A wide range of innovative and creative entries were submitted for the 2013 ANZIAs. Year-on-year, auDA, InternetNZ and our judging panel are consistently impressed by the increasing quality and calibre of these entries.
It's also great to see two Australian organisations co-entering their joint initiative: the CSIRO and The National Museum of Australia.
Our award-winning entries include:
- a revolutionary virtual experience where remote participants can personalise their visual and participatory experience via a robot;
- apps that help parents protect their children online;
- a secure cloud-based storage app;
- Australia’s first free online education that caters for different learning styles;
- an initiative enabling people with disabilities to find work in IT; and
- a wiki granting New Zealanders access to decision-making information.
Despite their different goals and areas of focus, all Award winners demonstrate excellence in the use of the Internet, benefitting all Australians and New Zealanders.
Vodafone Hutchison AustraliaWinner
- Visit: http://www.vodafone.com.au/guardian
- Guardian is a free smartphone application available for use on any network that lets parents and their children select the best Smartphone settings to support safe and responsible age appropriate internet use.
Guardian allows parents to set parameters on their child’s smartphone use. It gives parents the ability to set rules on the phone, such as when the internet can be accessed, what applications using the internet can be used or when Wi-Fi can be enabled or videos watched or online games played. Since July 2013, Vodafone Guardian now pre loads to all new android smartphones without the need to download which vastly increases its accessibility to users.
- Visit: https://mega.co.nz/
- MEGA is a cloud storage and collaboration service. Free storage of 50 GB is provided and thereafter there are three categories of paid membership, ranging from 500 GB storage/1 TB bandwidth to 4 TB storage/8 TB bandwidth. It has been independently tested to be the fastest cloud storage service in the world. Privacy is designed into the service; end to end encryption ensures that even human error on part of Mega or its service providers (such as server hosts) does not inadvertently expose a user's data. Collaboration features range from controlled access to a single person, a group of users, or public. MEGA has quickly emerged as a leader in the area of 'user controlled encryption'.
Internet Access & Digital Skills 2013
- Visit: http://www.workventures.com.au
- WorkVentures embarked to narrow the “digital divide” by assisting disadvantaged communities in accessing their very practical program which includes provision of free access to technology hubs, training, home ownership via refurbished computers and great stats of over 45,000 computers provided and over 35,000 disadvantaged individuals receiving training. They also target programs to specific communities such as indigenous youth in remote areas, migrants/refugees and seniors.
Open Universities AustraliaHighly Commended
- Visit: http://www.open2study.com
- In March 2013, Open Universities Australia launched Australia’s first free online education platform, www.open2study.com which offers introductory level university and professional learning online for free. Providing Australia’s first free online education that caters for different learning styles, it provides interactivity and is meant to be enjoyable. Also available globally, in the first 3 months from they garnered 33,000 enrolments and completion rates are almost four times higher than global standard. Subjects also include Internet skills development.
Wiki New ZealandWinner
- Visit: http://wikinewzealand.org
- The purpose of Wiki New Zealand is to enable informed decision making throughout New Zealand. The initiative comprises a website which serves two primary functions – to deliver data in a visually digestible but not opinion-laden form, and to redefine the audience for those with data about New Zealand. There are many organisations and individuals that collect data about New Zealand. Through wikinewzeland.org, they now have a mechanism for distributing their data to the general public.
Wiki New Zealand appears to be a world first. The wiki framework developed for Wiki New Zealand makes use of open source software, specifically Wordpress and High Charts, but it has been put together in a unique way to enable external contributors to create graphs and upload them into an audited process for publishing.
The Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of MelbourneHighly Commended
- Visit: http://caj.unimelb.edu.au/
- The Citizen website was launched in April this year. It has several aims. Foremost, it is a teaching tool that showcases the work of the students in the University of Melbourne’s Master of Journalism program, giving them real-world experience in working for publication and to deadline. The Citizen is also a flagship of the Centre for Advancing Journalism, making the Centre's research and public events more widely accessible to the public and the news media. Simultaneously, it serves as a test-bed for research-in-action, trialling innovative journalistic methodology. Finally, The Citizen aims to be a serious and worthwhile publication in its own right, with an emphasis on quality journalism that, in part, seeks to ‘back fill’ on issues and events neglected by a mainstream media that is battling staffing cuts and cost constraints. Judges noted it as a great source of publicly spirited journalism with a great presentation of information in an unique visual format which hosted 15,000 unique visitors in its first 6 weeks.
