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Institute for Development of Educational Technologies

Geocaching, Geotagging, Flickr,

WikiWiki, Web-blogs, and Live
Journal in Education:

New Generation of Learning

Projects of City Streets and
Internet Communities

Moscow, 2006
Patarakin E.D., Yastrebtzeva E.N.
Geocaching, Geotagging, Flickr, WikiWiki, Web-blogs, and
Live Journal in education: New Generation of learning projects of
city streets and network communities. – Мoscow.: Institute for
development of Educational Technologies, 2006. 34 с.

This practical guidance has been created on the basis of

learning materials of educational network community of K-12
teachers and pre-service teachers, who are participants of Intel®
Teach for the Future Program. The key project that participants of the
network community develop is creation and investigation of usage
models of school encyclopedia and digital map of Russian cities and
towns. The project implies collective usage of public Internet
services and a variety of play and study activities that are connected
with mobile devices, such as handhelds, GPS-navigators, cell phones,
video cameras, digital photo cameras, and other systems which
integrate all the above functions.

For educationalists, who are involved in project based

learning and research work with schoolchildren and university
students using up-to-date digital technologies and Internet-based

This publication was made with the support from Intel ® Teach to the
Future Program and can be distributed free of charge.

© E.Patarakin, Е.Yastrebtzeva, 2006

© Institute for Development of Educational Technologies, 2006

List of Contents:
CITY STREETS LEARNING PROJECTS ........................................................4

GPS AND GPS RECEIVERS.................................................................................7

USING OF GPS RECEIVER IN BRIEF...............................................................................8
USING GPS RECEIVERS ...................................................................................10
GEOCACHING ..........................................................................................................10
GEOTAGGING .........................................................................................................12
BLOGS AND LIVE JOURNALS ........................................................................14
LIVE JOURNAL .......................................................................................................15
HOW TO JOIN THE COMMUNITY IN BRIEF.......................................................................16
HOW TO SHOW YOUR CITY TO COMMUNITY IN BRIEF......................................................18
SPECIAL WIKIWIKI IN BRIEF .....................................................................................22
FUTURE PROGRAM ..........................................................................................23

NETWORK RESOURCES LINKS:....................................................................28

City streets learning projects
Extended reality is first of all an opportunity to see
the world through another person’s eyes
Kim Veltman

This practical guidance has been created on the basis of

learning materials of educational network community of school and
university teachers, who are participants of Intel® Teach for the
Future Program. The key project that participants of the network
community develop is creation and use of school encyclopedia and
digital map of Russian cities and towns. The project implies
collective use of public network services and a variety of play and
study activities that are connected with mobile devices, such as
handhelds, GPS-navigators, cell phones, video cameras, digital photo
cameras, and other systems integrating all the above functions.
Due to development of digital technologies teaching practice
adopts devices and tools that help schoolchildren extract and use data
during walks and traveling. Wide spread of computers and mobile
technologies allows to incorporate various open sites beyond school
walls in the teaching process. Nowadays city parks, squares and
streets turn into school classes. We used to know that all these places
were also involved in learning process, but now we can consolidate
and integrate them in a common learning context.
Quite recently school learning activities in the open and study
in computer laboratories were separated from each other.
Schoolchildren went on excursions to gather data that were brought
to the classroom to build computer models or create presentations.
Today mobile devices allow to obtain source digital materials directly
in city streets. Point location, digital photographs, audio and video
recording – all this can be conducted using affordable mobile devices
directly in city streets.
The main advantage of these devices is that they enable to
store and process information. Besides, they enable access to IT
systems, and promote to people’s collaboration in acting and
thinking. Learning activity in city streets using mobile devices can be

extended due to use of network technologies. As a result, learning
project participants do not only act in local context of city or village
streets, but also become familiar with such global network concepts
as databases, digital maps, and open encyclopedias.

