Monday, October 18, 2010

Winners of Game Changers Kids Competition Announced

October 18, 2010 (Washington, DC) - Seventeen winners of the Game Changers Kids Competition were announced in Washington, DC today at the White House Science Fair, with President Barack Obama congratulating 13-year-old Jack Hanson of New Mexico, for scoring the highest marks in this competition for young game designers. Hanson created the Live or Die adventure for the popular science learning game SporeTM. He was accompanied to the White House by his mother Lori Hanson and his sister and fellow teammate, 15-year-old Haley Hanson, who will also receive an award for her LittleBigPlanetTM entry.

Funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and administered by the virtual network of learning institutions HASTAC (, the Game Changers Kids Competition was part of the third annual $2 million Digital Media and Learning Competition, dedicated to Reimagining Learning. This year, MacArthur teamed with Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA), the Entertainment Software Association, and the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation to support new and creative user-generated levels and adventures to engage young people in learning in the two games. The intention of the Competition is to promote participatory learning, which operates under the notion that individuals, specifically young ones, learn best through sharing and involvement.

Kids learn by doing, and the Game Changers Kids Competition encourages them to learn science and technology by making it themselves in an environment that is fun and challenging, noted Connie Yowell, Director of Education at the MacArthur Foundation. In the digital age, the learning environment is turned on its head its no longer just the dynamic of the student, the teacher and the curriculum. Today, kids learn and interact with others even from around the world every time they go online, or play a video game, or engage through a social networking site. This Competition is helping us to identify and nurture the creation of learning environments that are relevant for kids today and will prepare them for a 21st century workforce.

Kids were challenged to develop new levels and adventures for the popular games SporeTM (EA) and LittleBigPlanetTM (Sony). Winners who designed adventures for SporeTM will be hosted, along with a parent or guardian, on a trip to Electronic Arts (EA), the game design company that developed SporeTM. Kids who won for creating new levels for LittleBigPlanetTM will receive a Sony PSP-3000 system.

Jack Hanson's SporeTM adventure, titled Live or Die, was chosen both for its challenging, entertaining game play and the scientific principles required to create and play it. Judges praised the way all the actions in the survivor adventure have consequences, and the way Hanson uses Artificial Intelligence and randomizing principles to make the game replayable, with new situations arising from each choice the gamer makes and a new game scenario developing each time one plays. I wanted my level to be interesting and new each time someone plays it, explained Jack. I made it so that there are different problems, but there are lots of different ways to solve those problems."

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Kids Competition final deadline announced!

The Game Changers Kids Competition will be open for applicants throughout the summer vacation. The final deadline for all applications--both new and/or revised re-submissions**--is 5:00pm EDT on August 31st.

As a reminder, this contest is for creative levels in LittleBigPlanet and adventures in Spore made by anyone, anywhere in the world who is under 18 years old. If you are a young gamer we hope you'll apply. If you know one, perhaps you can let them know about the competition.

**If you submitted your application earlier in the Competition cycle and wish to revise and re-submit, make sure to do so before 5:00 pm EDT on August 31st by emailing the link to your revised level/adventure to

Game Changers Kids Competition 2010

Join the 2010 Game Changers Kids Competition for Spore and Little Big Planet players. This is your chance to prove yourself as an innovative video game creator! Winners must be under 18, and will be selected based on “Creativity” and “Playability.”



Create an inspired LittleBigPlanet™ level with a team of 2 or 3 of your friends, or on your own for a chance to win a PSP® PlayStation Portable device and game!

Learn more at:


SPORE Galactic Adventures

Create an inspired adventure with a team of 2 or 3 of your friends, or on your own for a chance to win a visit to Electronic Arts, home to Spore!

Learn more at:

Thursday, June 17, 2010

People's Choice Winners Announced

Here's the official announcement, just released yesterday!

June 16, 2010 (Los Angeles, CA)-- Four People's Choice winners of the MacArthur Foundation/HASTAC Digital Media and Learning Competition were announced today at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles, CA. The announcement was made by Aneesh Chopra, the first Chief Technology Officer of the United States, to an audience of innovators in video game development, technology, and learning. The four People's Choice award winners were selected by the public at large in over twelve hundred votes submitted on the in the categories of 21st Century Learning Lab Designers and Game Changers.

