AT&T brings more second-screen features, content to U-verse customers on iPhone, iPad & iPod touch, and online — from


DALLAS, July 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The remote control is no longer the main device sitting next to you on the couch. Your iPhone or iPad is quickly becoming an integral part of TV watching, and AT&T* U-verse® TV customers now have access to several new features and content that bring their TV and wireless experiences together, including:

  • An expanded lineup of on demand premium and TV content available through the U-verse App for iPhone and iPod touch and AT&T U-verse App for iPad at no extra charge, including HBO®, Cinemax®, HBO, STARZ, ENCORE, MOVIEPLEX and Music Choice videos.
  • The ability to now link your iPad to your U-verse TV receiver with the AT&T U-verse App to access up to the minute sports companion content and scores from various leagues for today’s games, a review of yesterday’s games, and to see who is playing tomorrow.
  • The ability to now share information about what you are watching with friends on Facebook, and now, on Twitter through the AT&T U-verse App for iPad.
  • The ability to use your iPhone or iPod touch to control your U-verse TV with a full-featured, intuitive U-verse remote control with channel, guide, DVR, interactive app and on-demand controls, now available on the U-verse App for iPhone and iPod touch. The capability is already available today with the AT&T U-verse App for iPad.

From DSC:
Another illustration of convergence as well as another vendor taking one more step towards enabling a “Learning from the Living [Class] Room” piece of our future learning ecosystems.


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” — Part I [Christian]

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



Legal size PDF here



Addendum on 7/3/12 from an article I wrote for (for LifeLong Learning):
Establishing better collaboration between the corporate world and higher education [Christian]

In the near future, perhaps we could have second screen-based activities whereby corporate leaders are giving TED-like presentations or expressing the current issues in their worlds via a program on Smart TVs, and the students are communicating and collaborating about these presentations via tablets or smart phones.  Perhaps there will be electronic means whereby students could submit their ideas and feedback to the presenting companies (and whereby selected ideas could be rewarded in terms of free products or services that the company produces).



Excerpt from website:

Your Classroom Just Got A Little Bigger. OK, A Lot Bigger.
There are millions of people around the globe with a thirst for educational content but have little available to them. You have tremendous educational resources and a desire to reach more people.
The ClevrU platform offers educators the marketplace to reach across the barriers of today’s classroom and out to the rest of the world.  Our service combines the power of a complete online learning environment with a scalable platform designed to handle from 1 to a billion users while adapting to the users language of choice, their available bandwidth, and their type of mobile device or internet access.
We welcome free, open source material as well as fee based learning programs for which we can provide in country e-commerce support.
Excerpt from University? There’s an app for that  — from by Cathy Gulli
A Waterloo start-up provides courses on smartphones
For Tushar Singh, the 32-year-old co-founder of ClevrU and chief technology officer, the potential impact of providing education to those who are too poor or isolated to get one locally is what’s driving the company forward. “Education is a lifeline. It doesn’t just change a person, it also changes a community.”

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


The Future of Education - Learning Powered by Techonology -- Karen Cator -- May 2012


Featured presenters:

  • Karen Cator, Dir. Office of Education Technology, U.S. Department of Education
  • Dr. Barrett Mosbacker, Superintendent, Briarwood Christian School

Excerpts re: trends:

  • Mobility — 24/7 access
  • Social interactions for learning
  • Digital content
  • Big data



Barriers to adoption of online learning systems in U.S. Higher Education - May 1, 2012


Excerpt from the preface:

Digital technology has already changed the way colleges and universities function, but no matter how significant those changes feel today, real transformation is just beginning. Every day, a new program in online learning is announced, and on the horizon is the promise of using new adaptive learning technologies —or what we have come to call Interactive Learning Online—to educate more students than ever before at lower cost and with similar or even better learning outcomes.

This Ithaka S+R report is the first in a series that will provide leaders in higher education insight into what has been learned from online learning efforts to date and new research to help them move forward with the development and deployment of more advanced systems in the future.

