What is natural user interface (NUI)?

You may have heard the term NUI or natural user interface tossed around. It refers to a computer interface that is devoid of peripherals such as a keyboard or mouse.  Instead the human body is used to interact with the computer.  If the idea seems abstract, think about the movie Minority Report…


Microsoft’s Xbox Kinect is probably the most well known device that currently offers the opportunity to use NUI.  Its latest version recognizes a user’s body movements, facial gestures, voice inflection and even heart rate.  From an educational perspective, this opens the door for many interesting implementations.  This can allow for a possible multi-sensory educational experience unlike any we’ve seen before.  Students can operate with the learning modality that best suits them. The potential positive outcome of increased confidence in educational endeavors could change the academic trajectory of many students; particularly those with learning disabilities or many on the autistic spectrum.  There are obvious challenges to overcome such as cost, expertise and proper implementation, to name a few.  But that doesn’t mar the endless possibilities that such engaging, intuitive technology presents.


Technology is great, but teachers…WE STILL NEED YOU!

If you have followed my blog its obvious that I am a huge proponent of integrating technology into instruction and learning.  That being said, there is no way technology could ever replace teachers…GOOD teachers!  You know, the ones who stay up nights trying to figure out how to present the course material such that it resonates with that one kid that has sunk to the back of the class.  The ones who’s empathy outweighs and enhances their pedagogical approach.  The ones who look to steadily sharpen their skills and mastery of their craft.  The ones who provide confidence boosters to students who have stumbled.  The ones who mentor as much as they teach.  Yup…you’re the ones I’m talking to.  Our educational system breaks down without you.   We need you, appreciate you and applaud you!  THANK YOU!!!