I came upon a nice picture of a layar (that’s not a mistake. It is the commercial name of virtual layers on mobile phone applications) on a mobile phone. We see Keizersgracht in Amsterdam on a nice autumn day through a VodaFone branded cell phone. We can look through the phone and the apparent Funda site, the Dutch real estate site. Intriguing. In the same image, we read information regarding a house at Prins Hendrikkade, costing about 349,000 Euro. As an example of what’s coming up, I’d say it is a great picture. From a reality point of view, I tend to say that this mash-up is a hoax. The picture we see is indeed Keizersgracht. The bridge you may spot at the end of the canal is Leidsegracht. It is where I walk the dog twice a day. The shot is taken at the bridge of Leidsestraat. Prins Hendrikkade is by no means even close to this point. I know because I live just behind the left-side houses. And, a propos, there’s no way one might acquire a flat for that price in the Prins Hendrikkade area (which happens to be near Amsterdam Central Station and Nemo. But, who cares. VodaFone has made its point.
Of course, layers like the one in the mock up are gaining territory as we speak. So, what is the relevance of talking about these innovations in mobility? Well, I am delighted to say that I have been working on the concept of a minor. Not just me of course but I have written the concept based on brainstorms with some colleagues. Boudewijn Dominicus, our former educational manager, instigated the whole idea. Clever thinking, Boudewijn! So, hopefully, we are on the road with this educational innovation September 2010 (in terms of higher eduction, that’s fast).
The minor is called Mobile Business Design. There is an addition: ‘in a crossmedial context’. That’s obvious to us but may not necessarily be to outsiders. There is a lot happening on the mobile front. It is not just about layers (layers). It is more about people using their phone to do other things than what they have done so far. I on’t really know where this is heading to but it sure feels exciting. So, we are planning a couple of things that will improve our professional education in crossmedia and digital communication with knowledge about mobility and the (assumed) cross-overs with other media.
The first thing we plan is what we call an Encounter. We hope to be able to cooperate with esteemed players in the field of mobility and creative industry (we have not asked these players so I’m afraid I can’t mention their names at this stage. Sorry). During this Encounter, a half-day brainstorm session, we will deepen issues that deal with the near future of development of mobility, what the industry requires as mobile and crossmedia competencies the next couple of years and how our faculty and research group can anticipate on this.
The next thing is that we refine the concept of the minor Mobile Business Design which has been sent to the Hogeschool’s auditors. What will happen after this, I really have no clue at the moment but for me personally, I’m happy to say that it would be a jewel to my crown.
I haven’t talked about the relationship of mobility and crossmedia yet. I recon it is obvious. Maybe, part of the invitation text for the Encounter may help: “buzz developments succeed each other faster than warp speed. And turbulence rages on. Trends abide as unthought-of heirs of a recent history. Will Twitter stay or are we already in for a new social medium that will enable us to tell the world where we are, what we are, who we are and what we do? Or will the next big thing be something completely different? Something that will facilitate us to be anywhere and nowhere at the same time: “beam me up Scotty”? And looking at all these developments, how can we anticipate?”
Hoaxy mash-ups or not, we are all very sure that we stand at the mere beginning of new exciting developments in tooling our human communication. And I am happy to be able to architecture these accretions into our professional education.