The making of 100 INTERFACE magazines

(Last Updated On: June 21, 2020)

Welcome to our 100th issue! We’re proud to reach this milestone. It’s been an exciting and rewarding journey for all of us on the INTERFACE team – here are just some of the memorable moments along the way.

It all began in July 2007, with the publication of our very first issue. For sure, there was digital technology in schools but it was still very much early days. We were part of a brave new teaching world.

The stories in the first issue touched on a number of things. The cover article was about the last school to get high-speed internet access courtesy of the Government’s Project PROBE (it was Wakanui School in Canterbury, if you were wondering). We profiled four new adventures released by Hector’s World (a Netsafe initiative), offered tips for starting a blog, and explored combining Macs and PCs on the same network.

Within in a month, 1,000 teachers had registered to receive a free copy of the magazine – the 1,000th was Drury School’s Deb Hobson (who, like us, is still going strong as the school’s IT Technician!).

It was all go – and INTERFACE was up and running.

Technology timeline

To give some sense of where we exist in the technology timeline, when we started a site called YouTube had been going for all of two years, Twitter for one, and we launched the same year as iPhones. We’d have to wait three years before iPads made an appearance, and four before Chromebooks first started shipping and Microsoft launched what was then Office 365.

Incidentally, 2011 was the year Mojang officially released a building game by the name of ‘Minecraft’ that hasn’t done too badly.

Magazine of the Year

We were both thrilled and humbled to win the ‘Magazine of the Year’ Award in 2010. Organised by the Magazine Publishers Association (MPA), the annual awards recognise excellence in magazine publishing in New Zealand. INTERFACE beat a strong group of finalists to take top spot in the highly competitive Trade Professional Category. Judges described us as “a magazine with a purpose that is making a difference”.

INTERFACE is cheerful and hugely popular with its teacher base,” they added. “Editorial positioning and content are strong, as is its commercial success. It fills a crucial gap in our education system and demonstrates that even in a highly technology driven world magazines in their traditional form have an important role to play.”

INTERFACEXpo launches

Our INTERFACEXpo events have become a highlight of our year. Not being able to catch up with everyone this time around has been a huge disappointment. Nevertheless, the events have gone from strength to strength since the first one took place at the Addington Events Centre on 10 May, 2011.

Interestingly, our inaugural event almost didn’t happen. The Christchurch earthquake earlier in the year meant we couldn’t use our original venue choice, the Hotel Grand Chancellor. But Addington came to our rescue and, even with a 5.2 wobble the night before damaging LED screens on a couple of stands, we went ahead as planned.

Along the way …

We’ve seen quite a lot along the way. We’ve covered the School Network Upgrade Project (SNUP), upgrading and preparing school networks to take advantage of for ultra-fast broadband services. BYOD programmes have grown from just a handful of schools, to almost all. Network for Learning (N4L) has featured regularly since its launch in 2012, So, too, The Mind Lab, which began in 2013. In 2018, Cyclone unveiled the revamped TELA+ scheme. This year has seen the introduction of the new Learning Areas of the Digital Technologies curriculum and, of course, the challenges we’ve all faced with the COVID-19 lockdown.

Sharing all these experiences and more with you has been awesome and we would like to thank every single reader, advertiser and contributor for your support over the years.

It’s been quite a ride. And we’re not stopping at 100. We’ll keep bringing you the best help, advice, information, news and resources that we can. Here’s to many, many more.



© INTERFACE Magazine, June 2020


Categories: Article