Archive for category Technology
Because one screen is not enough, even more people don’t only watch TV passively anymore. Laptop on the knees, it became normal to surf on the web while watching intermittently TV.
Nowadays, the so-called Second Screen applications appear on our tablets, giving additional informations linked with the TV’s main program. Useful ?
A familiy watching religiously at TV in the 50’s. Past times. Nowadays, one screen is not enough anymore.
What does the Second Screen brings to us viewers ?
The second screen provides additional informations, in link with what you’re watching on your TV. An international example are the 2012 London Olympics, an event during witch several main TVs transmitted content about the results of the athletes during the broadcasting on the Second Screen.
The Guardian Second Screen, on tablet
Second Screen experiences in Switzerland
A swiss example : the RTS “deuxième écran”
In February 2012, the Radio Télévision Suisse launch its own Second Screen system. Up to now, only one program uses the application : the daily evening news “19:30”. During the program, each time a report is broadcasted, complements become available on the application.
Lets have a look at how it works :
From the RTS website mainpage “deuxième écran” section can be found in “Les plus du web”
Or, it’s possible to acess to it directly following this link.
How does the RTS “deuxième écran” looked like for today’s 19:30 ?
Want to know more about Christian Varone topic ? The second screen gives you more elements.
The second screen doesn’t only proposes texts, but also graphics (for the elections periods for example), videos, pictures galleries, and all wich supports the web can provide.
A video made by the RTS about the “deuxième écran” at the moment of it’s launch :
Playing with Second Screen
In December, the RTS will launch it’s new general culture game “Les Imbattables”.
The game itself isn’t very innovative (teams composed by a kid and a senior try to answer questions in a quiz). What’s new is the possibility for the viewer to answer actively to the questions on a tablet, trough the Second Screen. As the question is displayed on the TV screen, it appears also on the tablet with the possibility to answer to it.
RTS future game “Les Imbattables” will use since December 2012 the Second Screen technology.
Usefull, the Second Screen ?
Looking at the swiss example of the 19:30 “Deuxième écran”, it certainly provides some additional informations. The graphics are for example interesting, since they appear quite quickly on TV, sometimes too fast to be analysed properly.
But it appears that most of the content of this RTS Second Screen remains quite light, with just short texts, and the videos simply come from the swiss television website. There are no additional videos coming from youtube or dailymotion, no links : nothing that can really bring the user to new way of knowledge.
The Second Screen is but quite a new born. Some time more should be needed in order to see the concept further developed in the future. The TV broadcasters believe in the future of this technology. As does for example David Wertheimer, president of digital at Fox :
The second screen discussion we’ve been having is just one piece of a strategy that’s all about giving our audiences an opportunity to talk about the shows and share thoughts with the showrunners and the talent. To us, that’s what television in the 21st century is all about.
David Wertheimer, president of digital at Fox, believes in the future of the Second Screen.
Are you using Second Screen ? Or do you want to stay an oldschool « couch potatoe » ?
Before Second Screen: couch potatoes. What’s the best ?
With the rise of the Web 2.0, more and more people get to express themselves on the Internet: by contributing to a personal blog, answering to a poll on a website or making comments on any event the web is talking about. Today, those contributions can be neatly managed by news organisations to make you participate to their news production. And this is the object of this blog’s entry: crowdsourcing the news.
The crowd likes to be involved
Jeff Howe is the man who coined the term “crowdsourcing” in 2006 in an article called “The Rise of crowdsourcing.” At the time he was a contributing editor of the Wired magazine. Now he tends to be perceived as The Crowdsourcing expert. But you may wonder…
What is crowdsourcing?
As Jeff Howe well expressed it, crowdsourcing is a process of involving the public, the crowd, into a task by an open call. And this process if often made through a website. The definition could include many sorts of calls, indeed. To a large extent, crowdsourcing can be applied to solving a scientific problem, as the company InnoCentive started to do in 2001, or as IStockphotos managed in outsourcing the task of photographing an event to a voluntary crowd instead of hiring a professional photographer for instance.
Crowdsourcing takes many forms. But one thing makes it unique: it empowers the crowd. As the crowd represents different brains, different competences, it can be even more creative, efficient, innovative and influent than a single man working in his office on a task he has no grasp into.
How news organisations make the most of it?
In the context of Journalism, you can well imagine that the journalist and the news organisation one can work for were primarily the only gatekeepers of news, and you were waiting for them to be informed. If there was a place for you to communicate with the newspaper, there was the “letters to the editor”, and not many more.
Today news organisations have their websites. Moreover, if you give a closer look to them, you will notice they even make a space for you to act and communicate. Not by solely adding comments. There is more!
In England, the BBC has launched Have your Say ; in the USA, CNN opened iReport. And the Swiss news organisations are not the last: The RTS has Vos infos and The 20minutes has the Lecteur-Reporter’s platform. All fell in the new trend. They all let you the chance to be part of their work, or in other words: now the news need you.
