Why Should Tools Matter?
One of the distinctions of being human is our propensity for creating and using tools. While it is true that other species are found to use available materials in a seemingly teleological way, human beings are exceptional among the community of living things in this regard. I love tools! Relishing in this is one way of appreciating life as a human.
The tools we use shape our perspectives about how the world works, what is possible, even what is considered "scientific." For a proposition to be considered "scientific," it needs to be testable, or refutable. Some things that were not testable 50 yrs. ago, are testable today. fMRI, for example, makes it possible to view brain activity in a waking person and, therefore, propositions about the brain that were not "scientific" before have become so today. In view of what is possible, the exponential leaps in technology expand our abilities and scope of potential in ways unimaginable only a few years ago. The pace of technological advance makes the future exciting, but less predictable. As these advances are adopted, the realities about how the world works, also change. People communicate differently, they organize differently, they become informed differently, and ultimately, these differences will affect how they decide to do about things.
Many of us receive training on SPSS in college curricula, but then face the prospect of not having it after graduation. PSPP is a free replacement of the proprietary SPSS and appears very similar to it, with a few exceptions. Most important, however, is that the data files are interchangeable.
The process for downloading and installing PSPP from the main site or one of the mirror sites is a little complicated because it is bundled as a "tarball," addresses an international audience, and assumed different things about different operating systems -- including Linux.
If you are using a Windows operating system, here is a link that will save you a lot of aggravation. Simply click HERE to download an installation file. Run it, and you're all set to go with PSPP.
For help in using PSPP you can get the MANUAL in pdf and there is a PSPP wiki that can be very useful.
Best Tutorial in Statistics - Vassar Stats
Professor Emeritus, Richard Lowry, has assembled two parallel websites that bring statistics to an accessible level for all. One site provides a highly readable, and sometimes interactive, explanation of the most commonly used statistical methods for inference testing. And, it's free.
Inferential Statistics (textbook, click the title)
The second website provides the computational programs to actually conduct the inferential statistical tests. You can copy and paste your data from Excel, or type your data into the online programs. And, it's free.
Vassar Stats (computation programs, click the title)
Anyone who works their way through Lowry's Inferential Statistics and becomes comfortable with the Vassar Stats programs can consider themselves at an intermediate level of statistical understanding.
Free Online Database System
click the logo to go to Grubba
Grubba is so called Donationware. If you use Grubba and like it, you can make a (small) donation to support us.
Keeping Grubba running is expensive, so every donation is much appreciated. You can use Grubba up to 10.000 records and 5 forms. Grubba lets you create your own customized database online. It's designed in a way that you can create your own fields, with your own fieldnames and characteristics.
You also can create your own form(s). A form is nothing more then a collection of fields that match your database. With the form you can fill the database. The form also comes in handy when searching your database. The fields you made for your form are also present on the search page.
Caspio Bridge - Cloud Databases Made Easy
Caspio offers a platform where you can build a database with no programming, or import one from Excel or Access. Then, you create input Forms and output Reports (both interactive) and deploy them to your website with the provided embed code, just like with YouTube or a Google Gadget.
Price plans range from $40/month for Lite, to scalable business applications at $149/month to $299/month and enterprise levels beyond. Unlimited number of users. You'er paying for the amount of storage and the number of "Data Pages" (forms and reports deployed). 14-day free trial.
ZOHO Creator - Build online database
Use their intuitive and feature-rich platform to build your custom database applications. Just write your business rules and let the software handle deployment and hosting. You can create your own forms/tables afresh or import data from standard formats (.xls .csv .mdb) and get your database application online within minutes, really!
ZOHO offers a free trial plan, which can be upgraded to full feature roll out. The most popular plan is $49/month and offers unlimited number of users.
MyTaskHelper - online relational DB
Click this image to go to MTH website
MTH is an online relational database and web-forms builder. Everything starts from the Form, basically it's your Table. Columns are form fields. Everything is very easy - just drag and drop the field type you need to your form - as a result you add new column to your Table! You can create as many forms as you need. Link them using Relationships and you'll have web based relational database application. You'll be able to customize it and integrate it into your web site or blog. Using database roles you can restrict access to your database for your co-workers or friends. Create database views, build charts and google maps based on your data. And it costs only $29.00 USD per month for an UNLIMITED account.
Intuit Quickbase - online database
The makers of Quickbooks now offer an online database application. Quickbase comes with about 200 templates, or you can customize your own database structure. There is a 30 day free trial. Pricing begins at $300/month, so this is not a light weight solution.
DOVIEW - Visual Approach to Outcomes
Anyone who has tried to create Logic Models quickly becomes aware of the shortcomings in the typical approach. That is, drafting a model in a word processor or a spreadsheet is awkward. And, the resulting model is usually too "shallow" to be of much use. With DoView, you can readily create Logic Model diagrams, with linkage arrows. Also, the model can be multi-dimensional with drill-down details specifying Indicators, Data reports, and Notes, on separate layers and pages. DoView costs about $40.
You also get the ability to upload your model to a website so viewers can interact (drill down) with your model.
