Extension Technology is looking forward to seeing you on Thursday at the 2016 Staff Conference. We hope you are planning to attend one or more of our technology workshops. This year we have a good mix of topics, hopefully something for everyone!


Excel for beginners or pros! Back by popular demand, Jay Nelsen from University Training will be presenting two workshops on Excel:

Up and running with Excel
 9:30 a.m. in Snyder Classroom 1

Quickly summarize data using pivot table
10:45 a.m. in Snyder Classroom 1


In our QuickBytes roundtable workshops, a few of us on the Extension Technology team will be demonstrating Slack, UMU, PowerPoint to Video, Office Mix, Screencast-o-matic and a whole bunch of new Google tools and features. Our format will be small group demos so you can freely ask questions! You choose what technologies want to see or see them all! 

QuickBytes Roundtable Demos
9:30 a.m. in Snyder Classroom 2

QuickBytes Roundtable Demos
10:45 a.m. in Snyder Classroom 2


If you manage registrations for programs, you won’t want to miss the Easy-peasy Registration session. Here you will learn ways to make this process easier, more efficient and consistent with what others are doing.

Easy-peasy registration for your Extension program
2:30 p.m. in Snyder Classrom 2


WebEx is widely used in Extension and if you want to learn how to use it for meetings, trainings or even support others, this is a session for you! Bring your questions. 

Using WebEx
2:30 p.m. in Azalea Classroom

See you at the Arboretum!

Me and podcasts. Our love is true. Podcasts have something special about them. Whenever I meet another podcast lover, I know I have found a kindred spirit. 
Here are some reasons for you to become a podcast lover yourself!
  1. Podcasts help you learn tons and tons of stuff.
  2. They are frequently released.
  3. They make you feel part of a community around a topic.
  4. They are portable--all you need is your smartphone, no cellular/wifi required!
  5. You can listen while you do other "mindless" things. Like weeding the garden or folding the laundry. And podcasts make commuting fun! (well fun-ish anyway.)

What is a podcast anyway?

Podcasts are simply an audio format that is syndicated--and is typically a talk program. You can listen to a show here and there, or you can use an app (there are several) to organize and sync the shows you select. Without this syndication, Podcasts are really just audio files. In fact, they are just MP3 files varying from a few minutes to over an hour. 

How to find and listen to podcasts

You can always just Google for podcasts in your interest area. But in my opinion, it is much easier to sort through the iTunes Podcast tab (you need iTunes on your computer, or phone). You can listen to the podcasts right from iTunes, or, with your mobile device you can use the listening app of your choice.

3 Podcast listening tips

  1. Download a good app--this kind of app is called a "podcatcher"-- for listening on your mobile device.
    Good podcatchers include: 
    1. Pocket Casts
    2. Stitcher
    3. Overcast (iphone only)
    4. Podcast Addict (android only) 
  2. Get a connector cord thing for your car stereo, something like this (not an affiliate link), unless you have Bluetooth in your car or something. The car is the perfect place to listen to podcasts!
  3. Speed them up! You can go 2x ("Karen Matthes Style," as I like to call it) or a more reasonable 1.25x, and save yourself some time! This setting is found in most podcatchers.

Recommended podcasts

To get you started, here are some top-shelf podcasts to try. Your interests may vary, of course! Do you have favorite podcasts you could share?? Please do!

Coming up in a future Quick Byte

A behind the scenes look at our team recording our new Quick Bytes podcast, including a How To for starting a podcast!
Did you know you can watch videos at double speed, in theater mode or adjust your settings for a slow connection? Let's explore the viewing settings in YouTube.

Adjust your speed

My favorite way to watch videos is at double speed, unless of course I'm watching a step-by-step tutorial where I might want to slow it down to follow along. To change speeds, click the Gear button and select Speed. Choose from several speeds from 0.25 to 2.

