Mobile computing is quickly becoming involved in nearly every aspect of our lives. How we find directions, how we pay for goods, how we get our news, how we socially interconnect with others, and also as a verification of who we are, and nowhere is this more evident than in today’s high-tech colleges. Students and faculty are both using mobile smart phone and mobile computing applications around campus.
They serve as virtual credit cards, and identification for getting into dorm rooms, cafeterias, and secured areas on campus. These are both safety features, and convenience factors. Also, businesses that cater to college students can use such virtual ID systems to allow the students to get into concerts, exhibits, and sporting events – sometimes free of charge, and other times their virtual ID system will bill their college account.
In fact, there was a very interesting article in CR80 News in the fall 2010 magazine edition titled; “CSU’s Mobile App Looks to Replace Student IDs,” and in this brief article was a question-and-answer session with one of the top software architects of college mobile technologies.
Indeed, this is an extremely good use of this technology, and it works on the student’s personal tech device, no matter what they own. They may own a tablet computer running a Microsoft-based operating system, or perhaps they have a blackberry or an iPhone. These systems now work with whatever technology the student already owns, and therefore it becomes a universal system.
Many students and more so, their parents, are concerned with privacy. If such systems exist, the students can be tracked everywhere they go, and everything they do could be digitally recorded. In many aspects that is a problem, but in other aspects it also provides a layer of safety. It can be used to help culprits causing crimes, thus, protecting the rest of the students. It also prevents the students from having their credit card stolen.
If you’d like to learn more about this type of mobile application and mobile verification computing, I recommend you go and read that article, and then follow up online with some of the other interesting things being offered. Things like barcode scanners built into the mobile tech devices, giving information about the product, and also allowing the student to go online and check prices elsewhere at other retailers for the same product, therefore saving the money.
In the meantime, check out these six top mobile apps:
Lodged inside the popular free app Evernote, this easy-to-use app helps you manage your assignments and tasks, creating a killer planner that will keep you on track. Organize assignments by class, add color codes and input other notes like test dates, professor emails and office hours, and schedule reminders.
When your professor throws out a word like “antithetical” or “disputatious” (making you long for the word “commencement”), you’ve got it covered. Dictionary.com lets you find definitions fast, and even works without an Internet connection once it’s downloaded.
Want to throw around a few terms yourself? An audio pronunciation guide is provided, too, along with sample sentences and word history. Go ahead, get voluble.
JiWire Wi-Fi Finder
Your English Lit paper is due in four hours, but you’re off campus (or maybe even out of the country) for the day. But you won’t be out of luck: with the handy JiWire Wi-Fi Finder, you can lock onto a signal and get online quickly. The app lists nearly half a million free and paid Wi-Fi hotspots in over 144 countries. You can help out other students, too, by sharing a hotspot via email or your Twitter or Facebook accounts.
As part of its mobile search app collection, Google includes this funky app, which uses image-recognition technology to return relevant search results. Snap a picture of a famous landmark, and the app will let you know what you’re looking at.
You can also scan barcodes to get product information, add contacts by taking a photo of a business card or even translate foreign language text by capturing a snippet of it in a picture. Not that you’re goofing off during class, but it’s also excellent for solving Sudoku puzzles.
Sharing notes and contact info is a breeze with the simple app Bump. The software lets two mobile-device users swap info simply by “bumping” two phones together. It’s ideal for creating a study group and exchanging contact information quickly as you hustle off to your next class. As a bonus, you can also use the app to share photos with friends and family, and move contacts and photos from your device to your computer.
Whether you’re a business student who’s saving for an entrepreneurial venture, or you’re cash-strapped and tired of rooting between couch cushions to find change for coffee, Mint will help you find your way. The financial-management app lets you put all your accounts into one place so you can set a budget and track goals. By the time your first student-loan payment rolls around, you’ll be way ahead of the game.
Mobile apps like these can be a boon for any organization, so you’ll spend more time studying (and playing) and less time trying to juggle school and social time. Best of all, they’re free. Better scheduling, more robust study resources and financial management? Now, that’s smart.
Indeed, I hope you please consider all this, and think on it. If you have something relevant to add, I surely hope you will look up my e-mail and give me your thoughts.