Cisco’s recent announcement discontinuing the popular Flip camera caught everyone, especially the education community, by surprise. I have always enjoyed walking into a school to do a “Makin’ Movies” workshop and finding a number of those handy little cameras ready for participants. I personally have always favored and recommended Kodak’s Zi line, especially for Mac users since they use a better quality QuickTime codec and the Zi8 has a jack for an external microphone. But wait! Cisco quietly went to that codec too, a model or two ago. I know because I admonished one of my grad students repeatedly because she could not get her clips into Movie Maker without converting them first. When I finally realized her dilemma, we were half way through the class. But wait again! Kodak has discontinued the Zi line. I have seen Zi8′s on sale for as low as $69 in office supply stores – that’s about $100 off the original MSRP! Run, don’t walk to pick up one or a few of these for your school.
I suppose we should have seen it coming. There are a number of less expensive, USB type, pocket camcorders. And though not all schools have embraced mobile learning devices (especially ones with cameras!), they are