Moscow schoolchildren examine Lyamtsa village using GPS-navigators to

make a site plan, and create a virtual excursion (the photo is provided by

Groups of schoolchildren have been creating virtual learning

excursions in various Russian regions for several years already. As a
rule, the final form of presenting information is hypertext. Thus,
Moscow schoolchildren create virtual hypertext excursions using
materials of school expedition1. At that, information of all village
sites is connected with maximum logical connections. Thus, data of
villagers are connected with information of houses, where they live,
their households, folklore texts provided by them, as well as with
each other if people are relatives. The basis of such organization is an
outline plan of the village. “Entering” houses a user can become
familiar with their owners and learn all information connected with

Demin I.S., Using computer tools in expedition activities -

In 2002 schoolchildren of 14 villages of Nizhny Novgorod
Region worked at creating a collective hypertext. The key idea of a
collective hypertext is an opportunity to read the same document in
multiple ways. Additional information that extends the message text
is stored in databases from various villages2,3. Each object has a
corresponding line with the following cells: Name; Image; Text
description; Audio; Video. These words have specific meaning for
each village. We can call and open this meaning by using a special
program filter or by looking at the text through the village view filter.
Texts of the stories were created by teams of schoolchildren and were
performed as compositions “One day of a pupil in Nizhny Novgorod
village…” Overlapping of the composition texts with database lines
allows seeing multidimensional world created from a diversity of
links and reminiscences.

Patarakin E.D., Using Digital Collections in Learning Communications
Patarakin E.D., Forms of Network Communication -

GPS and GPS receivers
In order you who are rooted and confirmed in love,
could behold with all Saints what latitude, and
longitude, and altitude are.
Paul. To Ephesians. 3. 18

System of global positioning that is employed all over the

world is supported by the USA Department of Defense and is called
Global Positioning System, GPS. The system includes 24 satellites
moving at low altitudes of low earth orbit.

Satellites send radio signals to the Earth. Radio signal power

is too weak for the system to be used in close spaces. In places,
where the sky is closed by heavy foliage, in mountain ravines, or
under high building walls it is almost impossible to use GPS signals.
To receive GPS signals, special GPS receivers are used. These are
compact devices, exterior of which resembles that of cell phones. It
is worth mentioning that in the nearest future mobile phones will
integrate GPS receivers, forever setting people free from the fear of
getting lost.

GPS receiver receives signal from GPS in-orbit satellites and
defines its location in any point of the world. How precisely the
location is defined depends on a number of satellites, signals of
which have been received. To define a location, stable signals from at
least three satellites are required. Location preciseness varies usually
from 8 to several dozens meters.
Based on received signals the device informs a user of point
coordinates (latitude, longitude, and altitude). For example,
coordinates of Sergievskaya Church in Nizhny Novgorod are: 56
degrees 19 minutes 39 seconds of north latitude and 49 degrees 59
minutes 22 seconds of east longitude. In digital representation they
are: N 56°19'39'' and Е 43°59'22''.

There is a great variety of GPS receivers. Even within a

model line of one manufacturer they differ considerably in terms of
their capabilities, such as quantity of channels used to receive signals
from satellites, number of points and routes that a receiver can store
in its memory. The simplest (and the most affordable) receiver is
Garmin’s 12-channel Etreх. The device can store up to 500 points
and store 1 route consisting of 50 points.

Using of GPS receiver in brief

To the right On and Switch buttons are located:

PWR – ON/OFF and
Page – Page switching, passing from one page to another
To the left option buttons are located:

↑ Up
↓ Down
Selection confirmed
To define locations and make up a route, it is necessary to fulfill the
following actions:
1. Switch on the device using PWR button. The following message
appears: “Please wait. Searching for satellites” – sometimes the
device is searching for satellites for more than 5 minutes.
2. Wait until the device informs, “Ready to navigation. 20-meter
precision”. Use Page button to move to Main Menu Page,
1. Menu
2. Mark the point
3. Points
4. Route
5. Ways,
5. Settings
6. Battery charging

3. Move to Mark Point mode. In the lower part of the screen

coordinates appear, e.g., altitude: 167 m, N 56 19.583, E 44 00 430.
Confirm the selection

Using GPS receivers
Since advent of GPS devices, various services using their
capabilities have appeared. The services are first of all connected
with automobile traveling, when a navigator helps follow from one
route point to another. Travelers and nature explorers in forests,
mountains, and water use GPS receivers to mark certain points and
make up routes.
Besides business activities, some gaming and educational
activities using handheld GPS receivers have been developed. These
are, first of all, geocaching and geotagging.

