Steelcase announces their Active Learning Center Grant Recipients for 2017
Excerpt from Amazon fumbles earnings amidst high expectations (emphasis DSC):
Aside from AWS, Amazon Alexa-enabled devices were the top-selling products across all categories on Amazon.com throughout the holiday season and the company is reporting that Echo family sales are up over 9x compared to last season. Amazon aims to brand Alexa as a platform, something that has helped the product to gain capabilities faster than its competition. Developers and corporates released 4,000 new skills for the voice assistant in just the last quarter.
Alexa got 4,000 new skills in just the last quarter!
What are the teaching & learning ramifications of this?
By the way, I’m not saying for professors, teachers, & trainers to run for the hills (i.e., that they’ll be replaced by AI-based tools). But rather, I would like to suggest that we not only put this type of thing on our radars, but we should begin to actively experiment with such technologies to see if they might be able to help us do some heavy lifting for students learning about new topics.
Don’t discount the game-changing power of the morphing “TV” when coupled with artificial intelligence (AI), natural language processing (NLP), and blockchain-based technologies!
When I saw the article below, I couldn’t help but wonder what (we currently know of as) “TVs” will morph into and what functionalities they will be able to provide to us in the not-too-distant future…?
For example, the article mentions that Seiki, Westinghouse, and Element will be offering TVs that can not only access Alexa — a personal assistant from Amazon which uses artificial intelligence — but will also be able to provide access to over 7,000 apps and games via the Amazon Fire TV Store.
Some of the questions that come to my mind:
Forget a streaming stick: These 4K TVs come with Amazon Fire TV inside — from techradar.com by Nick Pino
The TVs will not only have access to Alexa via a microphone-equipped remote but, more importantly, will have access to the over 7,000 apps and games available on the Amazon Fire TV Store – a huge boon considering that most of these Smart TVs usually include, at max, a few dozen apps.
“I’ve been predicting that by 2030 the largest company on the internet is going to be an education-based company that we haven’t heard of yet,” Frey, the senior futurist at the DaVinci Institute think tank, tells Business Insider.
In the future, I’d like to see holograms provide stunning visual centerpieces for the entrance ways into libraries, or in our classrooms, or in our art galleries, recital halls, and more. The object(s), person(s), scene(s) could change into something else, providing a visually engaging experience that sets a tone for that space, time, and/or event.
Eventually, perhaps these types of technologies/setups will even be a way to display artwork within our homes and apartments.
Image from 900lbs.com
How long before recommendation engines like this can be filtered/focused down to just display apps, channels, etc. that are educational and/or training related (i.e., a recommendation engine to suggest personalized/customized playlists for learning)?
That is, in the future, will we have personalized/customized playlists for learning on our Apple TVs — as well as on our mobile devices — with the assessment results of our taking the module(s) or course(s) being sent in to:
Will participants in MOOCs, virtual K-12 schools, homeschoolers, and more take advantage of learning from home?
Will solid ROI’s from having thousands of participants paying a smaller amount (to take your course virtually) enable higher production values?
Will bots and/or human tutors be instantly accessible from our couches?
Other items on today’s announcements:
All the big announcements from Apple’s Mac event — from amp.imore.com by Joseph Keller
Apple is finally unifying the TV streaming experience with new app — from techradar.com by Nick Pino
How to migrate your old Mac’s data to your new Mac — from amp.imore.com by Lory Gil
MacBook Pro FAQ: Everything you need to know about Apple’s new laptops — from amp.imore.com by Serenity Caldwell
Accessibility FAQ: Everything you need to know about Apple’s new accessibility portal — from imore.com by Daniel Bader
Apple’s New MacBook Pro Has a ‘Touch Bar’ on the Keyboard — from wired.com by Brian Barrett
Apple’s New TV App Won’t Have Netflix or Amazon Video — from wired.com by Brian Barrett
Apple 5th Gen TV To Come With Major Software Updates; Release Date Likely In 2017 — from mobilenapps.com
The other day I had posted some ideas in regards to how artificial intelligence, machine learning, and augmented reality are coming together to offer some wonderful new possibilities for learning (see: “From DSC: Amazing possibilities coming together w/ augmented reality used in conjunction w/ machine learning! For example, consider these ideas.”) Here is one of the graphics from that posting:
These affordances are just now starting to be uncovered as machines are increasingly able to ascertain patterns, things, objects…even people (which calls for a separate posting at some point).
But mainly, for today, I wanted to highlight an excellent comment/reply from Nikos Andriotis @ Talent LMS who gave me permission to highlight his solid reflections and ideas:
Excellent reflection/idea Nikos — that would represent some serious personalized, customized learning!
Nikos’ innovative reflections also made me think about his ideas in light of their interaction or impact with web-based learner profiles, credentialing, badging, and lifelong learning. What’s especially noteworthy here is that the innovations (that impact learning) continue to occur mainly in the online and blended learning spaces.
How might the ramifications of these innovations impact institutions who are pretty much doing face-to-face only (in terms of their course delivery mechanisms and pedagogies)?
…what do the futures look like for those colleges and universities that operate only in the face-to-face space and who are not innovating enough?
Here’s an idea that came to my mind the other day as I was walking by a person who was trying to put some books back onto the shelves within our library.
Perhaps this idea is not very timely…as many collections of books will likely continue to be digitized and made available electronically. But preservation is still a goal for many libraries out there.
