Lenovo: http://blog.lenovo.com/au2014-07-17T04:37:56+00:00http://blog.lenovo.com/au/4k-video-is-now-within-reachDanielle Uskovic2014-07-17T04:37:56+00:00
It’s been a highlight of consumer electronics shows for quite a few years now, but 4K hasn’t been on most people’s agenda because of cost or the availability of content. That’s all changed this year, with a slew of new product announcements from video manufacturers: cameras, recorders and displays.
So you can expect more and more 4K content to start appearing (like this year’s World Cup).
When 4K displays first appeared, they were tens of thousands of dollars. They’ve steadily come down in price, with our new ThinkVision Pro2840m display priced very affordably. This new display is compatible with most current Lenovo PCs, so 4K is now something you can think about for your own desk.
First of all, what is 4K?
Just to get the names straight, 4K is also called UHD – ultra high definition – and 2160p.
In short, 4K is a new, higher, standard resolution for video displays.
It’s double the resolution of “Full HD” in both dimensions – 3840x2160 pixels, for four times the overall display resolution – 8.6 megapixels vs just over 2 megapixels.
Why go 4K?
Everything looks better. Apart from the higher resolution, the pixels on our new display are much smaller, so details are sharper. Digital photos look fantastic. Web apps become amazing. Games leap up to another level.
The newest top-end home and professional video cameras can shoot video at 4K. Apart from...
Lenovo sponsored two panel discussions at this year's EduTECH conference to reflect on the direction of education technology in Australia.
We were delighted that four of Australia's best qualified and most experienced educational technologists agreed to join our panel. They were:
Travis Smith, national education specialist at Microsoft. As a former teacher, assistant principal and university lecturer in education, Travis has plenty of 'on the ground' experience of how technology is working (or not!) in all kinds of schools.
Mike Reading, Australia's first Google certified teacher and Google Apps for Education certified trainer. As a working teacher who's presented professional development training for thousands of teachers, Mike also has a wealth of current real-world experience.
Jim Cook, innovation lead at the University of Sydney, overseeing their design lab.
Jason Jacobs, education specialist at Intel.
The panel agreed that "BYOD" (bring your own device) had a range of meanings that needed to be clarified. At one extreme it can mean "bring any device that's connected and has a screen". At the other, it can mean mandating a particular device, but getting parents to pay for it.
As Travis noted, the latter approach can give parents a misleading impression: "I've forked over $800-900 for a device, so my kid had better be computer-literate at the end of the term."
"Many think the type of device doesn't matter. The cognitive science says you think differently when you work on a screen from how you work...
With his Chinese upbringing and undergraduate study and American postgraduate experience, University of Oregon professor Yong Zhao brings a genuine international perspective to education. He's also a very entertaining speaker.
He began his EduTECH keynote with a challenging statistic: 53% of recent American graduates can't get a job in their chosen field. "Giving us the the best qualified generation of bartenders ever." Yet there's a widely reported "global talent shortage". So what's going on?
Zhao believes we're entering a "second machine age". In the first, steam power replaced horse power (and the horses were in no position to complain). Now machines are replacing cognitive functions. "If you can describe a job step by step, it will be replaced. We have a surplus of lawyers in the US. Search engines took over much of the work they used to do."
Yet traditionally undervalued talents have become valued – "Who'd have thought Kim Kardashian had marketable skills?"
The traditional education paradigm, which Zhao describes as "Funneling diverse people through standardised schooling to deliver employable skills," isn't working any more.
He sees creativity as the key to future job security and believes our education model stifles creative types – "They're troublemakers." Schools and universities should focus on personalised education, enhancing people's strengths, cultivating skills that can't be replaced by machines and encouraging entrepreneurial spirit. "Schooling trains employees. If you want to be managed, you won't be employable in the future."
For more on...
Continuing the EduTECH theme of challenging educational conventions, Conrad Wolfram of Wolfram Research took the stage to tell us that "Maths has a major problem. It's a real-world subject solving real-world problems, but maths education is a lot of hand calculating."
