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The World's Largest Touchscreen 53

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-seen-bigger dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The University of Groningen, in the Netherlands, has converted a 3D theater into the world's largest touchscreen, used for teaching mathematics and computer science students interactivity. The screen has a curvature of 135 degrees and is transparent."
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The World's Largest Touchscreen

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  • Ipod
    Ipad
    Imat
    now here comes the Iwall
    • When you purchase the iWall, you also indicate when you are available for gene-therapy, to give you GorillaArms(tm), extra long arms so you can easily reach the entire surface of the iWall.

  • by Zsub (1365549)
    Go Groningen! Best city in the Netherlands! Er gaat niets boven Groningen! (There is nothing better than (litt. above, latt/long-joke combined with language pun) Groningen!)
    • Every time I see Dutch in writing I assume someone is speaking Klingon.
    • Go Groningen! Best city in the Netherlands! Er gaat niets boven Groningen! (There is nothing better than (litt. above, latt/long-joke combined with language pun) Groningen!)

      But what is that in Gronings?

      • by Zsub (1365549)
        I wouldn't know, but _probably_ something like "d'r goat niks boo'm Grunn" although that would be the city dialect which in the eyes of the people from the province has nothing to do with Gronings. Then again, there are a lot of different local variations, so I'm not even sure Gronings as such even exists :-P
    • De boot naar Schiermonnikoog gaat boven Groningen.
      translated: The boat to Schiermonnikoog (an island, just above Groningen) goes above Groningen. That's referring to the other way to translate "Er gaat niets boven Groningen!": "Nothing goes above Groningen."
  • Will a giant touch screen computer actually teach or be more of a distraction? I have a hard time believing that one could actually increase mathematical skills by learning on the worlds largest iPod Touch. Something about sitting down with a pencil and paper and working out math problems still seems to be the best way to learn. Maybe I'm just too old school.

    • by Desler (1608317)

      This just in: Some people may learn better using different methods than yourself.

      • Re:Distraction? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Archangel Michael (180766) on Monday February 14, 2011 @02:13PM (#35201198) Journal

        This just in, Technology is over-hyped in education.

        I'm in education, and I see technology being employed simply for technology's sake.

        • Even when I was in school, that was true. We wasted soooo much time sitting in front of computers, for no other reason then the school bought them. We could have learned the same material 10x faster with an old-fashioned book (once called a "reader").

        • by Belial6 (794905)
          Useful things can frequently be used in ways that are not useful at all. Technology is not over-hyped in education. After all, a pencil is certainly a piece of technology. As are the lights, heating system, and clocks. Can computers be useful? Of course they can. Just as a pencil can. Will they help education if they are used poorly? Of course not. Just as pencil that is used strictly for playing tic-tac-toe will not help in education.
      • I agree, but a clearer question would be : will the cost of setting up a giant touch screen to teach a few students provide a return on investment? The only way I can see this occurring is if the CS students collectively built the device for future students. This provides revenues from a group of students, teaches these students about developing such technology, provides an alternative learning style for future students, and gives the University free publicity. The only downside I see to this project is if

    • by ahecht (567934)

      If you go to the source at http://www.rug.nl/cit/hpcv/nieuws/touchscreen1 [www.rug.nl] you will see that it wasn't created for teaching math at all (the blogspam linked from the story seems to have made that up). According to RUG: "the initial goal was to facilitate the scientists studying Geographic Information Systems and a research group that studies interaction methods for touch screens" GIS is a perfect application for this technology.

      • I only looked at the article link given. GIS does seem like a useful application, but where are the GIS students going to find a giant touch screen to actually use it for geographic information outside of academia? The research group for touchscreen interaction is the gold in this project. I can use the data they find for commercial purposes. A giant Math book seemed pointless though. Thanks for clarification.

    • I'm guessing that they meant "teaching interactivity to mathematics and computer science students".

  • Why? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pieisgood (841871) on Monday February 14, 2011 @01:46PM (#35200952) Journal

    I guess for computer science it can serve as an inspirational piece. To say, Hey this is why computers are awesome and here's what you could be doing with them.

    For math though, you really need a pencil, some paper, the book and lots of time to get things wrong before you get them right. Calculation stuff for calculus, sure use the screen to create interactive bounds on integrals or what not. For analysis? topology? proofs? Get them some time to study and get them to ask lots of questions.

    In summary, cool screen... but unnecessary.

    • by Stregano (1285764)
      Well, there is no way it would get a greenlight if they used it for entertainment purposes. They had to make it for educational purposes. I guess the closes thing for teaching with this would be those subjects
    • by Desler (1608317)

      For math though, you really need a pencil, some paper, the book and lots of time to get things wrong before you get them right.

      Maybe for you that works best, but why force that on other people who may learn better using this method?

