Thursday, August 24, 2006

Final Word

"Everything that has a beginning, has an end." (The Oracle, Matrix Revolutions)

It has been a great pleasure working on the blog for keeping records of what I have contributed to the learning of this course. When looking back at this, I can proudly present these to anyone who is considering using blogs for education.

One final aspect to the development of the learning object that I shouldn't wrap up without mentioning is the citation of sources used. Respecting to the intellectual property of others is an essential element in both teaching and learning. So here's a list of the sources that I have used:

Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation. (2006). http://www.kcrc.com.hk

Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation. (2002). Review of payments to contractors for the West Rail project.

Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation. (2001). The way ahead: West Rail.

Structural symposium (2000). Highways and railway structures.

I would like to thank my partner, Ryan, for all the time and effort on to our work without which my blog would be incomplete.

Hope to see you all in future at another course where we shall continue communicating through blogging!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Final Instructions

How the Learning Object Works

1. Choose a station to START.
2. Choose a station to END.
3. Choose a date on the calendar by using the green buttons.
4. Input the time needed to travel for HOURS and MINUTES.
5. Click on GO AHEAD to proceed.
6. Data is shown.
7. To start over, click on CHANGE STATIONS.
8. Repeat step (1).

For Decision-making

The commuter of the West Rail can use it for planning his/her journey. In the social context, there can be a number of uses for different scenarios:

1. Commuter A is late for work. He needs to decide whether to take the bus or the West Rail to travel from Tuen Mun to Tsuen Wan. So he checks up on the expected arrival time of the next train and the travel time needed to arrive at his destination to decide on which mode of transport to take.

2. Commuter B is on a day off from work. She wants to travel from Mei Foo to Tin Shui Wai to visit the Wetland Park with her family. They also want to avoid the rush hour traffic. So she looks at the train frequency to decide on the earliest time when the rush hour is over.

For Mathematics Teaching and Learning

The idea is to introduce some mathematical and other concepts for primary and secondary students. For instance:

1. The further the distance between 2 stations, the longer it takes to travel (proportionality).

2. Different times of the day will have different train frequencies arriving on platforms (business concepts).

3. Time it takes to travel from A to B (speed).

4. The whole journey from A to B starting from when commuter arrives on the platform, including the time required to wait for the next train.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Final Learning Object





Friday, July 28, 2006

The Prototype: A Visual Conceptual Model for Students and Commuters on the KCRC West Rail Line





  • Students: An understanding of the relationships between distance and time on a public transport.
  • Commuters: A journey planner on the estimated time of arrivals.

(a) A Step-by-Step Guide to Making it Work

  1. Select a station from the 2 lines
  2. Click on “Let's Go!”
  3. Choose the time and date of travel
  4. Information of the results

(b) What More Needs to be Done

  1. Display the stations exactly the same as selected
  2. Adjust the information of results accordingly
  3. Distances between stations to be included in the information of results
  4. Fine tune on the user interface

Friday, July 14, 2006

Reflection (4) - Researching for Final Assignment


It is very easy to come up with ideas. However, to make those ideas into reality is another story. But then there is something in between that process – research.

After deciding on the type of learning object and story-board, the research process proves to be as complicated as using the tools, such as Flash to make it something real. It is during this process that I decided to abandon the idea of using the MTR as the idea behind my device.

Why? After extensive searching in the libraries, the Internet (including its homepage), I realised it was more convenient for me to gain the data I need from the KCR instead. Though some of the KCR data I wanted could not be found, but overall, it was more accessible.

Given the time limitation we have to complete this whole assignment, it would be better for me to concentrate the next stages of the task – evaluate story-board and develop prototype.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Lesson Task: Final Assignment Story-board



1. Finding the distance (km) and estimated time of arrival (min) between any 2 MTR stations.


2. Choosing 2 MTR stations using interactive icons.


3. Then choose one DAY and one PERIOD.


4. Data on the distance (km) and estimated time of arrival (min) will be shown on the user interface.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Lesson Task: Final Assignment Proposal

Proposal outline by Ryan and me:

Topic:

The MTR

Aim:

1. To provide practical value for students to understand mathematical concepts.
2. To offer a visual interactive tool for users to plan their travel needs.

Type of Learning Object:

(a) Conceptual model – to help students realize that external factors can influence mathematical outcomes.
(b) Information object – to enhance the information already given on the MTR homepage in order to be more user-friendly for any user.

http://www.mtr.com.hk

Friday, June 23, 2006

Lesson Task: Learning Object on the Raindrop Shape

Our product by Ryan Yue and me.









http://www.amastro.org/at /w/wrds.html
http://www.islandnet.com/~see/weather/
almanac/arc2000/alm00jul.htm

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Reflection (3) - Digital Stories & Advertisements

While working through the story development process, I found timing the delivery of story to be the most difficult. In all advertisements, the timing is around 30 seconds only. If the intended message cannot be delivered within that period, the audience would lose interest in watching. However, when making my own story, keeping to the 30 seconds proved to be a challenging task.

I then realized the difference between a digital story and an advertisement… I was not trying to sell a product but to educate an audience on a topic. Typically, the aims of an advertisement can be summarized by the different stages of AIDA… awareness, interest, desire, action.

