News Release

REF NO.: 134

SUBJECT: Horizon Report recognizes Memorial University’s forward thinking in educational technology

DATE: February 25, 2011

The 2011 Horizon Report recognizes Memorial University’s Distance Education and Learning Technologies (DELT) unit and the Department of Computer Science for their collaborative work with the Town of Cupids in developing an interactive application for the iPhone and iPod Touch.
            The report, published by the New Media Consortium, is released annually at the EDUCAUSE conference and describes six areas of emerging technology that will have significant impacts on higher education and creative expression over the next one to five years.
            In 2009 the Cupids 400 community-based celebration committee partnered with DELT to develop teaching and learning content that enables people to virtually step back in time and participate in the Cupids Settlement Experience.
            The Cupids 400 iPhone and iPod Touch application is used to explore the 1610 English Canadian settlement in what is now Cupids, Newfoundland and Labrador. The application includes an interactive map, details about the settlement of the area, and historical information in a variety of media. Visitors to Cupids using the application can use the map to explore real-world locations of the original settlement. 
            Staff at DELT worked with the Cupids 400 committee to identify eight sites of significance, and then to develop the historical and current content for the application.  
            Dr. Peter Chen was one of the three lead faculty members from Computer Science, who worked with DELT to develop the location sensitive software for the app. At the project’s launch last fall at the Battery Hotel and Suites in St. John’s, Dr. Chen said it was an extremely rewarding experience to work with DELT and Cupids 400.
            “DELT generated vivid multimedia content to educate and entertain the visitors to Cupids, and we designed an application framework to integrate these materials,” he said. “This project was a great opportunity for us to train students for software development and project management, and we hired three of the best students from our undergraduate course on software development for mobile devices for the bulk of development and testing. We look forward to more opportunities to work on other exciting projects.” 
            The app provides teachers, students and tourists the opportunity to tour the area, explore the archaeological dig site and surrounding area, and obtain information regarding items of historical significance. The app also includes a short quiz and video interviews with lead archaeologist, Bill Gilbert.
For more information on the Cupids 400 Initiative, visit: www.cupids400.com/english/education/iphone.php.    
            The 2011 Horizon Report can be viewed at: http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/HR2011.pdf.

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