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On the Impending Demise of the IWB?

April 4, 2011 by Josh Caldwell

Okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration. Nevertheless, Fraser Spiers’ post about his next-gen classroom A/V setup really strikes a chord with my own views on IWBs. Why are we spending so much money single-task tool, when a setup like Spiers offers provides so much more¬†versatility¬†for the cost. The ability to better place technology in the hands of students should be reason enough to entertain such a shift.

You can have any student take control of the AppleTV from their iPad over AirPlay to share videos or photos. I personally use a lot of YouTube videos to teach automated systems in Computing. When pupils are researching content, they can share what they’ve found wirelessly.

I’ll suggest one better: with VNC access to the Mac Mini, you could put any task in the hands of the students. Instead of just sharing content (which is still a valuable use), full access to the presentation computer breaks down the barrier between teacher and student. Often, when in the computer lab, I ask a student to teach software skills via a VNC connection to Of course, most of us don’t have the benefit of a 1:1 iPad program, but a single iPad (or netbook) to pass around to students would suffice.

The rise of affordable multi-touch devices may just be the death-knoll for companies like SMART and Promethean, who have built their business models around expensive,¬†proprietary touch input devices. If they wish to compete in the modern marketplace, they need to focus on providing strong whiteboard software that isn’t tied to their specific hardware.

[via Fraser Speirs]

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