Glossy – MoLeNET

Blog of the Glossy MoLeNET Project

Initial learner feedback

As we roll out various deliverables of the Glossy project, we are starting to get some  feedback from the learners, both positive feedback and reservations.

The micro-laptop umpc format (we are using the Asus EeePC and the Stone UMPC) are proving very popular with learners, especially as they come with cameras.

Students are enjoying using the iPods (the classic and the touch) however as our network proxy blocks the iTunes Store, searching for podcasts is proving impossible. Once you know the podcast RSS feed then it is possible to subscribe to (and download) the podcast, but of course finding the RSS feed is difficult if you can’t search the iTunes store.

As we roll out the student wireless network, some of the learners are really pleased that they can now access the internet via their own devices. Was interested recently to see a student who had purchased their own EeePC, installed Windows XP on it and was using it with a 3G dongle from Three.

So MoLeNET is starting to have a real impact on learners and learning.

April 29, 2008 Posted by | eeepc, feedback, ipod classic, ipod touch, itunes, itunes store, learner, umpc, wifi, wireless | Comments Off on Initial learner feedback

Which would you choose, the iPod touch or the PSP?

I believe that the iPod touch has a lot of potential when it comes to mobile learning.

I think the SDK gives a whole new way of working with the iPod and Exchange intergration via ActivSync allows it to be used at an enterprise/institutional level that wasn’t possible before.

In our MoLeNET project we have a group using the iPod touch and another group using the iPod classic. If you remove the wireless aspect, the classic (or nano) is a much more flexible device. What makes the touch special is the wireless capability.

The fact you can browse the internet, use e-mail, web widgets, etc… on the iPod touch makes it much more usable for some aspects of learning than the “traditional” iPod.

My colleague Alan though mentions one failing of the iPod touch over other iPods. With the nano and the classic you can use them as USB storage devices to store files, however this is not possible with the iPod touch.

You will need to consider that the touch interface does mean the screen gets grubby pretty quickly and the included cloth will need to be used on a regular basis.

Another disadvantage is that it can’t play Flash based content.

So what about the PSP?

Well it has a bigger screen for one thing and it can play games!

I do like the PSP and at £120 is cheaper than the iPod touch.

It does not require iTunes and can be connected to a PC via a simple USB cable. With extras you can use Skype, record video and audio, and use GPS. The PSP also has built in speakers which means you don’t always have to use headphones.

However it comes with no onboard storage, so you will also need to buy a Memory Stick Duo for it. The wireless browser is okay, but nowhere near the level of usability or sophistication of the iPod touch browser.

Text entry is, well let’s just say, it’s interesting compared to other devices, it does mean that entering URLs is not easy.

The PSP can play “some” Flash based content.

So which one do I prefer?

WellI do use both on a regular basis, but for me the iPod touch wins out.

April 14, 2008 Posted by | ipod touch, psp | Comments Off on Which would you choose, the iPod touch or the PSP?

iPod touching..

I honestly wondered first of all if this was going to be much use to me at all because of all the hassle of itunes. Well, I had a fiddle about and realised that if I set the resources I wanted to use in my Website and then used Safari to access I had everything there ready to use and no piddling around with itunes! Hook in anywhere wireless and bingo. Once I had got over that hurdle I realised that as long as the resources were internet accessible I have the potential to press the ‘go’ button with the students on the research programme as soon as the Gloscol G-spot (or whatever its called) goes live.The map function is just excellent, pop your route in and off you go, no problemo! Waccha wanna PDA for! (yes, yes I know)Its official I’m in love with the ipod touch!

Cheers

Alan

February 29, 2008 Posted by | ipod touch | Comments Off on iPod touching..

Really Useful Research and Evaluation Event

I attended a really useful Research and Evaluation event on Friday. Loads of sharing good practice took place and I managed to get my hands on an Asus Eee Pc (If only for a brief time). I can now appreciate why it seems to be out of stock everywhere. It really is a snazzy little tool.

I’m planning that this will be the device that our IT students may be able to use. So far the IT tutors have rejected the iTouch, PSP and mobile phones as the screens are too small to display the video tutorials we are in the process of creating.

We have ordered 2 of the 4Gb Asus devices, one to remain on Linux the other to have Windows and Microsoft Office 2007 installed on it.

February 24, 2008 Posted by | eeepc, ipod touch, talk | Comments Off on Really Useful Research and Evaluation Event

ITS Meeting

Had a productive meeting with Jason from our ITS departmentover some of the details of the Glossy project. Discussed how the PSPs, iPods will be used and how we will upload content to the devices.

We also discussed the merits of various UMPCs that we have been looking at.

Also discussed some software for the college, VisualHub for video conversion and Comic Life for creating comics.

Good meeting.

February 5, 2008 Posted by | comic life, ipod nano, ipod touch, psp, umpc, visualhub | Comments Off on ITS Meeting

More headphones

As we are getting a load of iPods for our MoLeNET project to be used by a variety of students it makes sense that we also get a large bundle of spare headphones. You know to replace the ones which get lost, broken and in the main for hygiene reasons.

Key question do we get cheap ones, Apple white (so cool) ones, or ones which work really well?

January 24, 2008 Posted by | headphones, ipod nano, ipod touch | Comments Off on More headphones

Well that wasn’t planned…

This afternoon I got invited to a focus group meeting in the college and just happened to take an iPod touch. After the meeting I got talking to a few of the other managers there about the iPod touch, we then had a look at the other mobile devices we had got for the MoLeNET project and soon they were talking about how they wanted to use mobile devices to support learning and mobile learning scenarios.

After they left one of the managers came back with some colleagues and we went through the process again.

Really useful discussions, planning and staff went away really interested in the concepts behind the project and mobile learning.

Well that wasn’t planned…

January 24, 2008 Posted by | gadgets, ipod touch, staff, talk | Comments Off on Well that wasn’t planned…