Monday, July 23, 2007

WBS: KillerApp: Take Three

What's Being Said Department

Geoff Daily's third installment in his series on Lafayette came out today in the AppRising blog at This one focuses on his tour of the LITE center and examines that unique facility. (Not quite so unique as LEDA says, however. It's not "the world's first six-sided digital virtual reality cube" even if it is one of the very few that are publicly available.)

Geoff's pretty clearly wowed by the experience. I took the tour recently and know how he feels. It's pretty cool to draw in 3D—not draw a 3D representation on a 2D device but actually draw in 3D. It is also cool to walk around in 3D immersive environment, as you might well imagine.

Geoff Daily does us the courtesy of providing his video of the tour online as an aid to your imagination. But you should really go yourself. It's fun; it's free; and it's pretty much only available in Lafayette. (Well you could go to Sweden or Germany but wouldn't you rather make an appointment down at the egg?)

LITE will also be opening its doors to the public every first Wednesday of the month for 30-minute tours. For information or reservations, call (337) 735-LITE (5483).


Anonymous said...

Please post the finacial statements on the Lite Center.

John said...

You're talking to the wrong guy. Can't post what I don't have.

They're pretty much in startup mode; this is their first year and so I doubt they've much to brag on just yet.

Anonymous said...

What about that killer app for simulated welding?

John said...

Saw that today in the Advertiser. :-) I actually have a query in about it.

I know that it might sound a little silly to some but I can actually see a point.

Welding is a specie of what is called in educational circles: "experiential learning." Meaning that book learning doesn't work half so well as guided experience. (The trades are full of such learning. I was a carpenter once upon a time and teaching new hires was what really drew me into education and determined the direction of my research.)

Trouble is, experience can be dangerous or misleading. You won't cut a board that's supported on both ends but once. Trouble is that once could cost you a hand. --But not if it's virtual... Or you can get away with certain dumb things 15 or 20 times before it comes back to bite you (that's misleading) In a simulation you can make sure the "bad" consequence is made visible.

Anyway, if you were thinking it wouldn't be useful, I think you're wrong.

But it is likely to be pretty expensive right now--but eventually simulations will be a big educational tool. Especially for experiential learning in dangerous situations.

Once it gets cheap enough trade schools OUGHT to interested. Actually, I'm pretty impressed that our trade schools appear to get it. But from my experience working with the trade system in Illinois I'd say that better trade schools are way ahead in understanding curriculum issues....