Without a Nod or a Wink: Workplace Skills in Interpersonal Computer-Mediated Communication

Pamela Weatherill, Edith Cowan University Part of CW12

Interpersonal communication as a central workplace skill is well established. The skills required to effectively create and maintain these relationships shift however, when the communication takes place via computers (including tablets, laptops and smart phones). Workplaces often struggle with issues around digital communication technology, simply due to a lack of reflective skills building in areas such as evaluation of messages, paralinguistic text construction, reading non-linear messages and more simply developing an effective online voice. In many workplaces relationships are created and maintained with staff, virtual teams, customers, management and suppliers almost solely with text-based computer-mediated communication (CMC). While the use of SMS, chat software, email, discussion boards, wikis and social media are common place for relationship building in both personal and professional settings, there has been little reflection regarding the micro skills required to do this effectively in the workplace. This presentation focuses particularly on the skills sets and micro skills of interpersonal CMC required of tertiary graduates when they enter the workforce.

As part of a larger research project, this presentation focuses on feedback from employers of tertiary graduates across the 17 ANZSIC industry codes, and a review of relevant literature, to establish a model outlining the skills, and micro skills required for effective interpersonal CMC. With the intention being for use by online curriculum developers, the research has culminated in a comprehensive review of the generic graduate employability skills, and parallel skills required by graduate students – or indeed any professional in the workplace.

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Simple Lighting & Show Control with Quartz Composer

Douglas Heriot, University of Wollongong Part of CW12

Live events and installations these days can require many different systems for control.

Individually things like MIDI and DMX are pretty simple, but if you want to integrate these separate systems things start getting more complicated.

In this presentation I’ll talk about some common protocols used for control of different systems (MIDI, OSC, DMX, Art-Net), and how we can work with them on our Macs.
Quartz Composer is a great simple solution to quickly process this data without having to do any programming! It can synchronise & control these systems to do whatever you can imagine, and render live 3D graphics too.

I’ll show how to build some fun demos where MIDI and audio can control lighting and video systems, possibly even with audience involvement through web sockets in modern mobile browsers.


Always on, always connected

David Reid, Charles Sturt University Part of CW12

With the internet evolving rapidly from web 2.0 to web 3.0 academics face a battle integrating technology in the classroom. A significant number of Universities, Charles Sturt University included, are still attempting to address the impact of Web 2.0.

This presentation outlines an experiment in mutli platform teaching and digital integrated student engagement in a first year communications subject, Digital Media, at Charles Sturt University. It will present some provisional findings on the adoption and use of Apple mobile devices and Social Media platforms in T&L. This presentation will look reflectively at the highs and lows of this innovative approach, briefly demonstrating some of the tools and applications utilised in session. It will conclude with responses collected from students prior to their completion of the subject. It will highlight that the approach has been somewhat successful but also problematic in a number of areas.

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Getting started with wearable electronic art and the LilyPad Arduino

Jessica Lethbridge, University of Tasmania Part of CW12

Designed as a gateway into electronics the LilyPad allows you to create anything from practical purposed wearable electronics to wearable art and high fashion. The LilyPad is a platform that allows for the creation of wearable electronics in a way that is easy to use for beginners but still powerful enough for the creation of elaborate, professional projects.

This presentation will provide a background to the LilyPad’s creation, aims and capabilities, then demonstrate how to set up and use the LilyPad using your MacBook or iMac. This will be followed by live demonstrations of what is possible within the realm of wearable art using the LilyPad and MacOSX.


Immaterial material: an exploration of the relationship between physical and virtual during the artists making process

Pritika Lal, Auckland University of Technology Part of CW12

This presentation expands on my current Masters post graduate research and introduces the audience to techniques and approaches in practice-led research.

This practice based research project explores meaning through making during the artists creative process. Through a series of experiments using Mac OSX and Xbox Kinect I explore the relationship between the physical of the artists hands and a virtual material created using depth mapping and projection.
This project draws on theories of the hybrid or cyborg as found in the writing of Donna Haraway, examples of body tracings from Ana Mendieta’s Silueta Series and concepts of cyber bodies initially found in William Gibsons Neuromancer and Verner Vinge’s True Names.

The presentation will include examples of experiments as video documentation, a technical description of digital material i.e Mac OSX, Xbox Kinect, MaxMSP, projection.
A demonstration of the creative outcomes and discuss related concepts and theories and a future use for the research.


