Google Wave unifies Workspace and Showcase Portfolios

Google Wave was just announced at the Google I/O conference, video here. At minute 27:00 to 31:00 you will see a segment with important implications for the conversation we have been having with Helen Barrett about Showcase vs Workspace ePortfolios. Our original, and her graphic.  What seems to be important about Google Wave is the way it is a PLE and by adding new reviewers of some works, a showcase as well.  This could address the challenge of making showcases which might have otherwise been an aftertthought to the actual work.

The ability to imbed a Wave in another environment, such as a blog, could be used to quickly publish work items and invite wider communities to engage with them.

The survey tool shown later in the demo appears to be able to integrate with other aspects of a document, and if so, and if the survey tool is rich enough, might provide the embedded feedback for at least the author’s use as a harvesting gradebook.

Google gadgets for presenting data

One of the issues in learning in an era of information abundance is the need for tools to help visualize data. Examples of this are emerging including Blaise Aguera y Arcas demos Photosynth andHans Rosling shows the best stats you’ve ever seen. Our experiments are more modest, using Google to graph data and share it, below, and in a gadget being built by Corinna Lo in support of our Harvesting Gradebook work. In both the graph below and Lo’s work, data in a Google Doc Spreadsheet is being fed to a dynamic graphing tool that can then be mashed up into another presentation.

Contrast the current data above with the idealized trajectory in this WHO/CDC composite.

Graph of levels of infection vs stages in flu pandemic

Graph of levels of infection vs stages in flu pandemic