I am sitting in a nice classroom at Harvard Unviersity at the Apple Digital Campus Leadership Institute in Science Education listening to Bud Tribble. The focus of the event as you can guess is science education … not exactly my space, but still very interesting. I am here with Kyle Peck as we attempt to plan our own symposium in the ADC mode. Bud Tribble is a smart guy … he has both a Ph.D. and M.D. from the University of Washington and has been all over the computer industry for the last 20 some years — from the original Macintosh team, to NeXT, to SUN, and now back at Apple, Bud has been a real leader in the industry.
I was actually lucky enough to spend an hour with Bud about a year ago as I was working on a paper related to digital expression in the higer education space — really looking at how the Mac OS could play much better in existing infrstructure on our campuses. I was pushing Apple on the idea that students at places like Penn State shouldn’t have to have a .Mac account to play nicely with iLife. The conversation quickly moved into his areas of interest and it was a relatively terrifying experience. Did I mention the guy is smart? We ended up talking quite a bit about identity management and it was just a great hour.
Here he is going over the Apple advantage in science education … as with all things Apple in education at the moment, there is a lot of podcasting talk. The best point so far has been something in passing — that it isn’t important to focus on high production value, the point is to think about the pedagogical soundness of the approach … his example is the Electric Pickle video podcast. Talking iTunes U and how it all works … makes it sound so easy … not a person blinked at the “we host it for you” comment. Had a nice slide titled, “Click. Sync. Learn.” Interesting concept … I wonder if we could use something along the lines of “Create. Sync. Teach.” to get faculty engaged … does that work? If the response I got to my podcasting talk the other day at the Web 2006 conference is any indication, we won’t need it.
Lots of product overviews, but the good thing is the comment that Apple delivers a complete solution — all the UNIX tools as well as the standard tools we need — like Office. But as time when on, we returned to podcasting and how it can connect people to concepts that are difficult to teach. All in all an interesting discussion. Bud is a smart guy and I enjoy hearing him talk.