Tuesday, February 27, 2007

M-Learning event

Shame I am busy on 9th of March but if you get the chance hook up to this event at london Knowledge Lab.

Geoff is the UK's leading guru pushing m learning with vision flare and a facets that puts him above his peers of being a device agnostic. Its learning that matters not the device,

Geoff Stead from Tribal CTAD will be running a seminar on m-learning at
the London Knowledge Lab, describing some of CTAD's work producing
m-learning materials for adults with numeracy and literacy needs. The
seminar will give a brief overview of current m-learning activity for
this learner group, as well as looking at some of the trends and
patterns that seem to be emerging. There will be opportunities for some
hands-on experimentation, as well as a chance to engage with CTAD in
discussing possible future research and development collaboration.


Sunday, February 25, 2007

Outlook ghost on your desktop I really like this wasnt sure at first but now convinced .

About the product by the author

Have you ever wondered why it's such a pain use calendaring programs on your computer? It's simple: they don't mimic their real life counterparts very well. People who use calendars to organize their daily lives have them visible in plain sight nearly all of the time. Yet, on the computer, you have to go through a myriad of windows and clicks before you can even see your calendar. So to bridge the gap, I've come up with this little program that will place the Microsoft Outlook Calendaring system right on your desktop. The calendar object gets pinned to your desktop and stays there all the time in plain sight so you can always see what's upcoming. Of course, the benefits don't stop there ... because it's the actual Microsoft Outlook calendar, you get all it's functionality, such as direct editing, drag and drop of files, etc. You have to see it to believe it.


The year Mlearning goes mainstream ?

A core of people in the UK maybe at the most a dozen have been pushing Mlearn as the Next Big Thing for a while .

This article by

EDUCAUSE Review, vol. 40, no. 3 (May/June 2005): 40–53.
Enabling Mobile Learning

Author Ellen D. Wagner
Words in the preamble strike a chord with me

The mobile revolution is finally here. Wherever one looks, the evidence of mobile penetration and adoption is irrefutable: cell phones, PDAs (personal digital assistants), MP3 players, portable game devices, handhelds, tablets, and laptops abound. No demographic is immune from this phenomenon. From toddlers to seniors, people are increasingly connected and are digitally communicating with each other in ways that would have been impossible to imagine only a few years ago.

link at http://www.educause.edu/er/erm05/erm0532.asp?bhcp=1

To quote a colleagues favourite catch phrase bring it on !!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Accessible rail timetable site is really a web 2.0 kind of site

From my esteemed colleagues Adrian Higginbottom .

Not only very clever but accessible to. This is really a web2.0 type of site high degree of personlisation etc. Brilliant quite Brilliant

allows you to access timetable information simply by building your own web address - no need to fill in web forms.

so for example to see a time table of trains from Coventry to york use the URL http://traintimes.org.uk/coventry/york/

if you want to travel after 10:30 then

if you aren't traveling until the 28th then
and if you aren't sure what date next wednesday is then

what better for mobile access, forms free access etc.
and it also show best available price too.

unfortunately you can't currently buy tickets via this site :-(

Thanks Adrian!!!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Firefox 3.0 to support offline apps

Thanks to Rob Englebright for finding this interesting bit of news

This is significant because
you'll be able to use your web apps - like Gmail, Google Docs Spreadsheets, Google
Calendar, etc - in the browser even when offline. I deliberately mentioned all Google
web apps there, because of course this plays right into Google's hands.


this is a real world changing leap. The business model changes for software

Monday, February 19, 2007


Interesting device at a price

NEW EXCLUSIVE to Medionshop in the UK! Mobility enters a new era with the new UMPC RIM1000, the ultimate portable PC! It features Genuine Microsoft® Windows VistaTM Home Premium, a VIA C7-M 770 ULV processor, a 30GB hard disc drive and a 6.5" widescreen display.

The Medion UMPC allows you to work, surf the internet, communicate, watch video clips of listen to music - all while on the move!

You can do so much with the UMPC - synchronise your UMPC with you desktop pc or notebook, transfer data from your MP3 player or digital camera via an SD or MMC card using the memory card slot, connect your mobile phone via Bluetooth, connect to a projector via the VGA port plus share files via the USB port.


