Microsoft unveils Xbox One: the ultimate all-in-one home entertainment system — from microsoft.com

Excerpt:

REDMOND, Wash. — May 21, 2013 — A new vision for the future comes to life today as Microsoft Corp. unveils Xbox One , the all-in-one gaming and entertainment system created for today and the next generation. At Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Wash., the company showcased how Xbox One puts you at the center of all your games, TV, movies, music, sports and Skype.

“Xbox One is designed to deliver a whole new generation of blockbuster games, television and entertainment in a powerful, all-in-one device,” said Don Mattrick, president, Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “Our unique, modern architecture brings simplicity to the living room and, for the first time ever, the ability to instantly switch across your games and entertainment.”

With Xbox One, games push the boundaries of realism, and TV obeys your commands. Say “Xbox On” to launch your personalized Xbox One Home screen, discover what is popular on TV or see friends’ latest gaming achievements all using the most natural interface — your voice. The more you interact with Xbox One, the more it gets to know you and learns what you like.

 

From DSC:
Here’s the item I find particularly interesting (emphasis DSC):

  • Skype for Xbox One.
    Specially designed for Xbox One, talk with friends on your TV in stunning HD, or for the first time ever, hold group Skype calls on your TV.

 

Mezzanine-from-Oblong-May2013

 

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Mezzanine2-from-Oblong-May2013

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From the Oblong.com website:

Mezzanine™ is a collaborative conference room solution that introduces multi-user, multi-screen, multi-device collaboration. This is next-generation communication: share any content from any device with anyone, anywhere.

Mezzanine transforms creative teamwork, executive meetings, and sales presentations into real-time, collaborative work sessions. Mezzanine expands on existing telepresence technology by providing what we call InfoPresence™—the incorporation of multiple users, multiple devices, and multiple streams of information in the collaboration environment. The future of conference room collaboration is here.

A Mezzanine workspace lets any person on a network bring their own device and share content and applications with any colleague, anywhere in the world, interactively. Mezzanine is a collaborative conference room solution combining presentation design and delivery, application sharing, whiteboard capture, and video conferencing, all within a framework of multi-participant control.

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Also see:

  • Oblong Technovates with LA High School
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  • Oblong at OME
    Oblong Industries recently participated at OME, a summit hosted by UC San Francisco.  The two-day summit focused on charting the future of precision medicine—an emerging field combining big data with clinical research and patient care to deliver insights and advances in treatment that is more targeted and enables improved patient outcomes.

 

Part 3: Transmedia is a mindset, not a science — from by Matt Doherty — thanks to the Scoop from siobhan-o-flynn  at Tracking Transmedia
The end of TV as we know it & the rise of transmedia

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Also see:

The end of TV as we know it & the birth of transmedia — slideshare by Ogilvy & Mather

Doug Scott, President, OgilvyEntertainment and Matt Doherty, Transmedia Architect, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide presented The End of TV as We Know It & The Birth of Transmedia at the 21st Century Storytelling Conference: Content, Context and Conversations sponsored by Microsoft, Ogilvy & BrainJuicer on July 31, 2012 in Chicago.

Throughout history, we have told stories. Stories are what connect us across geographies, cultures and experiences; stories demonstrate that we share the same hope, dreams, fears, challenges and desires. Today’s complex, digtally connected consumer universe makes brand storytelling more challenging, but also creates opportunities for brands to tell their stories in new ways.

Doug Scott and Matt Doherty discussed how the idea of TV might be a thing of the past, but the stories that drive our content will always be our constant. Our variable? Telling. Telling has evolved due to the primary role of digital in our lives and disruptive innovation which has given us the ability to craft transmedia experiences. Transmedia has brought about a new set of creative tools and narratives that are rooted in content, formed by context and crossed by all things culture. Are you a story? Or are you a teller?

 

DSC’s comments on “Four Reasons Why Kids Should Learn Programming” — from tynker.com by Jolie O’Dell

.I like this blog posting and others have discussed this topic before…but I respectively disagree with one of the assertions: Programming is not easy — at least it wasn’t for me.  I think that’s true for others, as why else is it so hard to find good programmers and why are they paid so well?  Most people I know do not think like programmers do — it’s a different way of thinking. I’ve tried a couple different languages (albeit at a beginning level!), and while I greatly appreciate what programmers do, I am the first to tell you that I am not a programmer.   At least within web design and development types of tasks/careers, people tend to either gravitate towards the front end OR the back end — though there are exceptions to this rule of thumb who can do both types of tasks well.

So while I agree that students should learn some type of coding, we need more tools/services like this that aim to make programming fun, enjoyable, understandable, and relevant.

