Archive for 19 March 2003

The Internet for educating indviduals with social impairments

The Internet for educating individuals with social impairments

Jonathan Bishop


Social impairments materialise in a number of forms, from developmental disabilities such as autistic spectrum disorder, to psychiatric conditions such as social phobia. The individuals diagnosed with these problems find it difficult to deal with social situations through either the inability to perform in these situations or the fear of not being able to do so. The study investigated the social and practical implications of using Mobile Internet technology to deliver information relating to a social situation in real-time to participants with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (n = 10) and General Social Phobia (n = 3) diagnosed using DSM-IV. The participants used the agent on their mobile phone to convert phrases they found offensive or confusing into more concise and understandable definitions. Analysing their attitudes found that the technology enables socially impaired individuals to learn the meaning of emotions and understand more about how they communicate with their peers. However, the study concludes that governmental organisations, education providers and society as a whole need to adopt a cohesive approach to communication to ensure socially impaired individuals are fully included in society

Full Text

The Internet for educating individuals with social impairments


J. Bishop (2003). The Internet for educating individuals with social impairments. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning 19(4), pp. 546-556. Available online at:

Text to Save Ponty Park

The electronic petition to save Ynysangharad Park from developers became even easier to sign this week, as a new mobile number was launched.

Local campaigner Jonathan Bishop is seeking electronic signatures from the public to ask the Prime Minister to recognise the outcome of the referendum held in 2003 in which 78% of voters voted against parking in the park.

Speaking at the Labour Party Conference in Swansea on Saturday, Mr Bishop called on the Assembly Planning Minister Carwyn Jones to ensure that when referendums are held on planning matters that planning committees listen to the wishes of the public.

To sign the petition to prevent parking in the park simply visit Mr Bishop’s website at or using the new mobile service by texting “SPP” followed by your full name, the number or name of your house and your postcode to 07875 726076.

Time for Pontypridd’s Renaissance Period

I read with interest the article about the role of the University of Glamorgan in the economy of Pontypridd (University is a terrific asset, March 13).

The university provides a considerable customer base for a thriving market town with a culturally distinct evening economy.

However, this does not sound like the Pontypridd I know that has seen virtually no investment from the nationalists at RCT Council and continually has its assets threatened by their destructive policies.

In the same period that Plaid Cymru have been in office in RCT, Cardiff has changed significantly.

From the university in Park Place, to the end of the Taff Trail in Cardiff Bay, people have access to beautiful parks, numerous clubs and social venues and a growing number of shopping outlets and entertainment facilities.

Cardiff might be the capital city, and should expect this sort of investment, but why should Pontypridd not experience the urban renaissance that other European towns take for granted?

Real experts

William Dylan was right to emphasis the need for a second chamber in Parliament (The Western Mail, February 24), but his suggestion of a Senate would not produce any better legislation than the House of Lords does now.

In 1999 we voted for our preferred party to form a draft of the Health (Wales) Bill in the Assembly, and in 2001 we voted for an MP to debate the specifics of this Bill in Parliament.

The last thing we want in 2003 is to elect another load of politicians to play party politics with a very important piece of legislation for Wales.

In my view a second chamber should be made up of experts to scrutinise legislation, people from the real world, with real knowledge and experience. In the case of the Health (Wales) Bill this would be health-care professionals, the people this Bill will affect and who know what its implications will be.

If we really want democracy in our legislative process then the people affected by proposed laws should be involved and not just politically motivated individuals.

Following the family footsteps

The youngest representative of Llantwit Fardre Community Council was sworn-in this week. And the 23-year-old hopes to follow in the footsteps of his family who worked tirelessly in the public service.
Jonathan Bishop of Heol-y-Parc, Efail Isaf, was sworn-in as a Community Councillor for Llantwit Fardre last Wednesday (April 23).
A Freeman of Llantrisant, Coun Bishop hopes to follow in the footsteps of his ancestor, Coun Ivor Jacob, who was chairman of Llantrisant Town Council in 1947, by making a worthwhile contribution to his community.
“I feel honoured to have been given the chance to represent my community and take an active role in helping to change it for the better. This next year looks to be exciting and challenging, and I’m looking forward to playing my part in making it a successful one.”
Chairman of Llantwit Fardre Community Council, Coun John Worth said: “Jonathan Brings with him a lot of enthusiasm and commitment and we welcome the opportunity of working with him over the coming year to continue to make Llantwit Fardre a community to be proud of”.

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