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I-Spy Eye-Fi Wi-Fi February 10, 2010

Posted by IaninSheffield in Resources, Tools.
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When I first followed the link to the Eye-Fi card, I soon realised this would be something we could definitely use.

Eye-Fi card

The most basic 2Gb card

At it’s most simple it’s an SD memory card of the type used in many digital cameras, but at just shy of £50 for 2Gb, it’s hardly the cheapest form of storage!  However it has a much bigger trick up its sleeve because there’s an inbuilt wireless transmitter enabling the card to connect to your wireless network.  What this means is with the card in the camera, a few short seconds after taking a snap, the photo automatically whizzes off through the ether (assuming you’re within range of your wireless network) and lands in the folder of your choice.  Wow!  Now in  a home network that’s kinda neat . . . in a school environment, it’s nothing short of amazing!  All of a sudden the messing about having to get to a computer, find a card reader, log on to the network, then shift the photos to your user area . . . after you’ve sifted through the fifty or so other photos that the last user forgot to delete from the card!  That means that someone could be around the school taking the photos for a project whilst another member of the group is at a computer working on the photos within seconds of the photos being taken.

Only a thought, but could this be a way of providing stimulus material for digital storytelling or writing a newscast?  One group taking a series of photos whilst the others back at base write their interpretations in real time.  Lots of potential I think . . . and I’ve only just started thinking!

A couple of other points.  This wasn’t just a quick load and go.  The setup routine for a home wireless network is relatively painless; in a school that’s far fom the truth.  This is because part of the setup process requires the card to connect through the Internet and to do that, it’s configured to go out through port 80 . . . likely to be blocked in most schools.  After much to-ing and fro-ing between his home and school with card, camera and laptop, my genius network manager Steve (name-check deserved) eventually found a workaround – all credit due.

There are other cards in the range which are of larger capacity and include features like automatic geotagging, uploading of video and online sharing, but this one did what we needed.  Was it worth the price?  Well time will tell in terms of educational gains . . . but I know how much time our ICT Support Team spends uploading photos for rushed teaching staff.  I suspect it won’t take long for the card to have paid for itself in terms of saved time alone.  Now I’ve just got to find a way of providing storage for the bulging folder of photos!

(PS Just found DropResize . .  . watch this space!)