Sunday, October 07, 2007

So Close.... Wait, I Think We Have a Connection

There has been much talk about how the "World Is Flat," I have blogged about it so many times, that many of you may be saying.... 'not again!' I have read stories from others about their experiences connecting to others around the world, but I really thought those were exceptions and not something that normal humans with basic tools could do. Wrong! This past Thursday, October 4, during our Global Communications team meeting, we were able to connect in real time via Skype video conference with our colleague Geoff Hinman. Geoff was our Global Communications teacher in 2006-2007 and at the end of the year decided to take a positon at the American Overseas School of Rome in Italy for the next two years. We were able to have a full chat with Geoff for about 45 minutes from his apartment in Rome to the Video Lab at Capuchino. We started the plans to connect his Creative Writing class in Rome to our Global Communications students in San Bruno. We will have the students in California in class at 8AM connecting via Skype to the students in Rome at 4PM on a few occasions during the spring semester. Other than the Skype connections, we will be working collaboratively on a wiki to pull out social issues of interest to both groups of students.

Just as this happened, I was cruising the blogosphere and came across a few other things that fix nicely into the new paradigm that is now starting to take shape. Karl Fisch on his blog posted about a collaborative project that is asking people from around the world to collaborate on a project "to use the power of film to promote better understanding of our common humanity." The project known as 'Pangea Day,' will collect films from around the world to develop a 4-hour presentation on May 10, 2008 that will be video conferenced to 6 cities around the world.

Another development was the use of live video chat as a television show. Will Richardson, Steve Dembo and David Jakes did a "2.5 Cubs fans in a Bar" hosted the show using a site called '' I think the ability to broadcast to a group and allow them to comment on the presentation in real time is very valuable. Think of the travel around the world it would save. I am hoping to be able to ask Will about this when he is in Monterey next month for the CLHS/CUE conference. live stream from Chicago last week. Check out the archived copy below.

And if all of this wasn't enough, UC Berkeley is putting the entire lectures entry and mid-level courses on YouTube. (I'll be writing soon about how to download YouTube video if it is blocked in your school.) Check out the UC Berkeley channel, here!

Do you have ideas on what you would like to do with video to connect with others? Did you know that you can make videos without a video camera. Capture video with your cell phone and use bluetooth to send it to your Mac, or on the PC side, upload to your service provider and download back to your desktop. With most providers you can get 15 seconds of video per clip. Video field trip reports.... video homework.... share with anyone or everyone! There is definitely more to come...

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