Sunday, June 23, 2013

App like Bill Nye:

Metaphor for a product proposal

Bill Nye The Science Guy has been a model for this artist for a long time, and when it was announced that Nye had “made an app,” the artist’s curiosity was piqued because he wants to do for art education what Bill Nye and his ilk have done for science ed.

Copy-writing ABC news about Bill Nye’s App

      The new app available on iTunes is “Bill Nye The Science Guy,” downloadable for free for iOS (iPhone and iPad) devices."
     I took the text off the Web site and rewrote it—like buying a used article of clothing, and trying to tailor it to fit me. All the old radio and TV shows have been models for me when I think how to go on teaching after I die, using every kind of new and old technology I can stitch together.
      “Bill Nye The Science Guy, a PBS show that taught kids all about science, is off the air, but his smart and informative legacy lives on in the iTunes store,” the news article stated.
      In the same way, I am “off the campus” of the UW Art School forever, but I will live on in the iTunes store or the Android-compatible store at
      “Bill Nye The Science Guy is now an app, released earlier this month by Disney Publishing Worldwide. From games designed to teach users about the solar system and planet Earth’s geological history to do-it-yourself experiments, the app brings users all of the informative lessons Nye has to teach in an imaginative manner.”
      If I had a group like Disney to back me up, I know I could do an app for printmaking. I rack my brain trying to come up with a backer, and I haven’t succeeded yet. ABC (an affiliate of Disney) describe’s Nye’s app:
      “You’ve arrived at my desk!” exclaims the familiar voice of Bill Nye as you open the app.”
      It’s so much like my relief printmaking one I started a couple years ago, you can see it on my Printmaking Camp Website.

      In Nye’s App, "You choose from objects on the desk (click on the image) such as a rocket, a robot or a sundial, and the app will bring users into a different lesson. Select the rocket, for example, and you will embark on a mission to the solar system, where Nye teaches you facts about the planets. Tap the robot, and Nye and his dog will bring you on an archeological dig wherein you earn points and learn about the earth’s surface based on the objects you find.”
      It’s painful for me to read this stuff! I ache with envy! My app would have you click on a certain woodcutting knife and it would be explained, and method of using it, too. Click on the little icon of Dusty Cann, the PressGhost, or a caricature of Hiroshige, and take another approach in old Japan. Or, go with C. T. Chew on a Video Dig!
      “In addition to games, users can bring the science lab into their own home; swipe through a book of “do-it-yourself ” experiments and follow instructions to brew up homemade carbon dioxide, for example.” I question the use of the word “games” because clicking on something is not gamification in my book. No challenge, no game.
      “This app offers more than just facts and information. It has humor, too. For example, open Bill Nye’s desk drawer and learn when he started wearing bow ties and even how to tie one yourself.” Gag.
      "It is easy to download, install, and launch the app. Press the fingerprint icon to enter the Nye lab. No scientific laboratory is completely secure without a finger print identification!" Fake. Fake.
      "Bill Nye The Science Guy presents information in an engaging manner combining retro style animations with games and lessons users will find easy to absorb. The one downside: The app is not available for Android." (Well, MINE WILL BE!)- BR

      ©2013 Bill Ritchie, who thinks printmaking should be taught and learned, practiced, researched and be of community service. He retired from 20th Century teaching to start Emeralda Works—a blender of traditional printmaking and digital arts for producing games that combine curriculum, database, etching press, and a digital game-based interface.