People's Choice winners are:

21st Century Learning Lab Designers

Hole in the Wall: Activity Based E-Learning for Improving Elementary Education in India
Hole-in-the-Wall Education Limited, New Delhi, India
Bridging the digital divide by reaching previously underserved youth in the developing worldurban slums and remote-rural populations, ethnic minorities, juvenile home detainees, and children with special needs Hole-in-the-Wall has installed over 700 internet-enabled public Playground Learning Stations across India, Bhutan, Cambodia and countries in the African continent. Game-activities promote experiential learning that is mapped to prescribed primary grade curricula across various subjects, Hole-in-the-Walls Activity Based E-Learning Solution imparts a playful learning environment by encouraging learning through self and group exploration beyond the classroom.

Nox No More: Connecting Travel Logs with Simulation, Gaming, and Environmental Education
Rosanna Garcia, Northeastern University, Boston, MA
Nox No More is an online game that personalizes environmental education by linking learning to a players personal life to illustrate the positive impact of simple, everyday choices. Players upload real, GPS-gathered personal travel data into a competitive game. During the course of game play, players attempt to save the planet from carbon emissions and are provided with an analysis of potential fuel savings and ways they can reduce pollution by making alternative transportation choices, such as alternative fuel vehicles, public transportation, consolidation of trips, bicycling and walking. Aimed at college students, a beta version of the game will ultimately be available to middle and/or high schools as part of an environmental science curriculum.

Game Changers

Sackboys and The Mysterious Proof
Kan Yang Li, New York City, NY
In Sackboys and The Mysterious Proof, LittleBigPlanet players must escape from the
Proof family's century-old mansion by solving a series of puzzles using geometric reasoning. With puzzle mechanics driven by geometric theorems, students will convert geometric concepts from the classroom into active knowledge through collaborative play inspired by precision learning.

Jennifer Biedler, Blacksburg High School, Blacksburg, VA
In Mission: Evolution, high school students thoroughly analyze the evolutionary science driving the Spore game engine and investigate the scientific accuracy of the game. Working together to identify principles of evolutionary change that are absent from the off-the-shelf version of Spore, students collaborate to introduce these principles into their own missions in Spore Galactic Adventures.

Peoples Choice winners were chosen from the overall winners of the Digital Media and Learning Competition. Now in its third year, the Competitionfunded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and administered by the virtual network of learning institutions HASTACis an annual effort to find and to inspire the most novel uses of new media in support of learning.

This year the Competition was launched in collaboration with President Obamas Educate to Innovate campaign, challenging designers, inventors, entrepreneurs, and researchers to create learning labs for the 21st century, digital environments that promote building and tinkering in new and innovative ways. Detailed information about the winning projects and the Competition is available at

E3 is the annual trade expo sponsored by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) (, the U.S. association dedicated to serving the business and public affairs needs of companies that publish computer and video games for video game consoles, personal computers, and the Internet. This years convention will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center from June 15-17, 2010

About the MacArthur Foundation
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people and effective institutions committed to building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world. In addition to selecting the MacArthur Fellows, the Foundation works to defend human rights, advance global conservation and security, make cities better places, and understand how technology is affecting children and society. More information is available at

A consortium of humanists, artists, scientists, social scientists and engineers from universities and other civic institutions across the U.S. and internationally, the Humanities, Arts, Science and Technology Advanced Collaboratory (HASTAC) is committed to new forms of collaboration for thinking, teaching, and research across communities and disciplines fostered by creative uses of technology. The infrastructure for HASTAC has been largely provided by the John Hope
Franklin Center for Interdisciplinary and International Studies and the Franklin Humanities Institute at Duke University and the University of California Humanities Research Institute. More information is at

Press contacts:
HASTAC: Mandy Dailey, (919) 681-8897,

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Help pick the winners of the People's Choice Awards

Public voting on Digital Media and Learning Competition winning projects is now open!

Cast up to 4 votes for your favorite winning projects and help to decide which winning projects will receive additional awards and the title of "People's Choice."

Voting will close on June 4th, so don't wait. Visit to cast your votes today!

Game Changers announced

Last week at the Games for Change Festival in New York City, the winners of the Digital Media and Learning Game Changers Competition were announced by Aneesh Chopra - the first-ever CTO of the United States!

You can learn much more about them at

Here are their video pitches:

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Game Changers Kids Competition is now open

Announcing the Digital Media and Learning Game Changers Kids Competition! Please share the web site and the announcement below with any kids or colleagues who work with young people that may be interested in applying.

