Dr Who – and handheld technology

I had reason to visit my friendly general practitioner (doctor) recently, and as usual we had a bit of ‘IT talk’ as part of the consultation. A multi-talented man, Dr W. writes software-programs for medical practitioners. Proud owner of a new Apple Mac at home, his latest project is putting case notes/diagnoses/treatment tutorials onto handheld devices, that trainee doctors will be able to consult as they learn on the rounds.

This put me in mind of the post from CIO blogger Ben Worthen, who wrote about mobile devices in the corporate work environment.

I have partnered with a new site http://www.urFlick.com that will soon launch to provide training material and instructional videos for our industry to people’s mobile devices.
We already allow our sales team to view inventory, place orders, check customer credit and history via their Blackberries. Next is to utilize urFlick.com and have our communication and sales pitches hand delivered to their device.

When I’m in this conversation/reading space, I am frustrated that we haven’t moved more quickly in education (in Australia) to explore just what we could be doing with handheld devices with our students.

Perhaps iPhones in education will push the agenda for us – eventually!

Ben Worthen thinks the iPhone is the single most important thing to happen to CIOs this year, and asks

if the work and the personal parts of your lives are no longer separate why should the devices that you use in those roles be?

I agree. Yes, I know you will tell me that podcasting has had a big push – but somehow this seems just one (almost gimicky) part of an overall need to refocus how we use our technology tools. But that’s a teacher thing. I have a sneaking suspicion that what kids really want is a pocket-sized combo gadget, and teachers had better start pushing the boundaries of our thinking.

In December 2006 FutureLab released a new Handbook , Learning with Handheld Technologies. The Handbook tells us that pedagogical approaches and teaching styles must accommodate a more autonomous learner role for good use of handheld devices. The trouble is the use of handheld technologies in the classroom may present difficulties for those teachers who do not fully understand their potential in a learning and teaching context.

We have much to learn in this area.

Getting back the start of this post…. TV shows like Doctor Who are expected to be available for download later this year after the BBC Trust gave initial approval to the BBC’s on-demand plans. Under the proposals, viewers will be able to watch popular programmes online or download them to a home computer up to a week after they are broadcast.

3 thoughts on “Dr Who – and handheld technology

  1. Pingback: iPhones in Education « Maya Han’s Blog

  2. Pingback: iPhone in Education at iPhone in Education

  3. Pingback: iPhones in education at Aus Mac Ed

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