This week, my third grade son needed to give a presentation to his class about a holiday tradition in our family, so I helped him to create his first Keynote slide show for a presentation on how we pick out and decorate a Christmas tree every year. He showed it his class by connecting an iPad via HDMI to the SMART Board in his classroom. He did great, but I mention this today because I have seen countless ineffective PowerPoint presentations over the years (and I know that you have too) in which the presenter wrote virtually every word on the slide, in a font too small for most audience members to read, and with little visuals. But my son's instincts were to use lots of big pictures and very few words — e.g. "Step 4. Lights!" "Step 5. Star!!" Aside from the fact that he is overly fond of the exclamation point, it was nice to see that his natural instincts for his very first slide show were to keep his slides interesting, minimalistic and punchy. Needless to say, I was very proud. And now, the news of note from the past week:
- South Carolina attorney Justin Kahn reviews Day One, a journaling app.
- John Edwards of Law Technology News provides a few tips for using an iPad to give presentations.
- iMore created a really good list of the best iOS apps and accessories this year in its Best of 2014 Awards.
- Federico Viticci of MacStories created a 2014 version of his list of must-have iPad apps. Most of these apps are designed for power users — e.g. folks who want to use automated tasks — but if that sounds like you, this is a great list.
- Transporter updated its PC and Mac software to version 3.0 yesterday, and it looks like the iOS software will be very updated very soon. With the updated app, you will be able to use the iOS app to create new folders, and there are other improvements for iOS 8. On the Mac and PC, there are new folder icons which make it much easier to quickly see the status of each folder. Another new feature is that you can create read-only folders to share with others. More information is in the release notes.
- iMore decided to re-evaluate iOS 8 now that we have been using it for and while, and created iOS 8 review: 3 months later.
- We are still in the early days for the HealthKit features of iOS 8, but Ochsner Health System in Louisiana and Duke University teamed up to start to integrate the system into their health care, and Jonah Cornstock of MobiHealthNews describes what they have come up with so far.
- Seth Weintraub of 9to5Mac has named what he considers to be the best Bluetooth speakers of the year.
- And finally, while Seth Weintraub was concerned with sound quality and portability when he reviewed Bluetooth speakers, what if you would prefer something that is not portable and has (I presume) mediocre sound, but is definitely a conversation piece? Then you will want to look at The Megaphone from designers en&is in Milan. It is huge, made of ceramic, and has a thin wooden frame. The prices range from €399 to €599, so you'll spend a lot more on this than you would on that Bluetooth speaker. Here is a video if you want to see it in action: