Sphere – Teachers, you need to download this App

(NOTE: TourWrist is now know as Sphere)

The gang of, as of yet, unprosecuted hoodlums I hang out with and I are always on the lookout for innovative apps even if they aren’t intentionally or primarily education related. Aurasma was one of those. That app really changed the way we saw student engagement.

Well, here’s another one: Tourwrist. This app is unique in that the older the kids are the more potentially complex its use could become. I could even see my college students using it!

It seems, at first, to be a fancy way to show off your vacations. You take 360 degree panoramic shots (they’ve dubbed them “panos”), align the images within the app, and publish them to your own Tourwrist social network-like account. (As an aside, when my wife and I were selling our house last year we used it to give potential buyers a unique & enticing view of our abode.)

After we sold the house I kept the app, but never used it because I pigeon-holed it as a realestate app.

A few weeks ago my 8 yr old son was goofing around with it and came across the Eiffel Tower. He was blow away. He asked question after question about “that big thing” in the background. Then, in my melon, a flash of light went off…you know, those old smokey, black powder, 1912 ones that kinda blind you for a second?

Using Aurasma, I layered that Eiffel Tower “pano” onto this image and, so to speak, voila! (follow my Thrasymachus channel on Aurasma in order to see the attached Aura below). To combine these two wonderful apps, you’ll simply copy the URL of the ” pano” you want to embed into the URL section of the Aura creation part of Aurasma Studio.


Then I saw this milkyway “pano” on Tourwrist and, again, BAM! (Check out Steve Perry’s work on Tourwrist.com He’s awesome!)


The next “baby step” is to produce my own “pano” of a teacher’s room and attach links in Tourwrist to that teacher’s bio, Twitter page, room POI’s, media, and links to the outside hallway or to the school website. I though this might be a nice way to introduce yourself and your expectations to students before they’ve entered your room (especially the younger grades).

Teacher's Room

It’s still a work in progress, but here is what I have at this point.

A much bigger project would be to “pano” the entire school and link each pano to each other so parents could take a virtual tour of your school at 2 a.m., let’s say, if they want.

If you’ve used this app in other ways, let me know. Let’s share! Lots of potential here for educators.

About Thrasymachus

2013 Northwest ISD teacher of the year, Humanities Texas 2012 Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award, and 2011 Outstanding Educator of North Texas Award (North Central Texas College). I'm currently a Regional Digital Learning Consultant with the Education Service Center Region 11 in Ft. Worth, Texas and a college government educator who incorporates philosophy, technology & humor. A student through and through, I walk with my students in their learning. Most importantly, I'm blessed with the 3 most perfect kids eva! I love on them ery day!!!
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6 Responses to Sphere – Teachers, you need to download this App

  1. Dawn says:

    Okay, I got my account with aurasma set up to use web page in addition to image, video and 3d. I used a pano for the web page for my aura but when I focus on the trigger image it just spins and spins yet when I focus on your trigger images it works fine and takes me to tourwrist. Any ideas what I am doing wrong?

    Dawn deQuevedo

    • Thrasymachus says:

      Can you send screen shots? I could be an issues with any step of the project. Or the aura is simply taking its time to upload. What’s your experience level with aurasma?

      • Dawn says:

        little experience… I just started….did finally get it it to work. I had copied the address from my browser and was missing the http://www Once this was added the connection was made. Still not working out for me though. Can barely see the tourwrist pics. When I use your trigger image it looks differently. I’ll try to send some screen shots…

  2. Elizabeth Walker says:

    Hi! I contacted you via Twitter to find out how you made the Aurasma auras using the Sphere 360 images. I can link them, but they don’t show the way yours do (they are boxed, like you are looking at a computer screen, not the immersive views that you have). Can you help me with this? Sorry to keep bugging you, but I can’t get it to work and this is just too awesome not to put together!

    • Thrasymachus says:

      So sorry it took me so long to get back to you. I’ve been crazy busy with a few projects (among them EdCampNov8). I’ve put the tutorial together and it’s ready for your perusal. 🙂 Enjoy!

  3. Pingback: Elearn Prod | Pearltrees

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