The first trend, geocaching ("geocaching", from Greek "geo"
- Earth, English "cache" – hiding place) is connected with searching
for caches or guessing riddles about geographical coordinates. The
main idea is that some players hide caches, define their coordinates
using GPS and present these coordinates in the Internet, while other
players use these coordinates and GPS receivers to search for caches.
In educational geocaching players use GPS receiver capabilities to
fulfill tasks.
Geocaching can be used not only for training in up-to-date
technologies, but also for teaching in geography, history, literature
and local lore studies. Play leaders hide small treasures in secret
places and specify their geographical coordinates in the Internet. In
this training model a teacher works as a trailbreaker. He marks points
on the map, gathers materials to check precise location, and breaks
the trail for his students from one point to another. A player or a
group of players are given a list of points to attend. Players must
locate the points, find objects that are hidden there or answer the
questions. In each point players fulfill simple tasks and make notes in
their route sheet to confirm that the task has been fulfilled.
In summer and autumn of 2005 geocaching educational
games were held in several Russian cities: Nizhny Novgorod,
Irkutsk, Khabarovsk, Novosibirsk, Pskov, Porkhov and Voronezh. In

all cities games aroused great interest. When organizing the game,
main workload and constructive activities are carried out by teachers,
who mark the points, make up questions to the points, and place
points along the route.
General route sheet scheme looks the following way:
Point coordinates Place description Question
For example:
Lat=56.1946 long=43.59,66
In 1506, at that very place Fyodor Litvich hit Nagaisk mirza,
Mohammed-Amin's brother in law in chest with a cannonball.
After what is the church in this location named? [Ilya Prorok]
Questions that organizers of educational geocaching ask the
players are divided in the four following types:
1. Questions for attention and searching activities around a
specified point. Answers to these questions require attention and
keenness of observation. Often, people don’t pay attention to
surrounding objects. Thus, the question “Find wisemen playing chess
near the location” makes people raise their heads and see plastic
images of wisemen at the roof of a house. If a question contains an
attached old photograph, searching for an answer to the question
“What doesn’t correspond to reality in this photo?” makes players
find objects that have either appeared or disappeared in this place.
2. Questions for knowledge of historical facts and communicative
activities. Searching for an answer to the question "What was here
earlier?" implies that participants either know the history of a place,
or will be able to address local population and learn “why this place
is called the Black Pond”, “why this square is called Osharskaya”
3. Questions for local measurements. Answers to these questions
can be obtained by using GPS receiver capabilities. For example, a
stadium area can be found out by measuring it with a measure tape,
or by marking perimeter points and receiving data of distance
between these points from GPS stations.
4. Questions – marks of educational geocaching game. These are
funny tasks that are communicated from one game to another. From

the very first educational geocaching game such task was a question
“Bring a photo of a man in red trousers”.
At the finishing stage of educational geocaching game, teams
prepare computer presentations telling of the tours.

The other game model was used in educational games with
GPS receivers in Ekaterinburg and Saratov. Searching for the most
interesting points, defining their location, adding digital photographs
and stories to the objects were entrusted to players. The task of every
team was to create virtual traveling over their city for a limited
period of time. Though many locations in teams’ final presentations
were the same, each traveling was unique. Virtual city tours created
within the framework of virtual GPS travelings allow us to connect
geographical locations with ideas and reminiscences of people of
different generations. Due to that we can remember that Jupiter
concert hall situated at Varnavskaya Street is a former building of the
Party Education House, and before 1960-ies a Church of Saint
Varvara was situated here. This educational trend of GPS navigator
use is called geotagging.
Geotagging (“geotagging”, from Greek "geo" - Earth,
English "tag" – mark, label) is based on using points, where a
photograph is taken, as tags for geographical GPS coordinates.
Project participants present new photographs in the network,
supplying them with description and key words, i.e. tags, according
to which the photograph can be further located. Using such tags,
players can combine stories and photographs presented in project
participants’ collection with Google digital maps service, and obtain
an image of location, where a photograph has been taken, at Geotagging development is connected with using
new services that were defined as Social Software. These services
have considerably simplified process of creating and publishing
materials in the network. Now every person can not only obtain
access to digital collections, but also take part in forming his own
network content. Today new content is created by millions of people,
who bring new texts, photographs, drawings, musical files in the

