There have been a lot of rumors in the news lately about Apple and Google developing a smart watch. Personally, I find this much more exciting than glass as a useful technology in the near-term. Here’s why:
5. Assuming it has data, it would make the perfect phone interface. You already hold your phone up to your head. Holding your arm near your ear isn’t that much of a stretch.
4. Easier access to contextual data: Much like glancing down to see the time, a useful stream of data is a perfect fit for a watch. I’m an Android Google Now user, and I’m sure the interface would be great on a watch.
3. Bio-feedback possibilities: A device capable of receiving bio-feedback signals brings possibilities for consistent input of data, and more importantly – output. I’ve recently become a big fan of the productivity app Vitamin-R, which nudges you towards productivity. An close-at-hand device like a watch could remind you to take a break or maintain focus.
2. A remote control for the Internet of Things: Better than a TV remote, a watch could allow you to control internet-enabled devices, or might even bring the possibility of devices that respond to your presence. A watch might also be good for gaming as a cool replacement for a Wii-mote.
1. The big win for me would be a watch as a cell data tether.
A personal little wifi bubble to drive a tablet, laptop or any other device would make a smart watch much more useful and economical.It would also allow for activities that people often complain wouldn’t work well on a watch — just pull out your tablet after receiving an e-mail.
However, I have a small wrist – hopefully the batteries can get the size down to that of the Nike FuelBand.
For those of you who would take this one step further, check out Mike Elgan’s post on augmentation.
We’re thrilled to share the news about a brand new plugin now available to all Edublogs users – ClassBadges!
ClassBadges.com is an exciting new site that provides an easy and fun way to award badges to students.
From classroom and school awards, to badges for the mastery of learning material, ClassBadges has it all.
And now, you can award badges for blogging – such as for quality posts and number of comments – with many more to come!
The new plugin makes it easy to display earned badges in the sidebar of a blog.
To learn more about the plugin, check out this support post.
More To Come
Let us know in the comments below what blogging badges you’d like to be able to award or earn.
We’ll take your ideas and do our best to turn them into badges on the classbadges.com/edublogs page!
I’m heavily in the writing phase of my dissertation, which means that there are frequently topics that I suddenly need quick research. I’ve run into a problem where many of the books I’d like to peak at are completely checked out, even when multiple copies exist.
It sparked a thought that “some library books were made to be digital.” Many of the (clearly popular) books I’m looking at are foundational, or the “best in the field.” I would guess that a good number of them, as disciplines evolve, will eventually be out of date. I doubt these are books a library would want on their shelves for an eternity, but as a scholar I have real and present needs.
It would seem that libraries have the data at hand to discover which books are most popular. These will be:
- most searched
- most frequently “checked out” (as a status/time, though perhaps also in number of transactions)
- most recalled
- books on reserve
These are probably also the books for which publishers are likely to charge high digital access fees. But, given the need and available technology, this sort of access does not seem like too much to expect.
We will be offering courses on
- Video games and learning (+Constance Steinkuehler +kurt squire)
- Globalizing higher education (Kris Olds @globalhighered)
- Human evolution (+John Hawks)
- Economic markets (Randall Wright).
I wanted to highlight a few observations from our campus that might be informative to others:
• Amount of publicly available information regarding our MOOC initiative
• Our rationale for offering MOOCs
• MOOC platforms
Our exploration of MOOCs is part of a larger campus effort called Educational Innovation which is a multi-pronged initiative to create new courses and programs and reach new learners.
I commend our campus leadership for posting a lot of information that explains the background for our decision to enter the "moocosphere" (credit +Stephen Downes). We also have created an interesting FAQ.
It is reassuring to hear the rationale our campus leaders have put forth for deciding why and how to offer MOOCs. They have characterized this delivery model as experimental and an opportunity to learn. They have linked MOOCs to the Wisconsin Idea, our century-old core principle of serving our citizens. From our FAQ:
MOOCs provide a number of benefits. They are an avenue for outreach and public service on a global scale. By experimenting with MOOCs, we gain enhanced knowledge of assessment techniques, technologies, and learning analytics that may be transferable to our on-campus teaching and learning processes. MOOCs showcase our talented faculty members and instructional academic staff and provide positive visibility for our campus and degree programs. UW-Madison has a long tradition of supporting outreach through the Wisconsin Idea and supporting pedagogical innovation as evidenced by the Educational Innovation effort.I am extremely interested in hearing from our (stellar) faculty that will be leading these MOOCs as to their experiences and insights for future online teaching and learning.
