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Jul 10, 2001

Ever had one of those days where your software deleted your database of links extending back into 1998? Yeah, it has been one of those days. So remember folks, back up your data!

In the meantime, the link search service on my website will be offline until tomorrow as I restore my database from the backup files. Heh.

Digital Partners Launches VSyndicate, Enabling College Newspapers to Seamlessly Sell Stories This is an interesting idea which may have an even more interesting business plan. In its simple form, the VSyndicate service will allow college newspapers to share stories. This is the online version of a practice which has existed for many years (so I remember from my days with Canadian University Press - CUP). But a service like this also provides an excellent opportunity for marketers to add their own stories to the mix. Stories like, well, movie reviews. Now this is just speculation - the announcement doesn't say so explicitly - but: marketing, presented as news, in student newspapers. Perfect. Digital Partners Press Release, July 3, 2001. Submitted on Jul 10, 2001 [Refer]

Canned Content This interesting article gets at the heart of what is becoming a tangled and convoluted mess - sharing learning content. The article asks, can ASTD certification ensure the quality of off-the-shelf courseware? Well, something would help, as the market today is fragmented and frantic. And there are those who believe cetification will help. The courses will be reviewed by staff at LGuide based on standards which are, in ASTD's words, a "work in progress." But it's expensive, and it's not clear that all the publishers will play ball. Why would they, if they are selling now? And it's not clear that expensive standards are the way to go - whatever happened to that old standby, the peer review process? Or how about five star rating in E-Learning magazines? At any rate, this article taps into a major problem in the industry. By By Michael Rosenberg, E-Learning Mag, July, 2001. Submitted on Jul 10, 2001 [Refer]

Online Libraries Compete for University Presses This article from the Harvard Crimson points out that while several universities have provided free online access to journal publications through a service called Ebrary, Havard has yet to do so. Instead, Harvard uses a service called Questia, which charges a monthly subscription. By Garrett M. Graff, Harvard Crimson, July 6, 2001. Submitted on Jul 10, 2001 [Refer]

6 Publishers Will Give Poor Countries Free or Discounted Electronic Access to Journals It's nice to see that these publishers have finally discovered that their wares are too expensive for the developing world. But this evades the question of whether $1500 subscriptions make sense when offering online content anywhere. By kate Galbraith, the Chronicle of Higher Education, July 10, 2001. Submitted on Jul 10, 2001 [Refer]

Temple U. Lowers the Ax on Its Distance-Education Venture The thrust behind this Chronicle article is that nobody has found a way for online learning to be economically viable. This would be a surprise to those companies, such as, say, Saba, who are already making a lot of money, or SmartPlanet, who use e-learning as a way of advertising print publications, or the U.S. Military, or Cisco... maybe the real message is: if you set up online learning to duplicate university offerings, and charge a premium, you will not make money. By Goldie Blumenstyl, the Chronicle of Higher Education, July 9, 2001. Submitted on Jul 10, 2001 [Refer]

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