MiXR Studios Podcast: Episodes 24-27

By | December 4, 2020

The MiXR Studios Podcast exists to educate the University of Michigan community about what is happening in XR (Extended Reality) on campus. It will share best practices and exciting learnings while helping to shape the future of teaching and learning in higher education and beyond. Visit the podcast archive at: https://ai.umich.edu/category/mixr/

Episode 24: A Conversation About VR Documentary Storytelling: MiXR Studios Podcast with Guests Sara Blair and Barry Pousman

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In this week’s MiXR Studios podcast, we have a special opportunity to hear Professor Sara Blair interview filmmaker Barry Pousman, the COO and Lead Producer at LightShed.io about his transformative work in VR storytelling at the United Nations and Discovery Digital Networks. Professor Blair taught a course in the fall 2019 where students explored the perspectives of VR and the novel, and the course allowed her students to experience some of the work that Barry created. In this unique conversation, we hear from two experts in the space of digital storytelling and how that relates to bringing about social change.

Episode 25: Building a VR Classroom for the Humanities: MiXR Studios Podcast with Guest Jan Stewart

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In this week’s MiXR Studios podcast, we talk with Jan Stewart, the lead academic technology strategist for the University of Michigan’s LSA Technology Services. Jan shares his experience and input in creating the first VR classroom for Humanities at the university. He was instrumental in helping shape the design and delivery of the VR courses created by U-M professors Sara Blair and Lisa Nakamura. Technology isn’t the only consideration in a VR classroom, and Jan talks about how to deliver the safest and most effective experience for students.

Episode 26: Creating Narratives in Augmented Reality: MiXR Studios Podcast with Guest Simone Sessolo

In this week’s MiXR Studios podcast, we talk with Simone Sessolo, a lecturer IV at the Sweetland Center for Writing and the Digital Studies Institute at the University of Michigan’s College of Literature Science, and the Arts. Simone discusses his work in teaching composition and narrative writing with augmented reality. His work focuses around the interactions that exist between computers and traditional media. In talking with Lisa Nakamura from the Digital Studies Institute, he was intrigued by the university’s investments in augmented and virtual reality. This led him to create a 200-level writing course at U-M called Creating Narratives in Augmented Reality. We explore how he thinks about storytelling and digital technologies and what he would like to see the future look like at the university.

Episode 27: Laying the Foundation for a University-wide XR Initiative: MiXR Studios Podcast with Guest Tom Finholt

In the final episode for season one of the MiXR Studios podcast, we talk with Tom Finholt, the dean and a professor at the University of Michigan’s School of Information. Dean Finholt was instrumental in the early work in collaborating with faculty and other deans at U-M to explore what the university should be doing in terms of XR for research and pedagogy. Dean Finholt was strongly encouraged by alum and external advisory board member Jamie Voris to invest in XR technologies broadly across the university to enhance teaching and learning. As we wrap up our first season, I couldn’t think of a better person to share his insights and thoughts about where we have been and where we should go with the XR Initiative.