Mobile Physics Education around the Globe
In the last month, we decided to do a broad review of who is using Physics Toolbox by Vieyra Software apps from around the world. Tallying up all of the apps, we found that we have had over 150,000 downloads from nearly every nation (in blue, below) that has Google Play accessible to its citizens. We frequently find that our apps are downloaded in large numbers by workshop and course attendees learning to use mobile sensors in tandem.
That's quite a success for us - we do this entirely in our free time, and are continually amazed at the things people will do with our tools. The original intent was to create apps that were friendly for high school physics students, and what we found was that the tools were actually robust enough to be used in industry and academia, with a special preference by introductory physics professors to use them with students in their undergraduate courses. Although still frequently used in high school settings, the trend toward mobile sensors in high school is stronger in places like Europe, where commercial science probeware is not quite as prevalent as in the United States.
Filling the niche for data collection tools in places where they otherwise would not exist is at the heart of what we do.
What we continue to think sets our apps apart is the dialogue that we maintain within the physics education and research communities. Understanding that these tools are continually a work in progress, it is important for us to maintain communication with those who use them to share ideas both for their improvement and application.
Please reach out to us and share your ideas! firstname.lastname@example.org