Awesome people doing awesome things!

Recently I had the opportunity to catch up with a past student of mine, one of the key players of ProjectMIST who worked tirelessly to provide opportunity for students at Riverside High School with regard to using Minecraft to support their learning.

Nat, who tweets from @natbott42, is now at the end of his first year at Launceston College and is having a wonderful impact on his community. Here is what he had to tell me on our recent catch up over Skype:

Hey Ms Batty!

Oh my goodness. So much has been happening!

Uh, I suppose I should probably start at the beginning of the exciting stuff. As part of the Innovation Circle project I have been doing with James at QVMAG (Lots of stuff about that here: we went down to Queenstown to participate in the Queenstown Heritage and Arts Festival. Adam Monstogl and his wife moved down there early this year and invited us to set up a little innovation hacker space down there to inspire the small town community to explore innovation and creative technologies. Apart from a bit of car sickness on the way down, it was fantastic! We had over 200 people come through the space and look at the 3D printers and CNC machine (brought by the guys from the Hobart Hackerspace, who also came along to help out). I ran about 50 kids through virtual reality and xbox kinect demos I setup, sometimes running both at the same time. There are some awesome pictures up in the blog post on the innovation circle website.

The space in which we work at QVMAG, the battery shed, has been having up to 15 people in throughout various days so the director of the museum has given us increased use of the building which means we can now make use of a larger meeting room down from the workshop we currently inhabit. We are also going to be running a summer school program in which high school and college students will come in for 10 days over the course of three weeks and work to create a interactive exhibit for the Phenomena Factory. In conjunction with this, I will also be running a Minecraft workshop as part of the regular museum summer program. We will be having students working on a small LAN server to recreate the streets of Launceston (inspired by a lego model currently on display at the museum and pictures).

I also finished my exams a week ago and school finished with them so I have three months of holidays to work on interesting projects at the museum and hopefully find part time employment.

I feel like I have missed a lot but hopefully some of the stuff on the blog will fill in the gaps and I will be able to add extra bits to this as they come to mind 😛

Hope all is well in the big USA 😀

It is so great to know that the mentoring program that was set up in grade 9 and 10 with James is still going strong for Nat. It is also really nice to that a connection with a community, Queenstown Tasmania, that I have had is now developing with a student I have taught in Launceston. Queenstown people are such resilient, innovative people who have incredible community spirit. It was a great place to work and live.


  1. jamesriggall says:

    Incredible to think that Nat and I have known one another for three years now! Hard to imagine what it would be like to not have Nat involved in what we’re doing at Bitlink, the Innovation Circle and Macquarie House. He’s become a key part of the team over the past few years!

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