Friday, October 23, 2009

Africa calling

Africans are buying mobile phones at a world record rate, with take-up soaring by 550% in five years, research shows.

great story in the guardian

Thanks to Ken Banks for the lead !!

Successful deployment of networked handheld devices for learning and teaching. NCSL 2005 reloaded

Many years ago well I think summer 2005 . Some bright spark (actually Judy Clark) invited me to gig at the National College for School Leadership on mobile learning .
I remember turning up to meet an eclectic mix of people Mike Sharples Birmingham University Bob Harrison representing Toshiba, Geof Stead of tribal , Dave Whyley of Wolverhampton (learning2go) and Steve Sidaway of TXTtools. Well it was an OK gig but relationships made changed my thoughts directions in technology forever.

Well ALT are unwittingly (?) hosting a slightly grander version at the same place but with a different cast of practioners . See below so if your interested register the stuff your doing

The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) is pleased to announce
that with the support of Becta we will be running a good practice
workshop for schools, colleges, universities, work-based learning, and
community education about the *Successful deployment of networked
handheld devices for learning and teaching*.

The workshop will be facilitated by Professor Gilly Salmon, head of
Leicester University’s Beyond Distance Research Alliance, and it will
take place between 16.30 on Thursday 12 November to 15.30 on Friday 13
November at the National College for Leadership for Schools and
Children’s Services in Nottingham.
There is a full description below and at
Please highlight the event to people in your reach who may wish to

If you wish to attend this event please express an interest using the
form at by no later than *12 noon on Friday
23 October*.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Broadband in a backpack

Ok not one for your average holiday to pack list but if disaster relief is your thing worth looking

be it getting vital information in and out what price would you pay for an email to a loved one to say your ok .

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Twitter certainly rising

The rise of twitter and the like from highly respected pew in the US


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

short history offline article

Now just caught up with Micromen great stuff on Sinclair V Acorn battle in the 70's 80's (thanks I player ). Great TV also worth reading this article my Richard Millwod Short History of Offline Richard has one of the best pedigrees in the field of learning technology and his forsight and reflection is always worth seeking out.  You of course decide.

Assestment by Tweet for Griffith University journalism students in Brisbane Australia

Well interesting approach to providing supporting evidence for assesment. Not expressing a view but one to think about . Does provide a guide to itteraton /prototyping of an idea.,25197,26204513-12377,00.html

Indian operators scramble for Africa's mobile market

Interesting reflection on how mobile providers from Indian are heading to the "wild west of Africa mobile market" thanks to Adele Botha  for that phrase .

European and Middle Eastern service providers have been making inroads into the African mobile arena for years, but now Asian service providers are scrambling to get a slice of the world's last unsaturated market.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Gross assumptions

Had a brilliant week but really had my mindset challenged. Now reguar readers know I keep banging on the fact the next billion users of the internet will be from mobile devices. Read earlier post from ITU. But what ive missed is the role that limited bandwidth will have on those users. See story on south african broadband
even simple webpages will take ages to load if they load at all no youtube etc just think . Ive dscovered Mixit this week thanks to Adele Botha this is a social etworking app for mobile phones you never heard of it. Well wake up there are 16million users in africa . The role of the mobile cevice that nevers go near a desktop laptop to sync is vital. the role of sms cant be over stressed and the wake up to the fact outrageous charges for data no longer tolerated in most of europe are alive and well in Africa .

So bit of a rant dont go mad on media rich papers if you want to reach a wider audience think lean code and good old wap .

But this really had made me think and also not to get diverted by the shiny and new  of the I or G Phone if we are serious about digtal inclusion outside developed north think second generation devices not fifth genration moble devices.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The pocket spy: Will your smartphone rat you out?

great Mobile Learning blog

Great Mobile Learning blog described as
Mobile Libraries Is Devoted To Documenting Any and All Topics Relating To Services Provided By Libraries To patrons Within Mobile Environments.

Much more exciting than it sounds .

Thursday, October 08, 2009

THE WORLD IN 2009: ICT FACTS AND FIGURES:A decade of ICT growth driven by mobile technologies

Report from international telecoms union if you had any doubts that the world is mobile read this report

lots of detailsbut high level stuff along with mobile subscriptions still growing at 15%

-Mobile cellular has been the most rapidly adopted technology in history.Today it is the most popular and widespread personal technology on the
planet, with an estimated 4.6 billion subscriptions globally by the end of 2009
-Mobile broadband subscriptions overtook fixed broadband subscribers in
2008, highlighting the huge potential for the mobile Internet
-In 2009, more than a quarter of the world’s population are using the Internet

worth a read a look at the tables .

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Handheld learning 2009

Well back home after packed 3 days ! completely interacted out an intense round of meeting mates old and new and the most intense twitter streamof any event ive been to. Forget gentle stream think ranging torrect . Whats interesting after a mention of the P word "Prensky" now I thiking maybe digital natives was a good model when the book Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants published in 2001 but it doesnt work for me now.

It seems ageist and almost one size fits all young people. They are not uniform but are a diverse and wide ranging landscape of skills and attiutude. I do believe adults can teach very young children to fear technology . The phrase stop playing with X you will break it springs to mind. Mick Waters used the idea that young people have gadgetgumption and we breed it out of them over the early years of school .
The idea I most like at the moment and would like your help to build on is one of  Residents V Visitors in the Digital world . Dave White Oxford University presented around this concept at ALTC2009 and his influential blog

Great work which I fully credit and with Daves permission I aim to build on it . I believe this works well but needs refining .because you can be resident or visitor using different tools .
Second life I am hardly a visitor , Youtube I am visitor in terms of creating content I am a resident in terms of consuming content. Twitter I am fully resident and at time confuse twitter conversation with email or even voice conversation . Facebook I  was resident on but my visa( my need to use) has started to expire .
I think we need to create a model / table of the tools then tagging if resident or visitor based on a range of criterai time spent on activity frequency etc.  Anyone got a view and helping me build the model.  I will blog about the great experience at HHL09 but this idea has got inside my head and needs developing..

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

saw Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino speaker at handheld learning today she is part of

projects they are involved with are like

Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It's intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environment.

Personalising Learning with the iPod Touch

Had pleasure of seeing Loiuse Duncan present at #hhl09 on great project on using ipod touches in education she has a really useful site at

Worth looking at on a regular basis. I would be interested in any other projects using Ipod Touches in Education as well as other mobile devices . so go on leave a comment with a link !!

ICT access and usage in Africa

ICT access and usage in Africa. interesting stuff in report mobile is they in a lot of areas.
Some great stats
for example the percentage of disposable income spent by average Rwandan on mobile access - 65% or about 17% of total income for bottom 75% of earners

Monday, October 05, 2009

Thanks to Richard Scullin for reminding me to blog this

Simple real-time sharing, collaboration, and presentation.

Use to privately share your files and collaborate in real time by web, email, phone, mobile, and more. Create each drop in two clicks and share what you want, how you want, with whom you want. interesting cross platform cross media

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Library Finder

Searches libraries in US using zipcode (postcode) for e-books for
loan. Interesting idea view link here.

Friday, October 02, 2009

The Epic E-learning debate at the Oxford Union

Now what a evening even allowing for either a sloppily worded motion or indeed a very clever one it was a strong arguement what is was was a a superb airing of views . The no's won it but both sides argued from a e learning 1.0 stance think predominantly if not ecxclusivelly a desktop/laptop experience and completely missed the mobile thing.

but still a great night and nice to see stuff about the event up quicklynice photo me kicking off discussion from the floor

follows the debate online at