From DSC:

  • What if you want to allow some remote students to come on into your face-to-face classroom?
  • What if you want to allow those remote students to be seen and communicated with at eye level?
  • What if you want Remote Student A to join Group 1, and Remote Student B to join Group 2?

Well…how about using one of these devices  in order to do so!


New video collaboration robot: TelePresence gets moving — from by Dave Evans


That is why Cisco’s new joint effort with iRobot—demonstrated publicly this week for the first time—is so exciting: We’ve created a mobile Cisco TelePresence unit that brings collaboration to you—or, conversely, brings you to wherever you need to collaborate. Called iRobot Ava 500, this high-definition video collaboration robot combines Cisco TelePresence with iRobot’s mobility and self-navigation capabilities, enabling freedom of movement and spontaneous interactions with people thousands of miles away.



iRobot Ava™ 500 Video Collaboration Robot — published on Jun 10, 2013
iRobot and Cisco have teamed to bring the Ava 500 video collaboration robot to market. The robot blends iRobot’s autonomous navigation with Cisco’s TelePresence to enable people working off-site to participate in meetings and presentations where movement and location spontaneity are important. The new robot is also designed to enable mobile visual access to manufacturing facilities, laboratories, customer experience centers and other remote facilities.



Double Robotics Double



MantaroBot™ TeleMe




From Attack of the Telepresence Robots! — from BYTE  by Rick Lehrbaum





MantaroBot “TeleMe” VGo Communications “VGo” Anybots “QB” Suitable Technologies “Beam”




RP-7i Remote Presence Robot


Also see:


NASA hosts its first Google+ Hangout connecting with space station— from


WASHINGTON — NASA will host its first Google+ Hangout live with the International Space Station from 11 a.m. to noon EST, Friday, Feb. 22. This event will connect NASA’s social media followers with astronauts on the ground and living and working aboard the laboratory orbiting 240 miles above Earth.

From DSC:
Talk about some serious communications!

The words “mini MOOC” come to my mind…


Apple TV and the transformation of web apps into tablet and TV dual screen apps — from by Jeremy Allaire




Importantly, designers and developers need to shed the concept that “TVs” are for rendering video, and instead think about “TVs” as large monitors on which they can render applications, content and interactivity that is supported by a touch-based tablet application.

The key concept here is that this pervasive adoption of TV monitors is the tip of the spear in creating a social computing surface in the real world.

Specifically, Apple has provided the backbone for dual screen apps, enabling:

  • Any iOS device (and OSX Mountain Lion-enabled PCs) to broadcast its screen onto a TV. Think of this as essentially a wireless HDMI output to a TV. If you haven’t played with AirPlay mirroring features in iOS and Apple TV, give it a spin, it’s a really exciting development.
  • A set of APIs and an event model for enabling applications to become “dual screen aware” (e.g. to know when a device has a TV screen it can connect to, and to handle rendering information, data and content onto both the touch screen and the TV screen).

[Jeremy listed several applications for these concepts:  Buying a house, buying a car, doctor’s office, kids edutainment, the classroom, retail electronics store, consuming news, consuming video, sales reporting, board games.]


Also see:

From DSC:
Graphically speaking — and approaching this from an educational/learning ecosystems standpoint — I call this, “Learning from the Living [Class] Room.


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




Learning from the living room -- a component of our future learning ecosystems -- by Daniel S. Christian, June 2012



Related item:

50 interesting ways to use Skype in your classroom — from by Jeff Dunn


I’m a so-so fan of Skype. I’ve used it on an infrequent basis and have had more than a few dropped calls. Audio and video alike. However, it’s a cheap way to make long distance calls and seems to work better over wi-fi and the video quality is improving on a regular basis. So therefore it’s probably a great tool for the classroom. But how can you use Skype to do more than just make calls? Well, there’s a pantload of interesting ways! Check out these fun ideas:


From DSC:
And for “Skype on steroids”, consider using Blackboard Collaborate:



Blackboard Collaborate - Skype on Steroids



From DSC:
I created this graphic, so I ask for
mercy from you lawyers  at
Microsoft and/or at Blackboard! 🙂



Also see:


Beyond Siri - A report regarding the future of Virtual Assistants -- from VisionMobile -- June 2012



  • Virtual assistants: four generations in 20 years
  • The evolving VA technology landscape
  • The VA Competitive landscape
  • VA business models: Revenue share rather than paid app downloads
  • Leaders and challengers in the VA value chain
  • Beyond Siri: What’s in store in the VA market

Behind this report

  • Lead researcher: Marlène Sellebråten
  • Project lead: Michael Vakulenko
  • Marketing lead: Matos Kapetanakis
  • Editorial: Andreas Constantinou


Daniel S. Christian - Think Virtual -- April 2012


From DSC:

  • We not only need to think about things that are physical — new buildings, classroom renovations, learning spaces, books, etc. — but we also need to think in terms of the virtual — creation of high-end, interactive, multimedia-based content; electronic communications; web-based collaboration; cloud-based storage/content systems, etc.
  • Towards that end, I’d like to recommend the above graphic to the development offices at each university and college out there.

