United States presentations

Chris and Joel have been in the United States during August, presenting about the #thismymob project, and the successful launch of the app prototype with the five participating mobs. Their first stop was in Irvine, California where they met up with Professor Paul Dourish from the University of California Irvine, who is a partner investigator on the project. The discussions there were about post-colonial computing and how the project team can further investigate co-desiging technologies with Indigenous people and ‘coding for culture’.

IMG_3468

The next stop was to San Francisco, California where they presented the project to Google. The presentation was held in the San Francisco office and was also broadcast across to all Google offices around the United States. Google staff were very interested in the project particularly around ‘coding for culture’ and ensuring that technology is designed with Indigenous people to be culturally sensitive and appropriate.

IMG_3534

The next presentation was at MIT in Boston, which sparked interesting conversations around cyber bullying and how apps, such as #thismymob can be used as safe space for Indigenous people to connect and communicate with each other. The final stop was at the Australian Embassy in Washington DC, where Chris and Joel presented to Australian Embassy staff, and representatives from Embassies from New Zealand, Canada, Mexico and Peru.

IMG_3675

Indigenous Taiwan Meetings

In May 2018 Associate Professor Tuck Leong met with Professor Yu-Yang Liu from the College of Education of the University of Taipei, in Taiwan. Professor Liu talked about his long-term and ongoing research with different Indigenous Taiwanese groups which has been going on for over 10 years. In terms of using IT to support these Indigenous communities, the main efforts have been to use IT to help preserve different Indigenous languages. This has led to the creation of a large numbers of language learning games, storytelling videos, and language resources. A large effort is focused on reinforcing a standard phonetic written form of these oral languages. Through this, the very grammatically complex languages can be more easily taught/learned, and preserved.

The Indigenous groups he worked with, especially the elderly use mobile phones primarily for their communication and via texting. Not all would use smartphones. However, those using smartphones would almost certainly be using the Line messaging app as the main channel for communication. While Indigenous people, in Taiwan, especially the younger generations, use social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, these platforms cannot rival the dominant use of Line. The language learning site sponsored by the Council of Indigenous People is, http://klokah.tw
The other is sponsored by Taipei City Hall is, http://taipei.pqwasan.org.tw