Many of the lessons in this report can readily be applied locally; that is, they will help leaders make sound decisions for their own institutions. We have also identified two critical issues that if addressed at a system-level, will lead to better outcomes for all: the need for open, shared data on student learning and performance tracked through interactive online learning systems, and the need for investment in the creation of sustainable and customizable platforms for delivering interactive online learning instruction. We hope this report will help to stimulate discussion and planning among leaders on these important topics.


Also see:

  • Tempering the Rise of the Machines— from by Steve Kolowich
    Excerpt (emphasis DSC):
    The report, called “Barriers to Adoption of Online Learning Systems in U.S. Higher Education,” was co-written by Lawrence S. Bacow and William G. Bowen, the former presidents of Tufts and Princeton Universities, respectively, along with several Ithaka analysts. It was bankrolled by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The report contained little advocacy one way or another; rather, the authors appeared to strive for a dispassionate analysis driven by a general sense that the rise of machine learning is inevitable and universities should be prepared. Their findings were based on interviews with senior administrators at 25 public and private, four-year and two-year colleges, including “deep dive” analyses at five of them.

From DSC:
As Brian Crosby points out in the title of his blog — “Learning is Messy.” 

There is no silver bullet in the world of education that can be used to effectively teach everyone. In fact, if you were to get 100 instructional designers/teachers/professors/instructors/trainers in the same room, you will not be able to find anything close to a strong agreement on what constitutes the best and most effective learning theory as well as the practical implementations of applying that learning theory (even if we were to be talking about the same age range of students). In my Master’s work, I was looking for that silver bullet…but I never found one.

It is very difficult for a professor or a teacher to deliver truly personalized/customized learning to each student in their classroom:

  • How can a teacher consistently know and remember what motivates each particular student?
  • Because so much of learning depends upon prior learning, what “hooks” exist — per student — that he/she can use to hang new information on?
  • Then, what’s the most effective method of delivering the content for each particular student that might shift the content from their working memories to their long-term memories? (And in the process, do so in a way that develops a love for learning that will serve the student well over his lifetime)
  • What’s the best way to assess the learning for each student?
  • Which students cognitive loads are being eaten up due to the nervousness around being assessed?
  • What are the best methods of passing along those learnings onto the students’ future teachers’ for the students’ benefit?

In my estimation, the way we have things setup throughout most K-16 education, this is an impossible task. When there’s typically only 1-2 teachers trying to teach to 20-30 students at a time, how can this type of personalized instruction occur?

However, I believe digital learning and its surrounding tools/ecosystems hold enormous promise for delivering truly customized/personalized learning opportunities.  Such technologies will be able to learn where a student is at, how to motivate them, how fast to push them, and how they best progress through a type of content.  Such tools will provide real-time, learning-related, diagnostic dashboards for professors or teachers to leverage in order to guide and optimize a student’s education.



So I believe that the promise is there for delivering truly customized/personalized learning opportunities available 24x7x365 — even though we aren’t completely there yet.  But think of the power a teacher would have if he or she had IBM’s Watson AI-based analysis on each student at their disposal! A “guide on the side” using such diagnostic tools could be a ***potent*** ally for a student.*

As such, I see innovative approaches continuing to come to fruition that will harness the power of serious games, analytics, web-based learner profiles, and multimedia-based/interactive learning content. Eventually, a piece of this type of personalized education will enter in via the Smart/Connected TVs of our living rooms…but that’s a post I’m building out for another day in the near future.


*Another hope I have here is that such technologies will
enable students to identify and pursue their passions.


Some items that reinforced this notion for me include:


The key link from Bloom (1913-1999) one e-learning paper you must read plus his taxonomy of learning — an excellent item from Donald Clark Plan B (also see Donald’s archives for postings re: 50 top learning theorists)

The 2 Sigma Problem: The Search for Methods of Group Instruction as Effective as One-to-One Tutoring
Benjamin Bloom
University of Chicago | Northwestern University

Most striking were the differences in final achievement measures under the three conditions. Using the standard deviation (sigma) or the control (conventional) class, it was typically found that the average student under tutoring was about two standard deviations above the average of the control class (the average tutored student was above 98% of the students in the control class). The average student under mastery learning was about one standard deviation above the average of the control class(the average mastery learning student was above 84% of the students in the control class).

