Pier Luigi Capucci -- The Internet of Things


We were asked to consider the Internet of Things (IoT) from the user’s viewpoint. Well, my viewpoint is exactly this, since I’m neither a company director nor a software coder or a hardware creator. From an user’s viewpoint I think we are undergoing a big transformation. The Internet of Things comes out from an evolution process which involves calculation power, connections, networking, personal technologies, and that can be resumed in four phases.


Apple University will train executives to think like Steve Jobs — from good.is by Liz Dwyer


If you want to honor Steve Jobs’ life by following in his entrepreneurial footsteps, forget heading to business school. The Los Angeles Times reports that an Apple team has been working on a top-secret project to create an executive training program called Apple University. The goal? To train people to think like Steve Jobs.

Apple refused to comment on the existence of Apple University, but the Times says that in 2008, Jobs “personally recruited” Joel Podolny, the dean of Yale Business School, to “help Apple internalize the thoughts of its visionary founder to prepare for the day when he’s not around anymore.” Apple analyst Tim Bajarin told the Times that, “it became pretty clear that Apple needed a set of educational materials so that Apple employees could learn to think and make decisions as if they were Steve Jobs.” Though the curriculum is still under wraps, Jobs himself oversaw the creation of the “university-caliber courses.” (emphasis DSC)

 Also see:


Steve Jobs’ virtual DNA to be fostered in Apple University:  To survive its late founder, Apple and Steve Jobs planned a training program in which company executives will be taught to think like him, in “a forum to impart that DNA to future generations.” Key to this effort is Joel Podolny, former Yale Business School dean.
Photo: Steve Jobs helped plan Apple University — an executive training program to help Apple carry on without him. Credit: Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times

Steve Jobs helped plan Apple University — an executive training program to help
Apple carry on without him. (Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times / October 6, 2011)

From DSC:
If Apple were to choose to disrupt higher education, several other pieces of the puzzle have already been built and/or continue to be enhanced:

  • Siri — a serious start towards the use of intelligent agents / intelligent tutoring
  • An infrastructure to support 24x7x365 access and synchronization of content/assignments/files to a student’s various devices — via iCloud (available today via iTunes 10.5)
  • iTunes U already has millions of downloads and contains content from some of the world’s top universities
  • The internal expertise and teams to create incredibly-rich, interactive, multimedia-based, personalized, customized educational content
  • Students — like employees in the workplace — are looking for information/training/learning on demand — when they need it and on whatever device they need it
  • Apple — or other 3rd parties — could assist publishers in creating cloud-based apps (formerly called textbooks) to download to students’/professors’ devices as well as to the Chalkboards of the Future
  • The iPad continues to be implemented in a variety of education settings, allowing for some seriously interactive, mobile-based learning





At the least, I might be losing a bit more sleep if I were heading up an MBA program or a business school…


5 ideas for responding to what kids want the nation to know about educationfrom The Innovative Educator by Lisa Nielsen


In the session the focus was clear. Educators and the former principal (YAY for administrators) who attended wanted to know how we can hear the children and show them they matter, we love them, and we want to honor their unique passions, talents, interests, and abilities.  We discussed a lot of great ideas.  Here are five ways we discussed addressing what students want from education:

  1. Rather than bubbletests, measure student progress with personal success plans.
  2. Rather than report cards and transcripts allow students to showcase their learning with an authentic ePortfolio.
  3. Rather than work that only has the teacher as the audience, empower students to do real work that matters to them and has a real audience.
  4. Rather than telling students how to meet learning goals, empower them to drive their own learning as participant Deven Black explained he does (visit this link to see how).
  5. Have conversations with students about what their talents are.  You can use the videos in this article that feature students sharing stories about their talents.

Sydney Centre for Innovation in Learning (SCIL) and Northern Beaches Christian School (NBCS)




From SCIL’s website:

Sydney Centre for Innovation in Learning actively promotes excellence in education by providing new learning opportunities for students and future-focused Professional Development for teachers. Established as the research and innovation unit of Northern Beaches Christian School (Sydney, Australia), SCIL runs a range of programs and research projects that seek to transform educational thinking and practice both at NBCS and in the wider educational community.





