Open Thinkering


Month: October 2015

Weeknote 43/2015

This week I’ve been:

  • Mysteriously well as everyone around me succumbs to autumnal colds and other sniffles. I’m tempting fate here: I may be struck down just before we head off on holiday next week!
  • Running the last Computing Club of this half-term for some Year 4 pupils at the local school. We used the new version of Mozilla Thimble to remix the Keep Calm & Carry On poster.
  • Sending out Issue #191 of my newsletter, Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel. It featured links relating to: social mobility, ChromiumOS, and time management mistakes. This month’s newsletters are in association with City & Guilds TechBac. November’s sponsorship is still up for grabs!
  • Accompanying my children to their first piano lesson, which took me back to my childhood.
  • Releasing Episode 27 (‘Kenyan Packing’) of the Today In Digital Education podcast, my weekly podcast  Dai Barnes. This week’s episode was shorter due to Dai’s trip to Kenya. We discussed the Nvidia Shield TV, whether you should post to Medium, why Twitter is ‘dying’, GitHub pages, operating systems, and time management mistakes.
  • Finishing reading  The Open Organization and submitting (related) #OER16 conference proposals for a presentation and a workshop with Laura Hilliger.
  • Finishing reading  The Open Organization and submitting (related) #OER16 conference proposals for a presentation and a workshop with Laura Hilliger.
  • Collaborating with Bryan Mathers on various things, including NFC enabled business cards (see last bullet!) and talking with Mark Martin about various things.
  • Pushing through some more Open Badges-related work at City & Guilds in my role as Chair of the Open Badges Advisory Group.
  • Finishing a short report for Sarah Horrocks at London CLC relating to some of their upcoming work. I’m going to be working them a bit more in future as I perform a kind of critical friend / consultant consigliere role.
  • Moving back into our house after three weeks of living at my parents’ house while building work has been done on our home. Its like a different house.
  • Looking after my children on Friday instead of having a ‘Doug day’ as it was a teacher training day at their school and my wife was starting a bit of consultancy of her own for Think Physics.
  • Writing:

Next week I’m working for City & Guilds at home on Monday, before heading off to Gozo on a family holiday for a week. Thankfully, my mother will be around to check on the builders as they finish the work on our loft conversion!

5 ways to use NFC-enabled business cards

Bryan Mathers and I like to mess about with new technology. So when we saw launch NFC-enabled business cards we thought we needed some of that action.

They arrived, with some great designs from Bryan, earlier this week. We put together this quick video when at City & Guilds HQ in London yesterday:

(no video? click here!)

We’ve got some ideas around issuing Open Badges via NFC prompted by this technological development and Tim Riches efforts at MozFest last year.

More soon!

Open Badges location extension

I’m delighted that, thanks to some help from Kerri Lemoie, the Open Badges extension for geolocation that I proposed is now available for use. It was simple enough to do the initial coding following the following the example using JSON-LD but Kerri (and Nate Otto)

Details of how Open Badges extensions work can be found in this post I wrote for DMLcentral. It explains how version 1.1 of the specification allows for great things through extensions.

At the time of writing, the following extensions are now available:

  • Apply Link — provides a URL allowing potential badge earners to apply for an opportunity specified by a badge issuer.
  • Endorsement — allows a third party to publicly acknowledge the value of a badge designed, assessed, and issued by a particular issuer.
  • Location — allows for the addition of the geographic coordinates associated with a badge.
  • Accessibility — allows for the addition of content for people with disabilities.
  • Original Creator — provides a way to track the origin of a badge when one organisation creates it for another.

I’m really pleased with all of this and delighted that the Open Badges ecosystem has a bright future!

Image CC BY-ND Bryan Mathers

If you’re interested in designing badge systems and think I might be able to help, please do get in touch via my consultancy, Dynamic Skillset. I have reduced rates for third sector organisations such as charities, non-profits and educational institutions.