ICT and STEM news

STEM learning

Special edition of STEM articles from Teacher magazine. Includes virtual classrooms for Year 10s, STEM and gender and best practice for primary STEM.

Demystifying the AC Digital Technologies Curriculum P-6

Webinar with Dr Linda McIver; 19 June and 31 July 3.45-5pm.

http://email.acer.edu.au/t/ViewEmail/r/60882C5177B09AF02540EF23F30FEDED/F4AF64F35C0EDFC438A555EB6E97B45B

STEM learning: international best practice: Queensland science teacher Sarah Chapman gathered evidence from around the world. Essential elements include real world experiences, expertise from industry links, mentorships and cross-curricular integration.

https://www.teachermagazine.com.au/article/stem-learning-international-best-practice

Full report: https://cew.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Engaging-the-future-of-STEM.pdf

 

Australian Online Landscape Review (latest: April 2017)

Quarterly report produced by IAB/Nielsen. Top 10 brands: 1.Google 2.Facebook 3.YouTube 4.MSN/Outlook/Bing/Skype 5.Apple 6.eBay 7.Microsoft 8.Wikipedia 9.Instagram 10.Yahoo7.

Top 10 brands for streaming: 1.YouTube 2.Facebook 3.VEVO (music) 4.Vimeo (videos) 5.news.com.au 6.smh.com.au 7.MSN/Outlook/Bing/Skype 8.nine.com.au 9.Yahoo7 10. ABC Online

Smartphones are used more than desktops, which are used more than tablets.

file:///H:/Downloads/Digital%20Landscape%20Report_April%202017.pdf

 

Australians’ viewing habits

There are more screens (6.4 in each home) and most are internet-capable. Viewing is spread across devices but TV remains by far the most-watched screen. 86% of video viewing is on TVs – free-to-air or subscription; live or played back. TVs are also used for other tasks – gaming, DVDs, internet, music streaming, YouTube videos etc

http://www.nielsen.com/au/en/insights/news/2017/how-australians-viewing-habits-have-changed-over-the-past-five-years.html

http://www.oztam.com.au/documents/Other/Q4%202016%20AMSR_release.pdf

 

Australia’s internet speeds

According to the most recent Akamai State of the Internet report we are now 51st in the world for home broadband internet speeds (10.1 Mbps). However, we are well above the global average of 7 Mbps even with a large area to cover. Fastest is South Korea (26.1Mbps) 2. Norway 3. Sweden 4.Hong Kong 5.Switzerland. We are leading the Asia-Pacific region in mobile connectivity speeds (13.8 Mbps).

https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/03/australias-internet-speeds-are-a-global-embarrassment/

 

Why do adults think video games are bad?

The excellent news site The Conversation is running a series for children – Curious Kids, where children send in questions they would like an expert to answer. Recent research suggests that playing online games that involve puzzle-solving increases scores in maths, science and reading, whereas using social networking reduces academic achievement.

http://theconversation.com/curious-kids-why-do-adults-think-video-games-are-bad-76699

http://ijoc.org/index.php/ijoc/article/view/5586/1742

 

The science for and against video gaming

They can make your brain grow and they make you more self-aware and happier; but they can make you less empathetic and more violent.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/is-video-gaming-bad-for-you-the-science-for-and-against/

 

People could be genetically predisposed to social media use

One to two-thirds of variance in social media use is attributable to genetic traits; unique and shared environmental factors account for the remainder of variance.

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-05/ica-pcb050217.php

 

NASA EarthKAM

“A classroom with the ultimate view” – students enrol in missions on the International Space Station and request images of specific locations on Earth. The program was set up by astronaut Sally Ride in  1995, initially on space shuttle flights. 8000 schools from 78 countries have now participated with over 500 000 students creating a library of 94 000 images.

https://www.earthkam.org/

Search the image gallery: https://www.earthkam.org/ek-images

https://cosmosmagazine.com/geoscience/capturing-the-earth-as-art

 

Google Maps street-view of Uluru

Just launched after 2 years of consultation with traditional owners. The interactive map includes audio stories from the Anangu owners about the significance of Uluru, traditional law and creation stories. Many sacred sections of the rock were not photographed. Viewers can zoom into crevices, walk along trails and view ancient art. Google plans to map other Australian cultural sites, including Kakadu.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-06-08/google-street-view-allows-visitors-to-experience-uluru/8599050

 

Live interactions with robots increase their perceived human likeness

We need to get used to a future where robots will be part of our everyday lives, but rarely do we see robots face to face. A recent study found that people who watched live interactions with a robot were more likely to consider the robot to have more human-like qualities. Robots presented in virtual reality also scored high in human likeness. Watching a robot on a 2D screen scored lowest. “Many people will have their first encounter with a service robot over the next decade. Service robots are designed to communicate with humans in humanlike ways and assist them in various aspects of their daily routine. Potential areas of application range from hospitals and nursing homes to hotels and the users’ households” (Schreiner).