ARstudio – Opportunities for Augmented Reality in Education

Danny Munnerley, University of Canberra Part of CW12

As a relatively new and rapidly developing technology, applications for mobile devices, web cameras and now glasses that augment reality with digital objects are being taken up as potential educational tools.
There is a danger of educational applications being driven by what is technically possible, and by the interests and agendas of the early adopters, rather than what is pedagogically desirable, or empirically defensible. The risk of such a fragmented approach to augmented reality (AR) implementation may be to make it harder for academics and teachers to incorporate augmentation into their learning and teaching practices, and it may even alienate the less technically-minded, with AR left seeming as yet another flash-in-the-pan, short-lived technological toy, accessible only to those with technical know-how and high levels of IT literacy and competence.

In this presentation, we discuss how multi-modal, sensorial augmentation of reality links to existing theories of education and learning, focusing on ideas of cognitive dissonance and the confrontation of new realities implied by exposure to new and varied perspectives.

We stress that augmented realities, unlike virtual realities, are not substitutions for physical reality; not approximations to reality; but the layering of perspectives and experiences to augment and enrich reality. We discuss what opportunities AR opens up, and how those opportunities might be exploited within a given (constructivist) approach to learning and teaching. Finally, we consider existing applications of AR, trends in AR research and possibilities for uses of this technology in education.


Taking the “boring” out of history

Tim Nugent & Nic Wittison, University of Tasmania Part of CW12

Last year we developed a prototype app as part of a multidisciplinary project by the Schools of Computing and Information Systems, Engineering and History and Classics to combine spatial and historical data together to better improve historical and physical exploration of the Hunters Wharf area of Hobart. The prototype is an iPad and iPhone app that takes current maps of Hobart and allows users to overlay different historical maps of the same area to compare and contrast with the modern – allowing the historical information normally tied up in books to be available in a more modern and accessible form.

This presentation will cover what the app can currently do, and how it has been used by the different disciplines involved in its creation and how we envisage the app and similar tools being used in the future. This talk will also highlight the unique process undertaken to try and best fit the differing needs of the group when faced with presenting a traditionally hard to understand data source.

This talk will cover aspects of both education, system design and data visualisation.


Copyright, the digital economy, and change

Stephen Young, University of Melbourne Part of CW12

Why ‘digital’ makes a difference in copyright

The rights of the author and the employer

Using the work of others; others using your work

Confusion in the cloud – who is the actor?

Highlights of the Australian Law Reform Issues Paper “Copyright and the Digital Economy’

– Speculation on outcomes and what they could mean for Higher Education


Sweet Success: Making Machinima for Sugarcane Farmers

Helen Farley, University of Southern Queensland Part of CW12

Machinima is the art of using virtual worlds or games to make films. Second Life has proven popular venue for the creation of machinima for a number of reasons including the ability of users to create custom content, the facility to reuse items made by other users, and the capacity to readily alter avatars and landscapes. Though this medium is used by budding film makers to create fictional pieces and simulated documentaries, educators and researchers have also been quick to spot the potential of this form.

This paper reports on a project undertaken by the Australian Digital Futures Institute and the Centre for Sustainable Catchments both at the University of Southern Queensland to use machinima to inform sugarcane farmers’ decisions around sustainable farming practices. Future issues such as regional sustainability and predicted changes to climatic regimes will place an even greater burden upon struggling rural farming communities. This project will improve decision-making by regional communities, policy-makers and civil society through the development of an innovative, web-based, discussion support system, leading to sustainable and resilient regional areas.

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The development of students’ oral skills in fully-online language courses

Susan Yue Hua Sun, Auckland University of Technology Part of CW12

While many people are yet to be convinced that fully-online language courses are capable of developing learners’ oral/spoken language skills, strong empirical evidence is starting to emerge. It shows that online language learners’ oral skills can be adequately, if not exceedingly well, developed through the use of the increasingly sophisticated online tools, especially voice tools, e.g., Blackboard Wimba Voice Board, Voice Presentation, Voice Authoring, and the latest available Blackboard Collaborate, etc.

This study looks into two fully online Chinese language papers in a New Zealand University, and examines how the development of student oral skills takes place, i.e., their curriculum designs, technology choices, pedagogical considerations behind, and assessments related to oral language development. Needless to say, the technology choices are at the central place in the discussion, as the two papers are taught in the total absence of the traditional face-to-face classroom and its success or even just its survival are decidedly relied on online technology.

The examination will focus on the use of Wimba Voice Board, Voice Presentation, and Voice Authoring, and painstakingly point out their strengths and weaknesses. The inadequacy of technology and the frustrations which have been felt by the instructors along the way will also be detailed and discussed. Finally, commentary is made with regard to the latest available online tool – Blackboard Collaborate in Blackboard Learn.

This study concludes that through careful design and use of online voice tools such Voice Board and Voice Presentation, students’ oral skills can be well-developed in total-online language courses.

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