So recently, you might have noticed that I’ve started to have a bit of an obsession with Windows 8 Apps. I’ve been making a lot of apps using the TouchDevelop platform. I had been teaching my students how to build educational apps and some of them were published.
This week I was emailed by a friend Stuart Ball and he said that he had found something that turns WordPess blogs into Windows 8 apps. Well…. I had to see this to believe it and if I’m honest I thought it was a bit of a wind up at first. He sent me to this website which turns it into an app for you. The company is called IdeaPress and they do it on a regular basic for other platforms.
The process works by getting you registered to begin with. This was one of the easy parts. All you do is sign up with your email address and then it asks you a bunch of questions about your blog. You will have to choose your colours and icons and then once you have finished taking screen shots of your blog and using appropriate pictures for the start menus, you’re required to save it. You are given 3 options. You can get them to publish it for you which costs $199 (Aka, they do it for you) OR you can choose the first option. The Free Option!
The first option will send you the file you need and you then follow my tutorial in this blog post for getting it to the windows store. If you’re a student you can do this for free when you register with the development centre in windows. If you’re a teacher, you will need to pay for the subscription. When using my tutorial, the first 4 steps will not be applicable. You will not need to make the app package using TouchDevelop, because the software already does it for you. It emails you the code which you can open up in Visual Studio.
This is a good way of engaging people. Thinking about it’s educational value, you can use this in many lessons. If you started a group blog for an English class where students wrote their stories on the pages. You could make a story book without having to have all of the programming knowledge. The only thing you would have is to make sure that you know what you’re doing when publishing the app. I would be happy to help if you dropped me an email.
Revision apps could be the way forward. Are you wanting your students to go away and study. Why not post all of the text they need on the app. They can scroll through the different pages you need and each time they have access to the app. It’s a useful way of getting to your students through the use of technology. I’m going to work on creating a programming revision blog soon and will look to publish the app for teachers to use. Let me know if there is anything computer science related that you would like to contribute to it. I will keep you posted about the use of this.