From DSC:
Yesterday, I introduced a vision that integrates a variety of trends and emerging technologies that I’ve been keeping an eye on.


Click this thumbnail image to access the larger image / vision

Today, I want to focus on what this means for jobs, employment, career development — especially as it relates to higher ed and the corporate world.

As the trends are pointing out, there will be teams of specialists — with a variety of skillsets required — and each of these team members will play a different role. Some of these positions are captured in the graphic immediately below:
(many for-profit schools already have that table set)



Within higher ed, the extent to which this affects faculty members depends upon how these teams are formed. If faculty members don’t go along with this, institutions will likely reach out to adjunct faculty members — or contracted firms/help — to fill the gaps. Unless there are some other distinguishing factors, those institutions who don’t move towards a team-based approach will become irrelevant. It will be increasingly difficult for one person to develop the content that can compete with a team of specialists.  Also, organizations of excellence — who have higher initial development costs — will be able to spread these costs out over a global pool of students — resulting in a significantly cheaper alternative.  Organizations who don’t move in this direction may find that the pipelines coming into their institutions continue to get smaller.

There will be new jobs available — and changes to some existing jobs — as well, such as:

  • Virtual tutors
  • Virtual field trip guides (picture a person with some type of mobile device capturing a variety of places, events, talks, etc. in another country).
  • Curators
  • Technical support personnel specializing in building and supporting these platforms
  • Data analytics professionals
  • Artificial intelligence specialists
  • Specialized programmers
  • User interface designers
  • User experience designers
  • …and more

Roles may be altered for professors, teachers, and trainers. But teaching others how to discern quality information will likely continue to be important.

Employers may end up developing their own curriculum/cloud-based apps.  Apprentices, interns and prospective employees will be able to access these materials, with the understanding that they will be assessed at some point.

The web-based learner profiles will demonstrate where someone has been — and where they are currently at.

That’s it for now, but I will be jotting down further thoughts re: this vision from time to time. 








Geo Sim Philly -- where the virtual meets the real
My thanks to Mr. Steven Chevalia for this resource


Intel predicts Smart TV is the device of the future — from’s blog
Chipmaker Intel believes that the Smart TV is the electronic device of the future, in the living room anyway.


The Smart TV is already upon us, in its various forms from various manufacturers. It has arrived with 3D capabilities, web browsing and social networking and applications. Currently Samsung and LG seem to be two of the big players pushing the Smart TV to consumers.

Also see:


Telepresence in the classroom: Enhancing breadth and depth of learning — from Cisco by Kerry Best


All of a sudden, the classrooms lost their walls, and prior geographic and instructional limitations ceased to restrict learning.

  • …[telepresence] can bring in teachers for important subjects in which current instructors may not have specialized expertise
  • …take students on virtual field trips
  • …for teacher education
  • …bring historical figures to life


Christie Serves Up Content With Modular Multi-Touch Interactivity Kit and High Performance Software and Media Server

INFOCOMM/ORLANDO, Fla. – (June 15, 2011) –  Christie, a global visual technology company, today unveiled the newest members of its Christie® MicroTiles™ solutions family, the Christie® i-Kit touch interactivity kit, powered by Baanto™ ShadowSense™, and the Christie® JumpStart software and media server, both on technology preview at the Christie InfoComm booth #2127 through to June 17.


Also see:

Example shown above from Weill Cornell Medical College


From DSC: It would be sharp (and somewhat James Bond-ish) if you could take the concepts within the iTable from Kyle Buckner motorized parts and a customizable design)


Kyle Buckner Designs -- i table


…and combine those concepts with concepts found within a Microsoft Surface type of table: (esp. multi-touch capabilities for a group of people to work collaboratively on)


Microsoft Surface


…and combine those concepts with concepts found within Steelcase’s Media:Scape product (esp. the ability to bring your own device and instantly “connect” it and press a puck-like device to begin displaying it on the screen/table)


Steelcase's MediaScape

media:scape illustration


…kinda gives us a flavor for what may very well be part of the integration and continued convergence of devices…and it may be a device in your living room or study.

Next-Gen Classrooms: Aces of Space — from by Jennifer Demski
Four schools use cutting-edge design principles and technology to create next-gen learning spaces, with a focus on collaboration and student engagement.




media:scape with HD videoconferencing


Video conference project sparks meaningful learning — from by Tanya Roscorla

Also see:

  • A Taste for Telepresence — from The Journal by Dian Schaffhauser
    Although high-end videoconferencing is still new to this Maryland school district, it’s a sensible next step on a well-planned path to location-free communication.


© 2024 | Daniel Christian