Floody Hell, an app/serious game

9 03 2012

Yesterday, Ruben iJpelaar posted a free 2D water game for the iPhone and iPad called Floody Hell.

Ruben: “Pick up your boots and get ready for action. A major flood is ahead. The water rises fast and the lives of your citizens are in danger. YOU have to save them!
Plunge into this adventure and get the feeling of PAC-MAN and SimCity. Beside simple but elegant fun, this is also ‘serious gaming’. Experience the dilemmas of rescue workers and find out the most efficient way to transport people and sandbags before and during the big flood.
Enjoy 4 levels of flooding action now. More levels will become available in future (free) updates.

THIS IS THE FIRST 2D FLOODING GAME. BOOST YOUR DEVICE WITH FLOODY HELL!

Visit my website for more information and game instructions! This game is totally free without commercials or other annoyances. Be so kind to ‘rate’ this game at the App Store. Your feed-back enables me to improve the game and develop new games to promote hydrology and water management.

Go to http://www.water4all.info
Ruben IJpelaar, Hydrologist / Apple Developer”

I recommend that you watch the demo in Ruben’s website to get it quickly. I wish that Ruben had added an audio commentary instead of the text gloss to his video tutorial. The download from iTunes was fast, but controlling the vehicles without a mouse (like in the demo) took a few minutes of adjustment. You can’t regulate the speed of the vehicles so you really are at the mercy of the advancing waters. Interesting game to get kids understand the urgency and decision making by First Responders during flood emergencies. Comment here to share your experience with the app.

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NMC Larry Johnson asks…

9 03 2012

“If I Only Had $1…..”

Listen to some early responses:

one dollar video

Dr. Larry Johnson was at the CoSN Conference 2012 in Washington, DC on March 5 to 7, 2012. Get the whole story here: http://www.edtechmagazine.com/k12/video/cosn-if-i-only-had-1

What would YOU answer to Larry’s question?





ESA Foundation: Education Challenge Grant

9 03 2012

Here is another grant I found (and posted on arvelsig.com 3 days ago). Summary: The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) Foundation, with other academic organizations, is developing a contest for a K-12 grant to support the implementation of computer and video games in the classrooms. Winnings go from $15,000 to $40,000. USA only.

Competition

The ESA Foundation and its partners, the Cooney Center, FAS, California Endowment and the Association for Middle Level Education, will issue a call for lesson plans, submissions and other proposals incorporating existing computer and video games into school curricula. The goal is to harness the excitement and energy of playing video games into positive, measurable outcomes that advance children’s education and learning experiences.

Judging

The Challenge Grant partner organizations will serve as the blue ribbon panel of judges who will review the submissions and choose winners. The judges represent key sectors – including education, computer and video game publishing/development, and media and arts – that know first-hand how innovative games have and will continue to play a critical role in our education system.

Awards

Three prizes will be awarded to the most innovative entries, in the amounts of $40,000, $20,000 and $15,000, to use toward implementing the proposed lesson. The awards will be based on the originality and creativity of lesson plans that reflect the contributions that games make to a child’s learning.

Timeline

  • February 2012 – Launch
  • April 6, 2012 – Deadline for submissions
  • April 20, 2012 – Panel judging
  • May 1, 2012 – Announce winners

Download the application here: http://www.esafoundation.org/ESAFChallengeGrantApplication.pdf

Complete info at http://www.esafoundation.org/challenge-grant.asp and other pages on that website.

Here is a badge for tweeting about it, sharing it on your blog/network, and/or for posting in comments that you are applying for it (Then, you'll have to keep us updated on the progress. Good luck). Thanks!





How To Make Recordings in Second Life

27 02 2012

Colleagues have asked me how I create inworld recordings. I had already posted my early trials and tribulations on my first virtual blog (http://educedge.edublogs.org/category/how-to/page/2/) but I have not used that blog space in several years, and in re-reading what I posted, I realize that many things have evolved making the process a bit easier. I have not produced a film with a creative storyline or staged any cinema scenes in a long time. What I can offer here, though, is my experience with recording and archiving a live talk show, hosted on CAVE Island in Second Life. I suspect that since the software I use is web-based, this technique would work with any virtual platforms (video games, virtual worlds, …). I work on a PC, so this post would have to be adapted to anyone using a Mac.
Here are my steps:
1) Create an account on Livestream (free): http://new.livestream.com
2) Download Procaster
3) Watch what this kid does. His tutorial is quick (less than 3mns) and clear.