network. At that communication between people ever often takes the
form of mutual observation of network activities, not direct exchange
of utterances. Joint actions of participants of today’s network
communities often have gregarious character. Just like a form of bird
flock is made as a result of each bird fulfilling simple operations,
complicated behaviour of network community is formed as a result
of individual behaviour of its members. No one directs actions of
individual players, but their simple behaviour is the basis to form
complex collective behaviour. As a rule, the simpler individual
behaviour guidelines are, the more complex character collective
behaviour has. The following network communities can serve an
example of such gregarious communities based on new dataware:
• Network communities based on blog technologies that have
been introduced to Russian-language users in the form of
Live Journal project. In the end of 2004 ACM
Communications devoted to blogs a special issue running
under the remarkable title “Blogosphere”.
• Encyclopedias of collective authorship based on WikiWiki
technology. Here one should first of all mention project. When using Wiki, a person may not
pay attention to using HyperText markup language
instructions. A text of any collection page is interpreted by
the program as a hypertext. Hypertext page space can be
defined as Wikosphere.
• Network communities supporting free public object
classification. Today the most popular one among such
collective storages is Public system of
photograph storage implies user interaction. Since the basis
for classification tools is a tag concept, this sphere of activity
can be defined as Tagosphere.

Blogs and Live Journals
Blog (web-log) is a collection of records extended via Web-
interface. The term blog stems from Web-logging. According to the
definition of SlashDot, “Blog is a new private way of electronic
community evolution. It can serve as an example to show how people
use network to build their own communication environment”. As a
rule, these are consecutive records presented by one person, an owner
of the blog or journal. These records often contain annotated links to
other resources published in the network.
Blogs are distinguished not as much by the records’ structure,
but by how simple adding a new records is. A user just addresses a
Web-server, passes identification and adds a new record to his
collection. The server presents information as succession of
messages, with the latest messages being placed on the top.
Collection structure actually resembles usual consecutive diary or
journal structure.
Blog distinguishing features:
• Reverse record order – the latest records are published on the
top. As a rule, only the latest records are published on the first
page of the blog, while others are available in the archive.
• Feedback. The blog invites readers to express their opinion.
Feedback invitation is published immediately after the record.
In this way a commented blog is similar to the Internet forum.
• The only author. As a rule, blog records’ author is one person.
Only blog owners and authors may offer a topic and initiate
• Integration capabilities. Blog format allows to integrate
content of several author’s blogs in one page.
• Editing using usual browser.
• Stable links. Every message published in the blog has its
URL, i.e. address referring to which one can address the

The last of the above characteristics, i.e. link stability plays
an important role when establishing relations between people and
messages. If a message doesn’t have a stable network address, it does
not have network document status. Such message cannot be referred
to from another document, or found by program agents.

Live Journal
The most famous and popular among Russian audience is
LiveJournal, LJ for short. LiveJournal technology developers have
paid much attention to users’ acquaintance and interaction
capabilities. As a result, they managed to create a very transparent
and consistent mechanism of community formation. Using
LiveJournal capabilities, a person can keep his diary records. He can
keep them without showing to anybody, and the service will still
work. However the biggest part of live journal capabilities is
connected with interaction and observation for other users’ messages.
These messages are tracked via friendship mechanism. LiveJournal
friendship is rather a specific concept.
Each LiveJournal author forms his own page, where the
messages he writes appear. To add a person in LiveJournal friends
list means just to sign for the news he presents in his network diary.
News subscription from any live journal page looks like forming a
list of friends. Adding multiple friends or news stream subscriptions,
each live journal user forms the so-called friend list. In other words,
at the Author page we can read records kept by the author himself,
while Friends page presents us records, to which the author has
subscribed. Thus, a person may not express himself as an author of
his own records, but be a very interesting reader, that is, a person
who finds and forms very interesting news streams.
Reading news list can be more useful than keeping one’s own
records. Due to friend list a person gets an opportunity to arrange
news stream from selected and proven communicants.
There are various friends search engines in live journals. First
of all, it is search by key words people use to specify their interests.
Remember, key words are basic live journal search engine allowing
people with similar interests to find each other and form groups.

