Pixabay Revisited

A number of posts ago I posted about Using Images – avoiding copyright. Whilst writing the post I came across Pixabay and that attribution was not require in most cases, in fact it is not required at all. In fact it goes someone to solving a recent project question of how can we access a bank of media resources but without costing the earth and using them external to developing organisations? Well the solution certainly seems to be the whole point of Pixabay which in their own words is ….

“Finding free images of high quality is a tedious task – due to copyright issues, attribution requirements, or simply the lack of quality.
This inspired us to create Pixabay – a repository for stunning public domain pictures.
Your source for free vectors, free drawings and free photos.
You can use any Pixabay image without attribution in digital and printed form, even for commercial applications.”

What it also allows you to do is to share your own images (after an initial maximum of 10 that require approval that can take up to a few days) all they ask is that you allow them to be available for free and that they follow the  Photography Training and Image Quality Standards set by Pixabay. Your own images can be reviewed by order of upload, downloads, popularity, views, likes, favourites, comments.

User Portfolios can be searched as well by entering in the user name after “user:“, search my portfolio here user:techlec. Think of the use to students that require images or have images to share!



Retasking of this Blog

I have been writing less and less on the Surface RT, partly in the fact that I think I have exhausted the particular model and partly as I am so busy with other work aspects. So my mind wanders ocassionaly to this blog (originally a blog for lecturer interested-in and using technology) and I think that I have many opportunities to discuss a wider range of topics.

I still love my surface dearly (and our iPad is now firmly in the grasp of our four year old, and slowly disallowing new apps as they require a newer IOS) and there will certainly be upcoming posts relevant to it still. But for all things surface I would suggest following http://www.lovemysurface.net/ 



Living with the Surface RT [Day 100]

Surface RT

I have hit 100 days with the Surface RT and I can say that they only thing about it that has been an uphill struggle has been this blog (only at times!). I certainly would have liked it to be more educational that it has been but attempting to blog daily has limited that. Id on’t intend to stop blogging, but I do not intend beyond today to blog on a daily (or attempt) basis but I do feel that this entry should look back at what I have tried to do and where i still/want to go with the Surface RT.

  1. Connecting wirelessly to another display
  2. Tethering to my phone for when I cannot get Wifi (made some headway – Bluetooth only real solution from a cost perspective, and so far not needed to!)
  3. Finding at least one good app (and free) for all categories (a bit ambitious now the categories have expanded i.e. sport & government not my thing!)
  4. Trying to write this blog from the Surface itself (setup has been on a PC, entries have been on an iPhone 5)
  5. Not writing this blog retrospectively (which it has up till now!)
  6. Purchase & use a stylus

I still have a few projects/research pieces involving the Surface RT that will be a part of this blog.

  • Tethering to my phone for when I cannot get Wifi (from my original list above)
  • Micro HDMI to mini HDMI adapter (on order)
  • VGA adapter (on order)
  • Working with whole groups of students and staff to utilise tablets in the classroom

I do have to say that I have not powered up my works laptop since July 2013, the Surface RT has been a great replacement and the abilities it has serves it well:

  • light
  • portable
  • Small form factor
  • Amazing battery Life
  • Productive (especially love office and OneNote app)
  • App store is starting to mature


I am going to have to dust off the laptop, if only because I’m teaching game engines and the software is on my laptop ready to utilise. I am still holding out hope that miracast will come to the Surface RT (although knowing it not coming), but overall I don’t see myself being drawn back to the iPad.

In fact I would probably be persuaded to move onto a Surface Pro or similar tablet/laptop device.



Gliffy on the Surface RT [Day 86]

Not an app but a website, and one that seems to be fulfilling a need for a great diagram program whereby you can create a range of diagrams from pre-drawn elements.

  • Basic Shapes
  • Flowcharts
  • Swimlanes
  • UML 1.0 (Unified Modelling Language)
  • Entity Relationships
  • UI Form Components (User Interface)
  • Upload your own images (PNG, JPG & GIF)

You do need an account (free) but you could easily screen grab and crop for small diagrams