Two key items from EdNet Insight’s Anne Wujcik:

Mapping a Personalized Learning Journey – K-12 Students and Parents Connect the Dots with Digital Learning — from Project Tomorrow

Personalizing Learning in 2012 — The Student & Parent Point of View [infographic] — from Project Tomorrow
Excerpt from Anne’s posting:

This first report focuses on how today’s students are personalizing their own learning, and how their parents are supporting this effort. That personalization centers around three student desires: including how students seek out resources that are digitally-rich, untethered and socially-based. The report share the unfiltered views of K-12 students and parents on these key trends and documents their aspirations for fully leveraging the technologies supporting these trends to transform their learning lives.

The evolution of a couch potato: How TV and viewers are changing — from by Abhishek Baxi

Section headings:

  • Remote controls are dead
  • Let’s bring social in
  • There’s an app for it
  • Viewer is the king


The future of TV will be based on experiences to engage, entertain, and activate viewers stemming from creativity, imagination, and innovations in technology. While traditionally, TV has been a medium of consumption, the Web experience via PC, mobile, or stand-alone devices, has also brought in real-time engagement. While many call it the death of traditional TV industry, it might just be the factor which brings growth.
Addendum/also see:
  • Luminous Design – the Future of Smart TV — from
    What is the future of Smart TV? How to create a luminous design that will enlighten TV experience across devices, and make it really consistently Smart? Who could tell us the way better than Dale Herigstad? Dale is Chief Interaction Officer at Possible, and an internationally recognized designer and thought leader on the future of interactive and “many-screen” rich media interfaces.

McGraw-Hill report demonstrates power of adaptive learning technology to personalize education and support needs of 21st century students —
Report illustrates how personalized learning is the key to engage, retain and graduate students and prepare them for the global workforce


NEW YORK, April 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — A new report released today by the McGraw-Hill Education characterizes adaptive learning technology as the lynchpin in personalizing education in today’s K-12 and higher education classrooms. According to the report, adaptive learning technology, also known as a computer-assisted smart tutor, helps teachers tailor instruction for every student in the class, effectively creating a “class of one” and significantly improving learning outcomes.

The authors highlight three of McGraw-Hill’s adaptive programs:

  • LearnSmart is the leading interactive study tool for higher education that adaptively assesses students’ skill and knowledge levels to track which topics students have mastered and which require further instruction and practice. It then adjusts the learning content based on students’ strengths and weaknesses…
  • Power of U is a revolutionary, digitally rich personalized middle school math pilot program that uses real-time assessment data to group students in ways that allow them to learn at their own pace, in their own style, using the medium that works best for them…
  • ALEKS®, one of the pioneer products to use adaptive learning technology, is a web-based assessment and learning system created by the ALEKS Corporation and exclusively distributed by McGraw-Hill Higher Education to colleges and universities.


From DSC:
These are the types of technologies that will make their way into courses that you can take from your Smart/Connected TV (i.e. “learning from your living room” and “The Forthcoming Walmart of Education” trends continue to develop and are moving one step closer to reality).  


From DSC:
Arguably, Sal Kahn has become the most famous, influential educator on the planet today — his videos are watched millions of times a day now.  The question — which Eric Schmidt answers in the piece — I couldn’t help but ask was, “Why didn’t this type of innovation come from someone who was working in education at the time of their innovation?”

My thanks to Dr. Kate Byerwalter and her colleagues for passing along this resource.
The tags/associated categories for this posting point out the relevant areas covered.


Khan Academy: The future of education?

Also see:

  • Khan Academy: The future of education?
    (CBS News) Sal Khan is a math, science, and history teacher to millions of students, yet none have ever seen his face. Khan is the voice and brains behind Khan Academy, a free online tutoring site that may have gotten your kid out of an algebra bind with its educational how-to videos. Now Khan Academy is going global. Backed by Google, Gates, and other Internet powerhouses, Sal Khan wants to change education worldwide, and his approach is already being tested in some American schools. Sanjay Gupta reports.