Another way is searching in the list of those who have already been
marked as friends of your fiends. “My friend’s friend is my friend”.
The third way is when an experienced live journal author introduces
a newcomer to a group of friends. To do that, special “Look who is
here” messages are published; after that a new live journal member
makes mutual friends selecting from reading friends. Sometimes a
live journal-based group of people forms a community. Community
membership provides an opportunity to publish messages in common
news stream. At community pages there is Join Community
command link accompanied with the following note: “You are free to
leave the Community at any moment”.

How to join the community in brief

To discuss issues related to organizing network educational
projects using socialware, and, in particular, to organize inter-
regional projects using GPS receivers, there is a special live journal
community, Virtual Intels
To join the Community, it is necessary:
• To register in the Live Journal.
• To publish the first message in your diary.
• To specify your interests according to which a member is
found by colleagues.
• To find friends using Vintel and GPS tags
• To join Vintel Community
• To publish a message in the community and a link to your
photos at

Flickr service is designed for storage and further use of
digital photos. A registered system user can locate his photos at a
remote server. Free service enables downloading of 20 MB of photos
per month. Each photo can be supplied with a title, brief description
and key words for further search. Notes at the photographs can also
be made. If a photo shows several objects (for example, several
buildings), any object can be highlighted and supplied with
A photograph can have a status of a private, family, group or
public one. If the photograph is open to the public, it can be viewed
by anybody. Besides, it can be found by key words specified by the
user. Thus, searching by “bat” key word will provide a list of links to
all photos of bats, to which their owners have attached a
corresponding tag. The system allows simultaneous search by several
key words. Another interesting capability is using photo collections
or individual photos at your site or Live Journal pages. To obtain
html code of an individual photo link you should only ask the system
to show the photo in different sizes. Html code, which can be copied
to a required page, will be shown under each photo.
This transparent and useful service extends its capabilities.
The service allows all users to exchange photos, share photos and
photo tags. A person can not keep any negotiations or social contacts
within the service and still benefit from the service as such. Attaching
tags to the photos brings immediate advantages, as tags make easier
searching for photos. In future a user gradually discovers new
capabilities and gains additional benefits from integrating
photographs in common communities’ pools. After you have linked a
tag to the object, you can immediately see what other photographs
have been labeled with the same key words by other people. You can
adjust your key words to the most commonly used, or, on the
contrary, to influence the group norm of key words. Such feedback
results in user communication by means of metadata.
Flickr supports user communication capabilities, enabling
friendly relations between users. However, these relations do not

influence considerably general situation or tag map used by entire
community. Flickr service enables to obtain a map of multiple key
words used by people classifying their photographs. At that only key
words that occur often enough are shown at the screen. Flickr users
can form groups by interests and fill group photograph pool.
Within the framework of teacher network community
activities supported by Intel® Teach for the Future Program in
2005, server presents a gathered collection of digital
photos of Russian cities: Saint-Petersburg, Nizhny Novgorod,
Saratov, Irkutsk, Novosibirsk, Ekaterinburg, Pskov, Voronezh. The
collection is extended by both teachers and students. When adding a
new photo, project members also add photo description and key
words, i.e. tags, by which the photo can be found further. By the end
of November number of photos almost reaches 600. If precise GPS
coordinates of the place shown at the photo are known, they are also
added as tags. Using such tags and GeoBloggers network service
enables to combine stories and photographs included in collection by
project members with Google digital map service
(, and thus, to obtain an image of the place, where
the photo has been taken, at Google map. Every digital photo is
assigned not only temporary, but also a spatial value. Users that have
labeled their photos with geotagged labels (geo:lat=coordinate,
geo:long=coordinate) are provided by the service with geobloggers
map, at which these photographs are located. In a simplified form
used to record data as tags in Flickr system coordinates are presented
as geo:lat=56.1939 and geo:long=43.5922.

