Using Google Goggles in mobile learning projects

One of the lesser known free Google services in our experience is Google Goggles. Specially in it’s lastest release (Version 1.7) it has received a few enhancements that make it very useful for some mobile learning applications

Scanning of barcodes

Google Googles will scan most standard barcodes and provide information on the product scanned.

Here is an example from the Google Mobile Blog:

Let’s say you’re reading a magazine article you really like and want to share it with your friends. Just point Goggles at a part of the page, and instantly find a link to an online version to share immediately or read again later. You won’t even need the entire article in the frame. Goggles will also pull up more information from pages around the web where that text is mentioned, so its easier to learn about what you’re seeing.

Text recognition

You can use Google Googles to take images of printed text and have the result converted to text using OCR (Optical Character Recognition). Whil the results may vary our own test have shown good results on newspaper and magazines.

To download Google Goggles you can scan the QR code below

Google Goggles are currently available for both Android and iOS phones (just install via Android Market or Apple App Store. See http://www.google.com/mobile/goggles/ for further details.

Useful software for practical mobile learning

Since a fair bit of my time is spent working and researching in the field of Mobile Learning and there is not a lot of recent  listings of Software useful in practical m-Learning implementations I have compiled the following list from my bookmarks and Software I commonly use for these purposes. This list tries to represent currently usable applications not applications in the development stage.

Rather than writing this in the form of  a blog entry I decided to keep this as a live document within Google Apps that people can contribute to.

Please consider adding to this list if you find some useful mobile learning software missing. You can also subscribe to the changes to this list via RSS. You can also download this list as a PDF document.

Working with Second Life in an educational sense

With the help of SL resident Moggs Oceanlane I was able to get our first Sloodle implementation off the ground. Being a bit new on the SL concepts (Moodle as such is my daily life) I found the technical process quite easy, but was struggling with SL terminology a little.

Sloodle Screenshot
Sloodle Screenshot

Looking forward to getting some hands-on experience of the use of SL in an educational setting. I can see the practical applications – looking for some pilot projects to put them into ‘reality’ once we have got all the technical side tested thoroughly.

Open Educational Resources (OER)

One of the few new (for myself in my working life at least) bits of information I have picked up on here at ICL is Open Educational Resources (OER). That’s probably because it is outside of my usual area of expertise (which is more the technical implementation of e-Learning), but I found the concept never the less interesting and very similar to the Open Source Software concept which I have been working with for quite a while.

From what I have been picking up at the conference here (and a few
quick searches) there are quite a few projects and UNESCO seems to be particularily active in this arena. One problem that I can see is the fragmentation of this concept and a lack of any delivery standards. But as with all innovations that are in the Early Adopter stage there will have to be a process of consolidation once the dust has settled. From the prospective of a user and potential contributor (as well as for myself in integrating this with various LMS solutions) this obviously creates the problem of which one of the available projects to choose at this stage.

Major projects:

If I have missed anything obvious please let me know. I think these projects deserve some support.

Resources:

Stephen Downes – Models for Sustainable Open Educational Resources

As per usual I would be interested in finding out which educators in Australia use and feedback from practical use of these resources.