Friday, 18 December 2009

Final Progress Post

Title of Primary Project Output

CloudBank: Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Advanced Language Learners

Screenshots or diagram of prototype
--- click images to enlarge ---

Description of Prototype


"Imagine you are an international student in the UK. Your English is quite good, but every now and then you hear a word or phrase that was missing in your vocabulary. Normally you would take a mental note ... and then forget about it. With CloudBank you can hack it into your mobile phone, add an image or audio recording, and share it instantly with other language learners."

CloudBank enables international students in the UK to collect, annotate and tag interesting or intriguing language- and culture-related content found in everyday life, including text, images, audio recordings and web links. These content items are saved to an online repository, from where they can be syndicated via RSS feeds for inclusion in almost any website, including blogs and profile pages. In addition to syndication, the repository offers a web interface for adding, editing and discussing content in an online community.

End User of Prototype

According to HESA there were more than 340.000 international students enrolled in UK HEI in 2007/2008. Although these students typically have a high level of competence in English language and may not feel the need to enrol on formal language courses, they are still concerned with improving their facility in the language and with the native culture. The goal of CloudBank is to provide an informal and engaging way for students in this situation to share and build their collective knowledge.

User scenario:
Khalil is Jordanian student in the Brighton. He is in the Student Union watching a football game with some English friends. A goal is scored and there is much hilarity over the goalkeeper being nutmegged. Khalil cannot make sense of this: there’s not much connection with the nutmegs of his experience, which are used in cooking. He asks his UK friends what it means to be nutmegged. They explain that it means the striker played the ball through the keeper's legs. Khalil thinks other non-native speakers may be interested in this new nugget of knowledge. He gets out his Android G1 phone, starts the CloudBank app and keys in “to nutmeg: in football: to play through an opponent's legs”, tagging the entry with “nutmeg” and “football”. For good measure he also records an English friend pronouncing the word, and adds the recording to the entry, before sending it to the CloudBank cloud.

This same evening, Keichi, a Japanese student, learns about the term to nutmeg through the CloudBank RSS feed on his profile page. By chance he’s just been watching a video clip of the goal from tonight’s match. He logs onto the CloudBank community portal, searches for the nutmeg entry, and adds a reference to the video clip, so that others can get a better understanding of what it means to be nutmegged.

Link to working prototype

Alternatively, scan the QR Code with yor Android phone:
QR Code

Link to end user documentation

CloudBank Poster

CloudBank Video

CloudBank Presentation

CloudBank Mobile User Guide

Link to code repository or API

CloudBank REST Server Public API

CloudBank Android Client Code Repository

Link to technical documentation

CloudBank REST Server Public API

Cloudbank Android Client

Date prototype was launched

Prototype v.1 - 21 October 2009
Prototype v.2 - 17 December 2009

Project Team Names, Emails and Organisations

Lyn Pemberton, lp22 [at] brighton [dot] ac [dot] uk, University of Brighton, Project Leader

Marcus Winter, mw159 [at] brighton [dot] ac [dot] uk, University of Brighton, Design & Development

Sanaz Fallahkhair, sf61 [at] brighton [dot] ac [dot] uk, University of Brighton, User Engagement

Project Websites

Homepage (provisional)

Project Blog (this)

Code Repository

PIMS entry

Project evaluation

End-of-project SWOT analysis

Table of Content for Project Posts

User engagement & co-design
User interface
Users, systems and their models
Co-design session 1

Tools & Development
Mobile Alert Alert
CloudBank on the phone
First prototype
Android XML parsing
Balsamiq trial experience

Information & Integration
Mobile User Guide
REST API Specification
RSS Feed now available
Project video on CloudBank channel
Google Code project page
Website now online

Admin & Management
End-of-project SWOT analysis
Nearly there
Android Haiku
Catching up...
A suitable license for CloudBank

Conferences & Talks
CloudBank Poster
Research Seminar
CloudBank at mLearn 2009
CloudBank in the City
CloudBank in Florida
CloudBank off to Handheld Learning conference


Pemberton, L., Winter, M. & Fallahkhair, S. 2009. A User Created Content Approach to Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Advanced Language learners. Proceedings of mLearn 2009, Orlando, Florida.

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. & Fallahkhair, S. 2009. Collaborative Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Language Learners. Presented at HandHeld Learning 2009, London.

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. & Fallahkhair, S. 2010. Development of Collaborative Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Language Learners. Accepted for WMUTE 2010, Taiwan.

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. & Fallahkhair, S. 2010. Evaluation of a Collaborative Mobile Knowledge Sharing Application for Language Learners. Submitted to EdMedia 2010, Toronto, Canada.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

CloudBank Poster

CloudBank Poster
The short-listed CloudBank poster for the the University's recent Research Showcase event. Click to download as print-quality PDF.

Monday, 14 December 2009

End-of-project SWOT analysis

Complementing our SWOT analysis at the beginning of the project, we carried out a second SWOT analysis this afternoon to see what has changed over the past six months and to get a clearer picture in which direction we'd like to develop the project further.

- Implemented system, functional, ready to download
- Evaluated with target users (usability)
- Lightweight, clear, understandable
- Developer experience
- (content agnostic system)

- Some aspects not implemented, e.g. user identities, user groups
- Not polished, missing wide scale evaluation/implementation
- Only on Android
- Theory side underdeveloped

- Integrate with other systems and online communities
- Develop theory via evaluation (maybe ESRC/LLP project?)
- Different subject areas, e.g. design, geology, architecture
- Different language applications, e.g. jargon busting, vets in Africa
- Different character sets

- Open Source, could be copied, etc.
- Someone else develops similar concept
- Funding dries up
- Android does not flourish

Based on the analysis we identified a number of key aspects that need further development in order to realise potential benefits. These include technical features necessary for large-sacle deployment (user identities, user groups), better web integration (website, widget), integration with other systems (online learning environments, language learning communities) and evaluation (learning, attitudes, wider impact).

Friday, 11 December 2009

Nearly there

The picture of our Agile Wall clearly shows we are getting close to completion (of this phase at least :) Despite constantly adding new requirements based on feedback from our user sessions, all but two tickets have been completed. Not implemented are mobile alerts and content editing in the web interface, both of which are low-priority and will have to wait until the release version.

Monday, 7 December 2009