iPads and Academic Continuity in the College of Arts and Sciences

January 9th, 2014 Comments off

We’ve had a busy couple of semesters here in the College of Arts and Sciences, helping to implement a series of measures that we will test during our college-wide academic continuity exercises. What’s academic continuity? It’s the ability for departments and other units within the university to carry on operations and services in the event of a disaster or other major disruption.

A couple of years back, Dean Robert Olin decided that iPads with cellular data would be an important part of his academic continuity plan. The device would ensure that all faculty and staff in the college had a tool that they could use to communicate with fellow staff and faculty and interface to some extent with some university systems.

I’m attaching to this post a document that describes the basics of the academic continuity exercise that each department in the college is being asked to take on. I’m also attaching two password-protected tutorials for faculty and staff in the college. We’re posting these tutorials so that we can make them available to our users through Casper, our mobile device management system.

–Rebecca Johnson

Academic Continuity in the College of Arts and Sciences

Setting up AnyConnect.protected

Setting Up Files Connect.protected

Categories: advice Tags:

Editing a PowerPoint Presentation on Your iPad

April 3rd, 2013 Comments off

Jason Miller found a nice Macworld article on editing a PowerPoint on your iPad. Enjoy!

-Rebecca Johnson

Categories: advice, apps, beginner Tags: , ,

Emailing to a Distribution List from Your iPad

March 14th, 2013 40 comments

[IMPORTANT: This workaround is for Exchange accounts. If you use Gmail, scroll to the bottom of this post to find the entry on creating Gmail distribution lists.]

If you use email distribution lists, you may have noticed that your iPad doesn’t. Here’s how to fix that.

You’ll need to fool your iPad by creating an individual contact for your distribution list in the Contacts app on your iPad. Enter all of the emails for your list in the email field for this individual contact. Please know that this workaround isn’t pretty. Every time you send an email to this contact from your iPad, you’ll receive an error. Just tell the iPad to send anyway and you’ll have successfully tricked your iPad into sending an email out to a group.

Here is how to create a contact for your distribution list, step by step.

First, find an email that you’ve sent to the distribution list. Copy all of the email addresses in the “To:” field and paste these into a Word document. You’ll get something that looks like this:

Then, strip out all text other than the email addresses and separate the email addresses with semicolons. You’ll get something that looks like this:

Copy this block of email addresses into the BODY of an email (not the “To:” field) and send it to yourself. Open this email on your iPad and copy the block of addresses.

Next, open the Contacts app on your iPad and create an individual contact for this distribution list. Paste that entire block of email addresses in the email field for that individual contact. Name your contact something easy to type and you’re set.

You can send an email to this list by typing the name of this contact in the “To:” field of any email you send from the Mail app on your iPad. Remember, when you send the email, it will give you an error, saying that it looks like there’s something wrong with the email address. Go ahead and send anyway.

It takes a bit of work to set up a list as a contact, but if you use lists, the extra time involved is worth it.

Please let me know in the comments whether you’ve found an easier way to do this. I know that there are also apps that will allow you to send a single email to a group of people, but I’ve heard that emails sent this way do not go through the Exchange server. Again, if I’m wrong, let me know.

-Rebecca Johnson

UPDATE: I noticed that a number of comments indicate that emails to groups are being rejected by the server. I have been testing this on a mail server running Exchange 2007. I just tried it using my gmail account to send an email to the group I’d created and I was rejected. So, many apologies to those folks on gmail who are using the advice in this post. However, one of our brilliant student employees came up with this workaround for gmail accounts. For those folks who have gmail: consult Creating an Email Distribution List for Your Gmail Account. Please let us know if this works for you. Thanks!

iTunes 11 is here

December 6th, 2012 Comments off

So, the newest version of iTunes dropped this week. This post on MacLife gives you a summary of new features. Thanks for the link, Jason.

-Rebecca Johnson

Categories: advice, beginner Tags: , , ,

Thanksgiving app sales!

