To sum it up:
The idea is to take an iPad on a trip from the USA (Penn State, State College, PA) to Namibia via South Africa; see what happens throughout the trip and blog about the experience.
For the detailed oriented:
This past semester (spring 2010) Cole and Scott (Cole Camplese, Director of Education Technology Services & Scott McDonald, Assistant Professor of Science Education) brought their iPads to class (CI 597A – Disruptive Technologies) and passed them around for all of us to interact with this new tool/environment. It was interesting to see the reactions and conversations that were generated during this exercise.
Starting 18th May 2010, I’ll be traveling to Namibia and will spend time doing research on mobile learning. I’ll be taking along an iPad (courtesy of Cole Camplese @ ETS) and blog about the experience, especially about the reactions that the iPad generates as I travel from PSU to Namibia and back. The goal is to put the iPad in all types of situation: classrooms, formal or informal/non-formal learning environments, government/non-governmental settings, to areas that are technology rich and some that have little access to western technologies, etc.; and give people a chance to interact with it and see what type of reactions it generates. The iPad has not yet been released globally, so I am expecting that very few people would have had any contact with it.
I’ll also invite those who interact with the iPad to be guest bloggers and share their first hand account in addition to my observations.
Why do this:
I am interested in contextually appropriate technologies, I would like to know how and if the iPad fits into various context beyond the “that’s cool” effect. I am also interested in finding out what types of usage that different audiences envisage, what type of programs they would like to see on it to make it more appropriate for them and what type of design ideas I could get from speaking with different people.
It is a rough idea, which I am intentionally leaving vague so that I let the experience guide this exercise rather than my specific goals. I hope you’ll come back often and participate in the discussion by leaving your comments.
Date written: 15 May 2010
World count: 380