Archive for 2011


Photos from visit to Madrid Zoo and Aquarium the other day….

Mobile Development Challenge

We just launched the Digital Campus Mobile Development Challenge, for you to win a smartphone for building an Android application to help Health Extension Workers in Ethiopia manage their tasks/appointments for maternal care visits.

For full details please visit:


A few photos from trip to Bilbao this weekend (taken during the 4 seconds it stopped raining!)…

La Pedriza and Sigüenza

Few photos and GPS track from visits to La Pedriza and Sigüenza last week:

La Pedriza:


GPS Track from La Pedriza:

Españoles en el Mundo….

Have now been in Spain for a little over a year, my Spanish is slowly improving (should probably attempt to write a blog post in Spanish at some point!). If you’d like to learn about Ethiopia in Spanish, this was on TV the other week:

Shows lots of the places I was working in and visited whilst I was there (Mekelle, Wukro, Axum, Gondar, Lalibela). A couple of years ago Españoles en el Mundo broadcast this programme:–angel/625760/ about Father Ángel, who has been living in Wukro for the last 20+ years, and who we often visit when we’re in Mekelle. One of our projects is based in Wukro.

mQuiz: Importing from Moodle quizzes & GIFT format

I’ve just put up a new version of the mQuiz website and mQuiz Android app.

The key update is that you can now import quizzes in the GIFT format (which Moodle also uses). So if you already have a Moodle quiz then you can export it in GIFT format and upload to run in mQuiz – I’ve uploaded the 4 quizzes from our Certificate in Online Education course to demonstrate. Alternatively you can write your own quiz in GIFT format directly.

This now allows to create quizzes with more interesting question types than only single-option multiple choice, such as multi-option multiple choice, numerical, essay, short answer and true/false.

Any feedback on this is much appreciated!
Update (5th Dec 2011)… I’ve just added the facility to display feedback…

mQuiz: lots of updates….

Over the last few days I’ve made quite a lot of updates to the mQuiz server and Android application

mQuiz server updates

  • Graphs and better info about quiz responses – note that if you created the quiz then any responses you submit will not count towards average scores etc.
  • A download queue, so you can share quizzes with a link…. e.g. clicking on this link will add the ‘European Capitals’ quiz to your download queue, and will be downloaded next time you start the client phone app. You can use this even if you haven’t yet installed the phone app. As soon as you install and log in to the client, the quiz will be scheduled for download.
  • Quizzes can now have download/submissions turned on/off. Allows a quiz to be under development, and not downloadable to any clients, also by turning submissions off you can stop people sending in more results.
  • The leaderboard on the homepage now works. You’ll only appear once you have submitted results from at least 3 different quizzes (sorry, quizzes you created don’t count!).
  • Homepage much improved (I think anyway!).

mQuiz Android updates

  • You now need to register/login when you first open the client app. You’ll need valid login details to download quizzes, submit responses etc.
  • The download scheduler is implemented – so the client will automatically download any quizzes you’ve selected on the server. The scheduler only runs when you have the mQuiz client open and you can set how often it will check for quizzes in the preferences (from the mQuiz main page click on the menu button and select ‘preferences’).
  • Manage quizzes: you can now remove installed quizzes as well as just download them. Note that this will remove all your scores too (though results already send to the server will be kept).
  • The download quiz page now won’t try to download quizzes that are already installed
  • After you complete a quiz you now have the option to share your results via twitter, email, text message, facebook etc.

There’s still quite a lot I’d like to do to tidy up the client code, and all the other features I’d like to add too! Any feedback on the above, or the app generally, much appreciated 🙂

mQuiz: running quizzes on your mobile

Once again, I’ve been getting a bit slack with posting to my blog, seem to have got a bit distracted with writing project proposals and other work. So here’s a quick update on something I’ve been developing over the last couple of weeks… a smartphone application to easily create, deliver and take short quizzes and assessment activities. Firstly, a quick demo:

There are many quiz apps on Android market, but none that I found will allow you to easily create your own quiz questions (not without programming a new Android app). True, there are ways to do this, for example, to create your quiz in Moodle, then access via one of the mobile Moodle apps. But I wanted something that you could run on your phone offline and didn’t have the overhead of setting up a Moodle installation.

I now have a prototype website (at – very surprised this domain name was easily and cheaply available!), where you can create your own (multiple-choice) quizzes. Anyone with an Android smartphone can install the client application and download any of the quizzes created and submit/share their results. To download the client app see: or search for ‘mquiz’ in the market.

I’m planning to make some nice graphs/charts etc on the site so you can track responses to quizzes better. For example to see how many people have been taking your quiz, the scores they are getting, even identify which questions most people get right/wrong.

It’s very much a work in progress, so things are likely to change rapidly – not all the pages on the website are written yet even. Some of the key functions I’d like to work on are:

  • Nicer analytics pages/graphs on the website
  • Client app for other mobile OSs – thinking about porting to PhoneGap to make it easier to develop for multiple mobile platforms.
  • More than just multiple choice – it would be good to support something like the GIFT format to make it easy for people to import existing quizzes
  • Better sharing of quizzes – so you could email/sms someone a link to a quiz for them to opt to have it downloaded to their phone next time they open the client app
  • Visibility/submission permissions – currently all quizzes created are publicly available and anyone can submit responses (even anonymously), would like to have the option to restrict quizzes to particular users/groups
  • … probably much more to add to this list!

The code for the phone client app and the server app is available on GitHub, see: for details.

Any feedback/suggestions much appreciated (as would any help with the development!)

Recent posting on OpenDataKit Blog

Recent posting on the OpenDataKit blog about our use of ODK to improve maternal care in Ethiopia:

Digital Campus is a not for profit company specializing in technology development in emerging countries. For several years, they have been working with Mekelle University (Ethiopia) and are supporting a PhD programme in public health in conjunction with Alcalá University (Spain) and Maastricht University (Netherlands). One of their projects is researching ways in which mobile technologies can help to improve maternal and child health care in rural areas of Ethiopia.

Read the full post at:

Videos from HEW training

Couple of short videos from our recent HEW training sessions: