then search as you would with any other search engine. I tried it and got happy, reliable search results. GoodSearch was founded in 2005 by Ken Ramberg (the former founder of JOBTRAK, now a division of and JJ Ramberg (an MSNBC anchor and the former Director of Marketing at GoodSearch donates fifty percent of its revenue to the charities and schools designated by its users. The money GoodSearch donates to your cause comes from its advertisers — the users and the organizations do not spend a dime! In 2007 they also added GoodShop, an online shopping mall of reputable retailers approximately three percent of the sale (but possibly up to 20%! or more) to your cause). GoodSearch makes it easy for you to give..without actually giving. what could be easier?

Posted in School, Technology, Web 2.0 | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Ball Clock: A Cooler Way To Tell Time

Posted by grizzlymedia on November 14, 2008

[clearspring_widget title=”Ball Clock” wid=”48ce7cdc6af09c41″ pid=”491e2eb101e14d85″ width=”280″ height=”210″ domain=””]

I found out about this cool gadget from one of my Twitter friends, a fourteen-year-old blogger named Xavier Lur from Singapore who calls himself Kid Tech Guru. He blogs about cool Web 2.0 tools and tech websites. You can visit his blog here for more cool tips. Kid Tech Guru got the idea from a programmer named Adam Bowman. You can visit Adam’s site here where you can copy the code for the clock so you can embed it into your blog (even WordPress!!!!) or social networking site. According to the site, you can edit the colors of the balls, lines, and numbers. I was only able to change the colors from black to white and vice versa. I wanted to change them to lovely green and blue Creekview colors, but, sadly, they refused to cooperate. Maybe you’ll have better luck. I case you haven’t figured the clock out, the hour is on the bottom line, and the minutes are on the middle and then the top line. Each ball in the middle row stands for five minutes. Thanks Xavier and Adam!

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Online Teaching for Media Specialists: Why and How

Posted by grizzlymedia on October 16, 2008

Here’s another new post from the COMO convention. This is a presentation by Jane Zahner of Valdosta State University on “Online Teaching for Media Specialists: Why and How.” All the sessions have been great! Click on the link to see the presentation I created live using CoveritLive, a new Web 2.0 tool I learned about from Mrs. Hamilton.

Click Here

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Free! Alternatives to Expensive Technology Live from COMO

Posted by grizzlymedia on October 16, 2008

This was a live post from COMO, the Georgia Council of Media Organizations convention in Athens which I am attending this week. The presentation features Andrew Shuping from Mercer University discussing Free Alternatives to Expensive Technology. The presentation was posted live via CoveritLive. I’ll blog later on this cool free Web 2.0 tool! Click on the link to view my live post from the presentation.
Click Here

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Get a Clue with iCue!

Posted by grizzlymedia on August 18, 2008

iCue is NBC’s new website for teachers and students. It connects you to a network of friends and fellow learners for sharing, support, and discussion through the iCue Friends Network and Discussion Forums. iCue was designed to help students and lifelong learners interact with content by allowing them to access thousands of current and historic videos and other resources incorporated into cool games and activities. Learners at all levels will enjoy challenging themselves with pop quizzes, game challenges, and interactive activities that make learning simple and exciting. The material is correlated to courses in U.S. History, U.S. Government and Politics, English Language and Composition, and more. Go to iCue Widget to get a widget you can post on your blog or website, or go to iCue to visit the site and learn more.

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Sure Harry Potter Can Make a Couple of Kids Invisible, But What About a Tank?

Posted by grizzlymedia on August 10, 2008

Scientists at the University of California at Berkeley, funded by the United States military, have developed a new material that can bend light around objects, making them virtually invisible. The scientific breakthrough could make not only humans, but almost anything, including tanks and ships, disappear. The technology is still years away from realization, but it is still exciting! It is based on earlier research with microwaves at Imperial College London. The research by both groups is based on the theory that an object can be hidden by bending light around it. The lead researcher, Xiang Zhang, said: “In the case of invisibility cloaks or shields, the material would need to curve light waves completely around the object like a river flowing around a rock.” Someone who looked at the cloaked object would only see light from behind it — making the object seem to disappear. For more information about the invisibility cloak, you can read an article at FoxNews.

Posted in Books, Reading, Technology | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Zamzar Sizzles!

Posted by grizzlymedia on April 21, 2008


Thanks to Web 2.0 guru Sandi Adams, I have a cool new Web 2.0 app that you are going to loooove. OK, so suppose you are a teacher in a typical school system (like mine) that blocks YouTube, (or maybe you are a non-educator, but you just work or go to school somewhere that blocks YouTube so you will work instead of watching cool videos all day!), so you can’t access it at school, or show your students a cool video you found there. Well, you know there are other sites like TeacherTube and SchoolTube that have educational videos, but they still don’t have this video you simply cannot live without sharing. Well, no problemo! Enter Zamzar , the Web 2.0 tool you have been waiting for all your life. Well, maybe not all your life, just since your workplace/school started blocking YouTube. All you have to do is access Zamzar while you are at home enjoying said irresistible video (if you were at school and had the URL memorized, you wouldn’t even have to do it at home), browse for the URL, select the file type to which you want to convert the YouTube file, like maybe .avi or .wmv, so you can play it on Windows Media Player or something you have installed on your school/work computer, enter your email address so Zamzar can magically email you the converted file, and then click to convert the file. In no time at all, you will receive an email with the converted file which you can then share with your peeps! Of course it is going to be school-appropriate, right? Good. What a dedicated little teacher you are!

Posted in Technology, Web 2.0 | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Web 2.0–The Adventure Begins!

Posted by grizzlymedia on April 1, 2008

Today Mrs. Hamilton and I began a Web 2.0 class with Web 2.0 maven Sandi Adams. We had a blast on our first day! So far we played with things with which we are already familiar: WordPress,, and ImageChef. We learned even more cool stuff and look forward to learning even more. If you want to set up your own blog on WordPress, or set up your own social bookmarking account, or just create great graphics on ImageChef, please let us know. We can quickly get you started; stop by the media center today!

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