Multitouch microscope

Researchers at University of Helsinki and at a finnish company MultiTouch have made a clever innovation of using large multitouch screens as an interface for microscopes. The innovation is proposed as a teaching tool, allowing teacher to show how to use the microscope and point out things in images in intuitive way and also allowing many students to study images simultaneously.

The images come from the virtual microscope, but the idea of teaching by moving in huge images and pointing interesting things from it could as well be used with maps, star maps, Google Body, high resolution images of artworks etc.

I am envisioning future collaborative tools in schools to use a one big sheet of paper as their metaphor. Everyone can draw all over it, and zoom in and out in it to add infinitely more details.

Ok, http://prezi.com/ already does this.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
This entry was posted in News and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Multitouch microscope

  1. >>>>I am envisioning future collaborative tools in schools to use a one big sheet of paper as their metaphor. Everyone can draw all over it, and zoom in and out in it to add infinitely more details.

    Yep. This is a UI idea that tablet computing is also driving. New Promethean boards are multi-touch and multi-pen and support both native multi-touch events in Windows 7 and other OS’/apps via an API. So these things can generally connect up easily. It is great to find applications like this – and it would be good to test this one.

    Some video of the multi-mode (pens and touches) functions are here.

    Some academic research by Newcastle University using Promethean multi-user desktops is here: (includes a video): http://www.dfki.de/its2010/papers/fp184.html

    Understanding how large format multi-user interfaces can contribute to effective group working has been a research area for Promethean for some time.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
    • Mark, great demo on the first video you linked to! Any chance of getting that piece of software into pre-pilots on iTEC any time soon?

      VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
  2. There is quite interesting multi-touch table prototype that was demonstrated by KU Leuven people in EC-TEL conference last year: http://bramvandeputte.wordpress.com/2010/10/29/sciencetable-at-ec-tel-2010/

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  3. Teemu Leinonen says:

    Thanks Jukka for this – a great example. If we think the main idea presented in the video — the shared microscope view — I think this itself could be used in science classes. I would prefer that there is also way for student to add the material “stuff” under the microscope glass. One could bring thing to the class and students could explore it together with the microscope. In addition to the working shared microscope view there could also be access to online library of digital samples. Still, the possibility to give students a chance to practice science should be the first priority.

    Jukka wrote: I am envisioning future collaborative tools in schools to use a one big sheet of paper as their metaphor. Everyone can draw all over it, and zoom in and out in it to add infinitely more details.

    Mark wrote:Yep. This is a UI idea that tablet computing is also driving. New Promethean boards are multi-touch and multi-pen and support both native multi-touch events in Windows 7 and other OS’/apps via an API.

    This is definitely something we should test and prototype in the iTEC. Is it possible Mark? With the “one big sheet of paper as their metaphor” I would prefer that:

    1) The “shared paper” is accessible not only in the board but also from your own touch tablet or laptop.

    2) There is application for collaborative knowledge building discourse, with notes for sharing thoughts with thinking type categorization.

    I like the Mark’s mind-mapping example, too, but think that there should be more “limiting” and structured application for the purpose. I think this is important for teachers. In teaching and learning less is (often) more. 🙂

    Jukka: I think Prezis, especially with its collaborative editing is great, but I think in it the focus is anyway in *presentation*: to do something that will impress the audience. Doing a presentation is a great learning activity, but it is not the thing where you should start if you want to do knowledge building. An inquiry process really requires some hard work and some tools may support it. In this the mind-mapping, microscope and knowledge building tool are more essential.

    VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
  4. Dov Winer says:

    A bit late but I wish to express my enthusiasm for the multitouch
    microscope!!!
    Teemu Leinonen said:
    >I would prefer that there is also way for student to add the material “stuff” under >the microscope glass. One could bring thing to the class and students could explore it >together with the microscope.

    Indeed this provides for excellent learning experiences. A good example are
    samples of omnion roots that grow very quickly in the morning. Taking samples
    at that time, cutting with the microtome and colouring them provide the
    students with dramatic views of cromosomes in different stages of their division.
    The possibility that the microscope offer to see this together and discuss the
    different phases of the cell reproduction and the cromosomes duplication should
    be incomparable.

    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*