Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Visualization for Communication and (Learning) Design

I'm increasingly seeing value in visualization and design for learning technology. I've had great results in the past with storyboarding and wireframing, and the more I work with educational technology, the more I see the value of visualization and design.

See examples of different visual communication and design with the links, below (note: these are reflecting an *advanced* stage of a project; I'm interested in how to also communicate a preliminary picture of such characteristics):

nForm's Yvonne discusses the use of Swimlanes (example is actually an education technology project)
• Dennis, also from nForm, discusses upcoming CanUX 2008 sessions and this interesting visualization of the financial crisis by Xplaned's Dave Gray (Xplaned is a company that does stuff for many organizations, including Apple, and the example is similar to the “demo” on Wetpaint…I like the way they break down difficult concepts and show a timeline of events)

Alberta has a province-wide distributed learning forum to discuss DL strategies. They have some visualization on their website to help communicate their message/audience in an Interactive Map. This just hits home for me the importance of communicating design and mapping concepts.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

UBC's Medical School Implements Advanced Video-Conferencing System for Distributed Learning


A colleague of mine passed along this link. There is some good information here on lessons learned -- I like the example of the touch-screen that was difficult to use given the need for gloves. It's nice to see that they've listed some of the costs and other factors to consider for technology and infrastructure pieces, particularly for the video-conferencing (a $30,000 camera, for example...some advanced HD cameras actually go up into the $50,000 range...and, of course, that doesn't include any editing or distribution capabilities, it's just the capture).

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Wikitecture - 3D Wiki Using Second Life

It's interesting to see how 3D immersive representations of design, discussion and collaboration are evolving in Second Life (SL). In this case, Wikitecture seems to focus more on emulating physical architecture components, but the people at Studio Wikitecture also tout their product as a way to do project management online. Joshua-Michele Ross has some things to say about the benefit of Wikitecture for bringing local knowledge into the design process, and he points out that Studio Wikitecture just received the Architecture for Humanity's Founders Award for their work on a health facility in Nepal. Others, like the people at Immersive Workspaces, see potential in collaborative online workspaces in SL, but for now I think most businesses and post-secondary institutions will find the ease and simplicity of WebEX and Elluminate more appealing for their day-to-day lives.

I still wonder if the learning curve for aclimatizing to these virtual workspaces will, in the end, outweigh the benefits of 3D collaborative spaces. It's great to see this work being applied to things like healthcare and NGO-work, and I hope that we can see more of this kind of real-world application of SL development.

This Wiki Tree is also kind of cool...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Canadian Conference on Medical Education 2009

According to CCME website, the deadline for submissions for this year's CCME, which will be held in Edmonton, is Saturday Oct 25, 2008. On their website, the CCME is described as the following:

The Canadian Conference on Medical Education (CCME) is the premier medical education conference in Canada. It hosts the largest annual gathering of medical educators in the country. Each year a different Canadian faculty hosts the conference (in 2009 it is the University of Alberta) in partnership with five of Canada's leading health organizations - The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC), the Canadian Association for Medical Education (CAME), The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC), the Medical Council of Canada (MCC), and The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC). The AFMC is conference secretariat and provides administrative support for the conference.

See: http://www.mededconference.ca/home.php

Moodle Moot - Edmonton, 2009

Moodlemoot 2009, in cooperation with Athabasca University, will be held in Edmonton from April 1-4, 2009. See: http://moodlemoot.ca/moodle/index.php

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

New MacBooks

The new MacBooks are here...I like the idea of having the aluminum casing and the glass touchpad.


Happy Open Access Day

The UofA is one of the institutions participating in the world's first celebration of the international Open Access (OA) Day, in support of the free and open sharing of publicly funded research.

Open Access Day


Oct. 14th, 2008 is the world’s first OA day (that’s today!).

PS - Thanks to Richard for sending this my way.


Hi everyone,

I created this blog to examine issues related to research, education and technology. My interests are in the following areas:

  • Instructional Design
  • Humanities Computing
  • Multimedia
  • Education (post-secondary and K-12)
  • Copyright
  • Digital Culture
  • Usability (User Experience)
  • Literature
  • Medicine and Healthcare
  • Distributed Learning
  • Distributed Computing

The most interesting part will be getting some feedback on the things posted. I look forward to hearing from you!