By Stephen Downes
November 11, 2003

Creative Destruction and Disruptive Innovation
I'm still at AACE in Phoenix. Web access has been a bit spotty, especially in my hotel room. So the newsletter may be disrupted a bit. Today I offer one item from the conference, a summary of Wayne Hodgins's keynote this morning. "Consider," suggests Hodgins, "Personalized learning experiences for every person on the planet...? Just for me and just right: time, place, amount, medium, way, on demand, adaptive, in all forms, formal and informal, and not just online. Is this possible? This dream isn't new. But what is new is that this is now possible. And what would it mean if it were possible?" By Stephen Downes, Stephen's Web, November 11, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Web Search: How the Web has Changed Information Retrieval
The author sent me a nice note and this, a link to his most recent paper on the semantic web, which I pass along. The underlying premise is that a web page isn't an appropriate medium for metadata - a web page should be thought of, at best, as a 'snapshot' of an information resource. But I don't think that the answer to this is the closed web, as the author seems to imply in places. Rather, what it requires is a rethinking of our understanding of online resources, moving away from the document metaphor entirely, and thinking instead in terms of data feeds. By Terrence A. Brooks, Information Research, April, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Berklee’s Lessons for Everyone
Planning on selling music lessons online. Better rethink your business model. Via Olga Francois: "Today, the Berklee College of Music has released Berklee Shares, a site offering free music lessons for download. All content is available under a Creative Commons license, including mp3s embedded with CC licenses. Free lessons for musicians, and a valuable lesson for the rest of us. Bravo." By Lawrence Lessig, Lessig Blog, November 10, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Looking Back with an Eye on the Future
Slides from Stephen Marsh's presentation in Moncton Friday, which I unfortunately missed. PPS format, which means it won't run in Firebird (ran fine in Internet Exploder). Marsh discusses ACORN, a system of 'cafés' that can be visited by InfoAgents to exchange information. He also discussed 'quality of experience' in the ACE videoconferencing environment - we have set one up in Moncton, and I must say, it's a much different experience talking with human-sized humans online. Finally, Marsh had some good observations about trust. Yup, I really regret missing this. Also worth a view is a talk from October called 'The Design of the Everyday' - this and other talks are available on his presentations page. By Stephen Marsh, November 7, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Responses to Thoughts on PSU/Napster
Summary of commentary on Penn State's agreement to purchase Napster access for its students. Good point: "PSU/Napster does nothing to stop people from using P2P. Because of its limited artist selection and computer platforms (Macs and the iPod, in particular), many students will have no use for this system." By Derek Slater, A Copyfighter's Musings, November 10, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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