Player size

The default size of your video player automatically adapts to the space in your browser window. If you want to manually change the size of your video player, you can resize your browser window. Other options for viewing your video include:
  • Full Screen: fills the entire screen with your video. Press ESC to exit full screen
  • Theater Mode: adds a black background around the player without going full screen
  • Download the Floating YouTube Chrome extension that keeps a floating mini player on top of all windows for YouTube. It includes an ad blocker!

Slow Connection Tips

If you have a slow internet connection, there are some things you can try to optimize your viewing experience:
  • Choose lower video quality settings (240p or 360p). Click the gear button and select quality
  • Start the video and then click Pause right away. Wait for the gray video progress bar to load before clicking Play.

Right-click to share a video at a specific time:

Keyboard Shortcuts:

Try these keyboard shortcuts when watching videos:

k or spacebar = pause or play
j = rewind 10 seconds
l = fast-forward 10 seconds
m = mute
Number 0 = go to the beginning of the video
Numbers 1 to 9 = jump to 10% to 90% of the video

Feel free to share any tips you have for YouTube in the comments below!

I’ve been working for Extension Technology for about 10.5 months now and I’m excited to finally share a portfolio piece I personally had the opportunity to work on!

Youth Teaching Youth Online Teen Teacher Training

The 4-H Youth Teaching Youth team had identified a need for more flexibility and versatility when training teen teachers. Both in-school and out-of-school time is limited for teen teachers, which often results in a shortened training session that is rich in content, but does not allow adequate time for reflection and discussion. So this project assisted them in creating a flipped classroom approach to the trainings, allowing youth to complete self-study modules that provide background on the 4-H program, ages and stages of youth development, and strategies for teaching. After completing the online modules, teens attend face-to-face trainings that offer a space for deeper practice, reflection, application, and conversation.

Another challenge the team faces is the volume of students in the program.  Because of this, we discussed the benefits and challenges of Moodle and Qualtrics for the program, and decided to try both to get feedback from the teens and program coordinators.  The verdict is still out, but we want to give you a peek at the Qualtrics module.  Please note: the teaching video shown is a compilation of clips.  Isn’t it fun to watch the teens’ energy?

This project was selected through the Extension e-Learning Proposal Process. We work with Extension Educators, Program Staff, and Faculty who offer training or education, like the Turf and Ground Field Day, Equine Demonstrations, the Local Foods College, the Serve it Up Safely Course, and the Master Gardener Core Course. They are ready to expand their reach, make education more accessible, and/or collaborate with colleagues and community members at a distance. If this is you and you’re ready for help, contact us for a consultation or propose a project!

When you are collaborating on a Google document, sometimes you just want to make a suggestion without actually changing the words. You can use the Suggesting mode to recommend changes to the document. On the right side of the toolbar, click Editing. A drop-down will appear with the option to select Suggesting mode. Anyone with “Comment” or "Edit" rights can enter text in Suggesting mode.

Note: If you do not see Editing, Suggesting or Viewing in the top right, you have view-only access to the document and should request access from the owner if you want to suggest edits.

When you are in Suggesting mode, the changes you make will be in a new color and surrounded by a bracket and deletions are shown with a strike-through. A comment will appear in the right margin. To provide additional information about your edit in the comment box, click Reply...

Anyone with editing rights on the document can accept or reject edits by clicking the checkmark or “x” buttons. Collaborators can also reply to the changes in the text box.

You can see all of the suggested edits that have been accepted or rejected in your document by clicking Comments in the top-right corner of the document.

What is the difference between Suggesting Edits and Commenting?
  • Use Comments when: you want to ask a question or make a note next to a specific section of existing text. 
    • Result: Editors can reply to your comment or click Resolve to close the comment.
  • Use Suggested edits when: you want to suggest new text to add or change in the document. 
    • Result: Editors can accept your suggestions to add it as final text or reject the suggestions to erase them.
In Viewing mode, suggestions and comments are hidden and the document displays as it will be printed. You can’t edit the document in Viewing mode.