From DSC:
A relevant graphic comes to mind with what Sal is trying to achieve with analytics:

i.e. Highly-effective diagnostic tools for the educators and trainers out there!



Blackboard launches solution to improve developmental education
Fully online courses now include built-in assessment, analytics tools


WASHINGTON – February 22, 2012 – Blackboard Inc. today announced the official launch of Blackboard Developmental Education™ (Blackboard DevEd), an innovative approach aimed at improving student outcomes and increasing completion rates in an area where many institutions have struggled. The solution, which was first piloted by several institutions in the fall, now includes built-in assessment and analytics tools that enable course instructors to further personalize their instruction.


Blackboard Developmental EducationTM (Blackboard DevEd) is a comprehensive program of blended instruction and online remedial courses designed to improve student achievement levels cost-effectively.

Early reflections from DSC:

  • First of all, my congratulations go out to Blackboard for innovating! Nice work.
  • This is another example of the innovation occurring in the online/digital learning world — yet more tools and diagnostic powers are being made available to online-based teaching and learning environments
  • This should be another shot across the bow of how institutions of higher education are training our future teachers — student teachers NEED to know how to teach online!!!
  • Too early to tell how such endeavors will affect career paths (for teachers, administrators, counselors, nurses, and such)


Also see:

Pearson and Knewton charge ahead with adaptive courses — from The Journal by Dian Schaffhauser


“Personalized learning is a linchpin for the overall future of education,” said Greg Tobin of Pearson. “Incorporating Knewton’s technology into our MyLab/Mastering programs is leading the industry’s charge toward this new era of customized and personalized education.”

“Students generate a tremendous amount of high-stakes data that Knewton can analyze to ensure they learn in the most effective and efficient way for each. It is a new frontier in education,” added Jose Ferreira, founder and CEO of Knewton.

This time its personal — from The Journal by Jennifer Demski

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Leading Through Technology
Thomas Greaves, CEO of The Greaves Group, an educational consulting firm, takes Cator’s point one step further and says that it’s doubtful personalized learning could happen–or at least, happen well–without the right technological tools in place.

“The student, using technology, is better able to personalize their learning than a teacher is,” he says. “Teachers don’t have time to sit down and study each student, each day, in each course to figure out what they’re going to do differently with them. Teacher-driven personalization ends up being very weak, with very few factors, whereas if the students are leading their personalization via technology, then their instruction can be personalized based on a hundred variables instead of one or two.”

Greaves also seems to suggest that tech-driven personalized learning will, by its very nature, enable individualized learning and that holy grail of teaching, differentiated instruction, in which a teacher adapts classroom instruction to the various needs and skill levels of each student. Historically, differentiated instruction, as a practice, has been incredibly difficult, if not impossible, to implement in a teacher-centered learning environment that is driven by a print-based curriculum. Personalized learning may finally allow individualization and differentiation to actually happen in the classroom.

Ideally, tech-driven personalization combines the best of individualized learning–self-paced, diagnostic-driven–with the ability to adapt to a student’s specific learning styles, interests, and backgrounds. Personalization could be as simple as students compensating for any gaps in their pre-existing knowledge by allowing them to unobtrusively Google unknown terms during group instruction rather than raising their hand, or as sophisticated as students entering information about themselves into a piece of software that selects digital content based on the their interests and skill levels.

From DSC:
And with shrinking budgets, class sizes could easily be rising — making it even more difficult for teachers to try and implement customized/personalized learning without some type of assistance.

We may not be there yet…but we’ll get there.  Using a historical analogy:

  • Let’s go back to the early 80’s when the personal computer was just starting to be used much and the DEC’s of the world didn’t think much of them.  But over time, as Clayton Christensen and Michael Horn pointed out in Disrupting Class, these new inventions picked up features and power, and eventually, they crushed DEC. (Seems to me I heard Kodak was going bankrupt too…)





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