Monday, April 30, 2007

Update on Becta enhancing learning seminar

I attended this event a week and of course blogged it at

The presentations form the event are now all live and an and full audio to go with them with be avaialable from the 11th May. For now presentations can be found at

Nice description of what an RSS feed is.

Thanks to Lisa Valentine from JISC Regional Support centre in the North West. She thought it was great and a really easy and clear way of describing what an RSS feed is. .

thanks Lisa got to agree really nice resource.

Friday, April 27, 2007

i2010 ICT drives 50% of EU growth, says Commission's annual report on the digital economy

i2010 is the European Commission's strategic policy framework laying out broad policy guidelines for the information society and the media in the years up to 2010. It promotes an open and competitive digital economy, research into information and communication technologies, as well as their application to improve social inclusion, public services and quality of life. Main i2010 site is here

This years annual reports are out and comes out with this interesting statement

ICT drives 50% of EU growth, says Commission's annual report on the digital economy

Public and private investment in information and communication technology (ICT) is bearing fruit, finds the Commission's annual progress report on i2010 – the digitally-led strategy for growth and jobs. Technology is fuelling innovation and productivity, and there are signs of fundamental change in markets and user behaviour, as Europe moves towards a knowledge-based economy.
read more and get country by country reports Here

SMS to RSS a tool for disaster recovery

Shocked as we all were by Virginia Tech shooting read this interesting post from Creative Development Team at Sheffield Hallam

I also have an interest in SMS in disaster recovery linked to personal experience around 7/7 bombings in London . 160 characters in txt message isn't a lot of words but they can count for a lot when you need to get through to people and conventional phone network is down .

I attended sms in education conference a few weeks ago. Look at link to conference on sms texting in education

plus the neat video. Also ability to create rss feeds from a website blog posting increase chance of getting your message out. one of there customers Yorkshire coast college has done a really good podcast about it

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Introducing the book

Thanks to Gerry Cordon of Liverpool community college for pointing this out

This might amuse people who struggle introducing new technology to people. Those books will never catch on.

ALT annouce Learning Technologist of the Year

ALT is pleased to announce that this year we will be running, for the first time, a Learning Technologist of the Year Award.

The Chair of the judging panel is Professor Gilly Salmon.

Full details of the Award, including criteria, application process, prizes etc, will be published by mid May. In the meantime please note the following, and also draw this announcement to the attention of relevant colleagues.

The closing date and time for applications will be 09.00 GMT on Monday June 18th.

Answers to any questions raised about the Award will be published on the ALT web site during week beginning May 21st.

The judging panel will meet on June 27th.

We expect to interview shortlisted candidates on July 19th or July 20th.

The Award will be made at the 2007 ALT Conference Dinner in Nottingham on September 5th.

I will blog details as they appear or watch the ALT website

Ewan Mcintosh speaking in London

Having Derek Robertson of learning and teaching Scotland speak at the Becta serious games event last Tuesday in Birmingham I have by sheer chance got an opportunity to see his partner in crime fellow crusader for education Ewan Mcintosh speak at this first Tuesday event organised by Redhouse Media . Link to redhouse and therefirst Tuesday events here

The little abstract is interesting enough see below:


Ewan McIntosh

Educational Technologist

Learning and Teaching Scotland Futures

year, 16-year-olds who know little about life before the Internet and
email will enter the workforce. Ewan McIntosh is an experienced teacher
and a recognised authority on new media and technology in the
classroom. He’ll lead a session on how understanding the interests of
IT-savvy teenagers will be critical if businesses and the government
are to get the best out of the next generation of worker.

"Nintendads" are you one?

Well currently I am not but my  seven year old would love a DS!! Having seen a video of Nintendo,s dr kawashima s brain training being used in a real class by Derek Robertson of Learning and Teaching Scotland on Tuesday Link to article of his blog here .

This article originally form reuters suggesting the changing demograpphic are gamers 71% are married 66% have on child so the sad loner teacher bit doesn't apply. The world is changing and maybe Nintendads are the long tail game plan of marketing games consoles and the games title.