If you download the Google document as a .docx file, suggestions will be shown as tracked changes in Word.

With PowerPoint 2013, you can narrate your presentation one slide at a time, and save the file as an MP4 video. It will save your animations, transitions and embedded media. Let's step through the process.

Record your slide show

  1. With your presentation open, on the Slide Show tab, click the Record Slide Show down arrow.
  2. Select one:
    • Start Recording from Beginning
    • Start recording from Current Slide
    • Clear
    Note: Clear is grayed out unless you have previously recorded some slides. Selecting Clear will permanently delete all of your existing narrations or timings.

  3. In the Record Slide Show box, check or uncheck the options for your recording, and click Start Recording.

    • Slide and animation timings:PowerPoint will record the time you spend on each slide, including animation and triggers on each slide. 
    • Narrations, ink, and laser pointer: Record your voice as you go through your presentation. If you use the pen, highlighter, eraser, or laser pointer, PowerPoint will record those also. 
  4. At the top left corner of the slide, use the Recording toolbar to advance to the next slide, pause or re-record

    • Click Pause to take a break during your recording. Click Resume Recording to start again
    • If you re-record, PowerPoint will erase your previously recorded narration (including audio, ink, and laser pointer) before you start recording again on the same slide.
  5. To use ink, eraser, or the laser pointer in your recording, right-click anywhere on the slide, click Pointer options, and pick your tool (laser pointer, pen, highlighter, eraser)
  6. To end your recording, right-click the final slide, and click End Show
On the Slide Show tab, click From Beginning


  1. Go to the slide you want to re-record 
  2. On the Slide Show tab, click Record Slide Show down arrow 
  3. Click Start Recording from Current Slide…
  4. Record your narration
  5. Right-click to End Show

Save your presentation as a Video

  1. Save your PowerPoint presentation File > Save
  2. Click File > Export > Create a Video
  3. Under Create a Video
    • Select Presentation Quality > Largest file size and highest quality (if you plan to upload to YouTube)
    • Select Use Recorded Timings and Narrations
  4. Click Create Video
  5. Enter a filename for the video
  6. In the Save As type box, select MPEG-4, and then click Save
    • You can track the progress of the video creation by looking at the status bar at the bottom of your screen
    • The video creation process can take up to several hours depending on the length of the video and the complexity of the presentation
    • For longer videos, you can set it up so that they create overnight
  7. Your video is ready to upload to YouTube. Or to play your newly-created video, go to the designated folder location, and then double-click the file.
This is the sixth portfolio piece from our archive! If you've missed any, you can always find them here. I hope they've helped you start thinking about the tech-supported opportunities you can dig into too. Next time, I'm looking forward to sharing a project I've been working on, so stay tuned. In the meantime, here's another project the team worked on a while back.

Leadership and Civic Engagement Bite Size Tips via YouTube

The Leadership and Civic Engagement team wanted a way to boost their online presence, build their resources for multimedia integration into curriculum, and experiment with video technologies. So their project team worked with the Extension Technology team to develop a simple, inexpensive workflow for creating “bite-sized” (one tip each) videos for YouTube. The first five videos were created using equipment that can be checked out through the Extension Technology loan program, and a new iPad app for using a green screen. The team will evaluate the project and, if it is found to be accomplishing their objectives, the team is well-equipped to keep up this process themselves. 

Have a few minutes? Check them out!

Screenshot of Leadership and Civic Engagement YouTube Video

This project was selected through the Extension e-Learning Proposal Process. We work with Extension Educators, Program Staff, and Faculty who offer training or education, like the Turf and Ground Field Day, Equine Demonstrations, the Local Foods College, the Serve it Up Safely Course, and the Master Gardener Core Course. They are ready to expand their reach, make education more accessible, and/or collaborate with colleagues and community members at a distance. If this is you and you’re ready for help, contact us for a consultation or propose a project!