Nice article on some of the academic uses of Twitter which I found out about after reading a blog entry on Twitter from Lindsay Jordan.
The article by Dave Parry says:
I thought I would explain how I use it, specifically for academic related uses, and teaching.
Includes a really interesting observation on the way that learners used Twitter for classroom chatter.
The first thing I noticed when the class started using Twitter was how conversations continued inside and outside of class. Most of these conversations were not directly related to class material, but many were tangentially related. Because the students had the shared classroom experience when something came up outside of class that reminded them of material from class time it often got twittered. This served as a reinforcement/connection between the material and the “real world.”
The whole article is well worth reading if you are wondering about the academic benefits of Twitter.
In case you are still wondering what Twitter is…
One thing about Twitter is that you need to “do it” to really understand it.
Many of these ideas would also work for Jaiku (and in some cases with the threaded commenting could work better).
I have always been disappointed with the battery life. My original intention was to use the UX1XN as my main conference computer, my first attempt was at the JISC digitisation conference in Cardiff back in 2007.
It’s small enough to be unintrusive, unlike a laptop which can be a bit of a barrier, it has two cameras which enable me to send images to Flickr or take short video clips, and the keyboard is usable unlike the fiddly mobile phone type split keyboard of the Q1 Ultra. You can also use it without needing to put it on the table or on your lap which makes it ideal in the conference hall or break-out room environment.
However as I said at the beginning the battery life is the downer, I only really get about an hour and half from it, and this means that it won’t last the day at a conference.
So recently I ordered the extended battery for it, which should make it usable and hopefully last the day at a meeting or a conference.
I have therefore been practicing using the keyboard, which is quite thumbs orientated, and have managed to get a reasonable speed using it.
I wouldn’t want to write a long blog entry (like this one) on it, but for entering URLs or posting tweets or jaiku postings, I think it will work just fine.
Now of course what works well in the conference means that it would work equally well in the classroom or lecture theatre or workshop as a communication tool for learners.
Alas Sony no longer produce the UX1XN in the UK and though available from some suppliers still, generally you would need to get another UMPC if you were going to provide them to learners.
Excellent blog article on though Twitter is winning the battle in the numbers game, Jaiku will win the war once Android starts shipping.
What if Google where to build Jaiku into Android as the standard phone Address Book? As soon as Android devices started to ship, Jaiku (whatever form it takes in the future) would gain hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of users rapidly.
Personally I much prefer Jaiku over Twitter, the RSS and the comments allow for me a much deeper richer experience, more importantly as well it allows for interactivity much more easily than Twitter. This for me is why Jaiku has more potential for e-learning than Twitter.
However, ever since Google bought Jaiku, sign-ups have been restricted, let me know if you want an invite, and there have been quite a few 504 errors with Jaiku slow and unresponsive at times.
Hopefully with a day off tomorrow for Jaiku (what am I going to do) Jaiku will get even better and more reliable.
Follow me on Jaiku, though as you might expect I am also on Twitter.
I demonstrated Jaiku at ALT-C and then sent a good hour out of session taking to a English Literature lecturer who was very interested in using Jaiku (or Twitter) to enhance a session on discussing a book.
The book was set in a cafe, and he wanted the students to go to a cafe and then post their observations and discuss the book whilst drinking in a cafe.
Obviously you could do this face to face (difficult in a cafe to find enough chairs) likewise you could use a moodle discussion forum (such as this one), however one of the strengths of using something like Jaiku or Twitter was that the students wouldn’t need a wireless laptop, all they need is a phone capable of SMS and what student doesn’t have a phone these days?
Those of you who follow me online (or just plain bump into me online) or have read this
blog before will know that I am a fan of micro-blogging and specifically Jaiku.
So I read with interest today that Google has bought out Jaiku.
Exciting news: Google has bought Jaiku today. What does that mean? First and foremost, we’re of course continuing to support our existing users. So fear not: your Jaiku phone, the Web site, IM, SMS, and API will continue to work normally.
Interesting that Google went for Jaiku and not Twitter. Twitter has certainly had a lot more press than Jaiku, maybe it was a price thing, maybe it wasn’t.
What is also interesting is that Google already own a similar service, Dodgeball!
I do feel that micro-blogging has real educational potential, if not for learning, certainly for administration or even marketing.
Alas one of the side effects of this purchase is that…
That said, new user sign-ups have been limited for the time being.
Existing users will still be able to invite their friends
So if you know me and have been thinking about joining Jaiku, fear not, want an invite let me know.
Earlier, back in July, I blogged about Web Worker Daily which had a nice article on how Facebook could be used to support your work. Well they’ve just published another excellent article on how you can use Twitter in the workplace.
For those of you who still wonder whether it’s anything more than inane stream-of-consciousness, consider these ways in which Twitter can help you professionally.
Though I do have a Twitter account, I much prefer using Jaiku which is a similar micro-blogging site, and all eight ways can also be used with Jaiku. Jaiku also allows you to add RSS feeds which makes it even more useful and you can create channels which will make it very easy to add micro-blogging to an event or a conference.
I can be found on both Jaiku and Twitter, why not give it a try.
news and views on e-learning, TEL and learning stuff in general…