Sunday, May 10, 2015

Chromebook Challenge: Week 4 Update

Another successful week using a Chromebook only.  I brought in a USB mouse from home to make life a little easier versus a trackpad.  Nothing wrong with it, just more comfortable using a mouse.  If we went with the Chromebox with USB mouse & keyboard, that wouldn't be an issue. I don't have much to add to what we already know about using Chrome OS, it's fast & it works.  The other teacher that started using a Chromebook still does for everything except his PowerPoint presentations.

I had been using Fireshot extension for screenshots, but have been using Snagit, and it seems to be a little better.  Mainly, it allows me to do some basic editing right away, instead of opening up Pixlr.  I wish it would have the ability to erase things on the screen, but it does allow for adding in text & shapes.  So that is something that Fireshot doesn't do.

I can honestly say that switching to a Chromebook has made my life a lot less frustrating.  I had to use my computer this week to go to a site that was blocked on the Chromebook, device restrictions again.  The delay in logging in, the delay in opening the browser...just so much.  Once again, when teachers need to do something, we want speed.  We don't have time to stare at a screen and wait for something to happen.  We want to click on something and have it react right away.

It has helped me connect with the students and their devices.  We are all using the same thing now.  So I know exactly how it looks on their devices.  I know how the apps & extensions operate and problems that come up.  Being on the same operating system makes sense and benefits everyone.

That's all I have for this week.  I just have to re-emphasize that if you have considered moving to Chrome OS, do it.  Totally worth it.


  1. Similar success here- unfortunately have to use the windows computer for the Smartboard/reading curriculum, but gone chromeos (except reading) since the start of 4th quarter and no reason not to finish the year.
    I've also found awesome screenshot to be pretty good for screenshots as well. Neck and neck with snag it.

  2. Thanks for the tip on the screenshot app. I will take a look at it.

    I was talking to someone that runs IT for a district and they ran remote desktop and had a few computer used just for legacy programs.

  3. Awesome screenshot is the way to go. It's hands down my most used extension.

    1. 2 votes for awesome screenshot, I will look at it tomorrow.

  4. Snagit is great, but has some kinks to work out. I still have problems with syncing names after making an edit on the picture. Most of my screenshots are named "Untitled Image" or something like that, even though it says it sync'd and I named it. I am also leery about it because there have been times when I have grabbed a screnshot, grabbed the Google Link (shortened) and immediatly went into and saw that there was already one view from a Mac system (Working from Windows/ChromeOS). This has happened more than once. Just a word of warning, don't use it for any sensitive data.

    What can PowerPoint do that Slides can't. If he's having problems importing his slides, it is probably due to the fact that he used ClipArt instead of JPG/PNG/SVG graphics. Take a screenshot of the art using Clipping tool and import the clipped version rather than the ClipArt. The only things I've noticed that Slides cannot do that PowerPoint can is It has more options for Transitions/Animations and you can add an audio file to slides.

    The other thing I know you will eventually run into is Playing a DVD from your Chromebook. I have been able to accomplish this, but it requires the device to be in Developer Mode, a setting most IT Directors don't want to enable, and for good reason. It compromises the built in security of the device by making the Root user accessible with no password and giving Read/Write/Execute access to the Operating System, rather than just Read and Execute.

    1. I got rid of fireshot because it opened a splash page on the students Chromebooks every time they logged in. I kept fireshot on mine and also put on snagit. Thanks for the heads up with sensitive data issues.

      My friend's sound files aren't transferring over from his orignal PowerPoint file. My guess is how he saved the original file. What do you think?