Archive for the ‘*Mobile’ Category

Haiku, mobile learning and the practice of writing

“Mmmm, you could create a form of mobile-audio Haiku though,” continued that voice in my head.

Long conversations
beside blooming irises –
joys of life on the road
Matsuo Basho

Seeking – Walking the streets (Sept 26th, 2006)

Marica at Seeking reflects on the use of audioblogging, after my spending time in Wellington with her and her colleagues at the Open Polytechnic of NZ. I was particularly drawn to her thoughts about the Haiku and how a short piece of writing can convey much (in a similar way to an image that speaks a thousand words I suppose).

The haiku is a great metaphor for mobile learning, in that much is captured in a small ‘space’. I have set up a Winksite called Mobile Explorations (for access via your mobile device, go to and enter site ID # 17112) to capture these smaller moments that can be viewed and interacted with via a mobile device. Still in ‘testing’ phase, I have added a couple of haikus to the Zine, titled ‘Haiku thinking’. You can add your own haikus via the Guestbook if you wish. Here’s how it looks:

How can this be developed as a useful learning venture? Playful jottings and a few meaningful words can capture much of the essence of an experience in the same way images often do. It can enable the writer to develop ways of writing that convey a meaning or sense of an experience, just as we might interpret an image, its meaning, representation and structures, according to our position and frame of mind in time and space. Wu and Bergstraum describe this as the haiku moment:

It seems easiest to liken haiku to a photograph, which captures a moment in time. A pure photograph describes a scene, and this description causes an emotional response in its viewer. There is no caption on the photograph that tells us what emotional response we are to take from it. It is instead a simple moment in time, unencumbered.Haiku is the same thing. When a butterfly lands upon an open flower, what does the haiku poet take from this? The same thing that his reader will take from it when he describes the moment in verse. But he trusts his reader to sense the same emotion from his accurate description of the scene. He does not need to say “How beautiful!” in reference to the moment, because his words should evoke the correct response in his reader.

I often have jottings and snippets or phrases dotted around my desk on sticky notes, or written messily into notebooks (like my A5 laptop for example!) – even noted quickly in my mobile phone – and these hold meaning for me in ways a well-structured sentence may not.

Thus, from little things big things grow, as they say!

I’ll leave you with my try at a haiku:

Live out loud and soft:

Expect a newness within

Greet the world in song.

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On the Move #1: Testing Gabcast

Gabcast! On the Move #1

OLT Conference 2006 : Learning on the Move

Whilst I was in New Zealand last week, my colleague Leonard attended the OLT Conference in Queensland, where he presented our paper, Learner-centric design of digital mobile learning.

We received the Best Paper Award! Thanks to the reviewers and the conference chairs for their support!

the award!

Mobile Learning – Learner-Centric Design of Digital Mobile Learning

Other OLT2006 papers can be accessed here. I’d be interested to hear your thoughts about our paper …

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Brainstorming the interactive podcasting idea

Originally uploaded by mobology.

Alexander Hayes captured a lot of the brainstorming we did about the interactive podcast idea. You can listen to a couple of podcasts we did to simulate how an interactive podcast might work, using Audacity.

At the end of the day I discussed the idea with Marica and Lynsey and lots of questions surfaced, mainly around the idea of rights of the originating ‘author’ and how some people may or may not be comfortable with the idea of having others ‘annotate’ their thoughts and writing (or audio) in this way.

These questions appear in the comments of the Flickr photo posted by mobology. The image is of my A5 “laptop” (and was very effective!).

Interactive podcasts – asynchronous audio activities?

Could we design “interactive” podcasts? This was an idea we explored in Wellington, New Zealand as part of the FLNW Open Conference. Check out this recording below.interactive podcasts – (beta) (thanks to Leigh for this recording).

I envisaged something like this because being a somewhat kinaesthetic learner, I like to ‘do’ as I listen and read things. So for me, being able to interrupt a conversation (or podcast) and make notes to prompt or clarify my own thinking, would be really useful and very timely. In most cases, I would do this manually anyway.

However, what if, when listening to a podcast, you were able to record your notes or questions or responses so that others could also listen to them along with the original podcast? You would effectively be adding your voice to the conversation! Really it could be called a conver-cast (emphasising the conversational element) and would occur in a ‘layering of time’. The conversation occurs asynchronously and potentially combines

  • discussion/chat
  • podcasts
  • commentary
  • multiple voices
  • remixing (perhaps copy and paste?)
  • perhaps a wiki-like feature like rollback to previous versions (see comment by botheredByBees on BlipTV).

How might this be applied to learning situations?

I could imagine the ‘lecture’ for example, being podcasted, then students having the ability to zero in on a point being made, add a question, seek clarification, offer an opinion, and add to the ‘lecture’ in some way. This takes a linear ‘one-way’ resource and makes it inherently shareable, relevant to a learner’s position of learning at a certain time. The podcast is recorded at one point in time, the learner’s response may not take place until some time after (even after the course of study is finished). And it also allows for people to ‘change their minds’, as we often do in conversation where we can come around to another’s point of view, for example.

Similarly, a facilitator could also present an ‘unfinished’ cast, where they begin a ‘story’ for example and invite learners to develop the cast over a period of time (like contributing to a wiki in a sense).

Exploring the possibilities…

What other situations might a conver-cast be effectively applied? What are the implications of such an approach? What other learning scenarios could be supported here?

I’d like to hear more from you – are their ramifications? Limitations? Other possibilities you see?

These are jsut some beginning thoughts…

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