rAPPido Review: Smart Recorder 7 – the voice recorder and transcriber


Ms. History tried using the free version to send a recording longer than three minutes- it didn’t work- she had to pay for an upgrade. I say an upgrade, as their features are set on a menu, where you have to pay a certain fee for a certain feature, more for another. Hmmm. I think I am revising my review to say this is a great option ONLY  if you are making your comments less than three minutes. I am still in the midst of finding a better option.

It turns out that you can use Explain everything simply as a recorder- I tried by making a recording that was over 5 minutes and exported it to my google drive. It totally worked!  NOTE- Explain everything costs $2.99

Late yesterday afternoon I was visited by Ms. History teacher who was trying out quick voice to send feedback on student presentations. It all worked fine until she tried to email  herself the file. Though quick voice (free) lets you make recordings up to five minutes, it only allows you to export by email. Yet a five minute audio recording is a way bigger file than email will allow you to send. Consequently, she finds herself with some feedback she has no good way to give to the students.

My mission: find a free voice recorder with a user-friendly interface that allows different export options.

Screen Shot 2014-02-14 at 9.25.13 AM

After a very quick perusal of the following articles:

I decided to try Smart Recorder 7.

The interface is pretty simple, with a large red button you need to press to begin:

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As you can see, it also gives you handy little tips from the get go.

Here is how it looks while you are recording:

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You can pause your recording and the begin again. Once you are done, press done. You will then be asked to name your recording:

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I tried the transcript option, but alas, I think you have to pay:

Screen Shot 2014-02-14 at 9.33.58 AMI didn’t want to pay so I opted out.

Then I uploaded it to my google drive, where I could send the link by email, or share it with whoever I want:

Screen Shot 2014-02-14 at 9.34.28 AMAs you can see, you can also send it to dropbox, save it on your camera tool, sync it via wifi and open it in iMovie, web dab, and many other options.

Here are my recordings in my google drive:

Screen Shot 2014-02-14 at 9.40.54 AMAnd here is the link to my recording (honestly not worth listening to the whole thing- I am just attaching it as an example):

My recording

All in all, if your goal is to make quick comments and share them in a quick and effective manner to your students, this is a good option. The free version is easy to use, does not impose a time limit on recordings (YES IT DOES) and has many options for exporting.

iPad Show and Tell #3: Mme. Leblanc’s Pecha Kucha on QuickVoice!



Here is the last presentation from our inaugural show and tell on November 6th.

Mme. Leblanc would like to me to stress that she was trying

Haiku Deck

Haiku Deck

out a new tool for her called Haiku Deck and would like you to take that into account while viewing though personally, I don’t think it is necessary- it was a fabulous presentation on the merits and challenges of QuickVoice. And as a bonus, she learned a new tool!


Thanks Melanie!

Send an Audio recording of your Dictée with Voice Recorder

Screen Shot 2013-09-17 at 8.33.55 AMYesterday a French teacher asked me how she could send a recording of her speaking the dictation words to her class as a study aid.

I told her about a couple of audio recording apps, my favourite of which is Voice Recorder ($0.99):

photoI like the simple interface. All you have to do is push the red button and begin talking! Once you are finished, you can rename your recording, share it via email, facebook or youtube or save it to your camera roll.


A note on the notes though- the note is not included when you share the recording. Which is sad, because that would have been a great feature for our purposes of a Dictée study aid…

You can also download it by syncing it via wifi:



Or use the timer to count yourself in:



VoiceRecorder is a simple, inexpensive app that is easy to use.

FYI: I covered this topic early this year in this post, where I talked about audio memos.


Two Ways to Add Audio to Keynote

The grade sevens are working on their first multimedia project- the dreaded keynote presentation (I know this because my daughter has been working on it in the kitchen while I make dinner). One of the challenges of making the keynote directly on the iPad is the challenge of adding an audio track to their presentation.

Why is it a challenge? Because for some reason only known to Apple, there is no direct way of doing this.

After a bit of research I found this video:

I tried this method with my daughter and, after some failed attempts, succeeded in embedding two musical clips in her presentation. However, we were not able to extract a clip from the song- she had to go with the beginning.

But wait! Mr. Multimedia teacher just sent me the following video which shows how to add an audio clip (even from within a song) using an app called Hokusai:

Which just goes to show you that even if Mr. Jobs didn’t think about it that doesn’t mean it can’t be done…

Audio Recording Apps to Send Comments to Your Students

Screen Shot 2013-02-05 at 8.26.19 AMYesterday Mademoiselle The White came to see me. She likes to send audio comment to her French students and had been using audacity on her lap top to do it. Except that it was not easy or quick to export the file and then send it to her students. She was wondering if there was an app on her iPad that would let her record her comment and then simply send it off.

Well. I love it when people ask me questions that I know the answer to.