How to show your city to Community in brief

To implement inter-regional projects using GPS receivers,
there is a special Wandering Intels Community (GPSI) at Flickr
server. To join the community activities, it is necessary:
• To register at
• To download digital photographs of your city (not bigger than
1200 x 900)
• To tag photos using key words: Russia, 2005, vintel, GPS,

• To add photo description.
• To add clarifying notes to separate parts of photographs.
• To add photo coordinates obtained using GPS navigator
• To join GPSI Community
• To add your photos in community pool.
• To add your comments to pool photographs taken in other
Russian cities
Unfortunately, Flickr service supports user communication
only in English. To help educational community members get
registered and use service capabilities, special WikiWiki page
contains detailed Flickr information (htp://

Future of knowledge management is neither
searching for information, nor digital object
storage management: all this is a science of dead
information. The future is in how we tell stories to
each other, in the way we build new knowledge
from these stories, and reconstruct ourselves
through these actions. This is active, powerful, and
alive future of the Wiki Way (WikiWay)
Sunir Shah, September 30, 2005 Wikipedia eats Google

WikiWiki (wiki) is a collection of interconnected records.

Initially, technology developer Ward Cunningham called the
application the fast hypertext interaction environment. Then
WikiWiki term (means “very fast” in Hawaiian) became to be used.
When using WikiWiki a person may not pay attention to using
HyperText markup language instructions. A text of any collection
page is interpreted by the program as a hypertext.
In WikiWiki a radical model of collective hypertext is
implemented, when every network community member is provided
an opportunity to create and edit any record. There are obvious
advantages of using WikiWiki technologies to organize joint
activities. A user deals only with a usual hypertext on a page
containing Edit Page button. To edit the page, a usual browser is
enough, with little knowledge of HyperText markup language
An important WikiWiki feature is that any of community
members can participate in editing any record. This feature makes
WikiWiki the most powerful tool of collective hypertext creation, an
up-to-date electronic blackboard, at which the whole group can write.
An advantage of such electronic blackboard as compared to usual
school one is that all utterances written at electronic blackboard are
saved. If any record is replaced by a new one, it is “stuck” at the
blackboard over an old record. At that, all previous records are saved.

On the one hand, it allows to track every record history in WikiWiki
database. On the other hand, it guarantees data safety and certain
security of joint activity field from erroneous or purposefully
destructive actions. WikiWiki pages are interconnected using the
simplest addressing system. Such simplicity requires definite rules.
To support such a capability, unambiguous template patterns are
needed; a program agent can be taught to use such patterns. Various
WikiWiki clones can be arranged in different ways and can use
different rules, but the key question is always searching for
templates. For example, classical WikiWiki uses the following
expression as a template:
When translating from regular-expression language it means:
“mandatory Latin letter in the uppercase followed by a mandatory
letter in the lowercase or a numeral and any number of such letters
and numerals”.
Italicized combination of characters in brackets in the above
sentence can be repeated by any number of times. In human language
the rule is not very euphonic, but quite clear to the program. For
example, in first WikiWikis such words as WikiWiki, FireFox or
SourceForge were correct WikiWords, while MSOffice was a wrong
one. Users can create new WikiWords. At that, no error messages
will be returned. The program will just offer you to explain new
WikiWord meaning. To refer to an existing or new concept, you
should just use in the text a WikiWord recorded according to the
given rule.
As a rule, up-to-date WikiWiki programs understand Russian
and can be used to talk in Russian WikiWords. Within Swiki
framework, to define a template it is necessary to use asterisk
symbol; everything restricted by asterisk symbol from two sides is
considered to be *WikiWords*. Nowadays the most popular Wiki
engine version, on which Wikipedia open encyclopedia is based, uses
square brackets as template delimiters. Everything taken in double
square brackets is considered by the program agent as
[[WikiWords]]. Using special signs to create and highlight hypertext
links makes link creation even easier and makes it optional to use

WikiWords. Using such rules of the game, any character strings taken
in asterisks or square brackets can be WikiWords. WikiWiki was
created as a collective information assistant to help easily
interconnect database fragments or pages. In addition to personal
advantages of fast document creation there are also additional
collaboration advantages for document editing with other network
users. At that, a capability of individual activities, that of creating a
hypertext letter just for your own self remains available.