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-05/ica-liw051017.php

 

The 2017 emoji list: emoji version 5.0

All those cute little emoji have to be approved by the Unicode consortium and will be launched this month. There are 69 new images; 24 have 5 additional skin tones and 10 are non-gendered. New emoji include a genie, an older person, a breastfeeding mum and broccoli. There are now a total of 239 approved emoji.

http://blog.emojipedia.org/final-2017-emoji-list/

Interesting webcasts and ICT news

School Library Journal webcasts

Lots of good free archived webcasts here – Building a 21st century library; Hot new graphic novels coming soon; Pop literacy; Virtual reality and Augmented Reality….

You can also sign up for the following 3 webcasts in the Top Tech Trends Spring 2017 series (in association with ISTE) or access them later in the archives:

16 March: Information literacy in the age of fake news (now archived)
Critical thinking is more important than ever. Examines best practices for students to manage the digital firehose and considers perspective and bias.

20 April: 60 tools in 60 minutes
Explores the best applications and gear for your school or library, including must-have multimedia content, cool coding platforms, and top choices for your maker space.

18 May: Technology to aid the struggling reader
A resource-rich program with tips on how to leverage technology to help new and struggling readers. Learn about the best storytelling apps, digital sources of high-interest content for kids and teens, and more.

http://www.slj.com/category/webcasts/

 

Job hunting robots

Stephen Hawking , Elon Musk and Bill Gates are worried about our jobs.

Hawking: “The rise of Artificial Intelligence is likely to extend job destruction deep into the middle classes, with only the most caring, creative or supervisory roles remaining.”

Musk: “There will be fewer and fewer jobs that a robot cannot do better than a human.” A universal basic income would allow the economy to continue as millions of workers are displaced by automation.

Gates: Governments should start taxing robot workers.

Meanwhile, Uber has bought a self-driving truck company and Amazon, the world’s largest retailer, is testing a store with no employees. And you can get a coffee made by a robot barista in San Francisco’s Café X!

https://www.good.is/articles/automation-elon-musk-bill-gates-jobs?utm_source=thedailygood&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailygood

http://abc7news.com/technology/robot-baristas-serve-coffee-at-san-franciscos-cafe-x/1728812/

 

Preparing for the future of work

Lots of skills and attitudes here that we try to develop and encourage in our students!

People skills will continue to be in high demand – machines have no empathy and emotional intelligence (EI) plays a role in everything. Critical thinking will be crucial and creative thinkers will add value and new perspectives. Adaptability and insight will be more important than talent. Digital and media literacy and predicting trends will be paramount. Virtual collaboration skills will be essential to communicate with teams located elsewhere. Upsetting the status quo can be an asset!

https://medium.com/the-mission/how-to-prepare-yourself-for-the-automated-future-107ed5bc763#.bnlw1a486

 

Mark Zuckerberg’s robot butler Jarvis

Each year Zuckerberg creates a personal challenge for himself. For 2016, he wanted to develop a simple Artificial Intelligence to run his home – “Jarvis” (like in Iron Man). It took 100 hours. You can’t see Jarvis but you can hear him (voiced by Morgan Freeman!) and he is great at assisting with tasks. Zuckerberg controlled Jarvis from smartphones placed around the house and often used text (a Facebook Messenger bot that he built) rather than voice. Is it the future?

