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Learning on Mobile Devices

by werner on March 23rd, 2008

As Anita has already blogged, I am learning how to program an iPhone using learning content on an iPod Video.

The learning content consists of a dozen of video sequences of slides and demos, along with the voice of the presenter. The sequences are between 20 and 60 minutes long.

Although the videos were clearly not made for the small 2.5 inch iPod Video screen, they work surprisingly well.

Learning content on iPod Video

I had the best experience with a recorded presentation about the «Fundamentals of Cocoa». Apparently, this presentation was made in front of a large audience. The presenter assumed that not everybody in the audience would be able to see all the details on the screen, so he talked the audience through the demos. If he wanted to move the attention to a specific window on a screen, he grabbed it with the mouse, and wiggled it, before he started to work with it.

In this presentation, a number of code sequences needed to be entered into a code editor. Rather than entering these code sequences life, which is quite error prone during a presentation, he copied and pasted them from a secondary screen – which was not visible to the audience. This way, he did not only reduce his error rate, through the speed up that he gained, he had more time to talk about what he was doing.

All in all, for my first experience with using an iPod as a learning tool, it was quite pleasant. In two weeks time, I learned how to program an iPhone in the Train on my commute (a train ride taking about 25 minutes time).

If the learning content is done properly, the iPod Video is a quite a formidable learning tool. It is much better to handle in a train than a laptop, which can’t be used when the train is crowded.

The only drawback about the iPod Video is, that it gets very quickly full of sweat smudges if it is kept in the hand for some time. I wish Apple would have used a more sturdy material for the case of the device.

Some people looked at me strangely, when I was watching into the tiny screen during the whole time. But I can bear that. 😉

From → Personal

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