OUP discount offer on a range of books for all digifest participants

Posted on

To celebrate UCL digifest 2014, Oxford University Press are pleased to offer a 20% discount until 21 December 2014 on a special selection of books, featuring titles on: computer heroes, computing & society, and computer Science.

Please enter the code WEBDIGI14 in the promotional code box at the shopping basket to claim your discount.

How to Order
Please use this link to take a look at the titles on offer. Your final discounted price for each item will show up in your shopping basket after you have clicked on the ‘add to basket’ button on each individual product page.

Feedback Mechanisms

Posted on Updated on

Throughout the week, we are employing a range of different feedback mechanisms for session audiences to participate in. We will have sessions summed up in word clouds, in Chirps and even in song!

For the latter, Samer Abdallah from the department of computer science helped us build a very simple Google form that he managed to connect to Spotify where it generates a playlist based on form input.

You can listen to how digifest is feeling right now by clicking this link.

Notes from the Advocacy and Campaigns session #dfchange

Posted on Updated on

CC-BY Janina Dewitz

Notes from the Open Access 101 session #dfopen101

Posted on

Digifest diary

Posted on Updated on

One of our session hosts made a great session intro video using an online animated presentation software Powtoon, and it looked so good that I thought I’d dab my hands into it and give it a go.

The editing layout is quite straightforward and easy to navigate, although I did take some time playing around with it before I fully grasped the formatting and processes.

Snap 2014-09-16 at 20.00.50


Basically Powtoon works like the usual presentation softwares, only with more flexibility in slide length, presentation and animation styles and with cool icons to boot!

You can either add more slides, or increase the length of one slide, which was what I did. I only had about 5 slides, but they ran between 5-15 seconds each. I also had fun choosing different backgrounds, colours and fonts to make it more interesting. On top of that you could also add music to complement the animation, making it seem like a video instead of a normal presentation.

Here’s the final product, which is basically about what I do with digifest:

Powtoon is free to use online, although there are some options that require an upgrade to a premium paid account. Have a go at it and show it off to friends for one of your presentations!

Is this ok??

Posted on Updated on

Hello lovely digifest readers,

I was having a little browse and came across a slightly terrifying toy/’teaching tool’ called The Roboroach which started its life on popular crowdfunder Kickstarter.



Credit: backyardbrains.com

These guys have basically developed an electronic device that allows anyone to control the movements of a real live cockroach using their mobile phone app.  Backyard Brains claim this is a tool designed to pique, children’s interests in neuroscience…really?

There is a little procedure everyday punters must first operate on the animal, involving submersion in ice water, sanding, using a needle to make a small hole in the thorax to insert a wire and the cutting off of the antennae and the insertion of electrodes.  Now, I realise a lot of people anthropomorphise animals rather freely due in large part to Bambi, however, this still seems a bit wrong on a purely moral level right?  Fair enough using animals for the advancement of medicine but this toy can surely not stand behind such a argument.  Yeah it’s just a cockroach, their not very intelligent or cute but then where does one draw the line?  Will we be seeing remote control chinchillas soon?

Let us know what you think in the comments and take our poll  =)

UCL Museums: 3D scanning and printing at The Petrie

Posted on

Welcome to the second and final part of the UCL Museums series, where we share how UCL museums use tech and digital things to revolutionise artefact documentation and enhance user experience. This time we went to UCL’s Petrie Museum to take a peak at the technology behind their 3D scanning and printing of artefacts.

The sofware developer at the Petrie, Giancarlo Amati, graciously took us around the museum and spent some time explaining to us about the increased accessibility of artefacts through online curation and interactive apps. Check out these videos:

Part 1

Part 2

The digitisation of artefacts using a variety of technology, such as 3D scanning and printing, app tour and Augmented Reality (AR) has allowed greater accessability and interactivity between visitors and museum exhibits. Do drop by the Petrie Museum to experience this first-hand, or download The Tour of the Nile app available on Apple AppStore today.