Free Applications

Free Applications v.11

UPDATE: Version 11 is Posted on 1/2/12

I created this document “Free Applications” document to share free applications that have the potential to enhance professional development, technical assistance, and dissemination activities. On January 2, 2012 I attached Version 11 of my list of such applications.  This version has more than 130 new resources. I invite you to try out the free apps on this list (or others of the countless free apps available) and post your results. Please post information about your experiences, including the potential uses and limitations of the applications that you explore and if possible, links to examples of how you used them.


24 Responses to Free Applications

  1. Nick Ortiz says:

    Thanks, Larry. This is an invaluable resources for both business and personal use. The challenge continues to be agency security permissions for download. But the tide is shifting favorably, I believe.

    You might consider adding these favorites of mine to your list:

    (Photo editing>panorama photo stitching)

    • exploringtech says:

      Thanks Nick,
      I’ll add reddit and autostitch to my next update of the free apps doc. What do you like about these applications? How do you use them? What potential uses do you see for TA and PD?

      • Nick Ortiz says:

        I love Autostitch because it is completely automatic. You simply load all the photos and press “Go” (although you have the option to change more advanced settings if desired). It could be a useful tool for teachers taking large-scale pictures in the classroom although this may be a longe-term goal.

        Reddit is great because I usually learn about breaking news days before it hits the mainstream media. Unlike other bookmarkers like Digg, the Reddit user-interface is very no-fuss, barebones (kind of like craigslist). You can create “subreddits,” perhaps one for Early Childhood, to which professionals can subscribe and keep abreast of current research/news in the field.

      • exploringtech says:

        Thanks for the descriptions Nick!

  2. Ted Burke says:

    What a fantastic resource Larry! I’ve forwarded the link to this blog to the DEC Technology Committee members to share with their folks. Looking forward to seeing this become a venue for all of us to share our work and thoughts. Thanks so much for getting this started!

    • exploringtech says:

      Thanks Ted. If you get the time, try out one of the apps or pick one of your own favorites and tell us about it.

  3. Thanks Larry! This is great! I will be sharing it with others at the Child Development Division and only makes it easier for me to voice the need to move forward with Technology. I especially like the last one. Can’t wait to go through some of the free apps!

    • exploringtech says:

      Thanks Lianne, I appreciate you spreading the word. Also, please post your experiences using the free apps.

  4. aliceridgway says:

    So psyched to have what was a paper presentation handout “live” when ever and where ever need it and up-to-date! I’ve added this to delicious and posted it on the Part C Data Managers’ listserv.

    Well done.

    • exploringtech says:

      Thanks Alice…and thanks for the typos that you found. I’ll make the corrections in the next edition.

  5. Larry says:

    Not yet, but I’d be happy to try it out with you.

    • aliceridgway says:

      Actually – you already told me about Sightspeed! (Forgot that little detail)so when I tried to create an account using the Dell Video Chat(free) interface I was informed that my email account was already in use. I can log on to the Sightspeed websight but not into Dell Video Chat. I’ve sent a bug report to Sightspeed.

      • aliceridgway says:

        Update on Dell Video Chat and Sightspeed… My bug report resulted in this response:

        “-You will not be able to login your SightSpeed ID or your SightSpeed email address (the one used for your SightSpeed account) in Dell Video Chat or vice versa. A new account will need to be created with a different ID and email address.

        -SightSpeed and Dell Video Chat can not be run concurrently .i.e. you are logged into SightSpeed you will not be able to start up Dell Video Chat. No error message to this effect will be displayed. You must exit SightSpeed to use Dell video Chat and vice versa.”

        Oh well.

  6. aliceridgway says:

    BTW not to be a PC pest but “HomeMaker is available only for Macintosh.”

    Anyone have a good free website designer? My hosting service offers one to subscribers but I’m looking for one that anyone can use. (Including PC users.)

  7. Nick Ortiz says:

    I had the opportunity to try out GIMP and YouSendIt-Lite.
    GIMP seems to be a very powerful photo-editing tool–more features than even I have access to in PhotoShop Elements. The sheer number of features may overwhelm the layperson without a walkthrouh first. It would probably be best for, say, a school district contracting with a website designer or an administrator who happen to be particularly tech-savvy. The program is still a bit glitchy, though–it randomly closed on me a couple of times for no apparent reason.
    I used YouSendIt to upload some photos for my parents. The free version is good for very simple file uploads in order to get around e-mail file size limitations. And the security seems buff. However, it has several drawbacks:
    *Can only upload one file
    *File size cannot excede 100MB
    *Message body limited to ~100 characters
    *Registration requires phone number

    Rapidshare might be another free file sharer to consider.

  8. Nick Ortiz says:

    Found this the other day — Foobar 200 —

    Free audio player for Windows. Supports most file types including native support for AAC. It’s supposed to run a lot faster than iTunes.

  9. Tim Gray says:

    A free web designers, presumably you mean HTML editor, is Good resources for open source alternatives to paid for applications are and

  10. This is a fun web site. I am amazed at the variety of sound effects. These might be fun as wake-me-uppers at a training after lunch!

  11. Mary Peters says:

    I wanted to thank you for this tool…do you have any updates or additions to this blog planned?

    I hope to stay in touch,

    • exploringtech says:

      Hi Mary,
      Nice to hear from you! Yes, just this morning I just posted a new document on a new page about good digital camcorders for early childhood…check it out. Best, Larry

  12. Harriet Bicksler says:

    Do you know of any free applications that can convert an audio file to text (short of painstakingly listening and typing up each word!).

    Thanks for any help you can offer!

    • exploringtech says:

      Hi Harriet,
      Many people have been using YouTube’s auto captioning to create captions from youtube video (that you own):
      I have been experimenting with the free Dragon Dictation on an iPad to create text from the spoken word. I imagine that with careful arranging it could create text from playing recorded narration as well. It’s very accurate!
      As far as low-tech approaches to captioning videos, I have been hiring a work study student.
      Hope this helps.

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