Lifesize Acquires Kaptivo to Fuel Next Generation of Advanced Collaboration

Lifesize®, a global innovator of immersive enterprise communication solutions, today announced the acquisition of Kaptivo, a digital collaboration solutions company. With the addition of Kaptivo, Lifesize further expands its portfolio of cloud-based unified communications and collaboration (UCC) solutions for contact centers, video conferencing and meeting rooms with a new suite of advanced collaboration tools.

An industry pioneer in computer vision, image processing and artificial intelligence for visual collaboration, Kaptivo develops solutions that make remote brainstorming, education, planning and content creation more effective and productive. Kaptivo’s current products address an unmet need in remote meetings: Connecting the hundreds of millions of existing, traditional whiteboards to modern collaboration tools so that participants can brainstorm, teach, plan and draw as if everyone was in the same room. The Kaptivo solution pairs advanced image processing software that eliminates shadows, reflections and people in front of the whiteboard with an enterprise-grade, secure, cloud-based collaboration platform.

Along with the acquisition, Lifesize also announced the immediate availability of a new Kaptivo-powered digital whiteboard application, providing enhanced capabilities for remote collaboration and instruction within Lifesize video meetings. According to a recent report from Nemertes Research, more than half of organizations are using or planning to use digital whiteboards by 2021.…Read More

Promethean Joins Google for Education Partner Program

Global education technology provider, Promethean®, announced that it has become a Google for Education Partner, integrating its ClassFlow® software with Google Classroom rostering, Google Drive, and Google Single sign-on.

ClassFlow® is a cloud-based lesson delivery software with advanced collaboration tools that empower student engagement. ActivPanel® is an interactive display series that delivers innovation and ease of use that matters to teachers and students and provides the security and manageability trusted by school IT professionals and administrators.

Promethean products work well on Chrome OS™ operating system environments, offering customers intuitive educational solutions that promote student-teacher interactivity, productivity, and engagement. Key features include:…Read More

Screen recording and asynchronous collaboration tools

TechSmith is helping organizations and academic institutions who are preparing for prolonged absences and/or campus closures due to COVID-19. TechSmith is offering free access and expanded usage of tools that help enable business and educational continuity.

Their screen recording tool, TechSmith Snagit, and their asynchronous collaboration platform, TechSmith Video Review, will be free to use through the end of June 2020 to any organization that needs it.

In addition, for existing customers using their digital learning platform, TechSmith Relay, or their online video collaboration environment, Video Review, they will support increased usage with no charge. Existing Relay customers will be provided an expanded site license with campus-wide access through the end of June 2020.…Read More

Getting the most from collaboration tools

Communication and collaboration are not the same thing. There are many tools that allow educators and administrators to talk to each other, but to take advantage of edtech’s promise, they should also be able to use collaboration tools to work together on the same projects.

In her presentation, “Collaboration Near and Far in Digital Professional Learning Communities,” Geri Gillespy, administrator of digital integration at West Ada School District in ID, talked about how to get the most out of online collaboration tools.

Related content: 7 collaboration tools for the modern classroom…Read More

How is the E-rate impacting learning?

In the beginning, E-rate focused principally on telephone service, which was the most basic and universal way individuals communicated 20 years ago. While the focus on communication has remained, technology has changed radically throughout the past two decades. During this period, E-rate adapted by broadening the range of eligible services to include mobile phones, pagers, voicemail, email, school websites and basic collaboration tools.

As the program evolved, the definition of “new technology” grew increasingly inexact and complicated. It became clear that E-rate was in need of a refresh. Advocates for change, including legislators, the Federal Communications Commission and organizations such as ISTE and the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), hoped to address the question: How do we increase internet bandwidth available to our schools and provide ubiquitous wireless coverage?

Practical questions to ask

To answer this question, we needed to both increase E-rate funding and stretch every dollar. In an effort to make dollars go further, three main objectives were identified:…Read More

Experts: Collaboration tools hold big promise for education

An expert panel said social networking can help boost student engagement.

Social networking and educational gaming ignite spirited debates regarding their practicality in the classroom: Some educators say those technologies can engage students in new ways, while others question their actual effectiveness.

How Blogs, Social Media, and Video Games Improve Education,” a new paper from Darrell West, vice president and director of governance studies at the Brookings Institution, seeks to examine how collaboration tools can improve teaching and learning, and it identifies some of the key challenges that such tools must overcome.

At an April 24 Brookings Institution forum, a panel of experts discussed the impact that collaboration tools can have on education and key aspects of integrating collaborative technologies into curriculum.…Read More

Facebook ‘Groups’ could boost privacy, collaboration

Facebook launched an updated "Groups" application that allows for more collaboration.
Facebook "Groups" allows for easy communication and collaboration on projects, but is it an appropriate collaboration tool for students?

A new Facebook feature unveiled Oct. 6 gives users more control over which information is shared with certain groups of people, and it also offers an easy platform for online communication and collaboration on group projects—leading some K-12 educators and ed-tech officials to wonder if the social networking site might be a viable collaboration tool for students.

The Facebook “Groups” application lets users determine specific content to share with members of a defined group, as well as chat or work together on documents within a group. The feature could be a useful communication and collaboration tool for students outside the classroom—but concerns about online safety might keep many teachers and ed-tech officials from embracing the tool for such use.…Read More