International Children’s Digital Library Partners with the National Science Foundation to Co-sponsor the Children’s Mobile Workshop

For immediate release


MANCHESTER-BY-THE-SEA, MA - February 21, 2008 - The International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL) Foundation (www.childrenslibrary.org), today announced the Children’s Mobile Workshop, a conference designed to help explore the relationship between children's educational content and rapidly emerging new mobile technologies. The workshop, which will be held at the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory on the University of Maryland campus, will bring together academic researchers, industry experts, government specialists, and non-profit leaders. Together, they aim to better understand what leading research is being done in this critical area, examine future research directions for the field, and to widely disseminate the findings of the workshop.

Mobile devices have emerged as the “computing platform” for the 21st century. Recent reports suggest that today there are more cell phones in many countries than there are traditional desktop computers, with almost 10 times more new cell phones sold than desktop or laptop computers. This conference aims to better understand this phenomenon via keynote speakers, workshops, presentations, and group research and discussions. Keynote speakers will include Walter Bender, President - One Laptop per Child; Allison Druin, International Children’s Digital Library; Ramon Morales, Intel Classmate PC; Glenda Revelle, Sesame Workshop; and Yvonne Rogers, Open University (UK). The Workshop will open with Welcome Addresses by Charles Cableton, Sr. Education Specialist at the World Bank and Jason Bellone, United Nations Chief Information Officer. Participants include representatives from UNESCO, Scholastic, PBS, Leapfrog and others. Children’s Mobile Workshop will also be reserving 25% of their participant slots for graduate students.

“We are delighted to be co-sponsors of the Children’s Mobile Workshop,” says Tim Browne, Executive Director of the International Children’s Digital Library. “By bringing together some of the world’s leading children’s educational content  creators and providers and the designers of the various computing and cellular platforms projected to be used most by children in the very near future, we aim to discuss the intersection of creativity, technology, and education, and discover great new insights.  We hope this conference will have an extraordinary impact in the field.”

About ICDL

Founded in 2002, the International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL) has the world’s largest collection of multicultural children’s literature available freely on the Internet.  Funded initially by the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and Microsoft Research, ICDL debuted at an international celebration at the Library of Congress.  The mission of ICDL is to identify exemplary books that help children to understand the world around them and the global society in which they live and make them freely available on the Internet.  The materials in its collection, all presented in the original languages in which they were published, reflect similarities and differences in cultures, societies, interests, and lifestyles of peoples around the world.  The ICDL today has online more than 1,600 exemplary titles of its 5,000 books master collection, representing 38 countries and 42 languages. For more information, please visit ICDL on the Web at www.childrenslibrary.org

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NOTE TO EDITORS:  Experts from the International Children's Digital Library Foundation are available for interviews and/or commentary on a wide range of related topics including: the role of digital books in elementary education; using the Internet to fight global illiteracy; the digitization of books; and the role of the Internet in supplementing the world's libraries.