* Genuine Microsoft® Windows VistaTM Home Premium with Touch Pack

* VIA C7-M 770 ULV processor (1.0GHz, 400MHz FSB

* VIA UniChrome Pro II GFX

* 6.5" WVGA TFT Touchscreen with LED backlight (800x480px)

* High definition audio with integrated loudspeaker

* 30GB hard disc

* 768MB DDRII RAM memory

* Wireless LAN 802.11b/g with up to 54 Mbit/s

* Integrated Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR module

* Integrated webcam microphone array e.g. for video over IP

* SD/SD-IO/MMC card reader

* External AC adaptor lithium polymer battery VDE/GS approved

* Synchronise your UMPC with you desktop pc or notebook

* Transfer data from your MP3 player or digital camera via an SD or MMC card using the memory card slot

* Connect your mobile phone via Bluetooth

* Connect to a projector via the VGA port

* Share files via the USB port


memory madness

with usb memory sticks at under £7.00 for 1 GB and 4 gb under under £40.00. Can memory fall any lower


U3 enabled sticks are getting cheaper to ! Will the applications running on a memory stick going to become reality in next 6 months ? The of course wireless USB is coming !

Friday, February 16, 2007

Thumb Drive Drive

Sadly this site is in the US but what an interesting idea anybody fancy setting up a UK based one. I am sure youve got old flash drives lying around if you have give them to your local school community centre doing ICT classes. I give mine to my sons primary school.

The Inveneo site is still worth a look.

the mission page http://www.inveneo.org/?q=mission

the thumb drive page

Do you have old thumb drives (otherwise known as USB Memory Sticks) at your office or home that you don't use any more?
We're collecting these drives to share with the organizations we work with. They can be used in 100's of useful ways by:

  • Students
  • Aid Workers
  • Small Business Entrepreneurs

Please keep sending them in to Inveneo here and we'll make sure they get out to people and organizations who can use them well:

760 Market Street
Suite 859
San Francisco, CA 94102

Cool new smartphone

It is well known love I me gadgets but am a bit device agnostic at times but this new offerring from TOSH looks good. Amazingly the usual harsh engadget liked it . Interesting as Toshiba made business decision to withdraw from the PDA market several years ago.

Toshiba's new duo may not steal the show together, but the G900 is officially ready to help redefine high-end smartphone devices. The behemoth features, as we mentioned an utterly unreal 3-inch WVGA (800 x 480) display, rear biometric scanner, 2 megapixel rear camera, front-facing video conferencing camera, 64MB of internal memory, miniSD expansion, tri-band HSDPA (yes!), 802.11b/g, Bluetooth, USB, video calling, and USB On-The-Go. The E01 is far more lower end, but still manages HSDPA, a 65k color display, A2DP Bluetooth, and that same 2 megapixel camera.

whens it going to launch and how much is it going to cost I might be in that queue . Gallery pics on engadget look good to http://www.engadget.com/gallery/toshiba-wm6-devices/157628/

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Towards Maturity - Summary and Towards Maturity: insights for employers and training providers (research into e-learning)

Report by e skills Towards Maturity is a suite of four reports intended to help employers, training providers and policy makers better understand the ways in which e-learning can support employer skills requirements. The research was undertaken by e-skills UK on behalf of the Skills for Business network of 25 Sector Skills Councils.

The research included more than 200 organisations across all sectors as well as 1,000 individuals. It represents one of the most comprehensive studies to date into technology-based learning in the business environment.

Towards Maturity –Summary

Towards Maturity: insights for employers and training providers - 4.7MB)

worth watching the website http://www.e-skills.com

For the report Towards Maturity: implications for policy-makers and Towards Maturity: facts and figures will both be available in March 2007.

Handful or is it an armful of Handheld learning research.

Gawd the worlds going Handheld crazy three lots of reports on use of handhelds and I hear from Merlin Johns excellent blog goldsmith The e-scape report from Goldsmiths TERU will be released shortly on the TERU section of the Goldsmiths website so that makes four :

More detail on Merlins excellent blog at http://www.merlinjohnonline.net/

The previous post doubting handheld learning still being to early I think might be wrong .

From Futurelab

Learning with handheld technologies - NEW

By Fern Faux, Angela McFarlane, Nel Roche, Keri Facer

This handbook offers a guide and resource for those considering exploring handheld technologies for teaching and learning purposes. Four case reports show how different schools, LAs and individuals have attempted to tap the potential of handheld technology for learning, while a wider survey of handheld learning projects gives a sense of the range of work going on, along with contact information.