Special WikiWiki in brief

To organize inter-regional projects using GPS receivers,
special WikiWiki has been created. To join the community activities,
it is necessary:
• To register. It helps track your pages.
• To attend best practice pages and become familiar with
WikiWiki style
• To add your name and a link to your city
• To discuss [[Virtual Excursion]] article
• To extend [[Wiki Page]] text about your city with new
concepts, places, photographs

City streets learning projects in Intel®
Teach for the Future Program
In September – December of 2005, geotagging city games
using GPS receivers were held in several Russian cities. Discussion
of the games was conducted in Live Journal within the framework of
network community. Virtual tours are prepared and presented using
Flickr and WikiWiki services. Every team’s activities resulted in
virtual city tour. Schoolchildren write an informal story of the place
they live in. The story is illustrated by digital photos downloaded to
Flickr server. Players learn both how to use GPS receivers and work
with network technologies: download photographs, use key words,
“make friends” with other teams, create WikiWiki pages, locate
digital photos on these pages, bind pages.
Activities related to virtual tour do not come to an end after s
group presents its work. Game organizers and guests from other
cities single out hypertext presentation keywords that evoke their
special interest. After that teams must create articles revealing
names of specified objects.
As a result of community activities, digital map of Russian
cities is gradually formed, where Intel® Teach for the Future
Program has conducted and still conducts its city games using GPS
receivers. Besides, due to efforts of geotagging game participants, a
collective learning city encyclopedia is gradually formed. In the
course of joint activities, community members gather geographical
coordinates of locations, take digital photographs in these locations,
learn additional information of the places, and sometimes transform
it in question answer form.
Besides gathering information, a learning project must
include a story that would accumulate all the diversity of gathered
materials presenting them in a narration form. This form is necessary
as people usually don’t like reading paper or electronic dictionaries
and encyclopedias. People like listening and reading to stories.
Selecting a story that would consolidate community member
activities in various Russian cities we based our choice on successful
experience of creating Carmen SanDiego TV-show and a number of

learning games. To create a game that would attract schoolchildren,
Carmen SanDiego authors suggested using a story of a private
detective. A detective was a woman in a coat and read felt hat, with
an exotic easy-to-remember name that was chasing criminals all over
the world in the meantime solving geography-related tasks.
For our story we used a character of traveling frog that travels
from one city to another (see Appendix 2). In each city the frog
executes a special secret mission that game participants should
discover by visiting and examining points the frog had visited. To
increase believability of the story about traveling frogs, a special
Live Journal blog has been created; the blog stories are published by
a group of authors on behalf of a frog:
As any Live Journal, the frog’s diary contains information of
its author: its brief biography and list of interests.
Traveling frog biography:
It is plausible, but not interesting. You can contradict me that reality
is not obliged to be interesting. And I will tell you that reality may
not, but it does not concern hypotheses.
Borkhes. Death and Boussole
I am a traveling frog. I travel over cities and execute secret missions
there. I gather fairy-tales, steal brilliants, restore monasteries,
rename streets, extend reality, deschool society, create communities,
teach students, deep parallel, multiple entities, count stars.
Frog’s list of interests:
augmentation, carmen sandiego, computer games, cooking, deep
parallel, deshooling, ecology, education, flickr, flocks, frogs,
geography, geotagging, gps, hypertext, Illich, Intel, Italy, monarchy,
money, out-door education, religion, revolution, Russia, schooling,
secret mission, traveling, turtle, ubiquity, wikiwiki, Bach, Borkhes,
Gorky, Lenin, Pavich, Sverdlov, Death and Boussole, Trio from
Belville, Khazar dictionary, absinth, Charlie angels, brilliants,
railway stations, borders, crane, green tea, greens, snakes, games,
coffee, cooking, frogs, mission, mobile systems, teaching, memorials,
cakes, traveling, revolution, connection, fairy-tales, France, church,
turtles, chess.