November 22nd, 2012 Comments off

This is the time of year when lots of the most popular apps are on sale. Most of the major holidays are always accompanied with app price drops and Thanksgiving is no exception. Here are a few of our favorite apps that are on sale today:

Docs-to-go is 40% off and currently $9.99. http://appshopper.com/business/documents-to-go%c2%ae-with-exchange-attachments-microsoft-word-editing-exchange-attachments-desktop-sync

Quick Office is 75% off and currently $4.99 http://appshopper.com/business/quickoffice-connect-mobile-suite-for-ipad

Penultimate is 50% off and currently $0.99 http://appshopper.com/productivity/penultimate

Notability is 60% off and currently $1.99  http://appshopper.com/productivity/notability

-Jason Miller


Categories: apps, breaking news Tags:

A setting in 6.0 that prevents accidental in-app purchases

November 16th, 2012 Comments off

Jason has found another good link. Read this, especially if your kids get their hands on your iDevices now and then.

Re-Enabling Password Check

-Rebecca Johnson

Should you Skype, FaceTime, or Google+ Hangout?

October 24th, 2012 Comments off

Jason Miller found a nice run-down from Popular Mechanics on the pros and cons of these three video-calling tools.

–Rebecca Johnson

Categories: advice, apps Tags: , , ,

eTech iPad Accessory Showcase

October 23rd, 2012 Comments off

Recently, at the request of faculty and staff here in the College of Arts and Sciences at The University of Alabama, eTech hosted an iPad accessory showcase, gathering an assortment of keyboards, styli, various cables, and even some drumsticks and a guitar pick, so that faculty and staff who have iPads might take these on a test drive before purchasing their own. The list below shows the items in the showcase. I have linked the items to pages on the Logitech, Zagg, etc., websites, or in a couple of cases to a page on Amazon. Do know that prices may vary, so you may want to shop around rather than purchasing directly from the company that made the item.

Logitech solar keyboard
Logitech tablet keyboard for iPad
Apple bluetooth keyboard

iRig microphone

Targus stylus (the Targus stylus in our showcase, the one with the wide, angled tip, seems to no longer be available, the link in the text is to a page showing other Targus styli)
Pogo Sketch
Kensington Combo

Pix and Stix

Altec Lansing speakers
Reel Boom speakers (bluetooth and wireless)

The following four items are all Apple products and can be found on this page: iPad accessories
VGA display connector
iPad dock (when used in a multimedia room, this dock seems to distort the mirrored image from the iPad)
Apple digital AV adapter
camera kit connection

–Rebecca Johnson

Creating an Email Distribution List for Your Gmail Account

October 10th, 2012 2 comments

By far the most popular post on this blog has been one that describes how to create an email distribution list that can be used on the iPad. Today, Emily, one of our systems assistant student employees, found an adjustment to the process that will allow you to create a distribution list on the iPad if your primary account is gmail.

The key is to add your gmail account to the iPad as an Exchange account. So, under Mail, Contacts, and Calendars in Settings, tap Add Account . . . and select Microsoft Exchange. In the first screen, enter your gmail address and password in the appropriate fields. Entering a Description is optional, but it can be helpful if you have multiple accounts on a single device.

On the next screen, enter m.google.com in the Server and Domain fields. Enter your entire gmail address as the User name. Tap Next. Now you’re ready to create an email distribution list on your iPad using your gmail account.

–Rebecca Johnson


iOS 6.0 Tips: Setting up multiple email signatures, using “Street View,” and more

October 8th, 2012 Comments off

Here are some links that Jason Miller sent me recently that detail some nifty things you can do in iOS 6.0, including how to

Use HTML to create a link in your email signature in iOS 6.0

Have multiple email signatures on your iOS 6.0 device

Reorder your inboxes with iOS 6.0

Get Google Maps back on your iOS 6.0 device

Get Google Maps “Streetview” for the Google Maps web application

–Rebecca Johnson