USAID created the mEducation Alliance over six years ago in order to capitalize on the increased availability of mobile devices in the developing world. The use of these new portable communication tools can become powerful forces in establishing twenty-first century educational systems no longer bound to legacy systems from the past. The mEducation Alliance is committed to reducing barriers to access appropriate, scalable, and low-cost mobile technologies to help improve learning outcomes in formal and non-formal education across all levels, especially in low-resource and developing country contexts.
The Alliance is working to empower evidence-based decision making through an explicit focus on the evaluation of education technology interventions. Our community is full of enthusiasm and innovative ideas, the Alliance serves to refocus our collective efforts towards impact.
Representatives from around the developing world (Asia, Africa, Central and South America) will be gathering in Washington, D.C. next week, October 18th-20th. To find out more about the full agenda for the week, please visit http://www.meducationalliance.org/
Thanks, Skype. Dancers at the Tisch School of Arts at New York University can now connect with dance studios in South America, Europe or Japan. NOW is the name of this internet-based innovation that allows dancers to perform duets, as well as ensemble pieces, with partners from around the world.
In setting the “stage” for a duet, a student technician makes the Skype call – a bit of logistical suspense with every ring – before the dancers gave their names, locations and local time. NYU choreographer Pat Catterson wants her dancers to take their material phrases that sometimes wander into whimsy – and make them their own, a process that Skype facilitates and subtly alters. Occasionally, the physical virtual pairs moved in unison, their synchronization loosened by technological glitches as well as by idiosyncratic timing.
NOW “performances” (75-minute installations) have been described as one of those the-way-we-live-now kind of works, both homespun and high tech, with elements familiar and unsettlingly novel. Whatever it may be or eventually become, NOW is certainly an innovative example of how technology can support artistic collaboration on a global scale.