Tag Archives: steve jobs

Presenting, presenting, presenting – Weeknote #33 – 18th October 2019

Photo by Alex Litvin on Unsplash
Photo by Alex Litvin on Unsplash

Monday I was undertaking the final preparations for some presentation training I am delivering on Thursday. This included printing some postcards as well as designing activities.

I took advantage of Pixabay to find images for my postcards, this is a great site for images, and due to their open licensing, you can use them in a variety of ways. Though I often attribute the site for the images I use, it’s not a requirement, so if you use them later or forget, it’s not really an issue.

Tuesday I was off to London for a meeting to discuss some future collaborative work that Jisc may undertake. What are the big challenges that HE (and FE) are facing for the future. One comment which was made I thought was interesting, was how challenging it was to get people to think about long term future challenges. Most people can identify current issues and potential near-future challenges but identifying the really big challenges that will impact education in the medium or long term, is really hard. Part of the challenge is that there are so many factors that can impact and predicting the future is thus very hard.

Reminded of this challenge of predicting the future, this week with the imminent anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall thirty years ago. Watching the haunting nuclear war TV film, Threads in 1984, I had no idea that the Cold War was every going to end, it looked like it would last forever and we would always be living under the threat of nuclear war. Five years later on the 9thNovember 1989, the Berlin Wall fell. I remember watching it on the news in my student accommodation, thinking, what’s happening, how is this happening? Back then we didn’t have social media, mobile phones or the web, so the only way for news to filter through was by television and newspapers. A year later we had the reunification of Germany. A year after that the USSR was dissolved. Continue reading Presenting, presenting, presenting – Weeknote #33 – 18th October 2019

Think Different

Steve Jobs for Fortune magazine

Steve Jobs has spoken and written at various times about design and innovation.

What can we learn from people like Steve Jobs and companies like Apple?

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

Apple are an innovative company in terms of taking existing products and ideas and turning them into success stories. There were mp3 players before the iPod, but the iPod has become the ubiquitous music player. However how many out there remember the Cube? Though thought as a wonderful piece of technology design, however as a product success. There was also the iPod HiFi which failed miserably.

When we talk about innovation in education there is often an assumption that innovative practice has to always result in success. However innovation in education (as with technology and business)  means taking risks and management need to be aware that innovation is risky. However management are not the only group that need to know this, learners need to be aware of the risks of innovation too. They need to be aware but also be aware that the process of innovation is one that contributes to their learning and does not impair their learning.

Another quote from Steve

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

For many people the reason they like products like the iPad the iPhone is not the way it looks or even the functionality, but the way it works for them and meeting their needs. I know that for example that the Galaxy Tab has a camera, but the user interface on the iPad and the way it works, works for me.

When we design courses and educational materials, too often we focus on how it looks and how it makes people feel. We maybe should be concentrating on the way it works.

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.

Both of these quotes from Steve demonstrate the risk you take by (just) asking customers and building what they want, and the importance of showing end products.

It is important that we listen to the Learner Voice and the student surveys that organisations like JISC and the NUS have done. However we must ensure that these feed into our course design and delivery rather than lead them. Learners come to institutions to learn, if you ask them what they want then by the time you have got there, they’ll want something new and different and you will need to start again. Likewise  if we can show learners course design and delivery they may decide that this is more what they need than if you just ask them. Two examples come to mind, if you ask learners before the come to college whether they want to use wikis and discussion forums, unless they have used them before I suspect that most learners will say no. Show them how wikis and discussion forums can be used for learning and they may then want to use them. One question though, how do we design our courses and delivery systems?

WWDC 2010 Keynote

Today is Steve Jobs’ Keynote at WWDC. It will be on around 6pm here in the UK. There is no live feed and I expect to follow the key announcements via Twitter or Engadget.

Traditionally we get to hear about new products and new software.

As might be expected the web is rife with rumours about what we will hear about. I’ll let you Google them to find what they are.

I am expecting to see a new iPhone, and though I am pleased with my iPhone 3GS will be thinking about upgrading to the new one if it does more than the 3GS does. Key new features for me are not so much the multi-tasking that we will see in iPhone OS 4.0 as that will work on the 3GS, but new hardware features. I would like to see a new camera with a better lense. The 3G camera is rubbish compared to the 3GS, but many other phones have much better cameras and I do use the camera on my iPhone a lot. Prior to retirement I used the camera on the Nokia N95 a lot too.

I doubt we will see the portable wifi hotspot that Android 2.2 brought to the Nexus One which is a pity as that is such a useful feature of that phone. Now using it more than ever.

Will be interested to see if there are any details on a new version of OS X and what that will bring to my Mac.

Not long now…

Apple announce new 3G iPhone

Apple announce new 3G iPhone

Apple announced iPhone 3G yesterday in a keynote by Steve Jobs at the WWDC in San Francisco. It will be available in the UK on the 11th July.

New features include:

  • 3G-capable. 2.8 times faster than EDGE.
  • GPS built-in
  • Thinner
  • Better battery life – 300 hours of standby, 2G talk-time 10 hours (as opposed to 5), 5 hours of 3G talk-time (competition is 3 hour 3G talk time), 5 to 6 hours of high-speed browsing, 7 hours of video, 24 hours of audio.
  • Flush headphone jack

Other new features are:

  • contact searching
  • complete iWork document support
  • complete Office document support (now includes PowerPoint)
  • bulk delete and move for Mail
  • save images you receive
  • scientific calculator in landscape mode
  • parental controls
  • language

I wonder if the Keynote (iWork) and PowerPoint support also allows you to show the presentation via an AV cable in the same way you can do at the moment with video and images.

It will be interesting to see also if iWork (or even Office) support includes editing and creating support, or is it just going to be reading, I suspect the latter.

Of course there are also all the features announced when the iPhone SDK was released earlier this year which include:

  • Exchange and ActivSync support
  • Applications
  • VPN

I do like the fact that an educational institution can put apps on the iPhone (or the iPod touch) without needing to go through the Apple checking process and the iTunes App store.

Downside is that you now need to activate the phone in store, so now unlocking just became a lot more expensive as you will have to buy into a phone plan as well as the phone.