Solutions

Getting the Picture

Pics4Learning

And that can certainly price it out of the range of schoolchildren, looking for illustrations for their classroom projects. But there's a solution on the web, thanks to FileMaker Pro, the award winning database software application from FileMaker Inc.

Overview

  • Pics4Learning, a partnership of Tech4Learning and Florida's Orange County Public Schools, allows schools around the world to learn from each other. Students' and teachers' photos are digitized and uploaded via the Web to the FileMaker Pro–based Pics4Learning database, where they are available to any student or teacher who needs them.

Industry

  • K–12 Education

FileMaker Pro is the very heart of the system.

— Melinda Kolk, Vice President, Pics4Learning

Business Challenge

It's called Pics4Learning and it's a partnership of San Diego–based Tech4Learning and the Orange County Public Schools Technology Development Unit of Orlando, Florida, evolving from the award–winning PhotoShare program which drew raves from Florida students and teachers a few years ago.

How it works is the picture of simplicity. Students and teachers from around the nation and across the world take pictures of their environment — scenes of daily life, landscapes, people at work or at play, everyday objects. Those images are digitized and uploaded via the web to the Pics4Learning database — and are then available for download, on copyright–friendly terms, by any student or teacher who wants to use them.

Successful Solution

FileMaker Pro is the very heart of the system, says Pics4Learning Vice President Melinda Kolk. 'The images are uploaded by the donors to a FileMaker Pro database,' she explains, 'and using the Troi File plug–in are automatically placed in a pending folder for review by a team of moderators, who make sure the pictures are appropriate. Then, the moderators edit and resize the images as necessary, assign them search keywords, and place them in the proper category. All this is done very efficiently from the single FileMaker Pro administrative screen. 'It's been fantastic,' affirms Melinda. 'The administrators love FileMaker — there's an average of sixty new images coming in every day, and FileMaker really helps them get the job done!'

It's been fantastic. The administrators love FileMaker — there's an average of sixty new images coming in every day, and FileMaker really helps them get the job done!

— Melinda Kolk, Vice President, Pics4Learning

Customer Benefits

Downloading is even easier — behind an attractive, fully–searchable web page interface, FileMaker Pro keeps track of more than eight thousand individual images — from aardvarks to zebras, from Australia to Zimbabwe, if you can think of a topic chances are Pics4Learning can provide an image.

The project has been a huge success since going on line in October 1999. The first month alone saw more than 20 thousand hits, and photos were contributed from all over the United States and from as far away as Estonia, Poland and South Africa. The project isn't just a classroom tool — it's creating a worldwide community of students getting to know each other through the magic of digital photography. And plans are in the works to make Pics4Learning even more exciting — eventually, the system will be expanded to offer animation, sound and video.

Kids love Pics4Learning. Teachers love Pics4Learning. Pics4Learning loves FileMaker Pro.

And you can't put a price on that picture.

For FileMaker:

Kevin Mallon
Public Relations Manager
FileMaker Inc.
408-987-7227
kevin_mallon@filemaker.com
http://www.filemaker.com

For Pics4Learning:

Melinda Kolk
Vice President
Pics4Learning
619-563-5348
melinda@tech4learning.com
melinda@tech4learning.com