Blog Archives

Being in Bremen!


I have spent the last four days at the EU LearningLayers, hosted by Bau ABC, a technical training college specialising I the building trades. A very different model to the UK, in that the training is completely embedded within the workplace, and funded by large employers paying a ‘training levy’. In the first year apprentices ‘live’ in at the colleges for 12 weeks, then 6 weeks in year 2 and then specialist weeks in year 3.

For advanced training

For advanced training

Thanks to Melanie Campbell for an amazing tour. We also had a BBQ and watched the German football match with the apprentices – a fun evening for all!

Pekka Kamarainen, an wonderful EU colleague and linguist in 17 languages! Explains here what the aims of the Bremen meeting are:usingheavyequipment

http://www.pontydysgu.org/2014/06/learning-layers-goes-to-bau-abc-rostrup-part-4-how-are-we-trying-to-develop-our-work-further/

and post meeting has written an overview of the day 2 learning café conversations here:

http://www.pontydysgu.org/2014/06/what-has-learning-layers-experienced-in-bau-abc-part-2-workshops-to-create-medium-term-roadmaps-in-topic-tables

I really enjoyed facilitating the workshop about new partners and scaling, with @grahamattwell; the consortium are starting to gear up for the middle-to-long-term, and the tools are being embedded in very different ways and contexts.

myworkshop4The Help-Seeking tool project I am working on has its third co-design workshop in September, looking forward to keeping up with this tool, even when I get back to the ‘day job’. Scaling of technology is really complex, and the Layers project is starting to unpack some of the key issues.  I am working with colleagues to produce a ‘Diffusion of Innovation’ internal report , and this will feed into our ALT-C conference talk : “Bridging the ‘missing middle’: a design based approach to scaling” ALT information available www.alt.ac.uk. In the meantime I need to prepare my return to my ‘day’ job…


As part of the LearningLayers meeting in Aachen, we were invited to visit the RWTH Augmented Reality ‘Cave’. Only words to describe the experience –  this is what it would be like on a real ‘magic flying carpet‘! Incredible being able to fly around the whole statue and it’s surrounding geographical area – what a great project recreating this lost artefact. The importance and significance of the loss are reported in the Unesco Report (2013)

“Enclosed between the high mountains of the Hindu Kush in the central highlands of Afghanistan, the Bamiyan Valley opens out into a large basin bordered to the north by a long, high stretch of rocky cliffs. The Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley comprise a serial property consisting of eight separate sites within the Valley and its tributaries. Carved into the Bamiyan Cliffs are the two niches of the giant Buddha statues (55m and 38m high) destroyed by the Taliban in 2001, and numerous caves forming a large ensemble of Buddhist monasteries, chapels and sanctuaries along the foothills of the valley dating from the 3rd to the 5th century C.E.”

http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/208

The technical report on the project can be accessed here:

http://www.icomos.de/pdf/ICOMOS_Publikation_Bamiyan.pdf

And an excellent thesis around the concepts underpinning this type of technology:

http://www.vision.rwth-aachen.de/people/aljosa-osep/thesis_doc.pdf

Communication EU style


This week I have been reflecting on my EU project sabbatical and the ways in which communications work.

So its bi-monthly report time on the EU project. My expectations of huge amounts of documentation that would take weeks to compile not realised! Obviously can’t share exactly what each partner has done, but all of the updates were simply added onto a page of the EU project wiki. I am starting to find my way around the different communications for different contexts.

Our Aachen theory camp all set up and organised – all done! Led by scientific officer Tobias Ley and a shared agenda developed once again via shared documents on the wiki, and each contributor then adds a wiki page behind the link. Professor John Cook, Researcher Dr Patricia Santos-Rodriguez and I are contributing and have put together our work on Vygotsky and scaffolding – last week was a ‘week with Vygotsky!’ All the ‘theory’ documents were collated into one pdf and circulated, and a DOODLE poll used to agree a time for a pre-workshop discussion.

The LearningLayers Open Design Library featured in my webinar talk last Thursday – available from the ALT Repository at: http://repository.alt.ac.uk/2344/ Thanks to Patricia Santos-Rodriguez for writing the case study.

The LearningLayers newsletter is now available with news, events and updates on the App development: http://goo.gl/wlFQig