Fun videos – including wife Priscilla’s experience: https://techcrunch.com/2016/12/20/watch-mark-zuckerbergs-morgan-freeman-voiced-jarvis-ai-in-action/

http://www.smh.com.au/technology/innovation/mark-zuckerberg-shows-off-jarvis-ai-he-built-to-run-his-home-20161220-gtfgfq.html

His 2017 challenge – meeting and talking with someone from every state of the US: https://www.facebook.com/zuck/posts/10103385178272401

 

70+ educational  iPad apps for the classroom

Useful categories: presentations, screencasting, video and audio creation, book creation, file storage, whiteboard, notetaking, mindmapping, speech to text…

http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2017/01/70-educational-ipad-apps-for-teachers.html

 

Apple Park

The new Apple headquarters (aka the “spaceship”) opens soon in Cupertino, California, with 12 000 employees moving in from April. It will be one of the most energy-efficient buildings in the world – run entirely on renewable energy and with walking & running paths for employees, an orchard, meadow and pond. Product launches will take place in the Steve Jobs Theatre on a hill.

http://www.macworld.co.uk/feature/apple/52-facts-about-apples-spaceship-campus-february-drone-video-3489704/

ICT news

Ok it had to happen…your bot shopping experience is here! The Kmart Buddy bot will help you with suggestions this Xmas. Search for Buddy in Facebook Messenger. Specify what you want and Buddy presents web pages where you can buy the goods online.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/technology/kmart-buddy-bot-can-it-do-your-christmas-shopping/news-story/9f0b135b5def79e6e6880b39b54dc53f

 

Digital Inclusion Index Report

Produced by Swinburne University of Technology and Telstra in August. The Australian Digital Inclusion Index measures the extent of digital inclusion in Australia – access, affordability and digital ability. No surprise – Australians are spending more time and doing more online. The highest-scoring state is ACT, followed by Victoria. Groups with high digital inclusion include those who speak other languages. Those with low levels of income, education and employment are less included. Indigenous Australians and people with disability have low but improving inclusion. The gender gap is narrow but there is a marked difference in attitudes towards learning new technology. Geography also plays a critical role – inclusion is higher in capital cities than country areas. Access and affordability can be barriers but a person’s digital ability (attitudes, skills, activities, safety concerns) also has a large impact. The Index will help inform and promote policy and programs to enhance digital inclusion in Australia.

http://www.swinburne.edu.au/news/latest-news/2016/08/swinburne-study-measures-australias-digital-divide.php

http://digitalinclusionindex.org.au/

http://digitalinclusionindex.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Australian-Digital-Inclusion-Index-2016.pdf

 

Born Digital 2016

Born Digital 2016, the National and State Libraries Australasia conference in August, explored the collection and preservation of digital content via video interviews with experts. Topics included Science and space; Indigenous voices; Digital lifestyles; Video games.

http://www.nsla.org.au/born-digital-2016

Why it’s important to preserve video games: http://www.nsla.org.au/news/borndigital2016-day-5-play

Truth and history with John Birmingham – libraries need to preserve digital content such as Facebook, blogs and tweets: http://www.nsla.org.au/news/borndigital2016-day-3-truth-and-history

 

The NBN GranTechie Report: the new wave of silver surfers

This Sept 2016 report shows that access to fast broadband, NBN and smart devices is redefining how older Australians are using the internet and debunks myths that they are not using technology to connect and learn. 72% of grandparents say the internet makes them feel more educated, more purposeful (66%) and more connected (85%). 93% go online every day; 79% use technology to stay connected with family and friends; 59% use the internet for online shopping; 72% couldn’t imagine life without the internet. And 49% of 18-34 year olds believe older generations are just as savvy as them when it comes to technology and the internet. Go Nan and Pop!

http://www.nbnco.com.au/content/dam/nbnco2/documents/The%20nbn%E2%84%A2%20GranTechies%20Report.pdf

https://startsat60.com/stories/tech/grantechies-rise-of-the-silver-surfer

Good books and reviews: https://startsat60.com/category/stories/entertain/books

 

Google Expeditions adds 50 new tours for schools

There are now over 400 virtual reality field trips, with over 100 lesson plans also available. Places include Machu Picchu, Antarctica, coral reefs, the International Space Station and a Viking settlement. Expeditions has been used by over 1 million students and is the app is available in 123 countries. Google Cardboard VR sets make the experience more immersive, but are not essential. Android and iOS.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/technology/peter-cosgrove-launches-google-tour-of-government-house/news-story/560b2534672c74be7174c170ae587fb0

https://blog.google/topics/education/adding-50-new-tours-schools-google-expeditions/

https://support.google.com/edu/expeditions/answer/6335093?hl=en&ref_topic=6334250

 

Google Earth Timelapse

Google has updated Timelapse, their comprehensive picture of the Earth’s changing surface. First released 2013, it now includes 4 additional years of imagery, petabytes of new data from satellites, and a sharper view of the Earth from 1984 to 2016. Watch the sprouting of Dubai’s artificial Palm Islands, the retreat of Alaska’s Columbia Glacier, glaciers in Antarctica and a river in Tibet.

