Ideas cast in all corners

March 9, 2001

Twelve of the world's top academics have come together to provide a global lecture service, launched on Monday.

The 12, including Richard Dawkins, Sir David Weatherall, and business guru John Kay, have filmed lectures for on-demand "webcast" from the Boxmind website.

The technology delivers a screen split into four. The lecture runs in the top left section with synchronised slides on the right. In the bottom half is the synchronised transcript, with embedded footnotes, while lists of web links appear in the bottom left section.

Users can stop the action at any point and pursue information from the links. They can also rewind the lecture and access supporting evidence.

Boxmind has contributions from Oxford colleagues Niall Ferguson (history), Peter Atkins (chemistry) and David Womersley (English literature).

Other United Kingdom lecturers featured include astronomer royal, Sir Martin Rees, Warwick University's Ian Stewart (mathematics) and the London School of Economics' law specialist Nicola Lacey.

The transatlantic contingent comprises philosopher John Searle, psychologist Steven Pinker and philosopher Daniel Dennett. The lectures will be available for the rest of this month. Thereafter, they will form part of Boxmind's e-lecture library, which will be available to academic institutions.


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