Posts Tagged ‘mobile’
When I compare the types of devices I used to bring with me on trips, say, five years ago with that which I bring now, I can say that I have gone mobile.
I used to tote a DSLR and a point-and-shoot camera. Now I just use my iPhone. There are times when I wish I had my DSLR to get a shot I see in my head, but then I make do.
I used to bring a hefty laptop. Now I have my Macbook Air. On some trips, I leave that behind and rely on my iPad. After all, if I really need Windows or something that requires Flash, I only need an Internet connection and TeamViewer or LogMeIn to access a computer at home or my office.
Going mobile with photography means that I can shoot, edit, and upload on the go. I shoot with the iPhone 4′s built in camera (I rarely use Camera+), delete the ones I do not want, and edit with Snapseed. I can then upload to Picasa via Picasa PhotoSender or to Posterous via its app. Often I do this as I travel from point to point to reduce the amount of work I have to do when I am back in the hotel room.
I might still need to do some troubleshooting when I am chair-bound. For example, the Posterous app is not reliable. Sometimes it will not upload in a timely fashion and other times it will upload two copies of the same posting. I attribute this partly to an Internet connection that might form and break while I am on the move.
But it has been a few days since returning and I have noticed some photos getting “broken” in Posterous and I have to use a desktop browser to fix them. The silver lining is that I need not retrieve the photos from my iPhone because they are synchronized to my computer via Dropbox.
Is there less work to do? No, there might actually be more! But I can do more in more places. While I am still out in the field, I can retake photos or make decisions in context. I can also share moments as they happen via Twitter. I cannot do that if I am not mobile.
So here are my mostly mobile-shot, edited, and uploaded photos from our short study trip to Adelaide and Sydney. People and work do not feature prominently in my photos because a) some of the little people need their privacy, and b) I want the photos to tell stories outside of the pressures of work.
The event in a nutshell:
- Opening ceremony at 10.30am (keynote addresses and lucky draws)
- Three concurrent sessions in the afternoon (practitioner, research, and portfolio tracks)
- Fringe event (vendors who offer mobile platforms, products, and solutions)
During the practitioner track, CeL will showcase four mobile apps:
- DollarDash (game-based learning of financial literacy concepts via this web app)
- NIE mGeo (project-based and experiential learning via this location-aware photo and video data collection native app)
- NIE mVideo (enabling the flipped classroom and decision-tree videos via this native app)
- NIE Well Said (learn to speak standard Singapore English on your own or with others with this native app)
Some insider information: The mVideo app is only a proof-of-concept at the moment so it is visually rough. The next version promises to have a slick interface (think cover flow and swiping instead of just tapping and typing).
Here is a sneak: One other app that is not quite ready for primetime is our classroom observation app for the iPad. This app will provide photo and video recording, editing an observation form, sharing that form with others, and a Web browser to check resources.
mrbrown shared a video that he shot and edited on his iPhone 4S.
I have featured mobile-made videos at least once before.
These videos illustrate the shift in power: To the devices (mobile phones) and to those who know how to take advantage of the devices (the creators).
I stumbled upon this excellent scoop.it resource on “Future School” yesterday and this video featured prominently.
Adopt or lose relevance. Adapt or die.
The CeL will be offering sessions on mobile productivity, teaching and learning over the semester break in September. These workshops will be for NIE staff only.
We have also opted to create an open fifth session. This will be done “unconference” style and we hope that other staff who have tips and tricks to share will do so a few minutes at a time.
These other open topics could include presentation tools, shared whiteboarding, smartphone based clickers for item response and feedback, photo editing, annotating and sharing, using location-aware apps, etc.
This brilliantly made movie caught my eye over the weekend. It was the winner of a Nokia short movie contest.
The splitscreen movie tells a love story. Its creator was “limited” by the requirement to shoot it with a camera phone.
This would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. Today cameras in mobile phones rival high end point-and-shoots. They have become so mainstream that, by the time you read this, the dominant camera for Flickr photos will be the iPhone.
