Friday, October 28, 2005

Monticello Explorer Thomas Jefferson Foundation
Whoa! This summer I stopped briefly at the visitor center at Monticello, but had no time to go into the plantation. No need! This comprehensive virtual tour takes you through the entire grounds, explores the fields and outbuildings, and takes you all through the mansion itself.

This uses everything. Vurtual models, audio narratives, dynamic maps, interactive timeline. Quite a feat of production. Of course it is with the help of our good friends at SecondStory, who always do such a great job.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Interactive Medieval Map
Oh, this is cool! A dynamic map of medieval europe - from 362AD to 1483. With sidebars for links to more information. While it's not extremely detailed yet, users are invited to submit info - in a one-click submission. So it should grow!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

As we've built this project up, a nagging question has always been, "How will developers get paid?" Open source has developed some surprisingly generous donations of time, money, sweat, perhaps blood, and certainly tears. And some remarkable business models have suceeded (witness Opera now giving away its project while its stock climbs).
Somewhat described as the "Ebay of Learning Objects", LydiaLearn forms a marketplace for developers and content aggregrators to meet. It may take a while; a lot of professors may be disappointed when their power-point slides don't find a ready market. I do think we'll see some cool results come from this.

Monday, October 17, 2005

iPod Apple
By now, everybody knows that the new iPod does video. And lets you buy Desperate Housewives. But what about education?

We now have a cheap, ubiquitous, eminantly portable, device which plays videos. Meanwhile, Cingular, you'll recall, has a phone with iTunes. Which also includes a JAVA engine for executing most any type of program - including Flash. Did we mention the 60GB drive on an iPod?

A pocket-portable web media player. What will you do with this kind of device?

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Medal of Honor - Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith
Acts that rise above the heroic - that so stand out among the brave actions performed now by soldiers weekly; acts that are sufficiently gallant and inspiring to draw the Medal of Honor - such acts deserve to be retold well and often. Sergeant Paul R. Smith's dedication to his buddies is such a story. The US Army web team has taken this on.

I would suggest that you listen first to the President's story of Paul as a young man and soldier (FF about a third through the video). You might watch his wife Birgit's memories, or her remarks at the end of the Hall of Heroes induction.

These and more videos will tell you something of what Paul was til 4 April. 2003. The animated Battlescape tells what he did that fateful day.

Monday, October 03, 2005

The Battle of Gettysburg The United States Army
My, my, my! OK, you have to know that the very first Flash™ history app we found and referenced on this site was Gettysburg's First Hours. Nice weapons sound effects, but no help as far as narration! Fast forward, then, to this site by the US Army web team.

So a question: what next? What's the next level of improvement? How can we accelerate it's day by working together, by discussing critiques, by learning, and perhaps even sharing code?