Read online version (8 web pages)
Open pdf version for best printing results (opens 229kb file in pdf format in same window)
Order free hard copy

From LSN

Mobile learning in practice: Piloting a mobile learning teachers' toolkit in further education colleges

UK college tutors taking part in the Mobile Learning Teachers' Toolkit project authored their own mobile learning materials (SMS quizzes, PDA learning games and mediaBoard activities) to cater for the specific needs of their students in their particular context. This publication reports on the impact of these mobile learning activities on teaching, learning and students' interest in learning and on how tutors integrated mobile learning into the curriculum. The challenges of setting up the project and some lessons learned are also discussed. Examples of the learning materials created and tips for using these tools with students are included to inform teachers who may be considering mobile learning for their students. sadly link to PDF isnt live yet but can be downloaded when the document is released.


From Teachers TV view the video online at


In this programme Year 10 pupils at Saltash.net Community School, near Plymouth, spend two days testing out specially adapted software on PDAs.

The cutting edge trial of interactive handheld computers is specially customised for the classroom to enhance pupil learning and assessment. These are multi-functioned with a typing and drawing facility, they take photos and can voice record comments and ideas.

The pupils can look at each others work, which is continuously beamed up onto the teacher's laptop ready to be assessed and commented upon.

The trials are part of a prototype design and technology GCSE exam being developed for the DfES and QCA by Professor Richard Kimbell of Goldsmith's College, London.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Handhelds in e-learning - still to early

This comment by Mark Nichols Waitakere, NZ
I i have to disagree from European perspective connectivity is getting cheaper the tools to create http://ebcnzer.blogspot.com/2007/02/handhelds-in-e-learning-still-too-early.html your own content for learners are getting easier,cheaper better . But nice review of futurelab report

I am becoming device agnostic .

one report to watch is shortly to be published

Mobile learning in practice, a soon to be released review of piloting mobile authoring tools in FE colleges, published by LSN. Authored by Carol Savill-Smith, Jill Attewell and Geoff Stead. Full publication will be available from LSN.

this link takes you to the site but publication isnt live yet.

E learning awards 2007

No involvement personally in this at all But this might be of interest. The £99.00 entry fee is also interesting.

The 3rd annual E-learning Awards will take place in November 2007 in London.

The primary objective of the E-learning Awards is to recognise real
excellence in the e-learning industry. This may be an e-learning
programme, project or strategy that is judged to be the best in that
category for that year.

The Awards are judged by the eLearning Network, the industry’s
foremost e-learning association. Receiving an Award means that an
organisation has made more than a positive contribution to clients’
fortunes. They will have created or produced something that will be
looked at years later as something that is a benchmark, to which others
in the industry can aspire to.

More importantly those that receive the awards will have excelled
and will have been recognised in doing so, by the e-learning industry


Saturday, February 10, 2007

Google Presently a full set ??

a geek article that suggests that google are going for ther full set with an alternative to PowerPoint!


add this to:

  • Google docs Excel and Word
  • Google mail Outlook
  • Google Base a database
watch this space.

Text-message course helping newcomers learn English

Great story via my google alerts from project helping new comers to Canada improve there English grammar using m learning . Interestingly set up by Athabasca university who helped host mlearn2006 in October in Banff where I presented.

"in Alberta pen and paper aren't necessary in an Edmonton classroom where students are learning English with a new tool — text messages on their cellphones.

Under a pilot project, the students at the Mennonite Centre for Newcomers are testing "m-learning," or mobile learning, where they download an English grammar lesson, then answer a series of multiple choice, or true or false questions.

Students at the Mennonite Centre for Newcomers are testing mobile learning - downloading an English grammar lesson, then answering a series of multiple choice, or true or false questions.Students at the Mennonite Centre for Newcomers are testing mobile learning - downloading an English grammar lesson, then answering a series of multiple choice, or true or false questions.
(CBC News)

Athabasca University, a long-distance post-secondary school, created the cellphone lessons for those wanting to learn English as a second language (ESL).

"You're controlling it, which is so nice," said Tracey Woodburn of Athabasca University. "A lot of people have been telling me, 'Oh, I can do this when I am watching my kid's soccer practice or when I am on the bus coming to school.'"

