Learning Technologies Newsletter

ISSUE 62 - August 2010 - by Phil Chambers


TIME TO READ: 5 minutes (Average Reader), less than a minute (Speed Reader) - Word Count: 1,032. To learn more about Speed Reading Contact us.

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Welcome to the August 2010 issue of the Learning Technologies Newsletter. Please continue to forward it to friends and colleagues who you think would find it useful.

This issue, we have an article on what you can learn from ‘Toy Story’, news of a an exiting new app for the iPad plus our regular features of Mind Map Tip, Quote of the month and what I’ve been up to recently.

August's Quote of the Month

"Get over the idea that only children should spend their time in study. Be a student so long as you still have something to learn, and this will mean all your life."

~Henry L. Doherty

More quotes here


What's Phil Up To?

Phil's Photo

July 14th saw the final of the Schools’ Memory Championships 2010. Many congratulations go to Rehnumah Insan (17) from Prior Pursglove College in Guisborough, Redcar & Cleveland.

As one memory competition comes to a close so the planning for the next one begins. I am currently working on the preparations for the UK Open International Memory Championships that will take place in London on 26th and 27th August, sponsored by MWB Business Exchange.

The UK Open is one of the most prestigious events in the Memory Calendar. This year we have 13 countries represented and question papers in 8 languages.

If you live within commuting distance of London and would like to be an arbiter please contact me. You will get full training in the marking procedures and have the opportunity to see what happens behind the scenes. You will also know the scores before the competitors or press are told!


iMindMap iPad App to Launch in August

Ever since the iPad was unveiled by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, the Mind Mapping community has been asking when there would be a Mind Map app available. The wait is nearly over with iMindMap for iPad due to launch later this month.

According to a press release from Think Buzan, “We know that we have been tantalising you for weeks with our upcoming iPad launch, and while we can't tell you the release date just yet, we can give you the exclusive news that the iMindMap for iPad application will be including a Presentation Mode!

Many users, trainers and consultants have given us their views on why Presentation Mode is so important for the iPad app. As a company, we aim to please our customers and supporters, so we are implementing their feedback by including this powerful feature with the launch product.

The iMindMap for iPad application will allow you to project your iPad presentation, meaning that dynamic and engaging presentations are now more portable than ever. The iMindMap app's Presentation Mode will act similarly to its cousin, iMindMap desktop software, by ‘growing’ your branches as you click next. The screen pans smoothly as the branch is added, focusing your audiences' attention and really giving that elusive ‘wow’ factor!

The app will be released next month - we promise the full details will be released soon. We think it will be worth the wait, and we hope you will feel the same!

Sign up for updates here.


Mind Map Tip of the Month

Try using photographs as central images. A digital camera or Polaroid gives you an instant image. You could use royalty free or stock photographs available on the internet, in books and on CD-ROM. You could even cut out pictures from magazines but make sure you don’t infringe copyright if you intend to distribute copies of your Mind Map. You can import digital photos into iMindMap to replace a central image chosen from the standard set presented at start up.


To Infinity and Beyond

I saw Toy Story 3 at the cinema recently. It is well worth going to see if you haven’t already done so. I know it is a kids’ film but it has enough great humour and action to keep even an adult gripped and enchanted. It certainly lives up to the high standards set by the first two films in the series.

Without spoiling the plot for you, there is a scene in the film where Buzz Lightyear has his software switched form ‘play mode’ to ‘demo’. As a result he forgets his friends and everything he has learned about being a toy. He returns to believing that at he is a real Space Ranger from Star Command and becomes a prison guard to his old friends thinking them to be agents of the evil Emperor Zurg. As Hamm the piggy bank puts it, “Return of the Astro-nut”.

Although we don’t have switches in our backs that control our behaviour there is a useful analogy to learning. Have you ever been on a training course or read a book and left feeling inspired to make a real change in your life? Maybe you do this for a while and things are great. Then daily life gets in the way, your switch gets re-set and you slip into your old habits. When you do any sort of learning remember to include time to review and sustain the gains that you make so that you don’t slip backwards. The ideal intervals for reviews, as described by Tony Buzan are:

  • 10 minutes after a learning period (reinforcing the learning straight away makes for a strong foundation)
  • 24 hours
  • 1 week
  • 1 month
  • 3 months (by this time the information should be locked in long term memory)
  • perhaps 6 months as little refresher.

The great thing is that the more you learn and maintain, the easier it is to learn new things. The new knowledge can link and associate to the old.


That’s it for this month. Look out for the next newsletter at the beginning of September and feel free to be in touch in the meantime.

My contact details are here.

Best Wishes