Game Changers Kids Competition 2010

Join the 2010 Game Changers Kids Competition for Spore and Little Big Planet players. This is your chance to prove yourself as an innovative video game creator! Winners must be under 18, and will be selected based on “Creativity” and “Playability.”



Create an inspired LittleBigPlanet™ level with a team of 2 or 3 of your friends, or on your own for a chance to win a PSP® PlayStation Portable device and game!

Learn more at:


SPORE Galactic Adventures

Create an inspired adventure with a team of 2 or 3 of your friends, or on your own for a chance to win a visit to Electronic Arts, home to Spore!

Learn more at:

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Finalist videos now posted for comment!

Public comment now open on finalist videos for this year's HASTAC/ MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition at

Finalists for this year's Digital Media and Learning Competition have now all posted their final three-minute video applications online. Through verbal pitches, story narratives, dramatic renderings, and machinima-style demos, the applicants have used videos to show how they are reimagining learning. We invite you to visit to see for yourself and to share your opinions and feedback with the applicants.

In May, you will have the opportunity to help determine which finalist will be named the People's Choice award winner. Stay tuned to for details!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Share your thoughts on finalists' applications!

We are pleased to announce the finalists for the 3rd HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition. Our first round judges had the seemingly impossible task of narrowing down an amazing field of ideas and we are proud to present these 67 finalists who are re-imagining learning in new and innovative ways. You can view the full list of finalists at

We invite you to visit to read through the applications that have advanced to the final round and to share any feedback and your ideas as to what the finalists should consider in advance of the second round. On April 19th, these finalists will post a three minute video that further describes their idea (whether through a verbal pitch, a story narrative, a dramatic rendering, or a machinima-style demo), so your comments during this period are welcomed and appreciated. You will also have the opportunity to view and comment on the round two video applications after April 19th.

Many thanks to all the applicants to this year's Competition and to all of you that have shared your thoughts and invaluable feedback as part of the public commenting process. We hope you will continue to stay tuned and to participate!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

2010 Finalists Announced!

The lists of finalists in both the Game Changers and 21st Century Learning Labs competitions has been announced. It's available on our web site, but I'll also paste the list below.

Soon their applications will be available online for additional commenting, and the applicants will be asked to add more detail including multimedia content to further explain their ideas.

Thanks again to all of the amazing educators, activists, and community organizers that applied!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Playing our way to a better world

Not many people think our Big Problem is that we don't play enough games. But game designer Jane McGonigal says that's exactly what we need to do. Even she describes this idea as "crazy," but she's also got a great point. What if all the time we spend playing games was dedicated instead to making the world a better place? And what if we could do both at the same time?

Check out her TED talk and see what you think.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Game Changers educate and inspire

[Connie]The MacArthur Foundation's Connie Yowell wrote a great essay at Huffington Post this week highlighting the potential of the Game Changers awards. Here's an excerpt:
News of the competition has been making its way through the gaming community, and a number of contest proposals have already come in. They contain some provocative creative plots and adventures: finding a missing genius scientist, repelling invaders of human consciousness, and the proper care and feeding of aliens. There are some intriguing new potential heroes, too, including: "Sackboy," a Geico-like lizard named "Sal," and an invisible time-traveling professor named "Momo."

- Connie Yowell: Inspire a New Generation of Game Experiences for Children,, 2/8/10
Got an inspiring idea?  Digital Media and Learning Competition submissions close on Monday.  Apply now!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

LBP and Snow

Last week North Carolina was hit with more snow than we've seen in a few years. This, of course, means school was canceled for most of the week. North Carolinians are not so adept at driving on inches of snow, and we don't have many snow plows! So one afternoon I brought my daughter and two friends to HASTAC, where they spent the entire afternoon playing LBP. They think I have the coolest job around! (They're right.) Check out the rapt attention and good times:

Thursday, February 4, 2010

DML Competition re-opens to NEW applicants

Due to popular demand, the 2010 HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition has been re-opened to new applicants!

The application system is now open.  Submit your application between now and noon EST on February 15th.
  • To be considered, all new applications must be submitted by noon EST on February 15th.
  • We cannot guarantee that new applications will be given the opportunity to benefit from public comment and feedback on their applications. Newly submitted applications will not be available in the public commenting system until after February 15th.
  • For full information about this year's Competition, please see
As planned, previous applicants are now also invited to re-submit their applications to include ideas and collaborators that may have arisen from the public comment. All previous applications must be re-submitted by February 15th to be considered.  Click here to learn more about the Competition timeline.