I suggested audio memos, an app I tried a while ago when attempting to find a recording app to work with Skype (it didn’t work by the way). But in terms of what MMe. The White needed, it was perfect. You record your message, you go to settings and tap on the email option. You send your helpful comment to your student.

I also found this article from educatorstechnology.com that gives an annotated list of several audio recorders that could be useful for teachers:

Screen Shot 2013-02-05 at 8.28.54 AM


Read more…

How to Record Skype Calls on your iPad? Good luck with that.

You can’t. At least not without jailbreaking your device apparently, which I don’t recommend.

So I wrote this post yesterday highlighting the following article before I tried it. It didn’t work and now I am sad. But wait! Read to the bottom! There is a silver lining!

via digital inspiration

In Grade Nine, students take a course on Careers. I think it might be called Professional Development, but that somehow seems wrong… Anyhoo, for that course, they must research a profession and then interview a pracitioner of that professional. Many students choose to interview friends or relatives who are only available via Skype. As the quality of the interviews are always better when the student is not worried about jotting down every word, Ms. PD. asks her students to record their conversation.

The problem is, to record a Skype conversation on your mac desktop or laptop, you need a piece of software like Call recorder that will cost you $15, a lot of money for a one time deal-io.

And here comes the iPad to the rescue!

Here is a simple guide to using your iPad to record skype calls on the iPad:

Read more

Yeah right. No rescue here. I tried Quick voice, Voice recorder and audio memos, and none of them worked. I wonder if this is a difference between the new iOS and the old? Or maybe the iPad 2 and the iPad 3? Whatever it is, the above article, as well as this one are giving erroneous info. Whether I begin the recorder app before or after I initiate the Skype call, either the Skype call makes the recorder stop or the recorder makes Skype hang up. Very frustrating.

But wait! There is a rescue option!!!

I did find a free (for a limited time only) app for your Mac! It is called Callnote Premium and works like a dream. Simply download it, allow it to talk to your Skype app and call the person you would like to record (asking their permission first of course.) Then press play!

I tested it and the conversation goes directly into your itunes, though you can also save it to your evernote, facebook or dropbox. If the file isn’t too large you can also email to yourself!

A Reconnaissance Trip into Keynote

So I finally bit the bullet and purchased key note for my ipad as I was conversing with Mr. Multimedia yesterday and he was mentioning how many of his students want to do their projects on the ipad.

In order to stay ahead of these young whippersnappers (or at least on par), I thought I would try to get a couple of slides together.

The Challenge:

1. Build a couple of slides (What? I’m busy so leave me alone.)
2. Add images
3. Add shapes.
4. Play around with the text box.
5. Add animation.
6. Add sound (this is the big one as I have heard rumours, since corroborated that keynote on the ipad doesn’t allow you to embed sound directly).
7.  If I can’t add sound, find a way to get both.

1. Relatively easy (as I had just updated to ios5 the other day, Keynote automatically took me to their tutorial, which I would highly recommend you try- it shows you how to do things and then gets you to try it. I learned many things, such as how to select two things at once and move them at the same time).

2. Adding images was also very simple. Just go to the little image at the top and add media. I went to my Camera roll and retrieved the screenshots that I needed. OH! I also used the replace option on the image given in the slide template- very handy indeed!

3. I wanted to highlight a section of my picture, so I went back to the icon with the picture box and chose shapes this time. I chose the circle.
Then to the i for the  style options–> Fill I was able to select NO Fill.

 I then turned the borders on, coloured it red (I like red) and tapped the image icon to get out of the screen. I did the same for my little line that linked my text box to the circled section.

4. The text box gave me a little difficulty (at one point the keyboard would not show up) but I finally managed to make the text smaller and move it around the screen. The difficulty I had was that I inadvertently made the slide zoom out when I was trying to move my picture and I couldn’t see half of my slide. Being the swift learner that I am though (no sniggering please) I figured it out and zoomed back in.

5. Animation. The animation functions pretty much the same way as it does in powerpoint though the nomenclature is a little different. Select the object you wish to animate and then click on the diamond shaped icon beside the image icon. It will take you to the following screen:

The + sign will let you animate the object at the beginning of the slide and the – at the end. You can choose your effect (I am partial to the anvil), the order as well as whether or not you want the animation to happens before or after the others or by click:

6. Add sound. Ahh. This seems to be Keynote’s Achille’s heel. There is no way to create a soundtrack to your presentation through the ipad keynote. Why, is beyond me- all the tools necessary to do so are available. It is one of those anomalies of reason- a black hole in the order of things.

However, there is a way around it, though the animations will be lost. Take screen shots of your slides, then go to imovie. Insert the slides via the camera roll and then click on the icon of the microphone to record. I had to zoom my slides a little (done by pinching the image) so that imovie showed the whole slide:

I also had to retake my voice recording about 5 times, but that was because I realised too late that I speak with a lot of umms and ahhhs.

Here is the final version:

Okay. Maybe not a work of genius, but it gets the point across.
Thus our reconnaissance mission concludes successfully!