Movie director Spike Lee was spotted photographing Obama with an iPad 2 (Cult of Mac) ridiculous as that may seem. Earlier this year, UPI reported how a Korean director had shot a 30-minute movie entirely on the iPhone 4. Vimeo hosts a preview of what might be the first short movie shot and edited entirely on the iPhone 4.
The conventional wisdom among researchers and administrators was that it was not sufficient to just put technology in the hands of users. Doing this would not change pedagogy or learning.
I used to agree wholeheartedly with that. But now the technologies are more powerful and intuitive. New teachers entering the profession have either grown up with these technologies or are more familiar with them.
The user’s unfamiliarity with the technologies or the clunkiness of the tools of the tools might have limited the creativity of teachers and learners in the past. But more and more of them seem to not just embrace the tools but also expect to use them in school.
The grandfather in the short clip said, “Let me tell you a story.” If our learners want to do so digitally, they should not be hindered in any way. It’s their prerogative to do so. It’s our responsibility to help them.
Many thanks to Carolyn for sharing this interview of Mimo Ito, What Exactly Can You Learn on a Mobile Phone? Part II.
There might be theorists who will go at length about the differences between learning with, learning from, learning on, ad nauseam. There might be some who will harp about technological determinism or how technology is just a means to an end.
Then there will be others who will put their money (and effort) where their mouths are and put mobile learning devices in the hands of learners. They will do this even though they are not sure how this might enhance or enable learning.
Yesterday I learnt that the Singapore Armed Forces is doing this. Several of my Delicious-based bookmarks are resources that report how various schools have taken the iPad plunge [one list] [another list].
Then there are others who are trying to decide if the water is too cold or hot to dip a toe in. The worst of them prevent others who know how to swim from actually swimming.
How do they do this? Their chief weapons are fear mongering and creating red tape. They delay the processes of developing, tinkering and reflecting.
You need very little research to find out how to create a mobile programme, particularly one that that is BYOD (bring your own device).
Such a programme is not like those in the past where labs or special rooms were built to house computers. Those programmes were designed around teaching and delivery instead of learning and exploration. Those programmes reinforced learning in just one place instead of where and when it was needed.
How might one start with such a programme?
It does not begin with a budget for devices like iPads. Instead, it starts by watching children use iPads and tapping that energy, excitement and need to explore. It helps if you are childlike too with your own exploration and openness to learn from mistakes.
I read this Telegraph report on the call to ban mobile phones and wireless networks in schools.
Some school administrators, teachers and parents will probably be glad that they might have another arrow in their quiver with which to shoot down mobile learning initiatives.
By extrapolation, what is next? Ban buses and cars as they are a leading cause of death and a source of pollution? If we did this then kids could walk to school for exercise. But they should probably wear Hershey kiss-shaped aluminium hats and apply snake oil to keep radiation at bay!
But seriously, the reports also notes that:
Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, warned that a ban on mobile phones and wireless networks in schools would bring widespread disruption.
He said: “The impact on schools would be enormous. Most schools have Wi-Fi networks now, while pupils and teachers carry mobile phones. Many schools are shifting towards far more mobile computing so pupils can have laptops they can take home to do their homework on. This would prevent all of that.”
I’ll offer a slightly different argument against supporting the ban on mobile phones and wireless networks.
In the case of mobile phone use, the assumption is that kids are using them as phones and therefore holding the devices up to their heads. How often do they use a mobile phone to call? They SMS, IM, game, browse the Web, etc., probably more often than they actually talk. When they do these things, the devices are held away at reading length.
As for wireless networks, why create yet another bubble to reinforce that the school is not part of the rest of the world. Need unfettered and speedy Internet access for some self-directed learning? Do so wirelessly in the comfort of home but not in school.
If you think about it, just about everything we do carries a risk. Instead of ignorantly fearing what we don’t understand, we should be managing these risks with valid and reliable information. That information might be in a state of flux now and no one should over react to it.
From set 4 of this wonderful gallery of quotations on educational change.