Read the article here

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Samsung up the anti in mini hard drives

Well we are all getting excited about Ultra Mobile Portable Computers with flash drives and then Samsung breed more life back into conventional hard drives. A 120gb 1.8 Inch hard drive yes 120gb 1.8inch drive . What is exciting is the very low pwer consumption because running out of power is what us mobile evangelists hate.


Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Enhancing Learning; virtual worlds, simulations and games based learning

Had the great pleasure of meeting Ernest Adams and Derek Robertson today. haven't had time to blog their presentation from BECTA event. "Enhancing Learning; virtual worlds, simulations and games based learning"

will put up the link to presentations from the day later. But for now feel the urge to put up these two inspirational individuals web presences:

Ernest Adams homepage link

Derek Robertson blog from Learning and Teaching Scotland

Talking about text their raving about it see the video

A couple of weeks ago I did the keynote at the first conference about using SMS in Education Europe. Leon Cynch one in the vanguard of web2.0 filmed it you can see the result at this link

Really liked the event as I have blogged before but also got to say impressed by the video which captures the enthusiasm of people using SMS in the education environment.

It may be Simple Messaging Service but the enthusiasm from users of SMS cant be dismissed .

Topmarks for producing the video which is available on teacher tube google video and Leons on site at

Saturday, April 21, 2007

EDUCAUSE REVIEW | May/June 2005, Volume 40, Number 3

excellent piece by Educause upping the mlearning anti in 2007 the year M goes mainstream interesting author to Ellen De Wagner of Macromedia. You might disagree with some of the content mobile learning v learning goes mobile but leave your views at home till you've read the whole article.

EDUCAUSE REVIEW | May/June 2005, Volume 40, Number 3

Friday, April 20, 2007

ePortfolio 2007, Maastricht 17-19 October 2007 call for papers

ePortfolio 2007, Maastricht 17-19 October 2007
This event was in UK last year and some of my Colleagues at Becta supported it and reported good things.

ePortfolio 2007 is the key international event for the growing community of
professionals interested in, and working with, ePortfolios. It brings
together policy-makers, researchers, teachers, trainers, human resource
managers and technologists. As a thematic event devoted to one domain,
it allows an in-depth and broad exploration of the issues - and results
in real outcomes. Past events have resulted in the creation of national
and international networks, contribution to ePortfolio policy, the
launch of the ePortfolio for All campaign, progress in ePortfolio
interoperability through the Plugfest, transnational projects and
numerous publications.

if you want to submit a paper workshop link is at

Business cards that show your web2.0 credentials

Heads up to Will Thomas of Suffolk college for spotting this before I got to mybloglines feed
great card from a great teacher and a great class

Reminds me I must post about geoff Stead of Tribal CTAD great idea and gift of a a rubber stamp "connected by andy" with my blog address . His idea knowing me well is when I meet someone who I think is cool to ask for five cards or so stamp the back and pass them onto to people I meet in the future .

state of the blogosphere

Blogs tags the whole web2.0 phenomena heres a report compiled from Technorati that will make you think. summary:

here's a few headlines that are worth reflecting on:-

  • The blogosphere is now 70 million weblogs wide

  • About 120,000 new weblogs are created each day, or...

  • 1.5 million posts per day

  • 1.4 new blogs are created every second

  • 17 posts are made every second

Cumulative number of weblogs - Technorati


  • 3000-7000 new splogs (fake, or spam blogs) created every day

  • Peak of 11,000 splogs per day last December


  • Growing from 35 to 75 million blogs took 320 days

Blogs vs. MSM

  • From 11 to 22 blogs among the top sources linked to in Q4 2006

The multi-lingual web

  • Japanese the #1 blogging language at 37%

  • English second at 33%

  • Chinese third at 8%

  • Italian fourth at 3%

  • Farsi a newcomer in the top 10 at 1%

Tags Stats

  • Tracking 230 million posts with tags or categories

  • 35% of all February 2007 posts used tags

  • 2.5 million blogs posted at least one tagged post in February

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Web 2.0 for content sharing for learning and teaching

I have got to give a huge heads up to my fellow technology evangelist Tom Franklin of Franklin consulting for organising on behalf of JISC this webinar on Web 2.0 for content sharing for learning and teaching.

The Webinar runs from Monday 30th April to Friday 4 May, and will continue to be open
for comment after that.

