Friday, January 13, 2006
The BETT show, supposedly the worlds largest show on IT and education. I can testify; it IS big. The usual tradeshow madness, this one takes place at Londons olympia hall.
It’s a weird experience: it’s the place where all the teachers that are computer literate and really try to push the envelope, and it’s completely packed with companies that develop educational solutions that use computers in all kinds of clever ways. So it’s like, computers are a natural tool in classrooms, and kids can benefit tremendously from using their laptops, mobile phones, blogs, game consols etc. as an integrated part of learning.
And yes, I totally believe in that. But the BETT show is like a parallel reality. We all get it here. But if you look at the reality of the school that my kids attend it’s a very different story – a story where classrooms and the way kids learn is pretty much the same as when I was a child - way back in the industral society.
A few findings:
- Smartboard, the leading manufacturer of .. well, smart boards, told that they have sold 375.000 boards worldwide so far – 125.000 of those in the UK.
But first of all, Apple was showing i-life 06. To me it’s a work of genius. It’s a pleasure to sense the intellect behind it. The integration of podcasting/RSS subscription and the continued seamless and totally, wonderfully easy integration of all media... it’s exactly what we’ve hoped for, but haven’t quite seen.
A lot has been written about the transition to Intel processors, and, yes, it adds speed and probably decreases incompatability, but to me the really significant part is the vision of the new i-life. It takes Apple to a new level, way ahead of the pack.
More on this later. Gotta get some sleep.