Also see:

From DSC:
Consumers’ expectations from entertainment may likely spill over into education

  • Why the future of TV is all about personalization — from stunmedia.com 
    Fueled by the explosive development of smartphones and tablets, video clip viewing routines have [been] forever modified. It’s no surprise that buyers, who have been speedy to embrace video clip providers like HBO GO, Netflix and Hulu, are now expecting a a lot more personalized, interactive and seamless viewing experience across their traditional TV, laptops, gaming consoles, and connected TVs, as well as on smartphones and tablets (emphasis DSC). Here, we’ll discuss the present state of personalised cell video and what customers can anticipate in the future.

From DSC:
In the near future, if I can see what I want on whatever device I want — and it’s personalized/customized for me — won’t that affect my expectations for other types of content that I want to review — such as educational content? 

Yes…I think it will. Whatever discipline I want, on whatever device I want, whenever I want it — available 24x7x365 with online tutoring available (which may or may not be from the same organization that posted the original content).



Universal Design for Learning (UDL) at a glance -- video

My thanks to Mrs. Krista Spahr, Calvin College, for this resource and the quote below:

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is meant to minimize barriers and to maximize learning.


Reflections from DSC:
Though I still have much to learn about Universal Design for Learning (UDL), my initial thought is that I really like this approach, as it moves us away from the one-size-fits-all approach and towards a teaching and learning environment that offers more choice, more selection, and more opportunities for customization and personalization. Plus, as companies such as Apple and Microsoft have seen, functionality that started out trying to address accessibility-related needs ended up helping everyone!

Along these lines, I created this graphic years ago — with the idea that students would have a choice on which media they might prefer to use to absorb the information:


Again, the idea being that we could provide the same content in 3-5 different ways and let the students select what works best for them. Plus, in the example above, we could even see how other students are describing/making meaning of something.

But it goes further than this as I’m understanding UDL. For example, the methods for achieving a learning outcome can be greatly varied, as the assignments for a particular outcome might be reaching via watching a video clip, or reading a book, or doing a project, or writing a story, or creating music, or ___(fill in the blank) ____.

Also see:



Guidelines for UDL

Closing the loop in education technology — from The Journal by David Nagel


K-12 education isn’t using technology effectively and isn’t investing nearly enough in IT infrastructure to enable next-generation learning. That’s the conclusion of a new report, “Unleashing the Potential of Technology in Education,” which called for a greater financial commitment to education technology and the adoption of a holistic, “closed loop” approach to its implementation.

See also:

Unleashing the Power of Technology in Education - Report from the BCG in August 2011

 From DSC:

We may continue to be disappointed in our overall results — even if we do bump up our ed tech infrastructure/investments — if we continue to use the same models/ways of doing things. That is, I wish we would move more towards a team-based approach and stop trying to load up our teachers’ and professors’ plates with tasks that they probably don’t have the time, interest, or training to do.  Graphically speaking:





So…use teams to create and deliver the content — and allow for online tutoring from a team of specialists in each discipline. Like the healthcare-related billboard I kept driving by the other day said: “A team of specialists at every step.


The future of TV is social and the revolution is coming ! | SOCIAL MEDIA NEWS | Digital Ministry — from Mark Mayhew

Ynon Kreiz, CEO of the Endemol group the largest independent production company in the world responsible for Big brother said Social TV is going to be huge.

“The ability to create content that will enable people to interface with each other, to connect, to recommend, to share and experience over television, is going to change the landscape of the industry.”


What is social TV?

Simply put, it’s about merging your social media networks to the TV.  It’s making TV social–again. It’s about taking the water cooler effect and making this virtual, it’s about the empowered consumer viewing content when and where they want, deciding who they want to share it with and being able to do this all in real time.In essence it is a term that describes technology that supports communication and social interaction in either the context of watching television, or related to TV content.Viewers are now using social media to connect with the TV with content that matters to them. Then, as the MIT study shows, they are engaging in massive real-time conversations around those shows and learning to be a part of that conversation and it is a participatory culture as well as a personalised one.TV always been social and on the face of it TV and social media seem like a natural fit but if the TV industry is going to make the most of the opportunities it is going to have change quickly and learn the lessons of the music industry.

It is time to rethink TV. It is time to imagine what it could be and redefine it for the participatory culture of tomorrow.


From DSC:

In the graphic below…what thoughts might arise if, instead of entertainment-oriented items, we thought more along the lines of providing materials relating to education, training,  professional development?

