Tag Archives: history

What’s a stereogranimator?

What’s a stereogranimator  you ask? Well, I used it to make this 3D animated gif with photos from the archives of the New York Public Library.

GIF made with the NYPL Labs Stereogranimator - view more at http://stereo.nypl.org/gallery/index
GIF made with the NYPL Labs Stereogranimator

The instructions are sparse so I’m not sure if my picture is supposed to vibrate so violently – but what a concept! I read about this on the iLibrarian website –

The NYPL’s Stereogranimator lets users create and share animated GIFs and 3D anaglyphs using more than 40,000 stereographs. Users can browse through the NYPL’s collection of dual photos and then combine them to make a 3D image. This project was inspired by Joshua Heineman’s project that he started four years ago. The San Francisco-based artist was using the NYPL’s collection of stereographs to create animated gif images for his Cursive Buildingssite. His project went viral and the Library took notice and began collaborating with him to create the Stereogranimator.

Go ahead, make one yourself.

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What do you know about vodka and Matryosha dolls?

The origin of words and the culture and history behind them are fascinating. Jenny Luca sent me to the Words of the World website today and I’ve been having fun learning about my Russian cultural background.

From Nazi to Chocolate, words play a vital role in our lives.

And each word has its own story.

But where do they come from? What do they mean? How do they change?

The University of Nottingham School of Languages and Cultures does a brilliant job of unpacking words in a very engaging way. It’s difficult not to go through all the videos in one sitting when the experts present their knowledge in such an accessible way. It makes me want to study at Nottingham University. So much more interesting for students to learn in video form, I think, and learning from experts in this way would be something which could entice reluctant learners or just bring knowledge through a face and voice, whetting the appetite for more.

Check out the YouTube channel, join the Facebook group, follow @wordsnottingham on Twitter, or follow the blog of the creator, film-maker Brady Haran.

My question is – will the word bank increase? I hope so because this learning site is very addictive.

Ever wondered about the history of Russian nesting dolls?

You might also like to have a look at The University of Nottingham’s YouTube channel.

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Filed under 21st century learning, language

The story of the button demonstrates the power of social networking

Looking through my Flickr contacts’ photostreams, I noticed some photos of a button. Intrigued, I read a lengthy explanation, a short, true story, which I wanted to share. This is bigsumo‘s story.

A man sent an email via Facebook on a Monday morning in August. He was not sure if the email was being sent to the right people. He mentioned that whilst mowing his lawn in Corinda, Brisbane he uncovered a button. He notice some writing imprinted into the button. He decided out of curiosity to google it. He discovered that ‘TJ Moles Charters Towers’ referred to a man who was a tailor in Charters Towers. This was obviously his branded button to advertise his wares.

The man also discovered an old forum request on the family history site Rootsweb, from a couple looking for information on this person. Unfortunately, their listed email was no longer valid. He tried searching Facebook and discovered some names matching the description and within the hour sent a querying email looking for a connection.

An hour later that email from Facebook was answered by me. My wife and I were the couple looking for information on TJ Moles as he was the father of our adopted grandmother (that’s a whole other story) who herself was born in 1898 in Charters Towers.

I responded with great suprise at such an out of left field email. I explained our connection to the button’s owner and was very greatful to take him up on his offer to mail the button to us on the Sunshine Coast. To which he replied that he would pop it in the post on his way to work. The next day, Tuesday I was suprised to see, delivered to me at work, an envelope containing a button stamped with TJ Moles Charters Towers.

This button has travel long, somehow winding its way from north Queensland to Brisbane to be found late in 2009. It potentially started it journey somewhere between 1880 – 1940 (when TJ Moles passed away) when he ran his tailor shop (best guess).

More amazing is the very fast journey this button has been on in the last 24 hours, thanks to google and social networking! This button, though small is our only physical connection with our adopted family from that time. It’ll take pride of place in our family history collection!

What a great story! How else could you have discovered the button’s story without the online connections and collaboration? Another example of the power of Flickr.

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Filed under flickr, Interesting, internet, networking, photos, technology, Web 2.0

Go underwater with Google Earth 5.0

Google Earth 5.0 has 2 new features. The first allows you to go back in time. You can go back in time to compare historical imagery of buildings, and you can compare historical photos of environmental features. observing changes to the landscape of our planet. The former will be of interest to history teachers, and the latter  to science teachers who will be able to use Google Earth to show students how climate change is affecting the Earth’s surface. What better way of learning than seeing for yourself.

