The Strength of Weak Ties

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Wednesday, November 29, 2006

I have seen the future and this is it

Have you seen the new version of Edutopia-the new online version of the magazine that you can actually turn pages...?

Imagine the implications...

It's the new textbook, and if I was still in the classroom, I would want my textbook to be like this. Right now.



With this textbook, you can:

Turn the pages
Zoom in and out
Make notes on content
See the magazine page (or textbook) thumbnails for navigation
Bookmark pages
Email content to others (or classmates)
Enable special effects-swoosh for page turning (can you imagine that 30 times!)
Single or Double page view
Search
Post content to favorites, to Digg, and get this, del.icio.us. This has del.icio.us integration...

What I'd like to see:

YouTube integration, even perhaps United Streaming (there you go, Hall)
Hyperlinks to other resources
Wikis for collaboration
Blogging capability for reflection, writing, etc.
Podcasts from authors, famous scientists, poets, politicians (well, maybe not politicians)
Podcasts on chapter reviews, important topics for downloading into an MP3 player.
Simulations/animations
Discussion boards and chats-maybe even some IM.
Cell phone/PDA version

Imagine something like this in a 1 to 1 environment.

David Warlick had a great quote-I don't recall where I heard him say it-but it was something like this: "What happens when my textbook won't play with me?"

Well, play time is almost here.

5 Comments:

  • At 9:49 AM , Blogger Dan said...

    I agree, this is a very powerful view of a future publication delivery mechanism!

    The inclusion of direct hyperlinks show it is no longer a "flat" presentation of the information, yet it is presented as such!

    This will be an interesting tool to demonstrate the nature of publications that are electronic vs. those that are paper-only!

    Thanks for the heads-up, Dave!

     
  • At 10:23 AM , Anonymous Tim Lauer said...

    I don't see the coffee cup ring on the cover :-)

     
  • At 4:50 AM , Blogger David Warlick said...

    Too Cool for School! Now if Steve Jobs would just make an Apple Tablet Mac, I'd be set...

     
  • At 6:40 AM , Anonymous Mike said...

    I'm not so sure I think this will fly. When word processors first came out, people would hand-write their documents and then transfer what they had written into the computer because they didn't feel comfortable composing in software. But we slowly got used to it and I would venture to guess that most people compose directly on the computer now. As to reading a publication, I've heard many people complain - but not as much in recent years - that they don't like reading directly on screen. But I think that's changing as people get used to absorbing information in a new medium.

    So why should we try to make web pages act like magazines? If I want to turn the pages of EduTopia I'll pick up my hard copy, sit in my chair and read it. I don't necessarily want the same experience sitting at my computer.

    To put it in Shoshana Zuboff's words, this feels more like "automating" than "informating."

     
  • At 7:43 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks so much for your comments on NXTbook Media. I was particularly happy to see you've noticed our permalinking feature as it's one of the "NXTbook only" features currently on the market.

    Also wanted to address your outstanding wish-list:

    YouTube integration, even perhaps United Streaming (there you go, Hall)- WHILE WE DON'T HAVE DIRECT INTEGRATION WITH YOUTUBE, FLASH VIDEO CAN BE DIRECTLY INTEGRATED WITHIN THE NXTBOOK.

    Hyperlinks to other resources - LIVE HYPERLINKS ARE STANDARD

    Wikis for collaboration - VERY COOL - WE'RE NOT THERE, YET.

    Blogging capability for reflection, writing, etc. - DITTO

    Podcasts from authors, famous scientists, poets, politicians (well, maybe not politicians)- HAS BEEN DONE WITH A NXTBOOK.

    Podcasts on chapter reviews, important topics for downloading into an MP3 player. - DITTO.

    Simulations/animations - YOU CAN DO IT.

    Discussion boards and chats-maybe even some IM.- 07 UPGRADE IN THE WORKS.

    Cell phone/PDA version - DATA PROVIDED TO PUBLISHERS ALSO HAS A BACK-UP XML FILE, SO THE PUBLISHER CAN PUSH IT OUT HOWEVER THEY LIKE.

    As you can see, the NXTbook can handle most of these wishes from a technical standpoint today... We're mostly in the process of getting publishers to embrace the technology enough so that they feel comfortable optimizing their content via rich media. (Edutopia's a great example of a publisher wishing to push the envelope and I think you'll see them doing more cool stuff in the coming year.)

    You didn't mention RSS, but you can also subscribe to a hyperlinked Table of Contents in your RSS reader. You'd get an update when a new issue is published including permalinks to all of the Table of Content items... Not sure if Edutopia is publicizing the feed, but if you'd like it.. just let me know.

    If you'd like to see your wish-list demonstrated, most everything you discussed can be found in "The Best of NXTbook," located here: http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/NXTbook/bestofnxtbook/index.php

    Thanks again for mentioning NXTbook Media!

    Macus

     

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