Finally, I am also quite curious to learn more about the Coursera platform. If large open courses are part of our future, I cannot envision our current LMSs (Desire2Learn and Moodle) being appropriate for delivery of MOOCs without radical redesign.
Regarding the use of the Coursera platform, this tidbit in our FAQ certainly caught my attention:
Can UW-Madison use the Coursera platform to deliver content for UW-Madison credit courses?
Yes, UW-Madison would have free use of the Coursera platform within UW-Madison for our enrolled students. Current course tools available include video course delivery, online quizzes, auto-grading, and community blogs.I had not heard of this possibility yet. My assumption - which clearly needs to be tested - is that we'll likely need one platform for traditional course delivery and another for future MOOCs. (If you have thoughts on this, please leave comments...I'd like to learn more.)
Is your campus offering MOOCs? Do you have information to share that can help others? What are your thoughts about future learning platforms?
We’ve been hearing from you that lots of educators need to move their blogs since Posterous announced they are shutting down their service on April 30. 2013
And, we’re happy to share, we’ve been working hard organizing a Posterous importer as quite a few of our Edublogs users have Posterous accounts.
When you migrate your Posterous account into Edublogs it will import:
- All image files
- All video files
- All audio files
- All posts
- All comments
- All media that has been embedded using embed code
You can easily import your posts into any Edublogs Campus and Edublogs Pro or upgraded blog.
Just go to Tools > Import and use one of the two import options:
- Posterous – Use if you haven’t uploaded video and audio files to your Posterous account.
- Posterous XML – use if you have uploaded video and audio files to your Posterous account.
There are numerous options for migrating Posterous to different blogging platforms but most are having the same challenge.Here is what you need to know: 1. Complete Media Transfer
Most platforms are able to import Posterous posts with images but aren’t able to migrate a complete media transfer if you have audio and video files uploaded to your Posterous account.
This means if you currently import a Posterous account into another blogging platform, and have uploaded any audio or video files, the posts are imported but the audio or video files remain on the Posterous service.
These audio and video files need to be imported into your new blog otherwise when Posterous shuts down these media files will be lost.
Edublogs is one of the few platforms that can migrate a complete media transfer so all your audio and video files are imported into your Edublogs blog when you import from Posterous.2. Embed Code
The other aspect you need to consider is that Posterous allowed you to embed a wide range of media such as Prezzi, AudioBoo, Google Forms, Glogster using embed code.
Not all platforms allow you to use embed code as Edublogs does. If you import your Posterous account into a platform that doesn’t allow embed code you’ll lose all your embeds. You don’t lose any embeds when you import into an Edublogs blog.3. Comments
Some platforms also can’t import your comments, so be sure to check this first.
We look forward to helping users move their existing work over and are happy to answer your questions!
If you’ve been thinking that your blog is due for a bit of a makeover, then you’ll love the ten new themes we are rolling out today!
Even better, all of these themes come with these fun features:
- designed to look great on tablets, phones, and desktops!
- change backgrounds and colors with ease
- add custom header images
- clean and easy to read
You can easily find all of these themes by going to Appearance > Themes in your dashboard.
They are all listed in the brand new “Featured Themes” section right at the top of the page!
Take a look through the new themes below and then give your blog an overdue new look!
Brand New Day
New School Theme
Designed specifically for our Edublogs Campus networks, this theme is a bit different than the others – Campus Default 2013.
We decided to make it available to everyone as it may be a perfect fit for schools, clubs, and others too.
Take a look!
- special ‘static homepage’ design
- easily brand with colors and logos
- add a custom menu and a login box will appear
- widgets for featured blogs, latest posts, and more
Try out one or more of the new themes and let us know what you think!
A music game I co-designed with a great team at the University of Wisconsin-Madison was recently featured in an article.
A study recently published in the International Journal of Innovation and Learning finds that animations in PowerPoint presentations may actually hinder student learning.
Nice piece in the Chronicle on efforts to help teach scientists how to engage the public (particularly policymakers) and make their research better understood. I had a first-hand experience with this at a poster-session put on by Delta and WPST at the T&L Symposium.
This presentation was given today in a graduate seminar focusing on biology teaching. The goal was to raise awareness of what a course management system can provide for class management and student learning. The slides are heavy on screen-shots, light on text, and absent of audio--hopefully they're still useful.