      • Because once you get past the trivial cases (e.g. isomorphisms with geometries over finite-dimensional vector spaces) it isn't even possible to create a visualization, let alone one which is useful as a teaching aid.

      • by pieisgood (841871)

        Maybe for lower division, as I stated in my post, this would be fine. After you get past all that stuff though, math takes on a new face. You are no longer tasked with "visualizing" the problem and then basing limits on that. The limits are arbitrary, the space non-Euclidean, and the work abstract. Visualizations here need only be minimal. A scrawled graph on a chalk board is MORE than enough to explain the concept visually. But if they want to play on the screen that's ok too.

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        For math though, you really need a pencil, some paper, the book and lots of time to get things wrong before you get them right.

        Maybe for you that works best, but why force that on other people who may learn better using this method?

        You sound like my kids who insist that they learn better with music playing loudly and a plentiful supply of snacks. My response is to unplug their fucking CD player, eat their crisps and chocolates, and find some extra hard spellings for them to learn. You never know when you might want to drop "antidisestablishmentarianism" into a conversation in the playground.

    • In summary, cool screen... but unnecessary.

      The road to absolutely nowhere is paved with sentiments like that.

    • Re:Why? (Score:4, Informative)

      by ahecht (567934) on Monday February 14, 2011 @02:21PM (#35201274) Homepage

      If you go to the source at http://www.rug.nl/cit/hpcv/nieuws/touchscreen1 [www.rug.nl] you will see that it wasn't created for teaching math at all (the blogspam linked from the story seems to have made that up). According to RUG: "the initial goal was to facilitate the scientists studying Geographic Information Systems and a research group that studies interaction methods for touch screens"

      • I don't think the article was saying "math students and computer science students," I think it was saying "math and computer science students." In many universities, the two are a single major, with the degree of specialization in either field being left up to the individual student, who remains a "mathematics/computer science" students. Yes, the math and comp sci curricula are less intensive at these schools, but it's a perfectly valid way of categorizing the discipline, despite the objections of mathemati
      • by pieisgood (841871)

        If I wasn't the GP i'd mod you up.

    • Geophysicists and seismic interpreters sometimes use large screens like these to collaborate on data analysis, even making use of stereo 3D at times. Being able to slice and recolor data, look at stuff from different angles, etc in real time increases accuracy and greatly speeds up things. I've seen such a "3d theater" used for interpretation of seismic data; the first time it was used they more than doubly recouped the (considerable) expense of building it, just in saved workhours of some very expensive
  • by Tx (96709) on Monday February 14, 2011 @01:47PM (#35200956) Journal

    My 11.6" tablet suddenly seems a bit undersized. Still, I reckon it will come into it's own when I have to get up and take it home with me ;).

    • by Inda (580031)
      You know those three guys are only 25mm tall? Freak lab experiment gone wrong, or something.
  • ...the 7 years younger me wants to scream kamehameha!
  • Looks like substantial input lag, really noticed it when they were writing numbers.

  • by joeyblades (785896) on Monday February 14, 2011 @02:08PM (#35201134)
    ... is someone to create the worlds largest monitor wipes!
  • How can you have a "World's Largest" article without ever actually writing down the size of the thing anywhere?!?!?!!?!?
  • by ahecht (567934) on Monday February 14, 2011 @02:18PM (#35201244) Homepage

    How about linking directly to the source, instead of to this blogspam: http://www.rug.nl/cit/hpcv/nieuws/touchscreen1 [www.rug.nl]

  • The original story is at http://www.rug.nl/cit/hpcv/nieuws/touchscreen1 [www.rug.nl] and there are plenty of details in the text belonging to the youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AlWFtF06RFo&hd=1 [youtube.com].
    In the original story there is no claim for the world largest, but perhaps it is the worlds largest curved screen. How knows.
    It is not used for teaching math, but if a professor comes along to give it a try he/she is welcome to do so. It is used by students studying interaction methods as the best method for in
  • I have seen better. (Score:3, Informative)

    by patjhal (1423249) on Monday February 14, 2011 @03:30PM (#35202070)

    This has resolution equivalent to two 4k screens and is LCD technology where that looks like projectors. http://www.evl.uic.edu/core.php?mod=4&type=4&indi=727 [uic.edu]

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Don't get me wrong, I find it very cool, but did you notice that the video did not demonstrate a single use case with any actual usefulness?

  • Next to be seen as yet another technologically, over hyped, computer "thingie" that you'll see on CSI which can zoom into a reflected image off of a button, reflecting off of a car mirror as seen from a satellite image that just so happened to be taking the picture at just the exact moment in time that the murder was taking place.

  • ...until this whole concept winds up getting wet and sticky. I want the raincoat concession at that theatre.

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