Interesting project echoing the positive points many UK projects have found.

Friday, February 09, 2007

JISC/HEA Innovative Practice WorkshopPlanning and Implementing Innovative Practice with Mobile and Wireless Technologies

Got to give a huge plug to this event arranged by colleagues at JISC and the HE Academy.
Publication will be good to.

Registration is now open

Workshop: Planning and Implementing Innovative Practice with Mobile and Wireless Technologies

The JISC and the Higher Education Academy wish to invite you participate in a workshop on Planning and Implementing Innovative Practice with Mobile and Wireless Technologies.

There are four venues and dates to choose from. Register at the separate form for the event you wish to attend. Each workshop is limited to 50 participants so early booking is advised.

London Met University - 7th March
Register at http://survey.jisc.ac.uk/innovprac_070307/

University of Leicester - 21st March
Register at http://survey.jisc.ac.uk/innovprac_210307/

University of Bristol - 18th April
Register at http://survey.jisc.ac.uk/innovprac_180407/

University of Salford - 25th April
Register at http://survey.jisc.ac.uk/innovprac_250407/

Each workshop will explore the practicalities of implementing mobile and wireless technologies in an institution. As a participant you will explore technical, pedagogical and organisational change issues around implementation. A practical demonstration the hosting institution will provide an insight into the latest developments in mobile and wireless technologies at the venue. For a full programmes of each workshop see http://www.jisc.ac.uk/whatwedo/programmes/elearning_innovation/eli_innov_wksp.aspx

The workshops are underpinned by the work of the JISC Innovations Programme and the Innovative Practice with e-Learning Publication. See http://www.elearning.ac.uk/innoprac

Further details and joining instructions will be sent one week before each workshop.

If you have any questions relating the event please contact Christina Ioannou jisc@inanyevent-uk.com or Eddie Gulc Eddie.Gulc@heacademy.ac.uk

Interesting way of recording and making conference sessions available.

This with my interest in on-line conferencing and video capture software this seems like an interesting solution that I also reckon they could deliver an augmented podcast . The main page is


The really interesting stuff to look at Somerset web 2.00 stuff and policy implementation stuff .

It doesnt replace being there but if you cant or need a future reminder a really useful tool..

I really love the plug for http://www.boveyclimateaction.org.uk/ on the front page who is the mystery guest that is appearing Monday ??? I am not there but If I find out I might even blog it or get a quote for the blog!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Web 2.00 on Youtube

I have to give a huge heads up to Ewan Mc Intosh blog http://edu.blogs.com/edublogs/
to finally making me think about Youtube (OK I know I am late to the party) I immediately found some thought provoking resources that link nicely with the interesting but slightly depressing EPIC video i blogged link here a while ago.

Really nice read write web intro movie

Web 2.0 ... The Machine is Us/ing Us

More formal but great video again understanding web 2.00

I will look at YouTube more.

Monday, February 05, 2007

My Old school in technology forefront youtube assemblies and Suffolk school communicate closure via Bebo

found this on Merlins blog http://www.addysg.org.uk/merlinjohnonline/news.php?item.104

What is really really scary it is my old upper school !!!! Ghosts in the machine six degree of seperation what ever http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_degrees_of_separation what ever or just plain spooky .

Some of the buildings don’t appear to have changed I only live 24 miles away but havent been back to the school in 18 years might go back for a visit.

Sleepy Suffolk is a hot bed of web 2.00

Heres a great story from Another Suffolk School in his own words better than mine

Social networking solution to rapid school communication

You've probably experienced the difficulties of
communicating a simple message using Chinese whipsers. Following a fire alarm
raised when gas was smelt within school we had 800 students on a field, on a
cold Thursday afternoon in November. They were instructed to go home as the
school buses had started to arrive, but must to their annoyance many students
had to leave their mobile phones and wallets in school until engineers arrived
to check the building.

The school office was also off limits until the
risk could be assessed and staff returned home not knowing what would happen the
next day. Once a decision had been made that school would remain closed on the
Friday staff started to receive information through the telephone tree with
department heads contacting their staff. The message that school would be closed
was also broadcast on the local BBC radio station, Suffolk radio. Not the
students first choice of listening matter.