He sees four elements to maths:
1. Define questions
2. Translate the real world into mathematical terms
3. Compute the answers
4. Interpret the results (from maths back to the real world)
We spend 80% of student time on step 3, when we should be spending 80% on the other three elements.
He believes maths education should assume the use of computers to make this happen.
"The important thing is to know how to set up the equation. Not how to calculate the equation. Let a computer do it!" He gave us a demonstration of the practical value of this, solving a complex cubic equation on his phone. "Something most university students couldn't do by hand."
He ran through some of the capabilities of the new Wolfram language, showing it producing visual examples of calculus and thermodynamics in action – "making these subjects suitable for primary school."
In response to critics who say you have to "get the basics first", he asks, "Do we need to build a car to drive it? Traditional maths teaching is mechanically focused, not problem focused. The mechanics of the moment is different from the essence of the subject."
Incidentally, it was great to see Conrad was using his Lenovo ThinkPad! He visited the Lenovo stand during...
The star keynote speaker at EduTECH, Sir Ken Robinson, has been advocating fundamental change in our education system since his landmark report to the British government in the late 1990s.
Well-known around the world, not least from his most-watched-TED-talk-of-all-time, Sir Ken got a huge reception from the capacity crowd at EduTECH.
While his delivery is charming and witty, his message is very blunt: "Our current education system was designed for a completely different world from today's. The global education reform movement is catastrophically misconceived and must be opposed."
He's particularly concerned with the growing emphasis on PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) rankings and other standardised measures. "It's increasing anxiety about education and is simply grotesque."
"We should think of education very differently from the way we've thought about it in the past. We should think about kids differently from the way we have in the past. And we need to think about teaching differently from the way we've thought of it in the past."
And the need to think differently about them is very, very urgent."
He believes we should shift the emphasis from "outputs" to culture, likening our current approach to unsustainable industrial agriculture that only considers yield, ignoring the long-term health of ecosystem.
"10% of all history's humanity is alive today. We are the largest generation since Homo sapiens began. Accommodating this population relies on us rethinking everything. And education is number one."
Sir Ken clearly had an impact on the attendees...
As Microsoft's vice president of worldwide education, Anthony Salcito travels the world talking to teachers and working to leverage technology to improve education.
"One of the biggest problems with educational innovation is that it's often hidden, because good teachers are not allowed to teach 'outside the curriculum' and are often fighting administrators for innovation. So we find potentially valuable technologies underused or just plain misused."
His key point was that technology is just part of a holistic approach to education and shouldn't be considered in isolation. Worst of all, too much focus on acquiring devices (what he calls "access aspiration") distracts people from making improvements in teaching.In assessing the value of technology and teaching he asks "Are you collecting data that's easy to get or data that will drive innovation? Once a decision is made, the 'data' that led to it is often forgotten."
He proposed a change to the Federal government's "earn or learn" mantra: "Get rid of 'or'. Everyone earning needs to keep learning."
Read more at Anthony's blog, Daily Edventures.
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If you were ever in doubt about the power of computers and the internet to change the world, Sugata Mitra will convince you.
He started in 1999 with an informal experiment to answer the question: "Could the poorest children benefit from a computer?", putting an internet-connected PC into a literal hole in the wall of slum next door to his New Delhi office.
He hoped it would do some good, but half-expected it to be ignored, vandalised or stolen. Instead, he was astounded when the slum children quickly worked out how to use it. And started learning. Much, much more and much, much faster than he or anyone predicted.
Sugata's opening keynote at EduTECH took us through the research that started with this impromptu experiment and the progress he's made since winning the TED Prize in 2013, developing his vision for self-organised learning environments (SOLEs) and a global "School in the Cloud".
His research also challenges the way we organise our education systems. As he points out, the principles underpinning the schools of the Western world were developed in the 19th century to train people for a very different world. As Sugata puts it "Our education system is very efficient. But it's obsolete, because it doesn't produce the creative and imaginative people the world needs today." And he asks, "How do we fix it?".