4) Click on Preferences to make sure that you are recording your desktop screen and not from your webcam.
5) Before I click “Broadcast”, I open my SL client.
6) I resize my SL screen so that the Procaster window is on the right side of my desktop screen, and not in my SL screen.
7) Click on “Broadcast”. Now you are broadcasting live your screen and your audio.
8) A Procaster UserInterface bar will appear at the bottom of my screen. So I resize my SL screen so that only the SL screen shows up in the broadcasting brackets.
7) When I am done broadcasting, I click “stop” on the bottom UI bar. Procaster will then ask me to delete or record the broadcast. I type in the name of the show, and click on “Save Recording”. Go slow because there is no recovering a show if you click on delete.
8) Then click on the Livestream logo (which directs you to your livestream account, click on My Account > My Channels > Studio > Video On-Demand. There you can select your latest recording, listen to it and make sure that it is alright. From there you can also choose the embed code or download.
9) Click on your account name, and this will get you to your public channel page. There you’ll have the url to the latest recording.

Here is the ARVEL Channel on Livestream that I’ve been managing for the ARVEL SIG: http://www.livestream.com/arvelsig
You can also embed the Channel on your Ning: http://arvelsig.ning.com/page/livestream

My Tips:
1) Because I do not want to do any post-editing, i click on “Broadcast” only when I am ready to screencast to the world. Everything that happens from then on is broadcasted and will be recorded and published as is.
2) I always use a headset to limit environmental noises outside the computer, so that the software records only what comes from inworld. This also means that I mute my mic once I am done introducing the guest speaker.
3) I manage the broadcast on livestream and the hosting inworld simultaneously, which means that I also login in SL with my admin avatar on my laptop, also with a headset plugged in (thanks Liz Dorland/Chimera Cosmos), to mute all external sound. Now I can have one avatar doing the hosting, and the other busy with the recording. This allows for a freedom of camera view when necessary from the admin avatar (security and other land permissions), and from the hosting avatar (changing camera view for a more interesting broadcast and recording).
4) You can also encourage your online listeners to type in their comments in the chat room on Livestream, that you can forward inworld to your discussion table. It makes for an outstanding mixed media experience.
5) Finally, know that because this is a free account, there is an ad starting at the beginning of every recording that you’ll make. You’ll have no choice over that.
6) Finally, Finally, I noticed that I must move very often the avatar on the computer I use to livestream otherwise the video gets recording in several short ones. There is no loss of video or audio, but it’s a bit annoying to start a new video to get to the next segment of your talk show recording…i’ll let you know if or when i find a solution to that.

I do not suggest that this is the best way to record live shows, but this is the way that works for me. I would be very pleased if you want to share your preferred tips, tricks and software to create recordings inworlds.

This movie camera icon is yours when you share your tips here in the comments! Thanks.





JIBE/UNITY: how to make games/apps

20 02 2012

Free e-book posted this month on Scribd to teach your students how to make games/apps with Unity, multiplayer with Jibe; Android, and Apple with right licenses. Basic Unity is free, jibe is affordable

 





Angry Birds

17 02 2012

yeah yeah I know, what’s up with the Angry Birds here? well, not only they are now on Facebook since Tuesday (with an EXCLUSIVE Facebook  Surf and Turf set!)…and come on, you can hardly ignore an app that is approaching the billion download, now can you?…

Image: my own screen

….[drum roll please]….in March 2012, Rovio is releasing Angry Bird Space

The hook? You’ll be lobbing birds on entirely new planets while contending with zero gravity, leading to new gameplay elements like slow-motion puzzles and “lightspeed” destruction. And just like with other Angry Birds games, expect those outer-space physics to be dead on. Andrew Stalbow, GM of Rovio North America, told Yahoo! Games, “They’re so accurate and easy to grasp that some teachers use Angry Birds in their lessons about projectile motion.”  So excited with Rovio’s efforts to integrate accurate science into the game that NASA and National Geographic are launch partners on Angry Birds Space.

 

If you are a teacher who is using Angry Bird in your science class, please add your comment here and earn the astroid badge!





Ravensburger AR puzzles

17 02 2012

Two days ago, Popsci reported on a new line of puzzles by Ravensburger: once the puzzle is completely assembled, you can interact with it via a free iOS app downloaded on your iPad or iPhone. Each puzzle unlocks different affordances in the app. So for example, “Paris provides viewers with a 360-degree panorama of the city in both day and night with clickable points-of-interest [while] an under-the-sea image pulls up a find-the-fish game, and a wildlife image cues up video footage” (source: http://www.popsci.com/gadgets/gallery/2012-02/most-incredible-toys-we-saw-toy-fair?image=8)

Image by Popsci at the 2012 American International Toy Fair on Feb 12 to 15, 2012

Still in the toys categories, robot cubes have magnets that hold the blocks together, allowing copper connectors to transmit data between the cubes. Cubelets offer different kits to different robots.

Have you seen a cool new toy that integrates an emerging technology into its interactivity? If so, list it here in comments and earn the joystick badge! Cheers.