The LinkedUp Vici Competition is the last competition on tools and demos that use open data for educational purposes. This time we asked for mature prototypes that are actually in use or that have been used.
We received thirteen submissions that have been evaluated by a panel of experts, who rated the submissions on their innovative aspects, attractiveness, usefulness, usability, performance, use of data, and the way privacy and other legal aspects were dealt with.
We are happy to announce the shortlist of ten submissions, which are all running sites or apps that you can try out yourself.
Several submissions bundle and offer open educational resources to growing educational communities.
AGRIS from the FAO of the United Nations provides access to publications on food and agriculture. Linked data and mash-up techniques are used to create one hub for different repositories. “Even though the application displays a lot of information in a single page, it is still easy to use”, according to one reviewer.
Didactalia, developed by the people from GNOSS (who participated before), helps you to browse, find and use learning material on many different topics, for different age groups and from various educational repositories. The reviewers found it an outstanding initiative. Currently, most material is in Spanish.
LearnWeb-OER gives users the opportunity to search for resources from the Web and to reuse them in a learning context. The platform allows for collaborative searching and sharing. The reviewers could see that the tool would be very useful to students and teachers alike.
Two other submissions use and enhance existing material to provide users with novel opportunities for learning.
FLAX is a site that helps you to learn a language by reading and watching open source material, varying from TED talks to academic collections. Learn to distinguish different word types and the context in which particular words are typically used. The reviewers called it a “very sophisticated application that is also easy to use”.
As the name already indicates, HyperTED lets you explore TED talks. It automatically annotates the textual material, recognizes where the main concepts and topics are discussed and provides quick links to reference sites while you watch. The reviewers found it a great addition to watching ‘talking heads’ online.
GroupMOOC is not a site but an app (for the iPhone) that you can use for creating course plans based on MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). You can check your workload and deadline, and connect and collaborate with groups of friends. The reviewers noted that “A MOOC agregator with social network functionality addresses a real need”.
The final two submissions to the open track use visualization techniques for making it easier to find and connect information.
ResXplorer focuses on scientific publication and shows you relations between authors, papers and conferences. By clicking on an author, paper or conference you make it the center of the next round of exploration. The reviewers found it “a good looking site with actionable information’.
Histropedia lets you interactively build and publish timelines that give an overview on events in history, based on data in Wikidata and Wikipedia. Teachers can create their own timelines by combining events that they think should be included. “A powerful tool for fast timeline creation.”
Last but not least, the shortlist contains two submissions to the Focused Tracks of the competition. The creators of these submissions spent a great of effort to work with the data required for these tracks and to address the track-specific goals.
ISCOOL is a serious game, submitted to the focused track ‘Supporting Developing Countries’. It is an informal learning environment that creates a visual game based on the text that you provide. The reviewers found it “a very innovative idea that could help particular aspects of the learning very well”.
The visualization of Water Resources & Ecology provides rich means to search journals, tweets and Wikipedia annotations. The interactive visualizations address the targeted content track, proposed and supported by Elsevier, to see how linked data can be used for making the learning experience more appealing and enhanced. The reviewers spent quite some time clicking around and were “overall happy with the interface and with the data”.
All ten shortlisted submissions will be presented during the workshop “Learning and Education with the Web of Data“, collocated with ISWC 2014, the International Semantic Web Conference 2014 (19-23 October in Riva del Garda – Trentino, Italy).
They will all compete for the third, second and first prize. In addition, you can vote which submission should win the People’s Choice Award. Reasons enough for registering for ISWC 2014 (if you haven’t done already) and for attending the presentations and demos of these great educational tools.