 

Tynker-April2013

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About
Tynker is a new computing platform designed specifically to teach children computational learning and programming skills in a fun and imaginative way. Tynker is inspired by Scratch from MIT. It is a completely browser-based implementation written using Open Web standards such as Javascript, HTML5, CSS3 and does not use Flash.
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Also see:

Dual screen: The evolution of the second screen — from blog.brightcove.com by Albert Lai

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Educational Gamification
In a previous post, we asked readers to suggest their ideas for dual screen applications. One of the more intriguing responses was the suggestion to create companion educational games to accompany associated video content.

In a dual screen experience, as video content is displayed on the television, the application can engage the viewer with relevant and education activities, from content reinforcement to spelling to trivia to memory “games.” One can imagine an interactive amalgamation of Dora the Explorer, Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?, and Schoolhouse Rock!

 

 

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The Living [Class] Room -- by Daniel Christian -- July 2012 -- a second device used in conjunction with a Smart/Connected TV

 

 

Addendum on 4/8/13:

Games grow up: Colleges recognize the power of gamification — from edtechmagazine.com by Jacquelyn Bengfort
Universities enliven education through the power of play.

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Game over – try again – level up (#GBL) — from classroom-aid.com
Creating effective classroom experiences through game-based mechanics and community, it works for children as well as adults.

How I turned my classroom into a ‘living video game’—and saw achievement soar
Teacher : Joli Barker
Students : second graders
School : Earl H. Slaughter Elementary School in McKinney, Texas

Understanding Quest-Based Learning from Boise State University
QBL-Whitepaper_Haskell-final (pdf file)
Teacher : Chris Haskell, ED.D.
Students : Pre-­?service teachers
School : Boise State University

 

 

Tagged with:  

Defiance-FirstVideoGameTVShow-Feb2013

 

Excerpt:

It’s not unusual for a science fiction television show to spin off a video game. What is unusual is linking the show and the game together on an ongoing basis, with plot elements and characters from each crossing over to the other. In April, gaming company Trion Worlds and the Syfy cable television channel will unveil Defiance, the first such crossover massively multiplayer online game (MMO) and TV show.

 

From DSC:

Transmedia.

Multimedia.

Interactivity.

Participation.

Gamification.

Sounds like there must be something here for the next gen of learners — and learning from the living room.

 

 

Also see:

From DSC:

In real estate, one hear’s the mantra:
Location. Location. Location.

In higher education, I have it that we’ll be hearing this for a while:
Experimentation. Experimentation. Experimentation.

Consider the following reflections on Steve’ Kolowich’s solid article, The new intelligence (from InsideHigherEd.com)

Excerpt:

And for the largest public university in the country, it is hardly fiction. Arizona State University has become ground zero for data-driven teaching in higher education. The university has rolled out an ambitious effort to turn its classrooms into laboratories for technology-abetted “adaptive learning” — a method that purports to give instructors real-time intelligence on how well each of their students is getting each concept.
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From DSC:
Besides being used in blended learning environments…some predictions:

  • These technologies will become integrated into what MOOCs eventually morph into and provide a significant piece of the assessment/guidance puzzle
  • Such tools will be a part of one’s future learning ecosystem
  • Such tools will be part of interactive, massively open online educationally-related games
  • Such tools will be integrated into personalized learning agents — spiders/recommendation engines that scan the web for relevant items that one needs to complete one’s cognitive gaps in a subject/topic
  • They will be accessible from your living room as well as from your mobile devices
  • They will integrate into web-based learner profiles

It’s the sort of thing I was trying to get at with this graphic from 3 years ago:
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Like a mechanic...

 

Please don’t misunderstand me, the human mind is far beyond the complexity of an engine. But I still think that there will be more tools & technologies developed that will help the teachers/professors in their efforts to guide students into the knowledge of a discipline.

I beseech the corporate world to get involved more here — and not with the end goal of earning profits — but rather, with the aim of making the world a better place and giving a huge gift to the generations yet born. 

I urge the corporate world to reach into their deep pockets (1.X trillion in cash at this point in time) and team up with our youth/teachers/professors/instructional designers/programmers/etc. to develop sophisticated, educationally-related, engaging games that are relevant to the world that our youth will be growing up in; and/or create interactive simulations that provide more choice/more control to the learners. 

I urge more of the corporate world to join Knewton and Pearson and allocate some significant resources to help develop the next gen learning tools.  I’ll bet that we’ll be amazed at what can be produced! Your daughters, sons, granddaughters, and grandsons will really appreciate the work that you did for them!!!

 

 

Grad student turns heads in Norwegian schools with technology-charged pedagogy — from beditionmagazine.com by DC Brandon; with thanks to brian k (@iEducator) for posting this on Twitter

Excerpt:

Salerno says using video games in the classroom is a sure-fire way to get students excited about learning. She used the example of a social studies unit that students are taught in Norwegian schools. In one particular unit, they usually read a textbook chapter about famous explorers. In the game-based version of the unit, textbooks may be used but are not relied upon.