Central Australian Aboriginal Media AssociationWinner
- Visit: http://www.caama.com.au
- The CAAMA website is a platform for our audience base of over 620,000 listeners on the CAAMA network across the country to find and share information about the rich Aboriginal cultures of Australia, the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in this country, and the current issues which continue to affect the lives of Aboriginal people. The CAAMA website delivers news interviews and current affairs to Aboriginal people living in the most remote parts of Australia through audio podcasts, video bulletins, online news stories and photojournalism coverage. Live-streaming through the CAAMA website, which starts automatically when users visit the page allow people from any location in the world with internet access to listen to CAAMA Radio, playing Aboriginal music, covers cultural festivals and events, promotes healthy lifestyles and positive messages and brings the latest in Aboriginal news and current affairs. The CAAMA website also delivers the most important national news and issues in a manner which is easy to understand by those who have English as a second or third language. Australia's Aboriginal culture is the oldest in the world, and CAAMA's website helps keep these cultures and languages alive, and therefore improving the wellbeing of Aboriginal peoples.
Cultural InfusionHighly Commended
- Visit: http://culturalinfusion.org.au/soundinfusion
- The Sound Infusion program uses traditional and authentic musical loops and samples from around the world, presented through an innovative online sound editing platform, to offer a fun and engaging way for students to learn about cultural diversity. As an entirely digital program, Sound Infusion has the potential to reach every corner of Australia through the National Broadband Network, as well as extend its reach overseas. Sound Infusion allows students to listen, drag and drop audio segments gathered from all over the world into the sequencer to create their own intercultural compositions and melodies. Sound Infusion was also awarded the Intercultural Innovation Award by the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) in February 2013. This award has seen Cultural Infusion become a member of the World Intercultural Facility for Innovation (WIFI) and allowed Cultural Infusion to look to creating an HTML5 version of Sound Infusion to reach a broader audience through mobile devices. Cultural Infusion was Highly Commended in the 2012 ANZIAs.
CSIRO and The National Museum of AustraliaWinner
- Visit: http://tourbot.nma.gov.au/index/overview
- CSIRO has developed and installed a system that enables students in regional Australia to participate in live, immersive, interactive, guided tours of the National Museum of Australia (NMA) from a computer in their school or local library. Currently operating in the Landmarks Gallery of the NMA, the system consists of a semi-autonomous mobile robot which accompanies a museum educator through the gallery and streams panoramic video from an omni-directional camera via the museum’s Wi-Fi network. Using a standard PC, headset, web-camera, and broadband Internet connection, remote students log in and use a browser-based interface to look around the gallery by panning and zooming within the panoramic image.
Users can click on highlighted objects within their field of view to explore additional digital content associated with those objects, and are challenged to respond to real-time quizzes posed by the educator.
The Mobile Telepresence for Museums system provides immersive tours of the National Museum of Australia to students outside Canberra who are not able to attend in person due to factors such as distance and cost. In this way it makes the collections and educational expertise of the Museum accessible to a broader audience, and allows educational staff at the NMA to expand their role engaging with students in the context of the Australian Curriculum - History. Because on-line museum visits can occur within the time allocated for a single lesson, the mobile telepresence system allows educators to design programs that involve multiple visits to the museum to explore different topics in the curriculum. Additionally, through the use of graphical overlays and digital content attached to visual ‘hotspots’, the system allows curators to present content (such as images or video of objects, people, locations, and events) beyond that which can be included in the physical displays.
- Visit: http://www.testit.infoxchange.net.au/
- A first in Australia, TestIT is a software testing social firm that supports, trains and employs people with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS). With a focus on web accessibility testIT offers a range of testing services that utilise the skills of our AS employees to provide a high level of quality in the testing we perform. People with AS often have excellent memory recall, high attention to detail and a superior ability to identify defects and irregularities, which has proven to be a competitive advantage in software testing firms globally.
The individuals involved experience significant benefits. They have learned new social skills, increased financial security and reduced instances of anxiety and depression.
TestIT is a business unit of Infoxchange and has been supported in development by funding from DEEWR, The Buckland Foundation and the R.E.Ross Trust with significant support from partners SoFA and Alpha Autism.