Archive for the ‘*What is?’ Category

ASCILITE 2007 to be held in Singapore

Ascilite 2007 – ICT : Providing Choices for Learners and Learning

Get your thinking caps on for ASCILITE 2007! Proposals are due July 23rd.

This conference will be held in Singapore at the Nanyang Technological University.

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Movember – all for men's health

Ummm, What is Movember???

mov title image

At the start of N(M)ovember guys register with a clean shaven face. The Movember participants known as Mo Bros then have the remainder of the month to grow and groom their moustache and along the way raise as much money and awareness about male health issues as possible.

Our FLS team are going to participate, starting with Col (onya Col!) – you can check out his mo log (blog) and if you feel the urge to sponsor ($$$) him for his mo-tastic efforts during the month of November, then please do!

Ladies, you can also participate – mo sistas are welcome and can raise awareness of mens health issues too! :o)

From the Movember site, here are the key men’s health issues for Movember 2006:

Prostate Cancer in partnership with the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia ( because every year in Australia 2,700 men die of prostate cancer – more than the number of women who die from breast cancer.

Male Depression in partnership with Beyond Blue ( because one in six men suffer from depression at any given time but most don’t seek help.

Testicular Cancer because it?s the second most common cancer in young men aged 18 to 35.

So, here’s a new (follicle) challenge for you… If you feel the urge, join up yourself and invite your own sponsors for this great initiative!

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Welcome to the News at Seven!

Quick one today (as I finish off an essay!)…

News at Seven is a neat way to present RSS news feeds audiovisually, which can also link to bloggers comments (in this example at least). This is a project from InfoLab, Northwestern University in the US.

And for learning? How about a student “newspaper” or student project updates, or learning activities in the workplace, as well as local community updates, beamed via internet and pulled down by users to their computers or mobile devices via RSS? Sounds pretty feasible to me! Could you see this audiovisual type of RSS applying to your teaching context?

This from the News at Seven project website:

News At Seven is a system that automatically generates a virtual news show. Totally autonomous, it collects, parses, edits and organizes news stories and then passes the formatted content to an artificial anchor for presentation. Using the resources present on the web, the system goes beyond the straight text of the news stories to also retrieve relevant images and blogs with commentary on the topics to be presented.

More videos can be found here.

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WOW – art on your skin

WOW program
Originally uploaded by margoc.

I joined Lynsey for WOW, a spectacularly festive feast of fabric, faces, frenetic dancing feats and fancy facards! (Fffffhew!)

If you haven’t yet travelled to New Zealand, Wellington especially, then this is the best excuse for a trip, if you ever needed one! I can’t recommend this cultural event enough! :o)

We were even warmed up to the show by a WOW street parade and 12-foot-tall dancing butterflies!

This is a truly international event and a great cultural arts drawcard for NZ. Hats off to all involved, especially the amazingly talented designers – what vision!

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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