Plymouth eLearning Conference 2008

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On Friday I attended the Plymouth eLearning Conference at the Roland Levinsky Building at the University of Plymouth. It was great to attend my first eLearning conference and for it to be in my doorstep was an extra bonus. The conference was organised by Steve Wheeler and I was given the opportunity to present a demonstration of an electronic whiteboard made from a Wii Controller. Over the past couple of months I have been following the tutorials and experimenting with the OpenSource software created by Johnny Chung Lee. I can happily confirm that the demonstration was a great success, the idea was to inspire people to look at the technology in an untraditional way, to make people see what is possible and give a realistic vision to how easy it actually is to produce. People seemed to be really impressed and were inspired to go and make one of their own. This is a fantastic result!

Overall it was a great day out. People visited the conference from all over the UK and it was great to mingle with some people work in the same area as myself. During the day I visited a range of sessions, however I was struck by one session on Web 2.0, and how then intend to use it in education. This is nothing new as far as I am concerned, considering some Web 2.0 technologies are already being used in further and higher education. However this particular session was focused at using the best web 2.0 technologies in its field and not buying one package that has it all, but are all pretty average. Therefore using flickr for photos, del.icio.us for social bookmarking, wikispaces for wikis and so forth. This is an excellent idea, why should we be forced to use tools that aren’t quite up-to-date. I think this is an excellent idea. A lot of the framework for the project is beased on OpenSource technology and software which is something I’m going to be looking at in the coming months. Is there a need to re-invent the wheel??

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