While an advertisement wants the audience to ultimately progress to the action stage (i.e. buying the product), a story would only stimulate the audience to reach just the interest stage (i.e. showing appreciation to story). With this in mind, I made the timing of the story longer to be acceptable because educating someone would require more patience and details given than an advertisement.

But see the following. Would you call it a story, an advertisement or something else?


Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUTk_B9UJkI&search=Brazil%20football%20history

Friday, June 16, 2006

Lesson Task: Digital Story

Here is the football history of Brazil. Created by Ryan and me.

Hope everyone will find it entertaining (especially near the end) as we did making it.


Source: Photos - http://fifaworldcup.yahoo.com
Soundtrack - Ricky Martin's "The Cup of Life"

Monday, June 12, 2006

Reflection (2) - Being Information Literate

Copy right & PlagiarismThough some classmates have already expressed that digital ethics are rather weak in HK, the general population’s awareness to digital piracy has been improved over the past 10 years. Many people now recognize that infringing copy right is a theft crime. However, many people may not necessarily know the exact nature of what constitutes an infringement of copy right. That is, people are likely to have broken copy right laws without either knowing about it or having the intent of doing so. The same can be said about plagiarism.

Daniel has mentioned that, “It is also not always appropriate to even place an image developed by others in your own image creation even with the acknowledgement (for educational purposes) and permission (in particular if you intent to publish and commercialized).” While many of us are aware that when dealing with text for academic purposes, as long as you cite the source, using/borrowing another person’s idea and presenting it as your own is generally accepted. However, if dealing with graphics is something else entirely, then most of us may already have plagiarized. For example, how many of us actually produced the graphics of the earth and sun for our previous task? Did we acknowledge their sources when we presented them in our blogs?

Though many of our classmates are information specialists who educate others on respecting intellectual property, the exact rules for dealing with information legally and ethically are sometimes unclear. For example, when or how is it OK if we copy and paste a graphic that becomes part of a larger display that is genuinely our own work, such as in the earth’s atmosphere task? We may understand the main principle of copy right and plagiarism. But we also need clearer guidelines to avoid stepping on potential minefields.

Digital story tellingThe technological advancement of the Internet has spawned new ways of communication that challenges mainstream news organisations. As shown in the previous class, a group of students can offer their side of the story towards the handling before and after the 9-11 incident in Loose Change on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/results?search=loose%20change&sort=relevance&page=2). These digital story tellers differentiate themselves from the mainstream media because they are seen to have the courage to upset important people that news organizations are reluctant to tell the same story.

When information on the Internet becomes abundant, the reader would need to possess information literate skills to filter out information that have credibility problems from those that are useful. Though what is said on Loose Change does offer an alternative opinion/fact on the US government’s handling of 9-11, one has to have a critical mind of how much is said is true. This critical and yet open mind is also required to what we read on mainstream news and not just digital stories on the Internet.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Lesson Task: The Earth's Atmosphere

My Design Process with Ryan Yue

Step 1 - Sketching

Used 11 sketches on paper to capture different parts of the information.

Step 2 –Preliminary design

Decided to use one slide instead of 10 to represent all the information.

Step 3 – Final design

Made further discussion to refine the preliminary design for final presentation.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Reflection (1) - Creativity and Visuals

Besides the fact that I'm not very technical literate with using software for designing, I do find this course to be fun.

The whole purpose of setting up a blog is that we, as classmates, can learn from each other. I was very impressed with Kelvin Leung's self-introduction powerpoint. Not only is it very easy to understand the information he is trying to tell us, but the actual design itself is very simple - one that is within my capability of designing.

Daniel has already emphasised that this course is not all about technical skills but rather more about creativity. From the case of Kelvin's design, I couldn't agree more with Daniel. In time, I believe my technical knowledge in design will be acquired in the lessons. However, how can I learn creativity? Is creativity something that can be learned at all?

In the last lesson, Daniel had shown that, "Reading and writing became curriculum requirements, but visual literacy wasn’t considered a necessary component of individual’s education," (Lester, 2000). Under this principle, we are only used to communicate our ideas using language and not pictures. But interestingly, the origins of the traditional Chinese character began as simple shapes which looked similar to the actual objects (i.e. hieroglyphic):

These are nouns. But as human communication became more complex, so did the traditional Chinese character development which its repertoire has expanded to include adjectives, verbs, adverbs, etc.

Although Tufte said, "Visuals can communicate complex ideas," it is often easier said than done because we were not trained to use visuals to communicate our thoughts as we are with using language. But nevertheless, from a purely personal point of view, as technology is becoming more widespread to our daily lives, visual representation will dominate the way of how we will receive, remember and retrieve information.

For this lesson's task, I managed to encapsulate about 99% of the textual information but used 10 pictures! The next challenges for me are to represent all that information in 1 picture and to display it using design software. I hope it'll be at viewable standard by the next lesson.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Myself

Feel free to interact with the icons on the photo at this URL:
http://iln.cite.hku.hk/com/1238/users/cbchan/Myself.pps

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Our Class Photo

http://iln.cite.hku.hk/com/1238/PhotoStory1.wmv

Small Talk (1) - Students' Load

What can be done to reduce the weight of students' school bags?

Friday, May 26, 2006

First Message

This is a long day...