https://blog.google/products/earth/our-most-detailed-view-earth-across-space-and-time/

View Timelapse: https://earthengine.google.com/timelapse/

 

Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy Verbs

This infographic lists verbs used to facilitate technology in the classroom, from lower-order thinking skills (LOTS) to higher-order thinking skills (HOTS).

https://globaldigitalcitizen.org/blooms-digital-taxonomy-verbs

Bloom’s taxonomy and apps for the iPad: http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2016/06/new-visual-on-blooms-digital-taxonomy.html

More Bloom’s and apps: http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2016/11/new-blooms-digital-taxonomy-poster-for.html

 

Netflix shows can now be downloaded and watched offline

Rolled out worldwide last week. Enjoy an offline binge on your smartphones and tablets. Update your Netfix app and choose the downward arrow icon when browsing. Free.

https://www.wired.com/2016/11/netflix-offline-viewing/

 

18 best external storage devices for iPad and iPhone

Very useful when your device is full of photos and videos. Includes Verbatim iStore ‘n’ Go (USB at one end and a Lightning port at the other) and SanDisk Connect Wireless USB flash drive (copies photos automatically straight onto the device).

http://www.macworld.co.uk/feature/iphone/best-ways-get-more-storage-for-your-iphone-or-ipad-external-devices-3579792/

Lexar JumpDrive (USB and Lightning connectors): http://www.lexar.com/products/usb-flash-drives/Lexar-JumpDrive-M20i-USB-3-flash-drive.html

 

ICT and media news

RUOK? survey reveals Aussies spend more time with screens than quality time with family and friends

We spend an average of 46 hours of our weekly downtime looking at TVs and devices, compared to 6 hours engaging with family and friends. About half of all Australians spend 2 hours or less weekly connecting with those who matter to them. Obstacles include distance, being too tired, being busy, housework and long work hours. Finding time in busy schedules is crucial. Strong and caring connections provide a safety net to help people cope with challenging times.

https://www.ruok.org.au/new-survey-reveals-aussies-spend-more-time-with-screens-than-quality-time-with-family-and-friends

 

Deloitte Media Consumer Survey 2016

Their 5th edition- more than 2000 Australians aged 14 to 69 were surveyed. The survey provides a snapshot of how consumers are interacting with media, entertainment and technologies. Results include:

 

* Huge influence of social media – the #1 digital destination; 84% are on a social network

*61% use social media every day; 84% of younger millennials use it every day

*Most used social media sites: 1.  Facebook (92%) 2. Instagram (28%) 3. Twitter (24%) 4. (All equal) Snapchat, LinkedIn, Google+ (18%)

*18% use social media sites as their most frequently used source of news (14% online papers; 6% print newspapers); many younger people use social media as their primary source of news

*Word of mouth is still the main influence on purchase decisions, followed by recommendations on social media (which has surpassed the influence of TV advertising)

*TV viewing, on any device, is the most preferred entertainment activity (62% rate it in top 3)

*Using the internet for social or personal interests is almost as popular as TV (60% rate it in top 3)

*Millennials prefer using the internet as their top source of entertainment; watching TV is the most popular with other generations

*Live programming is the most used method for consuming TV (42% of viewing time)

*Watching streamed programming is increasing (22% pay for a subscription)

*Millennials lead the uptake of streaming services such as Netflix, Stan and Presto

*Almost everyone likes to binge-watch (74% millennials; 50% others)

* 88% multitask while watching TV

*66% own tablet devices

*86% of households own a smartphone and a laptop; 85% own a TV

*67% rank smartphones in their top 3 devices

*Social media apps are the most popular with millennials; banking apps are also popular with younger people; older people like weather apps!

*10% intend to buy a Virtual Reality headset next year

*21% own a fitness band and 11% own a smartwatch

*Millennials (age 14 to 32) lead the way in engaging with the digital media universe

 

Preferred entertainment activities of all respondents – including books!

  1. Watching TV (any device) 2. Using the internet 3. Listening to music (any device) 4. Going to the movies 5. Reading books 6. Playing video games 7. Attending live performances 8. Reading newspapers (print or online) 9. Listening to the radio (any device/format) 10. Reading magazines (print or online)

*Reading books (in any format) is rated by 25% of people as a top 3 entertainment activity

*Reading books (in any format) decreased in popularity by 8% compared to 2015, despite gains for the past 4 years.

