Friday, March 16, 2007

from John Housser

Hello everyone,

My name is John Housser, and I am a student in Wolfville at Acadia University. As briefly as I can, I am going to try to tell you a little bit about who I am, how I got involved in this project, and what I will be involved in during the broadcasts next week, as well as a special, "Atmosphere," VR Photography event that will be happening on Thursday.

I have been working with Dr. Cynthia Alexander for several years, working on projects helping address issues in diverse and unique communities, like Mi'kmaq Nova Scotians, African Nova Scotians, and the Inuit of Nunavut. In working with these groups, we have been trying to show how new media technologies and techniques can be leveraged to create more culturally appropriate, progressive, cultural and educational learning materials. One of the major technologies we have been using is Virtual Reality (VR) photography. VR photography involves taking a series of photographs of a location, digitally stitching them together into a 360-degree panoramic photograph, and then projecting them using computers into a virtual reality environment. This can create an incredibly captivating and engaging interaction between the viewer, and any location in the world, no matter where they are. Using VR photography we can capture any environment, and then send an immersive image to anywhere else in the world, all in a very short time.

I will be coming in later next week (Thursday, March 22nd, at 4:00pm) to discuss how I got involved in VR photography and its extension to Virtual Learning Environments as an applied learning tool with the Inuit of Nunavut.

I will also be involved in a panel discussion, on the changing environment of Intellectual Property (IP), in this new digital age of, "web 2.0." This discussion will focus on topics like how user-created content web sites are changing research, news, and media sharing (think: WikiPedia, YouTube,, how open-source development is changing the models of research and development, new alternative rights management strategies (going from, "All Rights Reserved," to, "Some Rights Reserved") like Creative Commons licensing, and many more contemporary issues in IP. This discussion will be happening immediately following my discussion of VR photography and VLEs on Thursday, March 22 nd from 4:30-5:30pm, and we will be welcoming call-in questions or comments closer to the end of the discussion.

During this panel discussion, I will also be tying a number of these pursuits together… As a VR photographer, I have been involved in an event called the World Wide Panorama which is an event that happens four times a year, where VR photographers around the world have one week to capture a VR photograph on a common theme. This years event is during the same time as the community broadcasts (March 20-25), and the theme is, "Atmosphere." My intentions are to capture a VR photograph during our IP discussion, and present this as an interpretation of the changing atmosphere of IP, communications, and information. The image will be published as part of the WWP, as well as on my personal web site (, and become part of the Equity and Technology project as well as Ryakuga.

I look forward to the events next week, and hope that you will tune in, call in, and check out the online materials that will be created as a result of these broadcasts. Feel free to contact me (john [at] housser [dot] ca) if you have any questions, topics you'd like to see covered in either of my discussions, or anything else.

See you next week!


Ivan Smith said...

I see several mentions of "Kipowa". That should be "Kipawo". (This name originated in the three-point ferry service across Fundy in the 1930s, that connected KIngsport, PArrsboro, and WOlfville.)

Linda Mansell said...

Caught some of your panel discussion today online in Ontario, but lost some of it. Sounds like you had a good group and a good discussion on intellectual property. Keep up the good work!