"Happy is the Person Who is Able to
Discern the Causes of Things" - Virgil
Assignment 01: Web 2.0/Open Source Application Review.
1. Short description of the Web 2.0 application or open source software application.
The 3-D Brain from Gene to Cognition (www.g2conline.org) website
provides an interactive three dimensional model of the human brain,
with detailed description of each part of the brain along with studies
and researches on functions and disorders related to each respective
2. Describe the target audience for this software.
This 3-D model targets a wide range of audience, from students, teachers, to researchers.
3. What is the purpose of the software? How does it work?
The interactive brain model on the website could be rotate 360o
(vertically or horizontally) and is color-coded. Exterior portion of
the brain turns transparent when one chose to view internal parts of
the brain. To the left of the page is a sidebar with information
on different structures of the brain the user chose to view from the
drop down menu atop of it. Labels could be turn on/off if desired.
4. Describe the user interface. Is it easy or difficult to use? Why or why not?
Interface of this 3-D brain is very user-friendly. The brain model is
interactive; a label is displayed when cursor is pointed at a part of
the brain. Everything could be done with one click,
5. Technical requirements. Does it work on Windows,
Apple and Linux? Are there minimum memory requirements, software that
needs to be installed?
The 3-D Brain works on both Windows and Apple operating system,
however, I havent tried it on a Linux, but I would assume that it
would be compatible with Linux since all it needs is an internet
browser to access it; there is no need to download or install the 3-D
Brain, although the option is available if one decided to do so.
6. What browsers does it work with? Does it require Java-script, Java, ActiveX, Flash, Shockwave or plug-ins?
So far, I have tried to open 3-D brain on Internet Explorer, Firefox
Mozilla, Safari, Google Chrome and they all seem to work without any
7. What are the strengths of this software application?
It provides a three dimensional visual
representation of the human brain, which helps students in processing
An open source (free!) application that is easily accessible through the Internet.
It can also be downloaded onto computers, ipods, and iphones if Internet is not available.
Lesson plan for teachers and worksheet for students related to the brain is available for download.
Case studies and associated
functions/diseases/damages to particular parts of the brain are
available for students to explore.
8. What are the weaknesses of this software application?
English language learners might have trouble understanding the
terminology. Therefore, 3-D Brain could only be used as a visual aid
for these students, but their ability to extracting information from
reading would be dependent on their level of reading comprehension.
9. Provide at least three examples of how you might use this in your science teaching.
It could be used as a visual aid to show structure of the brain, and location of each part of the brain.
As a source of a research project, where students
find information (structure, shape, functions, diseases/damages)
relating to one specific part of the brain.
Worksheets provided by g2conline.com could be used as homework or an assessment tool.
10. Include any tips for science teachers.
Use it as visual aid during lecture: projector, Smart-board, or PowerPoint.
Students could work in groups or individual on a
project (diseases/disorder related to a part of the brain) using the
information provided by the 3-D brain.
11. Any other comments.
Do not over use the model in you lecture, for it may start to get dull
if the teacher keeps on lecturing, let the students explore it instead
and keep the lecture to minimum.
Copyright (C) 2010, Mr. Ly Science Education. all right reserved