Working with Spark Media of Washington, DC, I outlined and developed an advanced mobile application for participants at the Inter-American Development Bank Annual Meeting in Panama City, Panama (2013), and again in Bahia, Brazil (2014). The conference was attended by several thousand people, and the app was used for everything from registration, to checking and customizing an agenda, to finding a local restaurant for an evening meal. A QR code system was also built so participants could scan each other's codes to securely share contact information. The app was built with Cordova/PhoneGap, and the most recent iteration was deployed for web, iOS and Android.
You can find the Apple App Store version here, and the Android version here. The project was designed using open-source technology that gave it the flexibility to exist on multiple platforms. As a result, those who did not have an Apple or Android device were still able to engage with the application, even through a web browser.
Agenda: Participants are able to customize their own schedule.
News: All important news releases and alerts for the meeting.
LiveStream: Users can watch events streaming live.
Social: For keeping track of what’s happening on social networks during the meeting.
About: Information that participants will find useful, like information pertaining to host country and event history.
Map: Interactive map and location list with venues, vendors, and sites of interest.
QR Reader and Digital Business Card Exchange (meeting participants only): Users can scan QR codes on-site, and exchange contact info through a unique, user-specific QR code displayed in-app.
Until recently, media makers and advocates who wanted to share the story of somewhere were restricted to linear videos or photo galleries for their websites. Hiring a developer to build an interactive experience is costly, and the code required to build such an experience has a steep learning curve. Then came CSS3 and HTML5. Using new browser technologies, LookAbout is an ongoing open-source project designed to automate all of the hard parts in creating interactive panoramic experiences, so makers can get back to what matters most: Content.
Plus, the "old guard" of interactive projects, Adobe Flash, is not compatible with most mobile devices. Not so with LookAbout: Built on the open web, for the open web.
The project that fosters growth of this tool is called "A Mosque of Her Own" and is developed in collaboration with filmmaker Brigid Maher. This interactive documentary attempts to capture the physical space and culture of women's mosques in China.
You can view the evolving LookAbout demo here, the demo of "A Mosque of Her Own" here, or contact me if you're interested in learning more.
Ayniglobal's mission is to protect and preserve traditional indigenous cultures and ancestral lands including people, animals, plants and water systems. Part of their strategy to accomplish these tasks was to build a web presence that could reach as many people, on as many devices, as possible. In addition, they required the ability to accept subscribers for their mailing list, and take donations on the site.
Emmy award-winning photojournalist and filmmaker Bill Gentile teaches video journalism in many parts of the world. This online version of his workshop allows participants who live remotely to learn the craft of video journalism from the comfort of their own homes. Several features went into building the platform for this workshop, complete with user registration and payment, and customizations to WordPress to allow Bill to update the site himself. Notably, the videos for the course were lengthy, so I was able to integrate a system with Mozilla's Popcorn.js to allow participants to bounce back and forth within a given video by topic.
While working with the Center for Social Media at American University, I managed several aspects of their 2012 Media That Matters Conference. As a means of engaging participants, I designed the app as a volunteer service to allow users to view sponsors, the conference trailer, and each other's Twitter comments related to the event. I continue to host this app in the Apple App store, and update graphics. The app itself, however, is running on WordPress, so the organization is able to add/remove sponsors and events as needed.
You can view the Apple App Store version here, or the web version here.
Photo by Bill Gentile.
Teaching has been a lifelong passion for me, and every opportunity I've been given to share knowledge with others has been both a challenging and rewarding experience. I've instructed a wide range of students with varied skill sets:
High school students who wanted to learn backpack documentary but had never held a professional camera before.
Undergraduates who sought to learn how to edit and learn more about grammar in film.
Mid-career professionals who needed to expand their skills to the web, engaging with platforms like WordPress, and even creating mobile apps.
Established practitioners wanting to tell powerful stories with video.
Here's what a few past students have to say about my instruction:
I learned very quickly that he has the enviable skills of not only being well-versed in both the technical and creative elements of video storytelling, he's also very good at working with people to help them past obstacles...His cool demeanor and steady guidance were critical to the success of my project.
- Jim Eppard
Editor/Writer, U.S. Department of Justice
I had the pleasure and honor of working with Nick at Bill Gentile’s Backpack Journalism Workshop in Washington, DC on March 8 – 11. Nick was one of the assistant instructors for the course, and he was so highly valued and sought after that I had to begrudgingly share his time with the other course attendees (Nick needs to clone himself).
- Jennafer Bonello
Media Relations, World Wildlife Fund
As I continue to explore emerging technologies, like Mozilla's Popcorn project, I strive to incorporate these resources into my course content, so students complete work with me having experienced the cutting edge of what's out there, and knowing how these tools could fit into the bigger picture of their endeavors.
If you would like to read more about my professional and teaching endeavors, please check out my curriculum vitae, or contact me directly with questions. I am always happy to connect with someone who shares my dream of a better world through code.