As a million of events happen across the world, reporters and journalists cannot cover them all. This is where the audience is powerful: it can improve their coverage.
When terrorists set off a series of bombs on buses and subways in London, who produced the most riveting images and sound bites? The passengers and their cell phones.”  When an accident occur next to your home, or on your way to work, you are the first witness of the event and no professional reporter could catch the same tension you were able to grasp when it happens.
With a single photo, a video, a short message, you can make a newsroom get up. You can even make it change its editorial agenda.
For Bernard Rappaz, Editor in chief at the RTS in Switzerland, crowdsourcing makes a news media quicker than before. Using Twitter, Facebook, and their crowdsourcing tool on their website, the members of the newsroom can compete with the news agencies they are sometimes dependent on. As Mathieu Coutaz confirms himself: it allows the staff to be the first on the scene and to be always closer to the stories that interest the people their work for.
Mathieu Coutaz is the content manager for 20minutes online in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. The 20minutes is The daily newspaper distributed in Switzerland and this, for free. Its platform “lecteur-reporteur” has been launched in 2006 and the newspaper rewards any contributions that it eventually publishes on its web. What is most, “50% to 70% of the contributions that are selected go on the print edition” Mathieu Coutaz explains. And he emphasises one fundamental point that cannot be neglected: your photos and stories go through a process of verification before getting anything done. “When verified, the contributions of the audience can influence the editorial agenda on the temporal and hierarchical aspects. If it has to be treated before another news, and if the story is worth being published at the top of our agenda, then of course we do it.”
Crowdsourcing does not ask readers to become anything more than what they’ve always been: eyewitness to their daily lives.
In that sense the news organisations save their first role of gatekeepers: the readers don’t write the stories, they only contribute to it: the final decision of its treatement and broadcast still lies in the professional’s hands.
Crowdsourcing at risks
In an interesting article, Darren Gilbert warns that “crowdsourcing can be as advantageous as it can be dangerous.” Although readers are willing to contribute to the news, some are able to get a journalist on the wrong track. He takes the example of a recent scandal that occurred in the United States: a company named Journatic published news gathered from the public. And there were actually wrong!
In Switzerland, all the news platforms I discovered ask for the name and mail address of the contributors, in order to be able to get back to him/her. A mail address can be fake, indeed, but in any case, Swiss news organsations do the verification before publishing, which can avoid some serious faux pas.
To cope it all, crowdsourcing may well bring the public and the news organisation closer than before. It may establish a new relationship between the public and the news media: a trust that could have been lost. But it still needs to be well used in order not to lose what crowdsourcing is for journalism: a relevant tool to make the crowd part of the work, for a better and substantial result.
I am now turning to you
Have you ever contributed to the news of your local newspaper?
What do you think of the crowdsourcing concept regarding journalism?
And to go further…
A new trend in crowdsourcing is for journalists to use special crowdsourcing platforms to gather the information they couldn’t find from their places, such as Ushahidi‘s platform, specialised in mapping crowdsourcing information.
The TED talks also got into the crowdsourcing concept, here is a talk held by Paul Lewis about the impact of crowdsourcing the news for investigative journalism.
And to be always up to date with the last seminars about crowdsourcing and journalism, have a look at the European Journalism Center’s website, it’s worth it!
By Céline Bilardo
 Howe, J. 2008. Crowdsourcing: Why the power of the crowd is driving the future of business. 1st ed. USA: Ed.Crown Business. p.212.
I don’t have an iPad nor children, for the moment. However during my random train path, in a queue or watching popular videos (lolcats, babies, puppies), I couldn’t miss the fact that many mini-humans already owned an iPad and were very comfortable with it. It seems natural in their small skilful hands, like they have been using them forever: scrolling, zooming, switching applications and so on.
This scene seems more and more natural for me but,
- What implications does it have on the education of the kids at school and at home?
- How does this technological tool reshape education?
- What are the advantages and the downsides of “Professor iPad”?
This is a vast controversy subject and still currently debated. Blogs articles unleash parent’s passions, which are always very reactive when it comes to their heirs. My purpose is not to defend the iPad invasion in the classrooms or to cry wolf but to give an overview of the possibility of an interaction between traditional education and a virtual one.
Mummy, can I have iPad for breakfast please ?
Amazing isn’t it? These kinds of video are blooming on the net for the delight of our zygomatics. What to think of the intrusion of the iPads in our home? A New York Times blogger, David Pogue, has already asked himself: iPad or not ipad that is the question? In his article “A parent struggle with a child’s iPad addiction” the journalist questions his son’s addiction (in his definition of an addiction) for his iPad. After analyzing the benefits and the dangers of the interaction between his son and his tablet, Pogue concluded as follow:
For now, I’m trying to live by the mantra, “Moderation in all things.” As long as iPad use is part of a balanced diet of more physical play and non-electronic activities, I think my little guy will probably be O.K.
