Back in January at the Linux Australia conference , one my kids picked up a Nintendo Wii controller and started playing a remote game on a Linux desktop using the Bluetooth connection. The developer who was showing off the work on his Ubuntu computer by just followed some instructions posted to the web. I had heard of the work by Johhny Lee and seen his amazing YouTube clip that explains how to make your own interactive whiteboard (IWB) using some off-the-shelf bits. Now an entire community has sprung up to develop and extend this idea with further hardware hacks and additions.
It would be sad to think what might have happened if Johnny Lee had not openly shared this research and code, something we have perhaps taken for granted from University educators that have a mandate to share and publish. As he indicated in this TEDS video;
"Something that motivates, and gets me really excited with my research is when I see opportunities to drastically change the distribution and make the technology available to a wider percentage of the population."
Roslyn and I are working through some teaching ideas about using Bluetooth devices (Waicom tablets, keyboards and mice) in the classroom to similarly enhance what we can do with our current equipment. I have purchased a Wii for home and one for school to similarly play about with this technology, perhaps using some of the old desktop hardware we are recycling. Gamesclub kids will be over the moon to try out some collaborative game playing on the big classroom screen.
We live in exciting times.