Innovate 2007

Innovate07_2

Last Tuesday, May 8th, I attended Innovate 2007
in Richmond. Innovate 2007 promised to be a peek into the
innovative end of technology. According
the Innovate Website,

“Innovate
2007, modeled after the WIRED NextFest expo, will showcase the innovative
technologies and products that could transform education. The expo is organized
around the five major components of

Virginia’s
long-range technology plan: integration, professional development, connectivity,
educational applications and accountability.

Innovate 2007 will feature:

  • 65 plus interactive exhibits located in five pavilions
  • Hands-on opportunities to use new and emerging technologies
  • Lively discussions—led by prominent thought leaders and
    futurists—about the promises and limitations of the technologies and products”

Ok,
so it was a little “hyped”…
But for the first year, Innovate was alright. You got to pass through a fog screen at the entrance, try walking using
virtual-reality goggles inside a giant, plastic sphere and do a little surgery
on a frog. I personally took a short
ride on a Segway, played around with a Cricket, stared at the Science on a
Sphere display and listened to the keynote speakers.  All in all, Innovate 2007 was a bit short on
the promise, but still fun. If you did
not go this year, I am hoping that next year’s event is even better!

In
order to give you a bit of the flavor of Innovate 2007, I have created a
podcast of the event. The podcast
includes an overview by the first Keynote Speaker, Dr. Carol Strohecker, the
director of the Center for Design
Innovation
; Rich Ingrim from JMU Partnership for 21st
Century Skills
speaking about a 21st Century Skills Conference
in May 2008; Kevin from VFrog a
virtual reality frog dissection, Rachel Masser on using Virtual Conferencing
with NASA, and an overview of First and the Virginia First Lego League.

Aron Sterling
School Based Technology Specialist
Earth, Ocean and Weather Resource Teacher
Springfield Estates Elementary School

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