Each day will run from lunchtime to lunchtime, starting with live presentations at 12.30 from two speakers.

The subjects are:

Monday - Institutional practice in implementing Web 2.0

Tuesday - Creating content using Web 2.0

Wednesday - Web 2.0 for taching and learning

Thursday - Strategy and Policy

Friday - Conclusions and recommendations

Short briefing papers have been prepared, to help focus the discussion.
These highlight some of the issues and raise a number of questions, and we hope that you will find it useful to read them before the conference.

details can be found at

Mobile learning going mainstream

Harking back to new year predictions that 2007 was the year M learning goes mainstream another event promoted by e-learning age

"New Approaches to Learning: Informal, Mobile Distance"

They say

E-learning is fast becoming just another
way of delivering learning and every year there are more and more ways
and opportunities to deliver learning some using technology and some
that don’t.

Learn how to use mobile and distance
learning to the maximum effect for your organisation and how to put
your learners first, both now and in the future.

Interesting programme with not the usual hard core mlearning evangelists/pathfinders I ally myself with but great to see another event spreading the message. Programme link below

Ok its not the m-crowd but the plenty of room for new people currents pretty strong in the mainstream.

One laptop per Child moving into top gear

I was lucky enough to meet Mary Lou Jepsen at Mlearn2006 in Alberta I sat down next to her at breakfast !!!Mary is a leading part of the one laptop per child project team .It has the weirdest homepage but its the initiative that everybody has talked about knocked praised and it really is beginning to happen.

they're is some really long but good video on the project at

some really interesting results of trialling in Nigeria

And from karlfich blog
a great quote for those that said they would'nt do it

Oh, and they're hoping to ship 10 million of them this year, 50-100 million next year.

Move over XBOX 360 as biggest product roll out in history

Plus my own thought mesh technology is the future !!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Google presentations even google now own up

Need I say more but bring it on google !! read about on googles own blog !!!

Innovating e-Learning 2007 - Institutional Transformation and Supporting Lifelong Learning, 11 - 14 June 2007

This is likely to be a great event.

Supported by my friends at DirectLearn who are rapidly becoming the online conference organisers in the UK.

This is to let you know about the Jisc 2007 online conference, following last year's successful conference. This year, the topic is Innovating e-Learning 2007 - Institutional Transformation and Supporting Lifelong Learning, 11 - 14 June 2007

The conference focuses on the potential of e-learning in transforming practice within institutions and in supporting lifelong learning. The keynote presenters will offer a rich variety of perspectives on these themes:

Theme 1: Institutional transformation Day 1: Terry Mayes, Emeritus Professor, Glasgow Caledonian University, and Day 2: Dr John Guy, Principal, and Dr Mike Docker, Director, ICLT, the Sixth Form College, Farnborough

Theme 2: Supporting Lifelong Learning, introduced by Robin Mason, Professor of Educational Technology at The Institute of Educational Technology, The Open University

The concluding presentation will be given by Oleg Liber, Professor of e-Learning and Director of the Research Centre for Educational Technology and Interoperability Standards (CETIS), University of Bolton.

As well as these keynote presenters, there is a very large number of other sessions and presentations, making up what we hope is an exciting and useful programme. The full programme (and booking
information) can be seen at:

As last year, the conference will be open for a week for pre-conference reading, from the 4th June. The conference itself will run from 11-14 June and will then remain open for viewing for a full month, until 15 July.


Thanks to Bob Harrison for drawing this community to my attention ages back and finally got round to blogging it . It seems with a lot of the debate on virtual communities (second life etc) and the role this may play in augmenting enriching peoples lives this particular community seems to have been round a while . The front page blog is really interesting reading . Brigadoon specific community is those with Aspergers syndrome .

more detail on the background to the community can be found at

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

UKERNA launch wireless advisory service

This looks really useful for those of your working with wireless !!
UKERNA launched the Wireless Technology Advisory Service (WTAS) at Networkshop on 4/05/07. This service provides free advice and guidance to organisations on all aspects of wireless technologies. A wide range of information is published on this web site, including technology guides, and case studies

For a number of years JANET-connected organisations have been deploying wireless LANs (WLANs) alongside the wired networking infrastructure within their campuses. The rate of growth in the deployment of WLANs within the teaching and learning environment is accelerating, in parallel with the demand-driven proliferation of fixed and mobile wireless technologies and standards.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

RSS 2 to PDF free ATOM feeds conversion converts RSS2PDF

Thanks to Ivan for posting this as comment to earlier blog posting impressed Ivan very neat !!!

