Academics: Get To Work!

John Dvorak provides an interesting article at which suggests that there is not nearly enough sociological research on the culture of blogging and digital social networks (thanks for the tip Keith).

There are far too many understudied phenomena bubbling on the Net, and it’s time for academia to wake up. Valuable time is being wasted.

I agree. And, what about the greatly misunderstood social trend that is MySpace?

Ironically, the blog search engines reject the blogs within the MySpace and Live Journal systems, so they’re mostly unexplored, like a jungle in Borneo. This is despite the fact that there are more people doing online diaries and “blogging” on Live Journal and MySpace (over 50 million) than in all the rest of bloggerdom combined, worldwide.

I agree! Incredible studies relate to teen popular culture, the potential for social networks, technological and media literacy, teen dating and sexuality, teen identity and socialization, etc. are just waiting to be discovered. If I only had the time … uggh. Now back to that dissertation.

And that one thing that comforts me about all of this is that when I do complete this major step in my life, there will still be many interesting studies left to conduct. We truly live in an exciting time and I love my field more each day.

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Multi-Touch Interaction Experiments

We’ve recently been exploring the world of Sympodiums and SmartBoards in our Faculty. As this blog post states, things could quickly evolve in the area of touch-screen technology. And supposedly. Apple has the patent for these interactions (show below)? Some are predicting the introduction of a Tablet Mac in the near future. Neat stuff.

Update: While thinking about the future of display devices, I noticed this. Ohhhh … the possibilities.

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Neat stuff.

A picture cloud is the easiest way to make a photo come to life. By using a picture cloud you can turn still photos into images that spin 360° by uploading images you take around an object with your digital camera. Whether it’s houses, cars, toys, or pets, picture clouds are easy to create and can be used anywhere. Picture clouds are helping give depth to the web, and best of all – picture clouds are free.

I have yet to experiment with this and haven’t looked at it very closely, but this may have some potential for the classroom. Do check out the examples or take the tour.

Second International Enhanced Learning Strategy Showcase Of The Eastern Townships School Board

The Second International Enhanced Learning Strategy Showcase Of The Eastern Townships School Board will be held March 27-29/06. This looks interesting, and I will likely attend to learn more about this initiative.

In March 2006 take the opportunity to visit with the only district in Canada that has a board wide one-to-one laptop program! This exciting project is in its third year with over 5600 laptops deployed throughout the Eastern Townships School Board in Magog, Quebec. (Only 1.5 hours from Montreal & 30 minutes from the Vermont border) This innovative project combines the integration of technology on an unprecedented basis supported with extensive professional development.

This combination has created a unique learning environment that has increased student achievement, empowered teachers and promoted excellence throughout. Last year’s showcase saw educators from across North America visiting classrooms and taking part in this innovative redesign of traditional learning environments.

See more here:

I am also considering attending “iPods in Education: Improving Learning With Mobile Devices” (sponsored by Apple & McGraw-Hill Ryerson) to be held March 2/06 in Toronto. However, I’m a bit worried that it will be too much of a sales-pitch from two very proprietary-minded companies.