New Project: iPads for India

I'm starting a new short-term project to raise money to send iPads to the Barefoot College in India.

A friend recently asked me if we had any iPads that we could donate to the project he's working with in India. We didn't actually have any right then but we are coming up to the end of our lease at school and I thought there might be an opportunity.

Our lease requires that we either send the iPads back to the leasing company or buy the lease out. To buy out, we would need to pay back the fair market value of the iPads, which is currently about £100 per unit and we have 110.

I spoke to our leasing company and they generously offered a cut in the buyout price to support my plan and my intention is to try and crowd-fund the rest of the money from people who read this blog, listen to my podcasts and follow me on Twitter.

I really want to make this work as delivering 110 currently-supported iPads to a project like Barefoot College will make a huge difference instead of having to rely on older, unsupported and unreliable hardware.

Barefoot College

Barefoot College, which was recently visited by Apple VP Lisa Jackson, is an organisation that trains women in rural India to build solar powered projects to help their villages. These projects include solar water heating, cooking, desalination and even data projectors for use in night schools.

How to Help

As I said earlier, the main goal of my project is to raise enough money to buy out our school's equipment lease and own the iPads. I will then be working with Barefoot College to repair, test, configure and transport them to India. My friend, with my remote help via Skype, will be managing the iPads at Barefoot College. He is already doing this for the smaller number of devices that they currently have.

If we over-shoot the funding goal, we will use the money to either buy other equipment that will help the Barefoot College mission (USB hubs, spare cables, chargers, etc) or we will donate the surplus directly to Barefoot College.

If we don't make the target, Barefoot College will receive all donations.

Make a Donation at Crowdfunder.co.uk

Making a donation is the best support but I would really appreciate it if you could share this project with your friends social networks. Linking to the Crowdfunder page would be the most direct route for people to help.

I need to raise £180 per day to get this project done - will you help out?

Canvas 11 - Travelling with iOS

Canvas is a podcast all about iOS productivity that I co-host with Federico Viticci. This week Federico and I discuss travelling with iOS devices.

With summer - and WWDC - coming up, Federico and I bring you advice on the equipment, apps and tweaks for your iOS devices that you need when travelling with your iOS devices.

The travel bags are opened to reveal the essentials within. Federico and I share our favourite travel accessories, techniques for getting online abroad and our preferred iOS settings tweaks and Apple Watch complications for having fun and staying safe abroad.

A range of useful links are below.

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Out of School 180: Apple School Manager Hands On

This week on Out of School Bradley and I discuss the Apple education events that have been held in various areas to promote the new education features in iOS 9.3. Bradley held one such event in his school recently.

We, of course, continue to track the varying responses from Apple staff on whether Managed Apple IDs will get more free iCloud storage. At this point, I feel like anything less than unlimited iCloud for students will be seen as maddeningly parsimonious on Apple's part. We live in a world where companies are lining up to throw free cloud storage at schools - it's one reason why we love Google Apps at Cedars - and for Apple to cheap out on this would, in my opinion, be a mistake.

Bradley also got his first live demo of Apple Classroom and I report on some experiences having used it in school for the past few weeks.

iOS 9.3 Events

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Canvas 10 - Third Party Email

This week on Canvas, our podcast about iOS productivity, Federico and I (particularly Federico) drop serious knowledge on 3rd party iOS mail clients.

What are they good for? Where do they have hard limitations? Which ones are the best? Federico makes his picks and explains how these clients can hook into other parts of your workflow to really enhance your mail processing on iOS.

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