Day One – Tuesday May 17th, 2011

4:10-5:10 pm

AR for Experiential Learning

Production Track  (Great America K – First Floor)

Christopher Stapleton (Simiosys) – Mixed Reality Experiential Learning Landscapes: Applying Theory to Practice. Positioning Mixed and Augmenting Reality to Transform Experiential Venues for Education, Entertainment, Training and Marketing.

Take a leap across time and space to experience a future NASA lunar colony; watch prehistoric predators stalk captive wildlife in Florida science museums; experience the perfect storm of terrorist attacks within a DoD training scenario; be attacked by space aliens from the latest blockbuster at the local mall.  Beyond the sensory novelty value, Mixed and Augmented Reality is positioning itself to revolutionize the models of educational efficacy, economics and experience across diverse venues of learning in the home, at work, enhancing museums, infiltrating schools and even penetrating mainstream marketing.  The unique capabilities of Mixed Reality to augment limited physical spaces and allow experiences to transcend the walls of the venue, MR can significantly expand the breadth, depth and value of distributed simulated experiences.  This expands commercial opportunities for developers, sponsors, operators and publishers.

With projects funded by NASA, US Navy, National Science Foundation and the Department of Education, Simiosys is developing commercially viable experiential learning landscape models that work to make radical MR innovations not so disruptive. The key is applying multiple emerging theories of learning, innovation and storytelling to work together.  These innovations integrate the next generation trans-disciplinary talent, technology and techniques that fit within existing limits of operational feasibility.

Partnering with science centers, virtual schools, universities, marketing campaigns and training programs, we are taking the applied research process directly into real world venues that become laboratories in human experience.  Day-to-day engagement with the general public and operational staff provide  invaluable real-time insights to overcome the obstacles of adoption and leverage opportunities of rapidly emerging enabling technology.

Rob Rothfarb (Exploratorium) – AR for Experiential Learning in the Exploratorium

What are some of the challenges of developing interactive exhibits and science inquiry activities using mobile AR?  Rob has been creating some prototypes using popular platforms to explore the possibilities of using AR to engage different audiences at the Exploratorium in San Francisco.

Steve Snyder (Franklin Institute) – Sharing the Experience of Science

A central tension within the design of science exhibitions exists between the philosophical commitment to hands-on kinesthetic exploration of phenomena and the need for interpretation of that hands-on exploration. The ideal science exhibit device provides a meaningful primary and sensory involvement with phenomena while secondary support—graphic panels, animations, etc.—assist the learner in reflecting on the experience. AR technologies hold the promise of integrating the experiential, interpretive, and social dynamics of the learning experience. Through AR, the primary encounter and secondary interpretation could merge and generate a singular integrated experience. Or it could all be nothing more than a novelty, a toy, a solution in search of a problem.

Jeremy Roberts (Director of Technology, PBS KIDS Interactive)

AR Learning and Kids: Discovering the Obstacles

At PBS KIDS Interactive, helping kids learn through fun and age-appropriate game-based play is what we do, and we see augmented reality playing an increasingly significant role in the educational impact of game-based learning for kids.

While the potential of AR-based games is exciting, PBS KIDS Interactive knows from experience that any activity that doesn’t meet a kid’s expectations quickly risks abandonment. That’s why we’ve delved head first into usability and appeal testing of AR games with kids 6-8.

There’s no better way to learn how kids react and interact with AR games than to watch them do it, and we’ve discovered that hidden usability obstacles abound.

In this talk Mr. Roberts will share testing session video, highlight some key take-aways that will shape the upcoming round of AR games from PBS KIDS Interactive, and help you get a firsthand look at the world of kids and AR.

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