Another Zotcast?!

Posted by matthew on Apr 26, 2006 in technology

Today I discovered there’s actually another Zotcast, at a site called MacZot, which is giving away one of my favourite Mac Applications, SubEthaEdit by CodingMonkeys. I also learnt that SubEthaEdit gets its name from HHG2TG, also a favourite of mine:
“It’s from Douglas Adams’ a Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. The reporters of the guide submit their entries using the SubEthaNet (interestingly enough the Ethernet wasn’t yet available in time of writing of the HHGG) – therefore we named our editor SubEthaEdit in honor of Douglas Adams’ great work.” How weird is that?


Online Role-plays Podcast

Posted by matthew on Apr 25, 2006 in education, educause, research, roleplays, technology

Role-play has long been used as an educational tool to provide learners with a way to understand the real world. Since the advent of the World Wide Web, online role-plays have become widely used in Australian tertiary institutions to provide students with authentic learning opportunities. This presentation profiles two examples of online role-plays developed at the University of Melbourne: DRALE Online, in which final year law students form legal teams in a dispute resolution process, and The Campaign, a role-play about journalists and political advisors following a political campaign. To see the whole podcast, visit The Zotcast.


My first Podcast

Posted by matthew on Apr 25, 2006 in education, technology

I created a podcast of a presentation I did at CARET last week. You can view it on The Zotcast.


"Brainport" turns tongues into eyes

Posted by matthew on Apr 25, 2006 in science, technology

This is amazing. ABC News is reporting that scientists are looking at the use of a specialised device that allows you to see using sensors connected to your tongue. “By routing signals from helmet-mounted cameras, sonar and other equipment through the tongue to the brain, they hope to give elite soldiers superhuman senses similar to owls, snakes and fish.” While the research seems to be focused on military uses, they’ve also found that it can allow a blind person to catch a ball, and might be useful in treating vestibular disorders. “In testing, blind people found doorways, noticed people walking in front of them and caught balls. A version of the device, expected to be commercially marketed soon, has restored balance to those whose vestibular systems in the inner ear were destroyed by antibiotics.” Read more.


Rollercoaster Month

Posted by matthew on Apr 24, 2006 in wedding

A lot has happened since my last post — some good, some not so good. People have been asking me to update, so I’ll try to summarise the biggest news here. Sorry if this post is short, and I hope to post more regularly soon. First of all, we received the extremely sad news that my sister Kirsty lost her baby, Matilda. We felt the distance between Australia and the UK more keenly over that period than we have before, and it was upsetting not to be able to be at the service.

Some good news after that however, when I asked Lotte to marry me and she said yes! The entire story about the proposal will have to wait for now, but it was a wonderful day, and we’re planning for a big engagement party in October in Utrecht, and a wedding about a year later in Melbourne. Mum and Dad then decided they’d push their UK visit forward to May, so we were starting to feel a bit more positive about things. Then more sadness: we got the news that Lotte’s mum is ill and will need an operation in early May, so we’re currently making plans to be in Holland for her recovery. However the initial signs are good, which is a big relief. For Lotte and I, life goes on and we’re both fine and looking forward to Mum and Dad’s visit.