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Modelling context

Evolving definitions of context

Cloud created by:

Gill Clough
2 December 2009

Mike Sharples introduces the workshop by discussing models of context.

Mike introduces context:

  • Context is that which surrounds us
  • Context is that which weaves us together

i.e. context as a shell surrounding technology user


context as constructed through the interaction between people and technology.

Shell view of context:

Pictures to exemplify context as shell – i.e. pda users viewing an art gallery. Little sensors beneath the pictures allowed PDAs to identify location by triangulating on these sensors and then producing appropriate recommendations for information depending on which painting the user was standing in front of.

Model of learning as context acquisition. Technical issues of filtering information

Interaction view of context:

Context viewed as interaction between people overtime. Picture illustrates a group of people viewing a picture in a gallery. Through that interaction, they create a shared understanding. However this dialogue is situated in that particular setting. Each person bringing their own understanding, knowledge of art, interests and also has created a trail to get there. Thus context created through historic interaction with surroundings, settings, other people, for a particular reason.

Learning as social knowledge construction

Technical issues of modelling interaction over time.

Mobilearn project developed interaction view of context over time.

Modelling context

  • Context – what is going on over time
  • Context state – elements from learning and setting at one point in time, space or goal sequence
  • Context sub-state – elements from learners and settings that are relevant to the current focus of learning and desired level of context awareness.

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Gill Clough
7:48am 2 December 2009 (Edited 8:36am 2 December 2009)

Mike's definitions of context incorporated a couple of references which I'll add later

Jocelyn Wishart
9:22am 2 December 2009

Michael Cole (1996) Cultural Psychology context as that which surrounds us / that which weaves us together

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