Sunday Sweep: Top tech tools

Need a way to get and stay more organized, liven up your lifeless presentations or network with future employers? We’ve got you covered. Here are the editors’ top six ways to use technology to your advantage, both inside the classroom and out of it.
1. Make class time more productive. Get a livescribe smartpen to record audio of your classes while taking notes that can be digitized and transferred to your computer.  Keep an eye out for more Online Editor-in-Chief Jeff Stern’s in-depth coverage of livescribe in this week’s issue of The Pendulum.
2. Make better presentations. Microsoft PowerPoint has some awesome capabilities, but they’re not always used to their fullest potential.  Check out Prezi to see how you can make a more lively presentation on the web without limiting yourself to a linear layout.  While you’re at it, try out a better way to find a good time for your group to meet at WhenIsGood.com. 

3. Get and stay more organized. Google Apps are more than just web-based word processing. You can use Google docs to view attachments without downloading them, but you can also create word documents and spreadsheets and easily share them with classmates or project group members. If multiple viewers look at the same document at the same time, it is possible to see who is writing what while chatting about the content in a side bar.  Also use Google calendar to send personalized updates and reminders to your inbox, which you can now set to prioritize your thousands of daily e-mails based on your preference.

4. Make more streamlined slide shows. Photo slide shows, no matter the content, are often difficult to sync with music. So why spend the time fiddling with time codes when Animoto will figure it out for you? Just upload photos and choose the music and the link to a slide show will be delivered to your inbox in just a few minutes.

5. Market yourself, now. Get a LinkedIn account to connect with peers and current, previous and potential employers. Use your profile as a resume and the possibilities are endless. To learn about the growing importance of having a LinkedIn regardless of your major, look out for Copy Editor Lindsay Kimble’s article in this week’s issue of The Pendulum.

6. Be a better researcher. Use e-book resources to find relevant titles for papers and projects. Many of the classics are available for free on Bartleby and Project Gutenburg.  Use Google books to search within most books, even those that aren’t free or fully accessible, to find page numbers for quotes and relevant material.
Don’t forget to follow The Pendulum on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and watch out for this week’s issue, hitting the stands early Wednesday morning.
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