IoT and the Campus of Things — from er.educause.edu by Jason O. Hallstrom
Today, the IoT sits at the peak of Gartner’s Hype Cycle. It’s probably not surprising that industry is abuzz with the promise of streaming sensor data. The oft quoted “50 billion connected devices by 2020!” has become a rallying cry for technology analysts, chip vendors, network providers, and other proponents of a deeply connected, communicating world. What is surprising is that academia has been relatively slow to join the parade, particularly when the potential impacts are so exciting. Like most organizations that manage significant facilities, universities stand to benefit by adopting the IoT as part of their management strategy. The IoT also affords new opportunities to improve the customer experience. For universities, this means the ability to provide new student services and improve on those already offered. Perhaps most surprisingly, the IoT represents an opportunity to better engage a diverse student base in computer science and engineering, and to amplify these programs through meaningful interdisciplinary collaboration.
The potential benefits of the IoT to the academic community extend beyond facilities management to improving our students’ experience. The lowest hanging fruit can be harvested by adapting some of the smart city applications that have emerged. What student hasn’t shown up late to class after circling the parking lot looking for a space? Ask any student at a major university if it would improve their campus experience to be able to check on their smart phones which parking spots were available. The answer will be a resounding “yes!” and there’s nothing futuristic about it. IoT parking management systems are commercially available through a number of vendors. This same type of technology can be adapted to enable students to find open meeting rooms, computer facilities, or café seating. What might be really exciting for students living in campus dormitories: A guarantee that they’ll never walk down three flights of stairs balancing two loads of dirty laundry to find that none of the washing machines are available. On many campuses, the washing machines are already network-connected to support electronic payment; availability reporting is a straightforward extension.
2016 Innovators Awards | A Location-Aware App for Exploring the Library — from campustechnology.com by Meg Lloyd
To help users access rich information resources on campus, the University of Oklahoma Libraries created a mobile app with location-based navigation and “hyperlocal” content.
Category: Education Futurists
Institution: University of Oklahoma
Project: OU Libraries NavApp
Project lead: Matt Cook, emerging technologies librarian
I have attended the Next Generation Learning Spaces Conference for the past two years. Both conferences were very solid and they made a significant impact on our campus, as they provided the knowledge, research, data, ideas, contacts, and the catalyst for us to move forward with building a Sandbox Classroom on campus. This new, collaborative space allows us to experiment with different pedagogies as well as technologies. As such, we’ve been able to experiment much more with active learning-based methods of teaching and learning. We’re still in Phase I of this new space, and we’re learning new things all of the time.
For the upcoming conference in February, I will be moderating a New Directions in Learning panel on the use of augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR). Time permitting, I hope that we can also address other promising, emerging technologies that are heading our way such as chatbots, personal assistants, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, tvOS, blockchain and more.
The goal of this quickly-moving, engaging session will be to provide a smorgasbord of ideas to generate creative, innovative, and big thinking. We need to think about how these topics, trends, and technologies relate to what our next generation learning environments might look like in the near future — and put these things on our radars if they aren’t already there.
Key takeaways for the panel discussion:
I’m looking forward to catching up with friends, meeting new people, and to the solid learning that I know will happen at this conference. I encourage you to check out the conference and register soon to take advantage of the early bird discounts.
IBM Foundation collaborates with AFT and education leaders to use Watson to help teachers — from finance.yahoo.com
ARMONK, N.Y., Sept. 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Teachers will have access to a new, first-of-its-kind, free tool using IBM’s innovative Watson cognitive technology that has been trained by teachers and designed to strengthen teachers’ instruction and improve student achievement, the IBM Foundation and the American Federation of Teachers announced today.
Hundreds of elementary school teachers across the United States are piloting Teacher Advisor with Watson – an innovative tool by the IBM Foundation that provides teachers with a complete, personalized online resource. Teacher Advisor enables teachers to deepen their knowledge of key math concepts, access high-quality vetted math lessons and acclaimed teaching strategies and gives teachers the unique ability to tailor those lessons to meet their individual classroom needs.
Litow said there are plans to make Teacher Advisor available to all elementary school teachers across the U.S. before the end of the year.
In this first phase, Teacher Advisor offers hundreds of high-quality vetted lesson plans, instructional resources, and teaching techniques, which are customized to meet the needs of individual teachers and the particular needs of their students.
Educators can also access high-quality videos on teaching techniques to master key skills and bring a lesson or teaching strategy to life into their classroom.
Today’s announcement involved personalization and giving customized directions, and it caused my mind to go in a slightly different direction. (IBM, Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and others like Smart Sparrow are likely also thinking about this type of direction as well. Perhaps they’re already there…I’m not sure.)
But given the advancements in machine learning/cognitive computing (where example applications include optical character recognition (OCR) and computer vision), how much longer will it be before software is able to remotely or locally “see” what a third grader wrote down for a given math problem (via character and symbol recognition) and “see” what the student’s answer was while checking over the student’s work…if the answer was incorrect, the algorithms will likely know where the student went wrong. The software will be able to ascertain what the student did wrong and then show them how the problem should be solved (either via hints or by showing the entire problem to the student — per the teacher’s instructions/admin settings). Perhaps, via natural language processing, this process could be verbalized as well.
Further questions/thoughts/reflections then came to my mind:
Regarding the new Mirror product from Estimote — i.e., the world’s 1st video-enabled beacon — what might the applications look like for active learning classrooms (ALCs)?
That is, could students pre-load their content, then come into an active learning classroom and, upon request, launch an app which would then present their content to the nearest display?
Launching Estimote Mirror – the world’s first video-enabled beacon — from blog.estimote.com
Today we want to move contextual computing to a completely new level. We are happy to announce our newest product: Estimote Mirror. It’s the world’s first video-enabled beacon. Estimote Mirror can not only communicate with nearby phones and their corresponding apps, but also take content from these apps and display it on any digital screen around you.
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