CIE staff discover innovative technologies at SXSW
3/17/2010From March 12-16, Austin, Texas played host to almost 16,000 techies from across the world attending the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival. The annual conference sprang from the larger SXSW music and film festival in 1994. With each year the event has drawn larger and larger numbers of Web developers, designers, programmers, gamers and educators all looking to meet with each other and explore cutting edge technologies. Dana Deloca and Jennifer Knott of CIE attended this year’s event and offer the video recap above.
“Attending SXSW has become a valuable opportunity to discuss technology strategies with other university staff from the Austin area,” said Dana. She continued, “There were many innovative trends being discussed and demonstrated. It was especially interesting hearing about the uses of social networking and location-based programming (such as Gowalla and Foursquare); what’s happening in Web accessibility; and, perhaps most importantly for CIE, distance learning and online education. All of this information helps us as workers to better our campus.”
Jennifer attended a seminar entitled “Higher Education in the ‘Free’ Era.” The seminar proposed that universities find new ways for students and faculty to interact—through online forums, blogs, social networks and wikis. The seminar also pointed to the need for more expansive collaboration between universities to nurture an atmosphere of information sharing. “The speakers suggested that sharing between universities can help teachers to think more broadly, more contextually in their teaching” said Jennifer. “By thinking contextually, teachers create a more student-driven and focused curriculum. This, in turn, encourages students to ask more questions. Asking questions—and being willing to fail—creates innovation.”