Tech Education: Take a Look, It's In a Book


Earlier this year, Kunta Kinte aka Geordi La Forge aka Levar Burton secured the @ReadingRainbow twitter account. He promised that a "disruptive reading initiative" would be arriving soon. It's arrived as an iPad app. And ... it's pretty good.

The app serves as a library of interactive books.  The app itself is free, as well as one book download and introductory videos to the service. For additional content, users can subscribe for $10 every month or $30 every 6 months.  I originally balked at the price, but the content is intuitively suited for a device such as an iPad - lots of sounds, videos, interative games, and much more beyond just a scanned PDF. It's basically like an enhanced version of Highlights for Children. The high level of quality makes it worth the price.

One big negative is the file size. It weighs in at just over 100MB, and can feel a little sluggish during operation.  Since it's geared towards younger children, I don't see this being much of a problem. But for techies like myself, I'd prefer something a bit more slimmed down and speedier.

One improvement that I hope is in the works is interaction with physical libraries.  Imagine if I could "check in" at the my local library with a service similar to Foursquare that's integrated into the Reading Rainbow app, and that results in extra awards or stickers.  Even better: what if I could scan the bar codes of books that I read for other awards in the app? The possibilities are endless.

If you have an iPad, check it out by downloading here!