Trends & News

Scholastic’s New Transmedia Tween Series, Google’s Goggles, Online Education

Kids can now “Call Elmo” directly from a smartphone (with Sesame Street’s new app that lets kids talk to their favorite furry monster about a variety of topics. Elmo encourages them to sing songs, brush their teeth, practice their ABCs, and more. Parents can also schedule calls from Elmo for their children, say, right around bed time when they need reminders about brushing their teeth and getting a good night’s sleep. Elsewhere in kids’ entertainment, Scholastic is readying a new transmedia tween series, “The Infinity Ring,” which presents a story of time travel and rewriting history. Along with the books, the story includes interactive maps, an online game, and a mobile app) (Licensing Biz) (Kidscreen)

Google has a very interesting view of the future (looking through augmented reality glasses! The “heads-up display” glasses that Google is reportedly working on would tap into Google’s location-based data to provide users with information about their surroundings, all while looking like normal glasses to others. That’s right people, we’re living in the future!) (9to5Google)

It’s no secret that the Internet is important to young people (but it also factors heavily in how they prefer to learn. A new study found that collegians prefer a hybrid model of learning that incorporates both traditional and online classroom models. They also expect a university to offer free WiFi for students, and would rethink attending a particular school if it doesn’t provide that benefit. Speaking of young people and technology, parents are still finding it difficult to interact with their digital-savvy children. This column offers some advice) (TheNextWeb) (Yahoo!)

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Ever since MTV switched its programming from music videos to reality shows (music fans have been calling out for a channel that harkens back to the early days of “Music Television.” Vevo might finally end that search. The online network, started by Sony Music and Universal Music, has plans to launch a cable net in 2012 and aims to use Internet connected devices to secure its spot in Millennials’ living rooms) (FinancialTimes)

We’re all aware of shoe brands that give back (like Tom’s, but if that brand’s “bohemian” look isn’t your style, there’s a new alternative. BucketFeet brings street style to socially-conscious footwear. Each pair is designed by artist Aaron Firestein who founded the brand after spending time volunteering with impoverished children in Brazil. We love that more brands are helping us get in on giving back) (IHeartDaily)

Most Facebook users amassed their collection of friends (by adding people they know as well as friends-of-friends. And they most often delete friends because the unwelcome party makes offensive comments, because they don’t know the person well enough to bother being friends, or because the offender tries to sell them something) (AllFacebook)

Want to take a walk down memory lane? (YouTube has posted Rewind, its 2011 Year In Review featuring the most popular videos on the site. Scroll along the timeline to relive watching the trailer for the final Harry Potter movie, experience Rebecca Black’s “Friday,” and Lonely Island featuring Michael Bolton. YouTube’s review also includes a list of the top music videos, some of which creeped into the top 10 videos overall) (YouTube)

If you’re not yet in the holiday spirit (here’s a little “Easter egg” — er, holiday present — from Google. Or if your holiday mood tends more toward the sarcastic, these Calvin & Hobbes fans have you covered. Speaking of holidays, Ypulse will be taking this Friday off to enjoy the season, but we’ll be back next week as we count down to 2012) (eBookNewser)

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