Getting Started with Augmented Reality

Sarah Phillips attended the Informa conference last year, including a specific workshop on Augmented Reality (AR).

If you haven’t played around with some AR yet, now is the time to get started. It has been the topic of a couple of Emerging Technology Trials in 2010 and 2012.

A good app to try is Aurasma Lite which is free for iPad and Android. What you can do is create an image (or layer) to overlay onto a familiar object. Sarah demonstrated this to her colleagues here at eWorks with her business card, which she overlaid with a portrait photo of herself when pointing the device’s webcam at the card:

eWorks business card belonging to Sarah Philips, showing a picture of her on the right side

Sarah’s augmented business card

The clever part about this is that your layer gets stored in the cloud and you are provided with a link for sharing your layer with others. If you’re interested, you can find instructions on how to create your own AR layer with Aurasma.

Here is a list of other AR apps Sarah found to play with:


3 Awesome Presentation Tools

PowerPoint and Keynote are not the only options for creating awesome presentations. There are some great tools out there waiting to be discovered. Three of them particularly caught our attention:

  1. Explain Everything is an app that allows you to do a presentation, write on it as you go and record your voice in sync with the slides. This video should convince you:

  2. Google Presentations works as part of Google Docs (now Google Drive); and as such you can create presentations online either by yourself or as a shared activity. You can easily import from PowerPoint and share your presentation to your class or audience via a simple link. Even better, it is completely device interoperable. Wonderful.
  3. Haiku Deck is a free iPad app that ensures you get more creative with your presentations. It focuses on the story rather than just adding text content to slides. It helps you use fewer words and combines these with images from the bank in Haiku Deck itself or from your own collection.

M-learning Standards Update

A computer and an iPad on a desk

BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)

With the proliferation of mobiles, tablet devices and e-readers, teachers and training organisations delivering e-learning have a myriad of delivery possibilities.

In addition, the emerging phenomenon of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) in training and education is adding a layer of complexity to how learning can be achieved.

VET M-learning Standards assist e-learning practitioners to keep ahead of current m-learning developments. The revised and updated standards can now be downloaded from the New Generation Technologies for Learning website, together with a practical guide for teachers.

Funded by the National VET E-learning Strategy, and based upon research commenced in 2006 and reviews undertaken in 2008, 2010 and now 2012, the revised documents include:

  • recommendations on technical standards to support the creation, storage, discovery, delivery and usage of mobile enabled content;
  • findings and recommendations on m-learning good practices in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector – from educational, technical and standards perspectives;
  • information about new ways of utilising m-learning in VET,¬†identified in the 2010 and 2011 Emerging Technology Trials; and
  • advice for teachers, trainers and content developers seeking to create, select or use mobile learning content and technology for teaching and training, with consideration to the educational purposes it may support.

Mobile learning can be defined as learning that is facilitated and enhanced by the use of digital mobile devices that can be carried and used anywhere and anytime, such as mobile phones and tablet devices. Challenges specific to m-learning are related to the use of devices with reduced screen sizes, lack of standard input devices (such as a mouse and keyboard) and reduced computing power.

For more information, please visit the New Generation Technologies for Learning website and follow VET_Estandards on Twitter to receive updates and be notified of media releases.

Photo: byod, by howard61 on flickr.