*Reading books and playing video games are almost equal in popularity as a top 3 entertainment activity (25% for books; 24% for video games)

*Movie-going increased in popularity by 5% over the past year

*Aside from using the internet and watching TV, millennials also favour listening to music, going to the movies and playing video games

*Aside from watching TV and using the internet, boomers and matures also like reading newspapers and books

 

Good short video and infographic: http://www2.deloitte.com/au/en/pages/technology-media-and-telecommunications/articles/media-consumer-survey-2016.html

The report: http://bit.ly/2cV9Ml2

Summary: http://which-50.com/social-dominates-digital-reshapes-media-habits/

What’s new in ICT, education and popular culture?

Here is the link to my Moderation Day presentation on 13 August to Year 11 and 12 teacher librarians in Canberra, ACT.

What’s new in ICT, education and popular culture?

http://dckclib.wikispaces.com/Technology%2C+media+%26+popular+culture+updates

Australians’ Digital Lives Report

iPad magician

Can you do this with your iPad? Check out Simon Pierro on the Ellen show in Feb (9 million views) J

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_xhSQGKxO4

 

Australians’ Digital Lives Report

New report from ACMA (Aust. Communications and Media Authority) – a good resource for articles and reports. The lives of Australians are converging even further into their phones and data downloading almost doubled in the year to June 2014. 70% of Australians went online using a smartphone; 50% using a tablet. 92% of Australians use the internet with 81% having the internet at home. However, 1.1 million Australians have never been online, mostly aged over 65 years. In Sept 2014 Australia ranked 21st in the world on internet access. 10.9 million Australians made an e-commerce transaction (entertainment most popular, then fashion, then reading material). We are downloading more apps and participating in more blogs and online communities. 68% are using 3 or more devices to access the internet. Almost half of employed Australians are digital workers (5.7 million), using the internet to work away from the office.

Good short video: http://www.acma.gov.au/theACMA/engage-blogs/engage-blogs/researchacma/Australians-embrace-a-digital-life

http://www.computerworld.com.au/article/571535/1-1-million-aussies-never-accessed-internet/

 

Moderate use of video games linked to better behaviour

A study from Oxford University has found that kids who play video games in moderation (less than 1 hour a day) are not at risk of anti-social behaviour. They do better at school, are less aggressive and more emotionally stable. However, those who played for 3 hours or more were hyperactive, more likely to get into fights and to lose concentration. Kids who played Minecraft did not perform better academically but had better emotional health and social behaviour. A recent Griffith University study found better collaboration, problem solving and thinking skills among kids who played video games.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/education/video-games-linked-to-better-behaviour/story-fn59nlz9-1227288437259

http://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2015-04-01-poor-behaviour-linked-time-spent-gaming-not-types-games#

 

How Google picks new employees

Lazlo Bock of Google says that an increasing proportion of people hired at Google don’t have college degrees. Test scores don’t predict anything. Number 1 criteria used when evaluating candidates: Ability to learn – the ability to pick up new things, to learn on the fly, to find patterns in disparate pieces of information and take the next step. 2. Leadership – at every level,  including how to step back. 3.  Humility – openness to someone else having an even better idea than you.  4. Ownership – taking responsibility for solving problems and moving forward. 5. Expertise – but the other 4 attributes far outweigh expertise.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikaandersen/2014/04/07/how-google-picks-new-employees-hint-its-not-about-your-degree/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Good iPad apps – Mathstorm, Count Coins & Transformation Sentences

Here are some useful apps for primary school maths and language learning (all levels):

Mathstorm

$2.49 in the App Store; iOS 6 or later.

An entertaining and customisable collection of 5 games (monsoon, avalanche, meteor shower, sandstorm, blizzard) that each provide a different approach to developing maths skills. Teachers and students can choose to focus on particular skills eg. addition, subtraction, division, times tables etc. and they can also set time limit challenges. Games can be adjusted to suit players’ maths ability levels, catering for multiple abilities within a class. For example, the game can be set to only ask:

– 6 times tables

– Addition sums below 10

– Only division and multiplication

– Only division, multiplication and subtraction

– and many more combinations.

High scores are tracked, giving players a goal to beat. For ages 4 to 11.

https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/mathstorm/id897375887?ls=1&mt=8

Demo video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAnEndlRcRE

 

Aussie Kids Count Coins

$2.49 in the App Store; iOS 4 or later.

