Vine adds messaging | The Verge

Vine has launched its own video messaging system today, which offers users a way to communicate beyond the comments that appear beneath videos. Employee Jason Mante teased the feature in a Vine earlier today, and now the update for Vines mobile apps has arrived. Vine says its the most significant update since the app launched early last year. Vine messages, or VMs as Vine calls them, can be sent to anyone — theyre not just limited to existing Vine members.

via Vine adds messaging in biggest update since launch | The Verge.

Five Smart Ways to Deploy Tablets: Harvard Education Letter

The overarching goal was to increase students’ and teachers’ productivity and efficiency. “What we were looking for was portability, communication, and transfer of written material back and forth in a pretty seamless and easy way,” says Roslyn Superintendent Daniel Brenner. “Our vision of tablets is as a utility tool.” — via Harvard Education Letter.

Interesting read. I especially agree with the final two points in the article, “Prepare and Empower Teachers” and “Focus on Changing Classroom Practices” … what I find compelling is that I had this very conversation at today’s our University SteerCo. meeting when the question of if deploying tablets to students is a good idea.

My response was, “it depends.” If you can provide layers of pedagogical support, align curricular tasks, and provide solid faculty development you can be measurably successful. I also feel it is easier to go all the way with deployments like this — if you could outfit a campus, I feel it would be easier to challenge the status quo and truly move the needle. If everyone is in the same boat, the goal has to include finding real value in issuing the devices — faculty creating and offering digital texts, tablets being used as active tools during class, specialized apps selected to provide access to content, simulations, and collaboration, and so more. The only way, IMHO, to do something like this well is to take a systems approach and address all parts of the value chain. At the end of the day, this has to be part of the goal …

Successful tablet deployments are connected to broader efforts and motivate concrete changes in classroom instruction, educators note. Helping teachers change the way they teach is crucial, and won’t happen quickly or on its own.

With Hackathons Taking Center Stage, The Coming Transformation Of The Computer Scientist | TechCrunch

Some really interesting questions here for education to consider. One thing is certain — computer science as a major is as a dynamic and diverse field today as it ever was. My overwhelming thought now is just how cool it has become to be part of this emerging culture. How we react to it is very important and something we should pay attention to here at Stony Brook and at other institutions. Looks to me like University of Michigan is embracing it.

Hackathons, though, are just one part of the coming transformation of computer science education. Once a theoretical subject to the chagrin of many undergraduates, computer science students are increasingly finding outlets like hackathons, open source projects, and startups to learn the applied skill sets desired by industry – and are getting the job offers to prove it.Yet, this rebuilding of the pipeline for new engineers poses deep questions about the future of educating software developers. What is the proper role of universities and degree programs? How should the maker culture, which exists at the heart of these projects, connect with the traditional education mores of research universities? And at a time when access, particularly for females and underrepresented minorities, remains a deeply salient issue, how can organizers ensure that programs lower rather than raise any barriers to new entrants?

via With Hackathons Taking Center Stage, The Coming Transformation Of The Computer Scientist | TechCrunch.

Wearables Market Heating Up, With More Than 17M Bands Forecast To Ship This Year | TechCrunch

I wear a Fitbit every day. Before that, I had a Pebble Smart Watch … before that I used my iPhone to track my steps. Honestly, I use these devices for one reason only — to help me reach my daily goal of 10,000 steps. I am, however, looking forward to when these devices move from dumb to smart and allow me greater functionality — it is inevitable. I wonder what it will mean to us in education? Will we try to take advantage of these devices as we have with each of the other disruptive technologies to hit the street? I would assume and would love to spend some time talking about that with some people.

The wearables device market is still in its infancy but it’s growing fast — with more than 17 million wearable bands forecast to ship this year, according to a new forecast by Canalys.It reckons 2014 will be the year that wearables become a “key consumer technology”, and is predicting the smart band segment alone will reach 8 million annual shipments, growing to more than 23 million units by 2015, and over 45 million by 2017.

via Wearables Market Heating Up, With More Than 17M Bands Forecast To Ship This Year, Says Canalys | TechCrunch.