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November 20, 2001

Complexity in the Interface Age Interesting interview in which Jeremy Shapiro examines the impact of new technology on our lives. Of interest are his comments on the nature of the interfaced environment - it used to be the case that things worked well on their own, but now that all our devices interface with each other, complexities emerge. Shapiro is a faculty member in the Human and Organization Development Program at The Fielding Institute. By Unknown, Ubiquity, November 19, 2001.[Refer]

Case Western Reserve U. Turns to Virtual Reality at Its Dental School This is a good example of using simulation technology to provide practical training. Dental students at Case Western Reserve University now practice their technique on mannequins before pointing the drill at human patients. We all feel better for that. By Katherine S. Mangan, Chronicle of Higher Education, November 19, 2001.[Refer]

New Online University to be Based in Singapore More on Universitas 21: an article from Singapore's Strait Times announcing that U21's new university will be located in that city and that degrees from the university, to be called U21global, will be recognized by fifteen member institutions around the world. By Sandra Davie, Strait Times, November 20, 2001.[Refer]

Too Close For Comfort? I have long warned that unless we get our online learning act together, Microsoft will do it for us. Could this be the thin edge of the wedge? This article raises concerns that a recent alliance between Microsoft and LMS vendor Blackboard may reduce educator choices. Gee, d'ya think? By Michael Arnone, Chronicle of Higher Education, November 23, 2001.[Refer]

Net Researcher Bulks Up Its Library Adobe consolidates its hold on eBook publishing as it announces content agreements with three major publishers. Their big problem - as Nielsen NetRatings vice president Allen Weiner observes - is the availability of so much free content on the net. My bet is that Adobe won't try to compete with free content, it'll try to eradicate it. By Gwendolyn Mariano, CNet, November 19, 2001.[Refer]

Teachers as Grantseekers: The Privatization of the Urban Public School Teacher This essay - linked to a start page as a PDF file - raises a valid concern: requiring school teachers to compete for research funds is contributing to the commercialization of education. As the author observes, the process forces teachers "to market one?s teaching as a product and oneself as a valuable commodity; to embrace competition and the creation of self-selected communities; and to replace a commitment to a broad-based democracy in which the needs of all are met with fulfilling the needs of the deserving few." By Sara Freedman, TCRecord.Org, November 20, 2001.[Refer]

The Case for Personal Web Publishing A lot of people would dispute giving Dave Winder the title of "godfather of weblogging" (as attributed in this article) and there's a lot of work being done outside his sphere (especially by O'Reilly). You either love him or you hate him. But his views on the uses of weblogging in professional environments are important and he has some good insights into the future of RSS (Rich Site Summary) and SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol). By Mark Fisher, CMS Watch, Novmber 19, 2001.[Refer]

Career Resilience Webinar Series ASTD launches a webinar series with three online seminars related to career management (i.e., spiffing up your resume and doing well in the job interview). According to ASTD, "A Webinar is a Web-based presentation featuring an expert in some field using a collaborative tool. ASTD is using WebEx's OnStage product to do this." By Unknown, ASTD, November 19, 2001.[Refer]


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