RSS 2 to PDF free ATOM feeds conversion converts RSS2PDF: "Flexta takes a fresh approach to information publishing with RSS2.
In simple terms, RSS2 can convert multiple RSS and ATOM feeds into a single, consolidated PDF file without the need for expensive software, computer programming, or complicated RSS readers."

Mlearning survey

American Society for Training & Development online magazine is doing a survey on mobile learning . m learning moving up the agenda again do the survey at

2007 the year mlearning goes mainstream ??

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

TouchGraph mind map google amazon searches

This is so cool works to produce a visual mapping of a search its a little like aquabrowser which I have blogged before works interestingly for google and amazon data.

TouchGraph | HomePublish

MidnightSun Assistive Technology Conference

MidnightSun Assistive Technology Conference#
Anchorage in Alaska great location and timing for conference and content seems interesting anyone going and got space in the suitcase ??

Friday, April 06, 2007

85 piece mobile search tool kit

Huge heads up the blog from read write web team for this .
if your serious about mobile a list to check out not all maybe your cup of tea, latte or cappuccino but worth a look. excuse poor tagging on this but tagging could take longer than the post !!!

RSS to PDF revisited with interesting add ons

I first blogged this back in November 2005 ( have I really been blogging that long!) its had some nice features added since then including support for flickr photo stream

The original RSS to PDF tool can be found at
great tool i think I will add it to my sidebar links in coming weeks.

The great turle race

This is a lovely use of mobile gps technology with a serious aim sea turtle conservation. .

Select your turtle and watch the race . The site shows educational use of gps and the the world wide web.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

In the Wild Well being, the Web and the future of Education

Channel 4 Education special conference … In the Wild Well being, the Web and the future of Education 10 May 2007 London

We would be delighted if you can join us. This unique event will bring over 200 young people, educators, policy makers and representatives of the broadcast and digital media worlds together to explore some of the most important challenges facing young people as they are growing up today and some of ideas that are shaping the future of output of Channel 4 Education. We have arranged a great roster of speakers including

* Richard Reeves, Nick Baylis and Kathy Evans on well being
* James Bradburne, Pat Kane and Penelope Tobin on informal learning
* Bronwyn Kunhardt, Rachel O’Connell and Ewan McIntosh on living online
* Matthew Taylor, Mike Gibbons and Anna Craft on next practice in schools

There will also be an opportunities to participate in an ‘open space’ session where you as our guest can take control of the agenda and lots of chances to meet Channel 4 executives and hear about the plans for the future of Channel 4 Education on screen and online.

register here

Great Things Happening in New Zeland Hi to Room 9 at Nelson central School.

Came across two great blogs while looking at Ewan Mcintosh's blog

are the kids at room 9 central nelson school !!! Check the classes first ever podcast how cool is that go on regular readers of Andysblackhole go and listen to the podcast and post a comment.

The Collaborative State

Another excellent report from Demos its open paragraph on the web is interesting

Competition and choice have become the watchwords of public service reform over the past decade. But while these principles have delivered some important gains, they are not enough in isolation. Tight accountability and choice have often come at the expense of fragmenting the way that schools, hospitals and councils provide their services. Service improvement has come at the expense of the capacity to solve local people’s problems.

Its not short but the subject isnt exactly an easy one to shorten

Mobiles for Development of Rural Livelihoods in South Asia

Seriously good article about M-services for development. Upasna Kakroo has written a really great article. raise interesting points through out the article especially around bridging the divide why mobile . Notably she targets three areas for discussion.

  • m-Services: Emerging Markets
  • m-Services: Innovative practices
  • m-Services: Impact Assessment
link to original article here

Are you seriously Mobile ???

