What is “The Cloud”?

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“What is ‘The Cloud’?”

I’ve been asked that question many times. It sounds friendly, but to many people it is a confusing term. “The Cloud” is a term that refers to things being done, or saved on computers in a remote location. These computers are called servers and since they can be miles away from where you are, you need internet access to use it. If you have used Google Docs or even Gmail in the past, then you already use The Cloud. As people begin to juggle their work computers, home computers, smartphones and tablets, cloud computing is becoming more convenient and valuable. It allows you to keep all of those devices in sync without having to carry around a portable hard drive. All you need is an internet connection.


The Pros and Cons of Smart Phones in the Classroom

Image taken from Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Group_of_smartphones.jpg

Campus Technology has a very interesting article on how smartphones can be both a teaching tool and a distraction to students. Titled, Smartphones: Teaching Tool or Brain Candy?, they discuss how faculty can use phones as a asset teaching while giving ideas for managing phones in the classroom.

Here at UC Berkeley law we have a slightly different situation. Since almost all students have laptops, smartphones or tablets, faculty members must deal with these kinds of technology questions daily. While a smart phone  may signify a distracted student, it could also show that a student is researching a topic, or making a note to themselves about something in class. We tend t0 think of these devices as being used for social/entertainment purposes and may not be aware of what kind of potential they have as productivity and learning devices. It’s important to communicate to students what your expectations are for their use of technology in your class. Is it ok for them google search topics in class, or even use Wikipedia?


Clickers/Polling in the Classroom Workshop

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Clickers are a great tool for creating in-class discussions and improving student engagement. This workshop will offer hands-on training with clickers and discuss effective techniques for using them in the classroom. We will also look at web based polling tools that can be used in place of clickers.

Available Dates

Mar. 21, 10am – 11am
Mar. 22, 1pm – 2pm

To sign-up email John-Mark Ikeda at, jikeda@law.berkeley.edu.
Please specify date and time. If you are unable to make these dates, please contact us and we can make arrangements for a personal consultation.

iPad App Review: Pen Ultimate

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Is Pen Ultimate a notebook, or a digital whiteboard app? The answer is both. As a notebook or notepad replacement, Pen Ultimate sports extremely smooth handwritten text. Paired with a stylus, it’s likely the closest you can get to feeling like you are writing directly on your iPad. Pages are intuitively grouped into notebooks, that can be customized with different types of paper. Plug your iPad into a classroom projector cable and it transforms into a digital whiteboard. (more…)