Money skills are practised and developed through 6 games, using animated characters. Activities include paying and giving change, counting change and multiplying, comparing amounts & shopping. Stars are awarded and used to decorate a night scene. For ages 4 to 10.

https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/aussie-kids-count-coins/id834143919?mt=8

 

Transformation Sentences

$2.49 in the App Store; requires iOS7 or later.

This is a powerful app for teachers of sentence construction, sentence transformation and spelling – very useful for teachers of students who are learning to read – primary, high school, adult and ESL.

It was developed specifically for several teachers at Dickson College who wanted an app to support the Scaffolding Literacy program in the Secondary Introductory English Centre. Students here have just started learning English in Australia and will later move to ESL classes. The teachers wanted an app that wasn’t full of fancy bells and whistles but supported the teaching of literacy skills. The app has been used very successfully in class.

Demo video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slX6TwDG0gU

https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/transformation-sentences/id688779795?mt=8

Features include:

Sentences: Enter text, rearrange and drag individual words. Use for prediction games, cloze exercises etc

Spelling: Separate a word into letters or sounds.

Shuffle: Places all words in a sentence into random order. Students then reassemble the sentence.

Extra words: Add extra words and label parts of a sentence (eg. Who? What? Where?).

Save data: Save up to 10 sentences or spelling lists in folders. Send the folders to other iPads via Bluetooth or wi-fi (this enables the teacher to type a paragraph just once, which is then sent to the students’ iPads).

Draw: Use your finger as a pencil to write words directly on the screen.

Customise: Choose font, size and background.

(The apps were created by my son Bryan Hathaway, B. Software Engineering).

National Science Week 16-24 August

As well as Book Week, it’s also National Science Week (16-24 Aug): http://www.scienceweek.net.au/

Here are some interesting links….

 

Women of science wikibomb

Great to see this event as part of National Science Week in Canberra. Participants researched and wrote Wikipedia articles about Australian women of science, engineering and maths. Awesome work – over 100 Wikipedia entries were created – now that really adds to the authenticity and reliability of Wikipedia!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Meetup/Canberra/2014-08-14-Wikibomb

 

Science 360

Breaking science videos and news from around the world, ready to embed in websites etc. Hosted by the US National Science Foundation. Search for videos by topic or series.

http://science360.gov/files/

 

DNATube

Thousands of videos and lectures; explore by topics.

http://www.dnatube.com/

 

10 science YouTube channels you can’t miss

Includes Minute Physics; The Science Channel; SciShow; The Periodic Table of Videos, AsapSCIENCE and the excellent Vsauce.

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/10-science-youtube-channels-you-cant-miss/

 

125 great science videos

Astronomy, physics, psychology, biology, ecology, technology….

http://www.openculture.com/science_videos

 

Stephen Hawking biopic: The theory of everything

Directed by James Marsh. Stars Eddie Redmayne (from Les Mis) as renowned physicist Hawking, author of A brief history of time. The film follows his life through university and his triumphs in the face of physical adversity. Opens in Australia early 2015. http://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/aug/07/stephen-hawking-biopic-first-trailer-the-theory-of-everything

Trailer: http://www.theguardian.com/film/video/2014/aug/07/theory-of-everything-stephen-hawking-movie-trailer-video

Hawking is a legend – look at all the places he has appeared in popular culture: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Hawking_in_popular_culture

 

International Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge

Science magazine and the US National Science Foundation select winners each year for illustration, posters & graphics, photography, games & apps  and video. First place in games: Eyewire – one of the fastest growing citizen science projects ever created, where game players help to map neurons in a mouse’s retina. Also: EarthViewer app – scroll through billions of years of Earth’s geological periods. Meta!Blast: The Leaf game, for high school – players explore the microworlds of a leaf.

Slideshow of winners: http://www.sciencemag.org/site/multimedia/slideshows/343.6171.vis/index.xhtml

 

Eureka Prize for Science Photography

3 finalists and 7 highly commended entries; winner announced 10 Sept. Love the photo on a starry moonlit night of part of the Murchison Widefield Array radio telescope in W.A., which will be part of the largest telescope ever built (the Square Kilometre Array: SKA).

