Office 365–Now Free to Our Students

Office Image
From Microsoft’s Office 365 page

Wayne State has signed up for Microsoft’s Student Advantage Program – C&IT now provides free downloads of the latest version of Microsoft Office to all currently registered Wayne State students. This includes full-featured current versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook for PCs and Macs. PC users also get Access and OneNote. Students will be permitted to download five (5!) copies, which will run on Mac OS X, Windows, and Windows tablets running (real) Windows 8 (not RT).

Although the download process is a little complicated, there are clear instructions, and the Help Desk stands ready to provide assistance. C&IT didn’t forget faculty and staff – keep an eye out for Microsoft-related updates coming your way in the next year. Meanwhile, many folks have access to some version of Office through deals their colleges or departments have made–check with your tech support folks to find out. In some cases you can get a complete downloadable set for your home computer for the relatively low price of $75. The full details on the Student Advantage Program are available at – tell your students at your first class. It’s a great deal!


Some thoughts on how not to be overwhelmed with software choices

The Chronicle of Higher Education has a regular feature called Profhacker. A rotating group of faculty write about various technology-related issues in Higher Ed.

Recently Lincoln Mullen, a history of religion PhD candidate wrote about making reasonable choices about which electronic tools to use in our work. I have a colleague, for example, who still uses a DOS-based program because it does what he needs. I myself continue to use a word processor that first came out in the eighties (Notabene) because I think it’s still the best one around (it’s compatible with current Windows installations).

So here are some interesting thoughts–feel free to add to the conversation by commenting below…

PS I’d be glad to talk about Notabene and why I continue to use it off-list, as this is not supposed to be a forum for commercial applications.

Don’t walk while texting (or emailing or browsing…)

On Thursday October 25 I was walking across campus, around 1:30, heading towards a meeting and trying to deal with an issue with a recent travel request. While attempting to look up a phone number on my smartphone I tripped over the edge of a small platform and landed on my knees while my head hid a planter with a pebbly surface:

Planter under Prentis BuildingAs you might imagine, this did considerable damage to my face, and attracted a crowd. Some wonderful people from the Rec Center came with a first-aid kit and cleaned up most of the blood, but decided to call an ambulance, as this was potentially a closed-head brain injury. Never got a chance to get their names, but within five minutes an ambulance came and transported me to the Emergency Room in Receiving Hospital. I spent about four hours there, and, after a CAT scan it was decided that nothing was broken, but I was told to have someone watch me overnight and wake me every two hours to make sure I wasn’t experiencing post-traumatic brain swelling.

In the end, I was very lucky, and got off with a bad scrape on my forehead:

Abraded face


I took this picture with the offending instrument immediately after I was discharged from the hospital, and was waiting to be driven back to my car. I look much better here than I did the next morning, when my right eye was completely swollen shut and I was developing a ‘sympathetic’ black eye on the left side as well.

Almost all the ‘blackening’ is now gone, and there are only scabs and scars left, as of today. But the ‘take-home’ is very simply–don’t text and walk. It’s dangerous. I could have been badly hurt, not just ‘defaced’.

End of lesson for today.

International Conference on Online Learning–Streamed Live at Wayne

The annual Sloan-C conference on online learning will be streamed live to the Purdy/Kresge room 150 next week, and you are cordially invited to come and watch some or all of the talks.

The conference is taking place at Walt Disney World, but a number of the talks are being screened. Here is a link to the entire set of talks (with live links to the abstracts):

Not all of the sessions will be streamed at Wayne. Here is a graphic listing which lists all the talks we’ll be making available. Note that Wayne State’s own Sangeetha Gopalakrishnan is giving a talk Friday morning at 10:40 AM:

Sloan Conference Program