We figured out a good solution to provide students with a “terms and conditions” reminder at the beginning of the semester. I wish this kind of thing wasn’t necessary, but the only policy documents available are long, dense and unread. We need to provide a clear, useful, brief overview of what students and instructors have agreed to when activating their accounts. Better to do that with an education campaign than with a hammer.
I gave a presentation to the Graduate Students Association’s Symposium, on “advanced learning technologies”. I decided to not talk about shiny bits per se, but to take a step back and look at how the learning environment (space + design + technologies) shapes the learning experience for students. We had some good McLuhan-inspired discussion about how an environment (physical, blended, or online) tells people what is expected of them. And, how that can be shifted through thoughtful design. Then I showed some of the shiny stuff people are using to do interesting things on campus.
It was Reading Week, but I was able to spend some time thinking and talking about my research plan. I’m letting go of some of the ideas that I had because they are distractions from the core, and have started laying out a series of projects to explore various aspects of the thing. Man, is it hard letting go of stuff that I want to work on. But, focus is important.
More on the plan later, when I’ve been able to think it through some more. But, it feels pretty good knowing that I’ll be working on some really interesting projects that will hopefully lead to novel contributions to a couple of fields.
Also, I rode one of the new Segway self-balancing scooter things. A little embarrassing, but it’s kind of fun. Until campus security swarmed us because of rules etc. The thing can also be put into autonomous mode, or driven using an app. Stick a box on it, and it can make deliveries…
- Newsblur starred feed items
- Megan Geuss: In southeastern Colorado, robots carefully disarm WWII-era chemical weapons
- Brian Lamb: push-starting a dying VW microbus out of the parking lot, having been refused a cheap motel room for being dirty hippies
- via Jason Kottke: Do robots deserve rights if they achieve consciousness?
- Mark Frauenfelder: Isaac Asimov: How to never run out of ideas again
- via Jason Kottke: How technology amplifies authoritarianism
- via Stephen Downes: Three recommendations to enable Annotations on the Web
- Campus Technology: Ransomware: To Pay or Not To Pay?
- Maureen Herman: Climate change: Apocalypse by 1000 cuts
- Lisa Rowson: Past U Make a Difference award winner: ‘Everything we enjoy is the result of somebody’s hard work’
- Andrea James: Watch how augmented reality can help those with vision impairment
- Saved links on links.darcynorman.net
- Rapiro: Putting it together and getting it to work | element14 | Raspberry Pi Projects
- Rapiro: How to modify and upload the Arduino sk… | element14 | Raspberry Pi Projects
- Rapiro facial recognition with OpenCV and Raspberry Pi « Gary Fletcher
- GitHub – evilbluechickens/RAPIRO: RAPIRO Project – “Extending the basic motion set.”
- GitHub – mkokubun/rapiro.js: Node.js controlled RAPIRO
- Webots — Aldebaran 220.127.116.11 documentation – “Simulator to run a virtual NAO to test code before uploading to an actual robot”
- morse – Openrobots (robot simulator. looks interesting, but not many robots modeled)
- Baxter Workstation Setup – sdk-wiki
- Joint Trajectory Playback Example – sdk-wiki – “recording and playing back motions on Baxter. Should be possible to record a bunch of stuff, edit together the files (adjusting timestamps) and get a performance to play back…”
- Gazebo robot simulator
- The Philosophy of Westworld – Wisecrack Edition – YouTube
- Do Robots Deserve Rights? What if Machines Become Conscious? – YouTube
- University of Calgary – VoIP Voicemail Login
Still recovering from wrecking my back at the beginning of February. Walking mostly upright now, but still have some more healing to do. I did manage a couple of hours of easy runs at Canada Olympic Park, while The Boy™ was taking snowboarding lessons. And I’m walking like an old man again. Oops.