Click here to create or re-submit your application now. Good luck!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Join the Conversation!

Public commenting on the 2010 HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition is now open!  Join the conversation.  Log in to provide feedback and comments on applications.
  • Register to add your comments by creating a user name and password (please note the user name and password you created to submit an application will not work; all users must create new logins).  You will receive an activation e-mail, with a link to confirm your address, and can then log in to the system.
  • Take a look at as many of the brief 50-word project descriptions as you can.  If something looks interesting, you can either read more (a 300-word description) or save it and come back later for a closer look.  
  • Once you’ve taken a look, we encourage you to discuss (post a comment) or tell a friend.
  • Browse around the site.  You can search for projects by tag words that interest you, like robots or climate change, or look at the tag cloud for other clues.  You can see which projects are generating the most comments or see which ones were commented on most recently.  
  • Navigate, explore and share your thoughts.  Do you think the idea is a good one? Do you have any suggestions on how to make it better? Interested in collaborating?  The applicants will have a chance to incorporate your input during the resubmission period.
  • All of the projects have distinct URLs, so you can tweet, blog and share applications and solicit feedback.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Tonight Is the Night! Preliminary applications due by 11:59pm EST on January 22nd

As the deadline for preliminary applications draws ever closer, we wanted to take this opportunity to encourage you to submit your application today. The application system is open and will remain so until 11:59pm EST tonight--Friday, January 22nd.

However, please don't wait until the last minute and risk any potential snafus that could jeopardize your eligibility!

Here at HASTAC, we will make every effort to address any and all questions and/or technical difficulties even today--the deadline. Unfortunately, given the heavy traffic, we can in no way guarantee that last day queries or technical difficulties can be resolved in time to meet the deadline.

Don't risk it! If you have your application ready to go, go ahead and submit it here.

Best of luck!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Just over 3 days to go! Preliminary applications due by 11:59pm EST on January 22nd

As the deadline for preliminary applications draws closer, we wanted to take this opportunity to encourage folks to submit their applications as soon as possible. The application system is open and will remain so until 11:59pm EST on January 22nd.

However, please don't wait until the last minute and risk any potential snafus that could jeopardize your eligibility!

Here at HASTAC, we will make every effort to address any and all questions and/or technical difficulties even on the day of the deadline. Unfortunately, given the heavy traffic, we can in no way guarantee that last day queries or technical difficulties can be resolved in time to meet the deadline.

Don't risk it! If you have your application ready to go, go ahead and submit it here:

Best of luck!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Women Aloud Videoblogging for Empowerment

How do we create meaning with technology?

Leba Rubinoff of Mobile Movement, one of our 2008 Digital Media & Learning winners, asked that question in a blog post months ago, which struck me as one of the fundamental questions for the 21st century. We have the technology, we know the potential, we are flooded in a sea of information. How, then, can technology be used to create meaning?

Leba wrote, "I am always thinking about how to create intimacy and meaning with technology. It's hard to do. Really hard. Can we move people through technology? Can we inspire young people in Kenya and the US and make connections between people who have never met? Can we promote global citizenry one-to-one? And can we share those stories so others want to join the movement? I think we can."

I thought about Leba's questions during my conversation with Sapna Shahani and Angana Jhaveri of Women Aloud Videoblogging for Empowerment (WAVE), Digital Media & Learning winners from 2009. Both women are in India at the moment, so we used Skype to communicate, losing our connection five times during the one and a half hours we spoke. They were calling from a rural part of India, but despite the technological interruptions, it felt as though we were sitting in the same room. Their passion for the project was so palpable and their stories so vivid that it was easy to experience that familiar tug of participation, wanting to travel to India and see their project in action.

A few months ago, Sapna and Angana gathered 50 women from 28 states (and Delhi) for training, to show them how to use video and social media tools to capture the stories of the people and areas where they live. "Every state in India has a different language, and each region is so culturally different," Sapna told me. According to India's Constitution, there are 22 recognized languages, although the Indian Census estimates hundreds more different dialects and roughly 2,000 spoken languages.

When I asked Sapna and Angana what it was like to gather everyone together for the training, they both commented on the moment when each of the 50 women went around the room introducing themselves, saying their names and where they came from. "Some parts of India are completely foreign, so to get everyone together at once, it was the first time all of us met someone from each part of the country. We all felt how amazing it was to be together."

