Posts Tagged ‘apple-Mac-OS’

Bad audio quality in Moodle Kaltura recordings on iMacs under ambient sound conditions. A running log (closed)

  1. Symptom: See title.
  2. Cause: While speakers of the 3.5 mm headset take over from the iMac speakers, when plugged in, the 3.5 mm headset micro does not disable the webcam micro. The webcam micro remains the recording source for Moodle Kaltura (mac os x.6, safari 6, flash 10).
  3. Possible solutions:
      1. 1st choice: is there a way for the admin to override this permanently?
      2. 2nd choice: is there a way for the end user to override this on a case-by-case basis?
      3. "The Califone 3066AV is compatible with both Windows and Mac audio outputs (but is not compatible with iMacs)." ("The Wow starts now!").. Do we have to tie up our boom and lavalier microphones for this?
      4. Try the flash settings by right clicking in the video window, selecting the microphone icon, then choosing the external (= non-webcam) microphone for input.
      5. kaltura flash microphone settings0kaltura flash microphone settings
      6. Fail. The real culprit is the iMacs line-in audio-in for which you need a preamp to get it to work with analog microphones. Preamps seem to start at $40, but for that I can get a PC webcam (Microphone included). 

How to play Windows media on the MAC OS platform

LRC-provided Windows Media encoded audio and video learning materials files can easily also be played on the MAC, since Microsoft supports Windows Media also on the Mac-platform.

Mac users can download wmv/wma support for the Mac OS X version 10.3.9 or later, QuickTime version 7.0 or later) from for free. In this download from Microsoft, Windows Media® Components for QuickTime are  now “new & improved”.

SOLVED: How to record, in Adobe-Flash, video from my built-in iSight web camera on an 2010 iMac, combined with sound from an external cs100 PnP USB audio device

  1. Problem : Our new campus-wide Moodle Kaltura installation enables authentic oral proficiency examinations (we have no other Moodle Plugin for audio recordings). However, we still have no webcams on our mainstay PCs. We do have a few iMacs with built-in iSight webcams, but for providing students more privacy during their assignments in the language resource center, we need headphones. We have for spare some old headphones which we would like to use up, but they are analogue. These iMacs do not have an analog headset connector, only a line-in which would require a preamp. We have good sturdy USB headsets from Sanako, but these are too expensive to purchase for the iMacs that have no ways to secure them and little other specialized language learning use which we do not already get from the PCs (and more…).
  2. Workaround :
    1. Try an inexpensive USB audio device that has 3.5mm analog headset inputs.
    2. On my iMac 2010
    3. If in system preferences / sound/ I direct input and output to the USB PnP device
      1. test passes playing system sounds
    4. in audacity (if you CRANK the microphone sensitivity to the max!)
      1. recording test passes: The headset loudspeakers and micro work (not well, but they work, as a tab on the microphone indicate: there is static, and the recording volume is still softish, but better than the built in webcam microphone)
    5. in Kaltura,
      1. Flash only brings up the security dialogue (in Safari 5  and current Firefox ESR and Chrome) for allowing the  web application accessing to the built-in iSight web camera, but no options to choose a separate audio device
      2. However, if you control-click on Flash’s a video preview window for the  web camera, and click on “settings” (not “global settings”, although that is useful for always allowing access from certain URLs like your LMS) .
      3. CIMG0020
      4. Click on the microphone icon :
      5. CIMG0021
      6. Make sure the USB PnP  device is selected.
      7. CIMG0022
      8. You can bring up the settings dialogue, make sure the USB PnP device is chosen for audio and CRANK up the microphone input sensitivity! Then test the volume levels with the built-in volume meter (should  show lots of green bars when you speak. You may have to adjust the Califone headset microphone arm so that the microphone is very close in front of your mouth. ) Unlike in the picture, do not choose “reduce echo ”.
      9. CIMG0024
    6. Remaining
      1. Questions :
        1. Can this sensitivity setting be permanently stored for all users in the iMac software image, or do our students always have to adjust the microphone sensitivity?
        2. It remains to be seen whether this inexpensive and unsecurable device survives long when being used by our student population.
      2. Problem : The review video function of the Moodle Kaltura Flash video remains very temperamental on the Mac OS X (In my testing, one of the numerous problems we had with Moodle Kaltura on the iMacs popped up again: when starting to review the recording, the time counter goes, but the video stalls for  a few seconds – afterwards everything seems to play  fine, but this is enough to confuse the heck out of my users) . While we made another small step of progress towards  enabling Moodle Kaltura webcam recordings in the language resource center, it seems easier to just get web cameras for the PCs.

Protected: Mac OS X Image management– the basics

2012/02/10 Enter your password to view comments.

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

How to create a zip-archive of files

  1. Select the files you want to zip
    • On Windows, CTRL+left-click
    • On MAC, Apple-Keyboard-Command-Key-click
  2. Access the context menu
    • On Windows, right-click
    • On MAC, control-click
  3. Zip/Compress the file:
    • On Windows, select context menu item: “Send to”/ sub menu item: “Compressed (zipped) Folder”.
    • On Mac, select  context menu item: “Compress [number of files you selected here] items”, like so:
    • archiving
  4. You can find the zip-file in the same folder where your source files are, under  the name
    • On Windows, depends on the source file names
    • On MAC, look for “”.

Moodle Streaming Video Recording Assignment Glitch

2011/07/27 1 comment

Environment: Mac OS 10.6.6, Moodle 1.9, Kaltura TBA, Firefox 3, Flash TBA.

Symptom: As pictured below, when student tries to redo a video assignment submitted previously, by pressing button “resubmit …”, Flash security window pops up, asking for her permission to access the webcam, but won’t accept any input (“pizza of death” spins).

kaltura (4)

Workaround: Use Safari instead of Firefox.

Lesson to learn: Not only, but especially with computers, be resilient (“Try something else”: modify the sequence of steps, browser version, browser make, operating system, hardware…).

How to work with screenshots in Windows XP or MAC OS X

On your keyboard, press  key “Print Screen” to put a picture of the entire screen into the clipboard (for the active window, hold the ALT-key while pressing “Print Screen”).

You can paste this clipboard in any windows application, for example MS-Word or MS-Paint.

In order to use the built-in windows picture editor, click “Start”, click “Run”, type “mspaint” (w/o inverted commas).

In ms-paint, you can edit the picture, using a variety of tools in a menu on the left.

E.g. click on the eraser button to activate this tool, then use the mouse pointer to erase sensitive parts of the picture.

Or select the selection tool and with the mouse pointer, draw a selection frame inside the picture. Then you cut the selection to the clipboard and paste it to a new picture.

Finally, save the result (normally as JPEG, since this results in much smaller file size).

Here is a screencast that shows the entire screenshot cycle.

Using a MAC?



Capture entire screen and copy to the clipboard


Capture a window and copy to the clipboard

Command+Control+Shift+4 then Space bar, click on the target