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Technology: The new student saviour

Suzi PerryWhen I was a kid I was never that keen on Sunday evenings. Even ‘Lovejoy’ and ‘Songs of Praise’ seemed preferable to that awkward bit of homework that I should have finished earlier. Fortunately I had a generous mate who would share her brain power with me come Monday morning.

I reckon that technology would have been my friend if it had only been around. Sadly my gizmo stash, which I was so proud of, consisted of a calculator, Polaroid camera, Sony Walkman and a hi-fi stack system that took me 6 months to save up for with my wages from a Saturday job selling men’s shoes. I digress.

It’s back to school time (still stirs fear, that phrase!) and if I was growing up now I would probably be excited, because there are so many gadgets to support education that combine fun and learning, unlike our old I.T. room where I learned B.A.S.I.C. computer programming, which was, well, basic.

This week Oregon Scientific launch their ‘Meep’ tablet for young children. A small, touchscreen, robust  little beauty that has the advantage of various add-ons like a piano, microphone, drum set, joystick or steering wheel. It comes preloaded with 50 apps, games, e-books and some music and the system allows full parental control. It looks like it has it all, I’m not kidding I wouldn’t say no!


For teenagers of course there is a vast array of tablets, phones and ultrabooks that provide the obvious, but more specifically the app world offers solutions to all kinds of student woes.

The National Geographic Society  has ‘World Atlas’. This has 3 different styles of maps; you can zoom and browse your way around the globe and there is also a flag database.

‘Mathboard’ is an app that enables endless number crunching and for biology try  ‘Visual Anatomy’ an interactive reference app to learn about the human body. Being a slave to ‘Gray’s Anatomy’ and ‘House’ this is my favourite of the three. I particularly like the Gray’s Anatomy add on and the fact that the lite version is free, but there is also an upgrade should you require more in-depth knowledge. Class buddy Pro is also worth a download to manage semester schedules and class timetables.

Also a quick shout out to indulge my love of photography, to the Sony NEX F3, a great entry level Compact System Camera. Perfect for those starting out or any budding film students, it’s big on features but not on price and there is a good range of interchangeable lenses to choose from, plus because it’s compact, it’s small….big bonus for the old satchel.

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