Monthly Archives: February 2009

Why Build Virtual Worlds?

Why build a virtual world? Philip Rosedale, founder of the popular virtual world Second Life talks about the desire to build and create, and about how virtual worlds make that possible in ways that were not previously available/plausible.

Though I certainly don’t agree with all of Rosedale’s arguments about the merits of virtual worlds, he raises some interesting points. If he’s half-right, we’ll see more and more of these types of tools in the next few years.

13 minute presentation, followed by 15 minutes Q & A:

This video is from the TED talks, check out their website for many fascinating presentations on a wide range of topics related to technology, entertainment, and design.

March Workshops at Academic Computing

This March, Academic Computing is offering several workshops on a range of instructional technology topics. Most sessions are only 50 – 75 minutes long, and they hopefully can fit into your schedule.

Workshop topics include:

  • Copyright issues for faculty, and finding copyright-free images, audio, and video
  • Working with digital images for Macintosh and Windows
  • Designing and building effective presentation in PowerPoint
  • Preview of the digital video editing tools iMovie and MovieMaker
  • Customizing SPARK courses

To view the full schedule and register online, please visit: 
http://www.umass.edu/accoprod/workshop/register.php

Interested in training, but none of the scheduled times work for you? Contact our Instructional Media Lab at 545-2823 to set up a one-on-one consultation.

Spring 2009 SPARK Numbers

Requests for SPARK courses continue to roll in, here are the numbers so far for the semester:

Number of SPARK courses: 1,173
Number of instructors in SPARK:  849
Departments and programs represented: 91
Number of students in SPARK:  20,205
Number of student “seats”:  60,969  (the average student has SPARK for several courses)
Largest course in SPARK: 485 students