His School in the Cloud is intended to help answer this question.
The applause for Sugata's talk at EduTECH showed that plenty of...
Last week 5,615 educators and technologists converged on Brisbane to hear from 243 speakers in nine congresses covering the full range of education. It's the place to learn about educational technology.
And with 220 exhibitors, the accompanying exhibition featured the full range of Australia's educational technology suppliers, from one-person startups to "the big guys" (including, of course, Lenovo...Australia's number one educational PC supplier).
For us, it was a great opportunity to meet the people using our products, building our understanding of their needs and what we can do to meet them.
Paul Hutchings, Lenovo's new education lead for Australia, was excited by the conversations he had: "Unfortunately, we don't often get a chance to talk directly to teachers. As they are the ones who have to use the technology to enhance the learning experience of students, it’s critical to understand what really matters to them. With over 5,000 educators here, EduTECH gave us a perfect opportunity to have detailed conversations about what they need to deliver real educational value with technology."
At the core of the show were the keynotes and workshops, including over 200 speakers. Over the next few posts, we'll bring you some of the highlights.
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Lenovo Australia has unleashed the New ThinkPad X1 Carbon – the world’s lightest 14-inch ultrabook. Perfect for business users who want a laptop with high performance technology, mobility and durability, the New ThinkPad X1 Carbon joins Lenovo’s premium business portfolio. We've pulled together the top reasons that make the New X1 Carbon the perfect Professional Redefined Ultrabook.
1. Uncompromisingly Thin
Starting at 1.28 kg, the new X1 Carbon is the lightest 14″ Ultrabook™ on the planet.* And at just 17.72 mm thin, it's the thinnest ThinkPad ever. Yet even with a slimmer profile, we still boosted battery life and cooling.
2. Enduring Power
The new X1 Carbon delivers up to 8.6 hours of battery life on a single charge.* And if you do run low, don't fret: with RapidCharge you get 80% battery restored in just under an hour.
3. Patently Cool
Even with its ultrathin design, the new X1 Carbon stays cooler than ever. In fact, we re-engineered our patented fan blades—so X1 Carbon provides the same cool and quiet performance you expect from a ThinkPad.
4. Unbelievably Vivid
ColorBurst display with WQHD, IPS, and an anti-glare screen mean text is crisper, images are brighter, and colors are truer on the new X1 Carbon.
5. Impossibly Precise
X1 Carbon's 10–point multitouch screen improves accuracy, making touch–browsing and selecting more responsive. Plus it's anti–smudge.
6. Liberating Control
Give a multimedia presentation without touching your X1 Carbon. Voice control and 10 different hand gestures...
Going back to school has almost arrived and most schools these days use technology in the classroom. Whether doing presentations, creating videos, accessing the school intranet or playing Minecraft, we have the right PC for students. The perfect laptop or tablet is the one that’s great for both school and home and ours are fast enough, tough enough and cool enough for any kid. We’ve compiled a list of the best laptops and tablets Lenovo has to offer for school, home and play.
ThinkPad X131e - durable but light
Designed for durability in the rigorous K-12 school system, the 11.6-inch ThinkPad X131e is made to endure whatever's thrown its way. A rubber bumper cushions the top cover for added protection, while hinges and ports are further strengthened. Explore Features.
ThinkPad Yoga - the ultimate Multimode Ultrabook
The ThinkPad Yoga delivers flexibility. Its 12.5" display rotates 360 degrees to offer four different usage modes: Laptop, Tablet, Tent and Stand. Boasting legendary ThinkPad reliability and a range of security features, it's the ultimate multimode Ultrabook. Explore Features.
ThinkPad X240 - portability perfected
The 12.5" ThinkPad X240 Laptop is thin, light, built to last. Power Bridge technology lets you go up to 17 hours without plugging in, vPro gives you the ultimate in manageability, and plenty of other features let you take on the road. Explore Features.
ThinkPad Tablet - the true reliable tablet
Featuring the best that Lenovo, Microsoft and Intel have to offer, the...