Want to make video tutorials? DEBUT is an inexpensive application that allows you to produce videos from computer screen, webcam, or any video input device and simultaneously record audio. Great for making tutorials, demonstrations, or any kind of video presentation. Cost about $50
The Visual Understanding Environment (VUE) is an Open Source project based at Tufts University. The VUE project is focused on creating flexible tools for managing and integrating digital resources in support of teaching, learning and research. VUE provides a flexible visual environment for structuring, presenting, and sharing digital information. It's free!
Create game-changing presentations online! Pan, Zoom, Import Media, add a story line, captivate your audience. See an example here. If you work online and stay within 100 MB, it's free. If you need to go larger, go private, or wish to work offline, you can purchase plans ranging from $60/yr. to $160/yr. So, move beyond the PowerPoint format into something dynamic.
Cloud-based Information Management
See video demonstration - click
Diigo (pronounced DEE go) is an awesome tool for collecting, storing, retrieving, sharing, annotating, and just managing information you find on the internet. It's like a simplified version of Nvivo, but for internet browsing. You can put tags on entries, highlight passages, add sticky notes, copy text, bookmarks, to create a library of your online surfing inquiries.
Vertex42 - Templates for Excel
Free templates for Excel and Word, plus calculators, calendars, etc. There are also articles describing Excel tips, Statistics, Finance, and Dashboards.
DropBox - Free File Sharing for Teams
This is one of the most useful tools for collaborating among a team. DropBox allows you to create folders that automatically synchronize with your other computers, or with other persons. You get 2 GB of sharing space for free. If you invite others to join, you get additional free space. Plus, your shared files are also stored in the "Cloud" so you can reach them from anywhere on any computer. A great backup for important files!
Each folder you create can be selectively shared with specific people, so you can have multiple teams, projects, etc.
Weebly - Easy Affordable Web Platform
This is one of the best website platforms ever for those who are not programmers. This website is hosted by Weebly. It has a large range of building blocks and features for most website applications. There is a free version, if you don't mind having "Weebly" in the URL. The full version is only about $50/yr. and it allows you to create separate 10 websites.
WikiSpaces - Web Platform for Teachers
Wikispaces is a website platform for building wikis (like Wikipedia). There are free versions and paid versions. Special deals are available for teachers. An example of what can be done is demonstrated here at Ed Psych Temple. This is a wiki created by a class of graduate students at Temple University Harrisburg in the Spring of 2010 (my class). What is great about WikiSpaces is that it allows for collaboration among a team of persons.
Build a Portfolio Website
Click on logo to visit eFolioWorld
eFolioWorld allows you to build a portfolio for yourself, your institution, your course, or some special program. Easy to use tools are provided to make this easy and professional looking. It's a great way to offer a "dynamic" and multi-dimensional resume to showcase your rich background and accomplishments. It's free!
MailChimp - Email Campaign Manager
MailChimp is an email campaign manager that allows you to generate professional looking html emails and newsletters. It also has email list management features that report whether emails were delivered, opened, clicked, etc. You can create sign-up forms to paste on a website, or include within your email messages. That comes in real handy for allowing people to add themselves to your email list(s).
Survey Monkey - Online Survey Tool
Survey Monkey is an online survey platform. It offers a wide variety of question types and the means to program "skip questions" based on answers to previous questions. Data are saved online for frequency summaries, cross-tab analyses, graphic summary, or you can download as Excel files or SPSS files. There is a limited feature free version, or you can get the full boat for about $20/month.
Doodle - Polling to Schedule Meetings Free
If you have tried to schedule meetings with email communication, you know that it quickly becomes a messy task and usually involved multiple iterations until some date and time is settled. Doodle allows you to issue a Poll to attendees where they select from a set of possible time slots. They can register their availability and also see where the others are. It works! And, it's free.
SmartSheet - Project Management
SmartSheet is a simple, flexible project management tool that supports collaboration among any number of persons via internet access. There is a free trial period (30 days) that allows one to see if it fulfills your needs. There are different subscription rates beginning at $16/month.
LogMeIn - Remote Access to Your Computer
Log-Me-In provides complete remote access to your host computer. The host computer could be your desktop at home, or your computer at work, or whatever. You can have any number of host computers. With an internet connected computer, you can get remote access to your host computer. If there is someone working at that host computer, the two of you can work together or show each other how to do something. A basic account is FREE. With a pro account (about $12/month or $70/year) you can also do file transfers, remote to local printing, remote to local audio, background log in so you don't interrupt a current user, and more.
Splashtop - remote control from Tablet
click the logo to get to Splashtop
Gives you remote control access to all your software and files on your PC, Mac, or Linux desktop from your Android Tablet (or phone)? FREE! Download the "Streamer" to your host machine (PC, Mac) and then install the Application on your Tablet or Android phone. It works really well.
All you need is a webcam and internet connection and Skype will enable you to make free video calls. Oh, you also need a friend who has the same so there is someone on the other end to video chat with. The quality depends on your webcam and your internet connection speed. Skype to Skype calls are free. Skype to land lines cell phones are pennies per minute.
Group Video Calling is available with Skype Premium ($4.50/month). This allows for a "Hollywood Squares" type of meeting where everyone can see everyone. Only one person in the group needs to have a Premium account for the Group Video Calling to work for everyone on the call.
Best Windows Software - MakeUseOf.com