Mozilla Festival 2012

Time to reflect on what was a very inspiring couple of days at #mozfest, the Mozilla Festival that took place in the beautiful Ravensbourne College building in London. Packed full with sessions to make you experiment, build, extend, create, and collaborate.

I played with Zeega, a tool to create your own stories by combining photos, videos, audio and text from around the web, or indeed your own. It is about bringing your story to life. Still in Alpha, but you can ask for an invitation and start creating your very own stories to share.

Having used Scratch with the Raspberry Pi, I was very keen to see the new features of Scratch 2.0 We were all blown away with the new sensor scripts, which use the camera and sound for more fun! Hopefully it won’t be too long before Scratch 2.0 is more widely available. It will be worth the wait.

I was great to hear about Mozilla badges, a way to reward your commitment by giving you badges as you create new things with Mozilla Webmaker tools. These badges can then be shared with people you know. As an educator, you can issue badges and create your own to help your students feel proud of what they have achieved.

I was gutted to have missed the Makey Makey demo, but I will be ordering one soon to show at my daughters’ primary school.

I had my share of popcorn too… as Popcorn Maker was officially launched at #mozfest.

The Big M – #BigMConf

I attended The Big M mobile event on 21st and 22nd March in the beautiful city of Bath. It was refreshing to see an event of this kind outside London.  @bookmeister and @m1ke_ellis put together a terrific line up of speakers.

The highlight for me was @aral‘s talk on Beyond Usability on Mobile. Aral’s passion for designing usable experiences goes deep into his soul and  his ability to transmit this to his audience made it a joy to experience. Aral is also known for his Feathers App.

@raamthakrar spelt out the importance of App Distribution and Monetisation and how developers’ hard work should earn better financial rewards (but not like the bankers!).

@Ew4n caused some controversy and debate among the audience with his State of the Union Mobile Address! At one point he sounded like a toddler, “I want an App and I want it NOW”!  I’m glad I wasn’t the only one thinking it. Look at the evidence.

Still slightly jetlaged from SXSW, @brucel mainly told us about HTML5, the One Web and mobile best practices.

@pgolding told us about Future Mobile Innovations.

@wordbeard created some fantastic sketches that summarise The BigM Day

As always, it was great to catch up with familiar faces and meet new ones. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Bathcamp 2010

Huge kudos to @juliancheal who pulled together this year’s Bathcamp. It was a terrific gathering of like-minded individuals in the wonderful city of Bath.

We drank lots of Vitamin Water and the topics under discussion ranged widely from databases to guessing the meaning of Japanese calligraphy!

Unfortunately, I couldn’t stay for the ‘family fortunes’ bit but I was pleased to discover later that my new friend @rosiestones‘ team ended as the victors.

Will I go next year? Definitely.

Mobile web with MyMobileBristol

On the 27th October I attended a one day workshop organised by MyMobileBristol and DevCSI. It was a great opportunity to learn something about these two great projects. Good to learn that they have both now received confirmation of funding for another year.

MyMobileBristol has developed a mobile web app which provides students with time and location-based data. I actually got an opportunity to use the Live Bus Departures app on the day of the event. Continue reading

Workshop: Get a Google website for FREE

I have enjoyed building websites for the last 13 years and over the years there have been many publishing tools available to people to build a website. Often people need to learn new skills in order to make the most of the software.

Things have moved on since and now there are a number of companies that allow you to create websites with just a few clicks and little experience of web technologies. Continue reading

Social Media Cider Café (non-alcoholic)

North Somerset ApplesI have been working with SME’s for some time, and I’m now chuffed to announce the first Social Media Cider Café – which I am hosting with my good friend Michael Waugaman (@waugaman). Continue reading

Twestival comes to Bristol

Bristol TwestivalBristol is gearing up for its contribution to Twestival on Thursday (12 February) in aid of charity:water.

The global Twitter community has mobilised in double-quick time to host 24-hours of FUNdraising in a staggering 175+ cities around the world.

The idea was conceived by Amanda Rose. You can read about her motivation for Twestival in her interview with the Blog Herald.

Women’s Enterprise Day Bristol

The Business Support Network (BSN) is holding a series of events in the South West to celebrate Women’s Enterprise Day. The Bristol event on 19th November also coincides with the launch of the BSN Bristol. I look forward to the networking event and joining in the series of talks.

BristolSkillSwap

I was invited to the monthly meetings of the BristolSkillSwap to hear Joe Leech speak about usability. It was a very enjoyable talk with plenty of laughs. A good opportunity to say hello to a few people I’ve met through Steve’s work, and a good excuse to go out in the evening without a nappy bag!