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Messages - jomolungma

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Current Law Students / Re: Voice recorders for recording lectures
« on: June 24, 2005, 09:05:03 PM »
OK, some of you are just WAY more brilliant than I am when it comes to electronics/computer stuff. Maybe you guys can give me suggestions and help me out.

I have Onenote that I would like to try using because I like the feature that will allow me to record what is being said so that I can replay that part of the lecture if I miss something. I would also like to be able to record my lectures and burn them onto CDs so that I have something to listen to during the 40-minute commute.

I am trying to figure out if there is a voice recorder (of decent quality) that I can plug into my computer as it records (so I can be using it with Onenote), but that will also allow me to then burn the recordings onto CD. Some, I'm wanting to kill two birds with one stone where I would otherwise theoretically be recording the same lecture twice. Can anyone help with this? Maybe, all I need is a great microphone to be able to use with Onenote and then do this (I haven't gotten that far in my Onenote ventures). But, I would love to have a voice recorder that could potentially be used alone.

So, can any of you tech-Gods help?

You were on the right track.  As long as your laptop has a mic-in jack, all you need is a good mic, one designed for large lecture halls, not dictation.  There are good ones that can do both though.  When you use the OneNote record function, it saves the recording as a WMA file in the OneNote directory.  All you have to do is use Microsoft's Media Player, or another media player that recognizes WMA files, to burn them to CD.  If you use Media Player, just have it continuously monitor your OneNote directory for new files.  Then, every time you do a new recording it will automatically show up in Media Player and you can burn it. Also, if you own a digital music player other than an iPod, you can just sync your recordings with it and then listen to them with your DMP.  It'll save you on burn time and CDs and allow you to listen whenever/wherever you want.

I did look into Dragon Naturally Speaking - a friend mentioned that recording and then having the computer transcribe it sounded like a good idea, but the more I looked into it, I didn't think it would work in a lecture hall.


DNS will almost certainly not work in a lecture-hall format because it needs to learn the voice it is transcribing.  Unless your professor is willing to go through all the sample readings into your computer for you, it probably is a lost cause.

OneNote's recording feature is simply a "Record" button that accesses your microphone and records the input to a WMA file.  Theoretically the file size is limited by your hard disk space.  The useful aspect of the recording feature is that if you type notes while recording, the program keys your notes to points in the recording at which you typed them.  So, if on review you are looking at a note you typed, there will be an icon next to it which, when clicked, will cue up the recording at the exact moment you typed the note.  Actually very useful I've found.

Pittsburgh / Cost of Computer Increase to Student Loan
« on: June 07, 2005, 05:27:39 PM »
Howdy folks,

I just sent in my paperwork (receipts and all) for an increase to my student budget to accomodate the one-time cost of a computer (laptop) system for school.  I had received some inquiries as to how this process went/is going and thought I'd place it here.

First, according to (bottom of page) you can spend up to $3K on a computer for school and have it added to your student budget.  In talking with Charmaine McCall at the Pitt Law Fin Aid office, she confirmed this applies to law students.  You need to complete the form here and send it to Charmaine with all relevant receipts attached.  She will then forward this on to the main financial aid office.

And that should be all that's needed.  I haven't received my student budget yet, or  my exact approved loan amount, so I don't know if it worked in practice.  However, as soon as I hear I will post it here.  Hope this helps.

Current Law Students / Re: 14" or 15" Laptop Monitor
« on: May 28, 2005, 07:45:15 AM »
bla bla bla...who cares and does it really make a difference?
obviously the OP cares or they wouldn't have asked... and in the end, no, it doesn't make a difference if it doesn't make a difference

Current Law Students / Re: Laptop Bags
« on: May 28, 2005, 07:44:21 AM »
two bag makes - krumpler and tom bihn, make really good laptop bags.  tom bihn especially makes good backpack/laptop combos that will keep ya looking stylish  while you lug all your stuff around.  their site is at  Kinda pricey though if that's an issue.

Current Law Students / Re: 14" or 15" Laptop Monitor
« on: May 27, 2005, 02:31:04 PM »
I went back and forth on this for my T43 as well, even looked at an X41's 12" screen.  In the end I went with the 15" because I like a lot of screen real estate and while you don't have to use all that 15" offers, you can't use more than the 14" offers.  The difference in weight is not a factor for me.  If weight was an issue I would have gone with the X41, but I found that screen too small to put windows side-by-side, which is how I plan on taking notes. 

As for screen resolution, my T43 has SXGA resolution (which is something like 1480 x 1050).  I have used 1280 x 1024 for the last three years on my desktop and the smaller resolution is not that big of a deal.  The fonts installed are larger than you would use on a desktop (for things like icon names and menu choices) so I have no problem seeing those, and when I type I either increase the font size or zoom in on the doc to over 100%, but I really don't need to do either.  Also, most laptops (including the T43) come with some kind of zoom feature, like Fn + spacebar, that allows you to magnify the screen instantly if needed.  But, again, I don't find it necessary at all and appreciate the extra real estate the higher resolution provides.

Current Law Students / Re: Laptop Bags
« on: May 27, 2005, 02:26:08 PM »
I have this Kensington bag that a bought a while ago on a lark, before I even had a laptop.  I'm not sure what model it is, but the greatest thing about it is the shoulder strap.  The actual part that goes over your shoulder is stretchable foam.  It's by far the most comfortable thing I'v ever worn on my shoulder, especially once you add weight in the bag.  Wouldn't necessarily recommend the bag, but definitely the shoulder strap. 

Pittsburgh / Re: Married and going to Pitt?
« on: May 22, 2005, 09:32:43 AM »
Hey there. I'm Joe and I'm a soon-to-be 1L at Pitt. My wife and I always welcome the chance to associate with other grownups (we have a 4-year-old), so count us in. We got married just before she started med school at Pitt, so now it's my turn to run up some serious debt!

I've lived in or around Pittsburgh almost all my life, so feel free to ask for advice about where to live or whatever. Looking forward to meeting some people -- if you're already in the area, by all means say hi.

Thanks for responding Joe!  I sent you a more complete response via email, but I wanted to thank you again for your interest.  It's funny, my wife is just wrapping up her PhD in Art History, and while she didn't accrue any debt from that, she's been mostly occupied with school while I worked.  Now the foot will be in the other shoe, so to say.

We are buying a house in Pittsburgh and should be in full-time by August 1, so we'll be sure to say hi.  Thanks again for your post.

Pittsburgh / Re: Going to Pitt? Me too...
« on: May 13, 2005, 05:34:48 AM »
pick a good scotch and stick to it
- Aaron

After working on the website for the US importer of The Balvenie scotch, and getting lots of free bottles as a result, I'm permanently hooked to The Balvenie (doublewood preferred) - To quote Ron Burgundy - scotch scotch scotch, i love scotch

Current Law Students / Re: Does anyone use a digital voice recorder?
« on: April 28, 2005, 06:18:41 PM »
I would think that using a recorder would make you get more involved in class.  Instead of being concerned with typing/writing every word down that anyone says, you know that it's on tape if you miss something.  This would free you up to actually be interactive and attentive in class, worrying less about your notes and more about actively listening.

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