Each of the 50 women have returned to their homes to begin documenting stories, using their recently acquired video and editing skills. Eventually, the videos will become videoblogs on a new Women Aloud Videoblogging for Empowerment site, something we plan to announce on when the stories are up and ready to share.

I asked if the women would reconvene for a reunion at some point, perhaps when the site launched. Sapna's response says much about the women involved and what they can, and will, accomplish. "We did not budget for a second gathering, but the women decided that they will raise funds themselves and find a way to make it happen." As our world becomes more technological and connected, that kind of intention really stands out.

When we began to wrap up our call, Angana asked a question that others may be able to help answer. What is the best way to prepare for the launch of a website? When we spend so much time preparing for an exciting moment, often one that involves real people in real life, how do we translate a kind of stage moment to a networked, distributed environment? Analytics are fun to track, but what else can be done to make an online event meaningful? If you were working on Sapna and Angana's project, what would you do?

Friday, January 15, 2010

The application system for the 2010 HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition is now open

The online application system for the 2010 HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition is now open. To apply, visit You have until January 22, 2010 to submit your preliminary application.

To make sure that your application process runs smoothly, please keep the following in mind:

Your application will be made visible to the public for commenting on January 22. At that time, the application system will stop accepting new applications and be open for comment.

Prior to submitting your application, you will be given an opportunity to review it. However, once you hit "FINISH" on the application, you will NOT be allowed to revise or edit your application until the resubmission period opens on February 3rd.

The resubmission period of February 3rd-15th is to allow applicants to revise and strengthen their applications by tweaking, editing, broadening, etc., the initial application to incorporate any useful feedback or ideas offered by the public. The structure of the application form will not change.

It is not necessary for you to revise your application based on the feedback you receive, however, all applications MUST be resubmitted (even those that have not been edited or changed in any way) between February 3rd and 15th.

Please remember that you may only be the primary applicant on ONE application, although you may be listed as a collaborator on other applications. Applicants may be disqualified if they are discovered to have submitted multiple applications by using different email addresses or by using other (real or fictitious) identities to apply.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email While we can't give you feedback or advice on your application, we are happy to answer any specific questions.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Four P's

I've been exploring the wide world of LittleBIGPlanet user communities today. (And it is a very BIG world!) I came across this great forum post on "Creating Your Level: The Four P's." Planning, Preparation, Playtesting, and Publicity - it's good advice, and should be helpful for anyone developing content for the Game Changer awards in this year's competition.

Webcast: What Kids Learn When They Create with Digital Media

Courtesy of the MacArthur Foundation YouTube channel . . . 

This forum, entitled "The Power of Youth Voice," brought together experts in digital media and learning to share their research and experiences using digital media in and outside of the classroom. ...


Monday, January 11, 2010

Do you play Spore or Little Big Planet? Friend me!

My Spore thingThanks to the MacArthur Foundation's collaboration with EA and Sony for the Digital Media and Learning Competition, I have been learning more about the games Little Big Planet (on PlayStation3) and Spore: Galactic Adventures (on Macintosh/Windows).

I haven't had as much time as I'd like to play them (of course) but I have been dipping my toe in the water. In Spore I have graduated from the primordial ooze on up to "creature stage," and in LBP I have been exploring The Savannah and unlocked the tools to make my own "level" in the game.

Ruby GBeing the social network junkie that I am, one of the features I tend to check out first are the profiles and friends. But sadly, I don't have any friends on either network! If you play one of these games, would you friend me up? I'm using my standard handle rubyji in both My Spore and the the PlayStation network. I'm especially looking for people who are using these games for social or educational benefit.

Also, what are your favorite sources of information about these games and communities of game players? I ask for myself, but also because I am reaching out to LBP and Spore players to let them know they can submit content they make (or plan to make) in these games for awards of up to $50,000 in the Digital Media and Learning Competition! Please pass on the web site to people who might be interested, and/or tell me where to follow up. Thanks!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Better mental health through video gaming

McGill research team sees possibility of training brain to react differently


JANUARY 6, 2010

**Reblogged from The Ottawa Citizen,**

Video games already provide entertainment and diversion, but they may soon boost self-esteem and improve mental health.