The future of TV is social and the revolution is coming!


From DSC:
Speed, personalization, interactivity driving advancements in media today — I would submit that these trends are true for education as well.



Whether you’re talking about the future of television, news, or advertising, it’s all about speed, personalization, and interactivity. These three things are the driving considerations behind the advancement of all media today.

From DSC:
First, a word of caution. Due to the content of some of the stations available herein, I would recommend that only those people who are 18 or older visit this site.




[Concept] The new “textbook”: A multi-layered approach — from Daniel S. Christian
I’ve been thinking recently about new approaches to relaying — and engaging with — content in a “textbook”.

For a physical textbook

When opening up a physical textbook to a particular page, QR-like codes would be printed on the physical pages of the textbook.  With the advent of augmented reality, such a mechanism would open up some new possibilities to interact with content for that page. For example, some overall characteristics about this new, layered approach:

  • Augmented reality could reveal multiple layers of information:
    • From the author/subject matter expert as well as the publisher’s instructional design team
      • Main points highlighted
      • Pointers that may help with metacognition, such as potential mnemonics that might be helpful in moving something into long-term memory
      • Studying strategies
    • A layer that the professor or teacher could edit
      • Main points highlighted
      • Pointers that may help with metacognition, such as potential mnemonics that might be helpful in moving something into long-term memory
      • Studying strategies
    • A layer for the students to comment on/annotate that page
    • A layer for other students’ comments



For an electronic-based textbook

  • The interface would allow for such layers to be visible or not — much like Google’s Body Browser application
  • For example, in this graphic, comments from the SME and/or ID are highlighted on top of the normal text:





Advantages of this concept/model:

  • Ties physical into virtual world
  • We could economically update information (i.e. opens up streams of content)
  • Integrates social learning
  • Allows SMEs, IDs, faculty members to further comment/add to content as new information becomes available
  • Instructors could highlight the key points they want to stress
  • Many of the layers could offer items that might help with students’ meta-cognitive processes (i.e. to help them learn the content and move the content into long-term memory)
  • One could envision the textbook being converted into something more akin to an app in an online-based store — with notifications of updates that could be constantly pushed out


Addendum (5/26):


MyTVBuddy kicks off as the first pan-European Social TV app on iPad — from appmarket.tv (emphasis DSC)


Today E-ZONE unveiled its iPad app MyTVBuddy claiming it takes Social TV to the next level of exploration, interaction, engagement and participation by letting users check in to TV programs, watch videos, post messages on Facebook, share Twitter messages, participate in conversations  and see where other users are located. MyTVBuddy kicks off with a special launch edition of Eurovision 2011.

MyTVBuddy comes with a solution for turning TV viewing into a social experience by using mobile devices such as the iPad. According to a recent study from Yahoo, nearly 90 percent of people watching television are using a mobile device at the same time. Be it Twitter, Facebook, email or instant messaging, they are doing more than just watching.


From DSC:
TV and entertainment coming up to bat — with learning-related applications on deck!   🙂


Also see:



Addendum on 5/11/11:

Online learning begins to explode into mainstream in blended schools — from Disupting Class posted by Michael Horn

This week, Innosight Institute, where I am the executive director of the education practice, released a landmark report, titled The rise of K-12 blended learning: Profiles of Emerging Models, which profiles 40 different operators leading the rise of K-12 blended learning.

Across America a skyrocketing number of K-12 students are getting their education in blended-learning environments. Over 4 million K-12 students took at least one online course in 2010, according to Ambient Insight, and this space is growing now by a five-year compound annual growth rate of 43 percent—much faster than the growth of charter schooling or other K-12 education reforms, for example. And the majority of this growth is occurring in different types of “blended learning.”

Also see:


The Rise of K-12 Blended Learning -- May 2011


Mike Matas: A next-generation digital book (filmed March 2011)

TED: Mike Matas -- Next Generation Digital Book - filmed March 2011


About this talk
Software developer Mike Matas demos the first full-length interactive book for the iPad — with clever, swipeable video and graphics and some very cool data visualizations to play with. The book is “Our Choice,” Al Gore’s sequel to “An Inconvenient Truth.”

About Mike Matas
While at Apple, Mike Matas helped write the user interface for the iPhone and iPad. Now with Push Pop Press, he’s helping to rewrite the electronic book.


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