Besides biography and interests the blog contains frog history written
by a casual observer.
Frog’s history
There was a frog. Better to say, there were several frogs. And they
were fine. A warm bog, slime, yellow lily pads. But one summer day
everything has changed. There came a man in big gumboots and with
a net. He has caught frogs – took them out of their natural habitat.
Moreover. With the help of spells and technical means he turned
them into beautiful girls. Maybe in Vasilisas the Beautiful, or in
Charlie Angels. He hung yellow GPS stations on their chests, and
made them run on errands for him. Travel to various cities and
execute different secret missions. To clean the pond, or to take
pictures of walls and fences, or to gather fairy-tales and recipes.
Frogs feel cold and bad, but still travel to cities to execute their
missions. This slavery will last till spring. And the worst of all is that
they can’t complain to anybody and tell of their hard life. The only
thing they can do it to leave records in this frog’s blog. Only on Live
Journal pages can they write of the missions that have already been

Creating a virtual character that integrates events and objects

in various cities allows to transfer activities of students using GPS
navigators to a new level. Now instead of solving tasks in separate
points that are not connected to each other they have to find and
decipher a message contained in the city geographical context.

Experience of using new socialware allows to outline

expected development trends for network projects in the nearest
• Number of categories of digital objects that are exchanged by
network activity participants is gradually increasing.
• Organizer of joint network project ever oftener plays the role
of school adviser that observes children group behavior, and
not a marshaller that controls everybody’s actions.
• Learning projects are ever oftener leave school environments
and appeal to open knowledge exchange communities.

Adoption of new tools does not only give us an opportunity to
solve new tasks. New tools gradually modify our world outlook,
allow us to see the world from a new point of view. This new model
of network interaction can be used in teaching practice for teachers,
students, and schoolchildren to assimilate important ideas of
decentralization and environmental strategies of joint activities.
In new environment an organizer of joint network projects
ever oftener plays the role of school adviser that observes children
group behavior, and not an officer who controls everybody’s actions.
We have introduced network adviser term to emphasize gregarious
character of modern network communities. Such adviser, first of all,
extends students’ field of vision, helps them trace each others’
activity lines. The further students can see, the more they know of
actions of other group members, the clearer they understand
directions, in which other participants move, and the sooner overall
direction is formed. School adviser must see all group members. He
must tell the group of what he sees. To do this, a teacher as an adviser
can use direct communication forms, indirect communication forms
inside social services, and special services that allow to see
connection between pages, key words and photos.
If an adviser prefers using direct communication forms, he
can address community members directly telling them (in direct mail
list) what he observes at a given stage of community development.
If an adviser prefers using indirect communication forms
inside social services, he will have to perform following actions
depending on a community type:
• To read all Live Journal records, find new topics in
comments, consolidate and interconnect various topics,
annotate activities of separate students in his community
activity reviews.
• To look through and edit all exiting WikiWiki pages. To find
common topics at pages and at a link level to show students
who is near them, where their partners move, and what
interaction with them is possible.

• In Flickr service – to look though all published photos, their
descriptions and key words. To bind photographs and records
using links, add key words and comments.

We suppose, experience of participation in new network

forms that teachers gain inside the network community will extend
their ideas of capabilities of project network activities and will be
used in future when organizing network projects for teachers,
students and schoolchildren.

A new educational project ‘It is Time to Come Back to

Home’, supported by Intel and TransTeleCom started February, 2nd
2006 will help teachers and students to create their own wikipedia
pages. These entries will describe the events, people and places of
‘education interest’. Visit web-site and share your
stories to the broad wiki-community.

Network Resources Links:
Learning materials: – learning materials for creation and development of
network communities

Russian site of geocaching
Maps + photographs -
Google maps –

Live Journal
Vintel Community - - vintel tag
GPSI Community-

Wikipedia -
Wikipedia in Russian -
Learning WikiWiki
Vintel Project WikiWiki

Intel® Teach for the Future Program -

Institute for Development of Educational Technologies –