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-08/2014-eureka-prizes-science-photos/5657940

 

Sleek Geeks Eureka Science Schools Prize 2014

Short science videos – primary and secondary finalists; winners announced 10 Sept. View other years’ finalists also. Lots of interesting science – eg. I want to make tea – a musical parody, sung to Queen’s I want to break free 🙂 http://www.abc.net.au/science/video/2014/tea.html

2014 finalists: http://www.abc.net.au/science/sleekgeeks/eureka/

 

Free iBooks textbook: Life on Earth by Edward O. Wilson

Biology for secondary schools; 41 interactive chapters with video and animations, written by the Harvard naturalist and Pulitzer Prize winner, collaborating with the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute. Accompanied by an iTunes U course.

http://www.wehi.edu.au/site/latest_news/global_launch_of_innovative_ibooks_textbook_e.o._wilsons_life_on_earth

 

Professor Manning Clark and donor-conceived granddaughter

Fascinating story of Dr Lauren Burns and her quest to find out about her biological father (Aust. Story Aug 10 & 18). Good resource for discussion of medical ethics and legal issues.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-18/sperm-donor-conceived-woman-related-to-professor-manning-clark/5679580

Watch: http://www.abc.net.au/austory/specials/searchingforcelevenpartone/default.htm

http://www.abc.net.au/austory/

 

Walter and Eliza Hall Institute

The oldest medical research institute in Australia – 100 years old in 2015.

http://www.wehi.edu.au/

WEHI.TV: Video clips of discoveries and research: http://www.wehi.edu.au/education/wehitv/

Virus one billion times: Projected animations of viruses magnified one billion times – in the State Library of Victoria’s reading room earlier this year: http://www.wehi.edu.au/virus_one_billion_times/

 

Science is awesome!

Aussie Teens Online Report

ACMA (Aust. Communications and Media Authority) recently released a research snapshot: Aussie teens online (14-17 year olds).

Good infographic: http://www.acma.gov.au/theACMA/aussie-teens-online
Report summary: http://www.acma.gov.au/theACMA/engage-blogs/engage-blogs/Research-snapshots/Aussie-teens-online

• 69% of their mobile phones are smartphones.
• Mobile phones are increasingly used for online activities.
• 23% go online with a tablet; 74% with a laptop/computer; 56% with a smartphone.
• Wireless hotspots are increasingly used for internet access.
• 72% go online more than once a day.
• The top 5 internet domains visited (Dec 2013): Google (including Search, Chrome, Mail, Maps, Earth etc); Facebook; YouTube; Mi9 (including Skype, Xbox, ninemsn etc); Microsoft.
• 90% went online for entertainment activities – the most time spent online was at YouTube, then Facebook & Skype.
• Teenagers are not the dominant group in social media forums (other age groups outrank them) – they account for 7% of Australians who use social networking.
• Teens in Aust. and the US are moving away from Facebook (70% in 2012 to 58% 2013).
• Teens access a range of online forums – Wikipedia, WikiHow, Tumblr, Blogger, ninemsn Entertainment videos.

Not many surprises really….and 6 in 10 are going online for research and information! The internet is a natural and essential part of their (and our) lives….more support for BYOD.

Internet ethics?
You may have read about Facebook’s unethical experiment, where it secretly manipulated 700 000 users’ emotions via the Facebook news feed, in order to study “emotional contagion through social networks”. The researchers wanted to see if reading fewer positive posts made people less likely to post positive content (and the same for negative messages). They found that social networks can indeed propagate positive and negative feelings. And apparently we agreed to this “research” via the Data Use Policy when we signed up. A good article for discussion for psychology, sociology and legal studies classes.
http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2014/06/facebook_unethical_experiment_it_made_news_feeds_happier_or_sadder_to_manipulate.html

Look up (and put your gadgets down)

Look up

You might have seen this  video doing the rounds recently….over 19 million YouTube views since 25 April…..good for class discussion. Writer and director Gary Turk produced his 5 minute “spoken word film for an online generation”, highlighting the social isolation resulting from constant online connectivity. Turk says “Look Up is a lesson taught to us through a love story, in a world where we continue to find ways to make it easier for us to connect with one another, but always results in us spending more time alone”.  

Yes…ironic that a film about putting down your gadgets goes viral….and it might be a bit sentimental but it’s sweet. Think about what you’re missing out on….look up. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7dLU6fk9QY

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/look-up-video-lifechanging-film-about-quitting-social-media-ironically-goes-viral-with-tweets-from-andy-murray-and-jordin-sparks-9323510.html

Are you addicted to your smartphone?

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/reading-between-the-headlines/201307/smartphone-addiction