Adobe today announced the immediate availability of Adobe AIR, a new platform for building rich internet applications (RIAs) across different platforms, including Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.
Adobe AIR enables developers to create RIAs on the desktop using the skills and Web technologies — such as HTML, Ajax, PDF, Adobe Flash and Adobe Flex — they already employ. Applications deployed on Adobe AIR have the advantages of browser-based RIAs, such as speed of development, ease of use, and access from virtually anywhere. Yet they also have the benefits of desktop applications, such as the ability to read/write local files, work with other applications on a user’s computer and maintain local data storage on the desktop.
It’s an interesting variation on applications, some use desk bound applications such as Microsoft Office, whilst others use web based applications such as Google Apps.
It’s looking like Adobe AIR will allow users to have the flexibility of web based applications with the backup of desk bound applications when there is no internet connection (such as on plane).
Elonex who I remember as a manufacturer of high end laptops according to the Times will be releasing a £99 umpc laptop at the Education Show later this month.
…it includes a free word processor and spreadsheet, a free web browser and free e-mail software. It has a 7in screen, a rubbery little keyboard and no CD drive. And it all runs on an ageing chip that was designed before its target audience of seven-year-olds were even born.
Read more at the Times. Elonex’s website. The news has even reached Engadget.
For the MoLeNET Podcasting event I decided it might be useful to have a 2GB Micro SD card for my personal LG Viewty mobile phone.
Now I know I can buy one for about £4 from Amazon but I wanted a card for the event and didn’t have the time to wait for Amazon to deliver, so popped to Cribbs Causeway near Bristol on the way home from work to get one.
Now I know that there was no way I was going to get one for £4 off the high street retailers, so I was willing to pay up to about £12 for one, thinking I am getting ripped off, but at least I will have the card in time.
Now what I couldn’t believe was how much some high street retailers can get away with charging.
O2 was the “cheapest” place at £19, but generally most of the other mobile phone stores were charging £30 and one store, Zavvi had the nerve to be charging £40!
Guess who went without and is now going to go to Amazon.
Seems I am not the only one enamoured with Asus’ tiny little linux based UMPC.
The Asus EEE PC perched on my knee combines GNU software with a Linux kernel powered by an Intel Celeron Mobile Processor to produce a very extraordinary little laptop. It weighs less than a kilogram, starts up from cold in about 12 seconds and shuts down in five. It has no internal hard disk and no CD drive. It offers 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage and a seven-inch display; wireless, dial-out modem and ethernet adaptors are available for networking and internet connections, three USB ports, mini-jack sockets for headphones and microphone, a VGA out, an SD card slot and a built-in webcam. All for about £200 – less than the price of a show, dinner and taxi for two in London’s West End.
So is Stephen Fry.
I have been wondering how good the Asus Eee PC is. The small linux UMPC is certainly creating waves in the tech world as well as the MoLeNET community.
Lilian (one of the MoLeNET mentors) demonstrated one at the MoLeNET Online Conference last Friday and I was quite intrigued.
So you can imagine my surprise when the one I had ordered arrived today.
It was interesting to see how this small UMPC was going to work out.
It booted up fine and after a minimal setup process was ready to work. Already loaded with internet, office, media and other applications it is ready to go.
I tried a few things such as running a PowerPoint presentation and playing a video file.
It handled the few things I tried with ease.
I still need to try the internet applications, so it will be interesting to see how the Eee PC can be used to access our college VLE and other online services.
There’s a new browser for mobile devices providing a desktop experience on your windows mobile smartphone or PDA. Symbian and other platform editions are on their way.
Currently it’s a free download for US users only. Update now active in the UK too.
More info at:
From Handheld Learning
A lot of MoLeNET projects seem to be looking at the Eee-PC, a small linux based UMPC which though full of features such as wifi, SD card slot and camera, is relatively cheap at around £200.
Interestingly for a flash based device it is possible to run Windows XP on it and the manufacturer has released the Eee-PC in Japan running Windows XP.
Read more at Engadget.
Do you have staff in your institution who feel that
“all digital resources must be universally accessible to everyone”
or are they a little more enlightened?
A podcast is perfectly accessible to a visually impaired learner and completely pointless for a hearing impaired learner.
Accessibility only exists at the point of delivery. There can not be a universal accessibly digital resource, can there?
Digital resources by their very nature are often more accessible than a non-digital resource. An e-book can be read out to a visually impaired learner, whilst a real book can also be read out, but this for most books requires a real person to do it, which at 2am can often be difficult for some learners to find when they have an essay deadline!
Brian Kelly on his excellent UK Web Focus Blog has a great post on how one disabled learner is using Second Life and how it is improving access for her.
Well worth a read.