The article gave rise to no less than 947 comments…
Following the impact of the post, David Pogue got interviewed on that subject:
So, a key seems to be parental mediation between the kids and the tablet, which is also recommended for television, video games, telephony, internet access and so on.
The pedopsychiatrist Pierre Delion explains, in an interview, that the traditional games shouldn’t be replaced by screens. However, he doesn’t deny the importance of digital tools in our daily routine. He argues in favor of a support of the parents in the children’s discovery of the virtual games so they could understand the relationship between the real and the virtual. Children with communication problems or anxiety could also find a more comfortable relation in the virtual games than in the traditional ones. Professor Delion reminds us that :
Un enfant ne s’éduque jamais tout seul et l’iPad à mon sens ne doit pas être laissé aux enfants avant 9 ans. N’oublions pas que cette tablette reste un portail vers Internet.
The solution would be found in a balance in the private educational environment. The educational games participate in the development and in the creativity of the children. However, time spent with the iPad has to be clearly limited and controlled by the parents. So the relation between the children and the tablet does not fall into an addiction. In addition, Pierre Delion underlines the fact that the interactive games do not improve young children intelligence.
Daddy, can I take my iPad at school?
According to Apple, the iPad seems to be the revolution that the education was waiting since Plato’s Academy, revealed by this official video:
iPad is showing up in peoples’ lives all around the world. Now, when we set out to create the iPad, we set out to create not just a new product, but a new category. Tim Cook
It is obvious that this video shows a 100% positive record of the arrival of theirs tablets in the classrooms. It is shown that the iPad can be used from the maternity to the university. Everything is a matter of application(s). At each age its applications. But what evidence is there of this? Some studies have already addressed the issue.
One of the main studies was carried for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, a textbook publisher. The aim was to compare the performance of two groups of children at the Amelia Earhart Middle School in Riverside, California. A control group used the traditional Holt McDougal Algebra 1 textbook, while an experimental group used iPads with an interactive version of the same coursework. According to The Economist, at the end of the year: 78% of pupils using the interactive text scored “proficient” or “advanced” on the California algebra test, compared with only 59% scoring likewise with the standard textbook.
Students’ interaction with the device was more personal. You could tell students were more engaged. Using the iPad was more normal, more understandable for them. Coleman Kells, principal of Amelia Earhart Middle School.
Moving textbooks to mobile devices will reinvent learning. Marita Scarfi, CEO of digital-focused marketing agency Organic.
However, the major downside has been enlightened: the cost. The Apple iPads are still a $500-plus investment per unit. Funding is still a problem, particularly for public schools, explains Christina Bonnington for Wired. She says that one of the solutions would be sites like DonorsChoose.org which can provide funds for schools. Anyway, the cost shouldn’t stop us from
thinking education in that way.
The first iPad summit this year supported that of point of view. As a young student present at the summit reported: participants gave all their attention to a single piece of technology and how it might be applied in the realm of education. Tony Wagner, Ph.D. Harvard professor, highlighted the themes of the conference:
We must change the framework of education to reflect what our students need in the world today. Tools like the iPad allow educators and students to be creative, flexible, and innovative in ways never before seen. The same-old-same-old approach in education has only been driving the failure of the American educational system. If we want different results, we need to do something different.
Three main conclusions emerged from this First iPad Summit:
- iPad is simply a tool and not the magical, miracle object that will innovate education by itself
- iPad in the classroom must be linked with professional development
- iPad in education must be more than a replacement program
Bye bye Candy shop, Hello Apple store!
What are the educative applications? There is a certain numbers of applications destined to teach, develop, train, create and so on. Most of these apps have a recreational side which can transform the learning process into a less painful and boring experience for the children. From the most rudimentary to the serious Khan Academy, the Apple store proposes numerous applications for all ages, free as well as charged. Most of these apps work on the logic of a serious game: software that combines a serious intention, like pedagogical, informational, communicational, marketing, ideological or drive with fun. The vocation of a serious game is to make the serious side attractive with an interaction, rules or possibly with play goal.¹
Switch off your iPad, it’s time to go to bed now !
To conclude, the iPad isn’t a magical solution nor will it replace the contribution of a teacher. However, E-learning may allow developing certain abilities in children who are in an environment where the virtual is increasingly present. It’s central that children learn how to use the tools that they will find later in their studies or in their daily life/routine. Like David Pogue reminds us, the secret is in moderation. The iPad summits will certainly improve the knowledge, in a collaborative aim, of the utility and danger of this esthetic tool. The cost can clearly be a barrier to the spread of that product. We shouldn’t forget that education is profitable new market as well as a good way to attract future customers.
Even if there is still a lot to do and to develop around the perspective of e-teaching, I wish all the best for the collaboration between the teacher and the “Professor iPad”.
Education needs you !
read more: http://www.ipadpd.com/blog.html
1: Wikipedia, http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeu_sérieux