For our graduate school coursework, Rebecca and I gave a short presentation on how the Nintendo Wii will change the future of education. Currently, school systems across the nation are paying thousands and thousands of dollars for very expensive interactive whiteboards. A quick look at the Tags used with this post will give you the names for some of the more common varieties.
What follows is the outline used in the presentation.
The Nintendo Wii and the Future of Education An Exploration of New Technologies to catalyze School Reform
- Educational Uses Now
- Physical Education
- HOPSports – The future of kid’s fitness?
- HOPSports in Schools Video (3:22) from HOPSports.com
- Wii Remote Projects with Johnny Chung Lee
- Web Site: www.cs.cmu.edu/~johnny/projects/wii/
- “Tracking Your Fingers with the Wiimote” Video (4:08)
- “Head Tracking for Desktop VR Displays using the Wii Remote” Video (4:46)
- “Low-Cost Multi-point Interactive Whiteboards Using the Wiimote” Video (4:04)
It’s only a matter of time before someone takes advantage of Johnny Chung Lee’s software to produce a very inexpensive interactive whiteboard. In fact, you can do this yourself if you are so technically inclined. The Wiimote costs around $40 US, the pen is cheap too, and the software is freely available. Compare that cost to the thousands of dollars companies are currently charging for these displays and you can quickly see why they are marketing their products so heavily. They know that the technology is changing and they have a limited amount of time to turn a profit.
So, what is my advice for a company, organization, or school system interested in purchasing this technology? Wait. If you must have this functionality now in order to stay competitive then don’t invest your money in the expensive wall displays. The smaller hand-held pads and tablets give arguably similar experiences at a fraction of the cost. My own school system uses InterWrite Pads extensively with a few Smartboards here and there.