Mobile learning and mobile Internet explored at Seriously Mobile Summit 20 April


"Mobile internet, working in real time and supporting mobile workforce capability is the theme for this year's summit. We have assembled several of the world's top mobile learning experts to lead the event, including speakers from Ericsson, Giunti Labs and Reuters, three organizations that are leading the way in mobile learning and mobile Internet technology" said Ron Edwards, organizer of the Seriously Mobile Summit and one of its keynote presenters.

2007 Theme: The Mobile Internet: Working in Real Time

Supporting Mobile Workforce Capability
“Creativity is no longer about which companies have the most visionary executives, but which have the most compelling architecture of participation. That is, which companies make it easy, interesting and rewarding for a wide range of contributors to offer ideas, solve problems and improve products” - Tim O’Reilly, O’Reilly Media

We will explore:

  • Trends - business, cultural, technologies and how people are increasingly mobile
    • Physically - Travelling to work, clients, suppliers, between offices, Hot Desking, and 'Smart Working' - blending home and office based work
    • Mentally - Between teams, colleagues, their networks, volunteer work, personal/family, education
  • Individual needs
    • Instant access to context-based information and each other.
    • People want to stay informed, connected, capable and productive
  • Organisational needs
    • Agility; the ability to sense what is happening or needs to happen and react effectively.
      • Technology helps organisations tap in to what their “front line” is hearing and experiencing. It enables instant communication and collaboration to build context and meaning from developments.
      • Technology based products are evolving so fast there is a need to keep people up-to-speed on the changes while providing the right amount of training and support that doesn’t inhibit employee productivity.
    • Building a culture of innovation
      • It is often the most experienced and best networked/connected that are the most mobile. How do you continuously engage them to contribute to innovation? • How do you engage people at all levels in an organisation to tap in to creativity and ideas for growth? • The term Architecture of Participation describes the combination of enabling tools (often referred to as social media or web 2.0), culture and practices of organisation
  • Leading Edge Mobile Technologies and Implementation Strategies
link to event here

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Quiet map of britain is connectivity a scurge or a joy

I was lucky enough to be in Southwold in Suffolk on its stunning beach yesterday and noted a long standing restaurant the Dutch barn on the beach road has become Casa Mia it does look really nice . I was taken by this part of the chalked sign. Now is being able to pick up email and access the web a joy or a burden. I was made to think of an earlier article in the guardian about a map of tranquillity nothing to do with technology do we need now to think of maps of non broadband non 3g tranquillity to here is a link to original guardian article,,1928957,00.html.

What I think is nicer is the boys playing behind the sign see above or ten minutes earlier dads feet had been buried in sand by the mischevious duo.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Did you Know

Well worth a browse. I advice you look at both school specific and non school power point and look at the data as I said in Leeds a week today the world has changed and is changing further.

the employment trends and links with Englands decline in power in the early early mid twentieth century is interesting.

If you havent read Tom Standage's Victorian internet you should .

2020 Vision on DesignShare from Fischbowl

2020 Vision on DesignShare from my favourite blog !

If your involved with Building Schools For the Future in the UK in secondary, The primary Capitalisation programe (BSF for primary) or FE colleges new build reads this stuff.

also look at how it was collaboratively developed

short post for the best reading and viewing on the subject. Design learning spaces for the future not now or even worse the past.

IT sector backs common language for skills and experience

Good news from e-skills

IT sector backs common language for skills and experience

e-skills UK has today published the IT Professional Competency Model - a new, sector-wide approach to expressing IT professional capabilities. This simple and flexible model represents a breakthrough in helping employers, educators and others to communicate using a common language and framework for skills, knowledge and experience.

The IT Professional Competency Model builds on the Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA), allocating the competencies IT professionals have – in other words, what they can actually do – into a simple suite of subject-based 'disciplines' and levels. The model also includes transferable skills, such as business and personal skills, which apply to all disciplines. It is based on extensive consultation with employers of IT professionals in all areas of the economy.


Interesting commercial site with a definite M flavour

Beyond M-learning

From homepage of the Kaleidoscope Mobile Learning SIG a really interesting resources well worth delving into clip form Mike Sharples ( Nottingham University m-learning world guru).

This part of the site is intended to be a store of useful resources for researchers and students in Mobile Learning. It will grow as additional resources are contributed by members of the SIG.

Featured resources