This new application opens up exciting possibilities. When you click on the clock icon in the Google Earth 5.0 toolbar, the historical imagery time slider will appear and allow you to change your view to older imagery.

The Google Earth site includes a video which gives one of the examples of historic imagery, showing the  transformation of sports arenas in Philadelphia.


The Google Earth blog explains its exploration underwater:

But starting today we have a much more detailed bathymetric map (the ocean floor), so you can actually drop below the surface and explore the nooks and crannies of the seafloor in 3D. While you’re there you can explore thousands of data points including videos and images of ocean life, details on the best surf spots, logs of real ocean expeditions, and much more.

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Filed under 21st century learning, Education, photos, teaching, technology

Do you turn to Twitter when you’ve escaped death?

planecrash-22-december-2008-009

Photo from The Guardian UK

Interesting to read this article in The Guardian news blog.

Plane crash survivor texts Twitter updates

What’s the first thing you’d do after narrowly avoiding disaster

The first thing Mike Wilson did after surviving the Continental Airlines 737 crash when his plane slid off the runway in Denver was use his mobile phone to update his Twitter community.

A dedicated microblogger or …? Whatever he is, he has now made history as the first person to tweet a plane crash directly after an accident. Twitter might be the up and coming way to communicate after trauma. I think psychologists may eventually decide that sharing directly after a traumatic experience decreases shock or at least somehow alleviates stress. What do you think?

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Capzles: time captured in a story

Capzles is a new way to combine videos, photos and mp3s into rich, multimedia storytelling.

capzleobama

Until I’m successful in embedding the widget, here’s the link to a capzle on Obama. 

Capzles promises to ‘claim your memories; tell your stories; travel through time’, and they do that eloquently. The Obama capzle traces Obama’s life sequentially, and includes photos, and video and transcripts of speeches. I can definitely see the value of capzles for teaching subject matter, but more than that, kids would enjoy creating capzles to present research. This application really does have the potential to capture what’s essential and interesting, and package it neatly for viewing.

It’s free and simple to join. You can browse capzles created in popular categories, eg. history, art and design, film and movies, people and life, vacation and travel, etc. Under history, for example, you’ll find ‘history of Apple computer’ and ’75 years of the popemobile’. It’s a great way to share travel experiences, or present biographies in an engaging format. Or encapzlate your old photographs. Oh, and of course, it’s another great sharing tool. Although there isn’t a huge amount there at the moment, I expect it will expand its archive very quickly.

Thanks to @grosseck for this.

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Filed under creativity, Education, media, Web 2.0

Military blogs? An authentic voice for the history class

military-blogs

 

Make no mistake, military blogs will be part of American History.  There are hundreds (if not thousands) of blogs already archived online, published books, the Library of Congress has a Veterans History Project, students are studying military blogs in the classroom, thesis papers being written, and so much more.

Milblogging.com is the world’s largest index of military blogs – searchable by a variety of attributes. Milblogging.com currently has 2,172 military blogs in 41 countries with 6,762 registered members.

Some recently added blog posts include: life as a military wife; patriot missive; four fans of freedom; salute to your service, and many more.

Amongst other things you’ll find personal diaries of Vietnam war veterans. Here’s a unique perspective of history, an authentic story for the history class. What is it about these blogs that add an extra dimension to learning?

What is significant about this particular wartime diary is the fact that this soldier arrived in Vietnam on Jan. 23, 1968, one week before the Tet Offensive, which engulfed South Vietnam and is considered by many to be one of the turning points of the war. Assigned to Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV), this young soldier had a front-row view of one of the significant events of the United States’ long involvement in South East Asia.

 

This is a goldmine of personal accounts that give an insight into history which would otherwise take much longer to be published.

Unfortunately, to show up in the history books, usually years and years have to go by first, so you might have to wait a little while before you see the writings of 365 and a Wakeup or Wordsmith at War in a History Book. 

 Read in the Washington Post how blogging became therapy for Captain Danjel Bout:

When Capt. Danjel Bout lost three comrades in a single day while on an October 2005 mission in Baghdad, he stifled his grief and remained focused on what seemed to be the longest day of his life.

The next day, he let it out.

 Blogs come from many perspectives – Afghanistan frontlines, Iraq frontlines, US army/navy/airforce, marine corps, military veteran, civilian, military spouse, military parent, foreign national military, etc.

 There is a wealth of material for teachers of English, History, Geography, and many other subjects, especially with a little imaginative application.

 




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