Based on knowledge that many of our reactions to life's stresses happen in a split-second and often without our awareness, Mark Baldwin's team at McGill University in Montreal started wondering whether they could program people's brains to react differently.

"All we did was say, 'OK, can we train it?' And once you ask the question, you kind of think, 'Why not?' " the psychology professor says. "You can train anything else. You can train a golf swing, you can train arithmetic skills through practice and drills, so why shouldn't you be able to train some of these automatic thoughts about social experiences, about self and others, about relationships?"

They thought of how people who play a lot of Tetris start to think and even dream about bricks falling from the sky, he says, and video games seemed an ideal medium to retrain people's "mental habits" because they're engaging and motivational.

One could argue that meditation is based on this same notion of retraining thought processes, he says, but efforts backed by psychological science have only appeared in the last five years and the challenge is identifying which thought processes to practise.

He doesn't think it's possible to use a video game to convince people of something high-level like the belief they're a good person, he says, but you can practise basic reactions like paying attention to positive feedback and ignoring criticism.

They've already developed some simple games available at, Baldwin says, including one in which players find the smiling face amid a sea of frowning faces and another where a smiling face appears each time a player clicks on a word related to them, such as their name or year of birth.

"It's just like Pavlov's dog. This boosts self-esteem, makes people feel a little less aggressive in response to insults," Baldwin says. "It's a long way from being a therapy of any kind; these things are games and little laboratory tasks. But someday I think there's going to be some use for this as a part of some kind of psychological intervention."

In the future, the notion of "games" providing entertainment and "applications" doing something useful will converge, he says, pointing out that Nintendo's Brain Age and Wii Fit have already kicked off that trend.

"In terms of where the future goes, that's what makes me hopeful that the application idea is growing and the line between them will get blurred and you'll see more of these positive efforts being integrated with entertainment-type games," Baldwin says.

- - -

About this series: The World Future Society, a Washington, D.C., think-tank founded in 1967, tracks future trends in technology, politics and society. This week, Canwest News Service highlights five of the organization's most fascinating forecasts for 2010 and beyond.

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Lessons Learned from 10 former Digital Media and Learning Competition award winners

Today, over at, former Digital Media and Learning Competition Young Innovator award winner Daniel Poynter (Digital Democracy Contest) posted a selection of interviews that he taped with various 2008 Digital Media and Learning Competition award winners at last year's winner's event. Check them out to learn what lessons former Digital Media and Learning Competition winners wish they had known before embarking on their journeys (and some things that you might want to consider when developing your applications).

Reblogged from "Lessons Learned from 10 DML Winners"

The Digital Media and Learning Competition is all about learning. How do digital environments change learning? What do "innovators" in this field learn from their experiments?

At the DML ceremony in Chicago April 17, 2009 the Digital Democracy Contest and GNIC team asked 2008 winners, "What do you wish you would have known last year in order to be more effective?" Videos of their responses are below:

Howard Rheingold - create realistic goals and budgets. Find great programmers.
Hugo Berkeley - keep an open mind, react to realities, and hold on to what's best about your idea.
Jessica Fraser - network with other grantees.
Amira Fouad - let your users guide your project.
Steve Anderson - it's very important and valuable to connect with other grantees.
Jon Santiago - think about your "theory of change" and think of how to track those changes.
Adriana Pentz - starting a project from scratch within a year is very difficult. Good projects take time. Also, grantees will be more successful by being candid about challenges in their work with other grantees, MacArthur and HASTAC.
Rik Panganiban - remember those two or three success stories (not just statistics) which show your project's impact. Catching those stories on video is even better!
Michael Blockstein - Spend a lot of time planning. Set up a clear pathway and strategy. Build relationships.
Edwin Bender - interact with your users early. Find out what's important to them.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Competition timeline extended by a week--application system to open January 15

Happy New Year!

Here at Digital Media and Learning Competition headquarters, we are increasingly excited as the opening of the online application system draws closer. We can't wait to see the ideas that you have percolating and the many innovative ways you are reimagining learning!

To give you some additional time to shine up those initial applications and get them ready for prime-time, we are happy to announce that we have extended the Competition timeline by one week. This means that  the online application system will now open and begin accepting applications on January 15th.  The due date for preliminary applications has been extended until January 22nd, while resubmitted final first round applications (taking into consideration any public feedback/comments received)  will be due no later than February 15th.

Please check out the revised timeline here: and feel free to email us with any questions.