So how does she incorporate video games into a social studies lesson?

She uses a Microsoft product called Kodu, although she says there are many other software products that could be used, like Minecraft and Little Big Planet.

She breaks the unit down like this (from the perspective of a student):

  1. Choose an explorer to profile
  2. Research the explorer’s history online and in textbooks
  3. Create game map (games require planning to be successfully built)
  4. Create game details and missions, mark out important plot points
  5. Build world
  6. Build in characters and plot in the form of missions
  7. Demo game to classmates on “gameday”

 

Also see:

From DSC:
A solid infographic is out at Knewton.com — of which I want to highlight 2 portions of it (below).

This first excerpt is not to dog teachers but rather it’s meant to support them and to say that we need to change a losing game (at least a part of the solution in ed reform is to get out of the business of focusing so much on standardized tests and another part of the solution resides in the second graphic below):

 

EducationCrisis-Jan2013

 

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EducationCrisis2-Jan2013

 

 

Also relevant see:

From DSC:
In this series of periodic postings re: experimentation (see here and here), this week’s Consumers Electronics Show prompts me to think about different types of experiments, prompting such questions as:
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  • When will we see more educationally-related second screen apps?
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  • How might this type of setup dovetail with MOOCs provided by institutions of higher education? With MOOCs offered by the corporate world?
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  • What sorts of technologies will weave their way into what could be offered here?
    (The following possibilities come to my mind: Artificial Intelligence (AI), learning agents, recommendation engines, course or topic playlists, web-based learner profiles, data mining/analytics, videoconferencing, educational gaming, virtual tutoring, BYOD, and/or cloud-based computing. Other…?)
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  • Will Internet-enabled marketplaces and exchanges — between learners and teachers — become commonplace?
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  • Will technologies involved with endeavors like IBM’s Watson or with Knewton be deployed in this kind of convergent environment? If so, what sorts of doors/job opportunities/new skillsets would that open up or require?
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The Living [Class] Room -- by Daniel Christian -- July 2012 -- a second device used in conjunction with a Smart/Connected TV

 

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Some relevant items on this include:

Flingo reveals Samba, a first of its kind dual interactive TV and second screen platform — from pandodaily.com byasdf

Excerpt:

This week at CES in Las Vegas (the Consumer Electronics Show), San Francisco-based Flingo will release the latest version of its platform, dubbed Samba, aimed at changing this. Samba will make four-year-old Flingo one of the first to offer a combined Interactive TV and Second Screen experience.

“We saw a surge of Smart TV and tablet adoption in 2012, but realized that a seamless TV experience across all screens was missing,” says Flingo co-founder and CEO Ashwin Navin, formerly of BitTorrent. “Samba will blur the lines between linear television and the Web.”

Flingo is unique in that it uses video, not audio to identify what content is being viewed…

Samba offers viewers the ability to actively engage with programming in real-time through their primary screen. This can take the form of polls, social conversations, recommendations, or consumption of related media. In the case of Second Screens, aka internet-connected laptops, tablets, and smartphones used simultaneously while watching TV, the company can offer an even wider array of complementary content and engagement, such as aggregated social feeds relating to live programming or an ability to watch past episodes of a live show. This can all be delivered across multiple screens, in concert.

 

Also see:

Smart TV Alliance adds Panasonic and IBM to its fold, lays bare new SDK features -- Sean Buckley

 

Also see:

 

samsung smart tv ces 2013

 

Kevin Smith/Business Insider

 

More tangentially, but still relevant:

  • McGraw-Hill to debut adaptive e-book for students — from blogs.wsj.com by Shalini Ramachandran
    Excerpt:

    The SmartBook…works like this: All readers essentially see the same textbook as they read for the first five minutes. But as a reader answers review questions placed throughout the chapter, different passages become highlighted to point the reader to where he or she should focus attention.

 

From DSC:
I understand that Mr. George Lucas is going to express his generosity in donating the $4.05 billion from the sale of Lucasfilm to education.

Here’s a question/idea that I’d like to put forth to Mr. Lucas (or to the United States Department of Education, or to another interested/committed party):

Would you consider using the $4+ billion gift to build an “Online Learning Dream Team?”

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Daniel Christian -- The Online Learning Dream Team - as of November 2012

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 Original image credit (before purchased/edited by DSC)
yobro10 / 123RF Stock Photo

 

 

From DSC:
What do you think? What other “players” — technologies, vendors, skillsets, etc. — should be on this team?

  • Perhaps videography?
  • Online tutoring?
  • Student academic services?
  • Animation?
  • Digital photography?

 

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