Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Capacity focus, 73: Google's US$35 Chromecast announced today -- with 32" LCD TV's at US$ 200 and 42" ones at US$400+, a potential education, evangelism and discipleship breakthrough (we are all our own TV broadcasters now!) . . . and stay tuned for a more flexible alternative using a wireless keyboard with track pad

Just announced, watch:

It seems this synchronises with Wi Fi and Google Chrome as well as certain web sites. Plug in in a HDMI port on the TV, and it will synch with devices on the local Wi Fi. (Assumption, you have that.)

Since it works with Chrome, it can show anything on a Chrome tab, including web pages, PDFs, and online documents (such as Google Doc or whatever they call it now.)

Of course, the Google lock-in is a commercial gambit, but you don't need to have just one browser.

This turns a living room or classroom sized television into a giant screen, great for education, evangelism and discipleship training.

What do I mean?

Simple, here is a technology that with broadband access, instantly turns a YouTube, Vimeo etc channel based course or a video podcast into something a group can sit down together to watch in a living room or seminar room or even a classroom. Then, with facilitation, things can be paused, watched in segments, discussed, gone back to, and more.

All of this in a context where it is now astonishingly low cost to get a camera, software etc and produce videos and kiosk style presentations that can easily be integrated with a panel or a "magazine show" format where hosts and guests in effect invite the watcher into their "living room" (more usually, actually a set up on a stage). Or you can do the equivalent of a mini series or a full one, a Semester will typically have 11 - 12 taught weeks. A Sunday School quarter is about that length too.

That is, if we will put in a modest investment and make a sustained effort, we are all educational broadcasters with channels of our own now.  

(Cf. here and here at CF # 3 and # 44, on that. Includes two major freebie vid editing and much more packages. I am also seeing that moderate packages go for about US$ 40 - 90, and if you are willing to accept an older generation, as I have on order, as low as US$20. Good enough video camcorders are going for US$150 - 250 or so, and fluid head tripods, camera cases, spare batteries etc can be had perhaps in kits for US$ 50 or so. I assume the reader knows that if s/he gets a modest laptop or 20 - 23" All In One (AIO) Desktop, for US$ 400 - 600 . . . think of that as a giant tablet with its own separate keyboard and mouse, there will be all the processing horsepower needed.)

My suggestion on content is, that we need at least:
  • bridging, Mars Hill stuff, and something that uses Ac 17 as a basis would be great,
  • Church renewal and mobilisation for discipleship [Titus 2:11 - 14 is a great start point], 
  • Evangelism as a lifestyle training
  • Setting up youth with a vision, a mission, calling, talents, and gifts  for Christian life, service and missions
  • 1 Cor 15:1 - 11 and putting first foundational things first
  • Apologetics 101 primer with an emphasis on young people
  • addressing scientism and evolutionary materialist ideology dressed up in a lab coat
  • disciples in recovery from Orwell's 1984 media manipulation world
  • disciples in recovery from the idolatry of political messianism
  • disciples in recovery from the benumbing, endarkening sensualism, porn-perversion agenda and dark corners of the web
  • family life engagement
  • missions mobilisation and engagement (the mission of the church IN our region and FROM it in light of the great commission and the fullness theme of Eph 1 and 4 etc.)
  • Three tidal waves: prophetic intellectual and cultural, God blessed transformational service and leadership in church, home, school, college, workplace, community, nation and world
  • Engaging the battle for the soul of our civilisation

Or, we can be instant pundits (do, make sure you know what you are talking about), etc.

(And if we don't do this, someone else will, who does not have our interests at heart.)

Logitech multi-touch wireless keyboard (HT: Amazon)
Of course a concern is, the commercial lock-in.

No problem, mon.

There is another alternative, using a wireless keyboard with track-pad, an HDMI cable and the two screen mode of a Laptop etc. Which, will give a giant screen to any PC, and the wireless keyboard allows control from anywhere in a room. 

Logitech's wireless keyboard with a large multi-touch track-pad (shown) is interesting, at US$ 30. 

With this setup, of course, one can do anything that the PC is set up to do. (Skype teleconferencing comes to mind.) 

And, stepping down a few tech level notches, a laptop with a DVD drive is capable of transmitting the video to a TV set up as second monitor. Or, simply put the vid etc on a thumbdrive USB memory stick. These days, a lot of TVs are set up to play from a USB memory stick. (In short, a seminar facilitation kit could include printed support, a DVD or two and handouts. Just add a seminar room -- which can be your friendly local living room or Den.)

So, we have alternatives. END