These established methods
were not effective in reaching our students. My experience was:
After arriving home at 4:15 I started to receive messages on my Bebo home page (
) from students asking whether or not school would
be open the next day. As I hadn't yet been contacted by telephone I was only
able to assure students that I would post a message to my Bebo whiteboard when I
had information. I was contacted by about 6 students through Bebo, using both
private messaging and the public comments feature. About fifteen students also
contacted me using instant messaging and Email. One of these students whose
father is a teacher at our school was able to tell me that school would in fact
in be closed. After checking this via an Email to this teacher, who was far
ahead of me on the telephone tree I was then able to post on my Bebo whiteboard
that school was in fact closed.

Posting the information on a web page in itself was not the most powerful use of the Internet. It was the fact that so many students were connected to each other through Bebo and instant messaging that the news was able to travel so quickly. Many students found out that school
was closed through Bebo and instant messaging before visiting the school website to check the information or receiving an Email.

Once the news was published on the school website (http://gcus.net)it was automatically available as an RSS feed and Emailed to pupils and parents. A significant number of these
emails bounced back however from unavailable email accounts. Either from these
Email accounts no longer being used or our messages being identified as spam
because such a large number were sent out.

Bebo and the power of community won. The message was quickly relayed from hand to hand with students
then visiting the school website to check the validity of the message.

I received my message from the telephone tree three hours after I'd heard it
through Bebo.

A wonderful example of the digital divide was that students without access to the Internet (or who hadn't been contacted by friends and didn't listen to radio Suffolk) were the ones who arrived at school to find it closed the next day!

And when the engineers arrived, they couldn't find any damage to our gas supply.

So all this social networking is evil I think not !

Sunday, February 04, 2007

ICT and building schools for the future: an essential guide Becta Publication

this maybe of interest to those involved in BSF (Building Schools for the Future )

Aimed at school leaders, this useful guide looks at how technology is
integral to the Building Schools for the Future programme and
highlights key things that you should be thinking about in this area.

ICT and building schools for the future: an essential guide

You might also find the partnership for schools website useful http://www.p4s.org.uk/

BBC on Demand services consultation

This sounds less exciting than it is. If you listen to BBC podcasts are interested in how the BBC is going to evolve in the future to respond on demand TV audio etc please please respond and blog this request to your blogs to.

The BBC Trust is carrying out its first Public Value Test
(PVT) – a new procedure that must be applied when the Trust considers
applications from BBC management for the approval of new BBC services.


The first PVT concerns the BBC’s proposed on-demand services.

Here you can find out how to take part in the public consultation on the BBC Trust’s provisional conclusions.

The proposed new services

TheBBC's Executive has been developing proposals to offer BBC programmes and content 'on demand'. made an application last August for the following:
  • Seven-day TV catch-up over the internet
  • Seven-day TV catch-up over cable
  • Simulcast TV over the internet (streaming of live television networks)
  • Non-digital rights management (DRM) audio downloads over the internet (podcasting of selected radio programmes)
link to consultation is here

Dapper: Blotter (Blog Plotter)

If your interested in checking and displaying your blogs popularity over time I might incorporate this but not now. Not quite a friendly as clustrmaps see my side bar but nearly .


Friday, February 02, 2007

learning e -learning blog

New Zealand is full of great people and Selena is one I met her at Mlearn2006 in Banff in October . She is doing great stuff with learners in NZ in areas such as baking apprentices. Really clever and thought provoking her post on plans for 2007 is worth a look. Great blog Selena your in my bloglines !!! She is really thinking of the new pedagogy that some of us in the uL like Geof Stead of CTAD are talking about . Power to you Selena


Thursday, February 01, 2007

Whiteboard Research

Thanks to Rob Talbot for this from Coventry College. DFES study 'e-Learning in Further Education: The Impact on Student Intermediate and End-point Outcomes' June 2006 is a useful read.

Full study at http://www.dfes.gov.uk/research/data/uploadfiles/RR739.pdf

and research brief at http://www.dfes.gov.uk/research/data/uploadfiles/RB739.pdf

Similar research from schools sector in London



I know keep mentioning this but it can save you hours of time and gives a good summary tech happening relating to education The January edition of TechNews is now available.

Please use the link below to download TechNews as a PDF* file:


TechNews archive

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the website is also in permanent links in my sidebar.