By Stephen Downes
January 12, 2004


By Stephen Downes, OLDaily, January 12, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Canadian Elearning Workshop 2004
Good coverage of today's Elearning workshop in Vancouver, including my own talk this morning. The meeting is a summary of projects funded by CANARIE, including our own eduSource project. By Raymond Yee, Raymond Yee's Wiki, January 12, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Depth and Superficiality: E-learning and Global Culture
Outline and link to a presentation looking at the impact of culture on e-learning. The author argues that while most e-learning today merely presents content, such e-learning will not produce a lot of change in the learner and will need eventually to be replaced with new, "deep", technology. But such deep technology is much more senstitive to cultural variation, and no methodologies yet exist to take this into account. By Patrick Dunn, Viral-learning.net, January 12, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Wem gehört die Mona Lisa?
The English translation of this article is a bit rough, but you can get the meaning: though the image of the Mona Lisa has long since passed into the public domain, a new sort of property has been created by restricting who can photograph the artwork, then copyrighting the photos. So who owns the (image of) the Mona Lisa? Bill Gates. "It is to a certain extent a parasite, which wants to push out the delimitation of the copyright protection..." By Rita Gudermann, Wirtschaft, January 8, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Babel's Children
Fans of Star Trek are familiar with the Tamarians, a species that speaks entirely in metaphor (for more, see the The Darmok Dictionary). We use metaphor in English, but the bulk of our communication is of the noun-verb construction. This, too, is the form of metadata languages such as RDF. But some languages, such as Riau Indonesian, do not distinguish between noun and verb. The question raised in this article is whether our forms of linguistic contruction inform how we think. Or does how we think determine how we form languages? To me, this question is interesting because I postulate that multi-media is a post-grammatical language. If such a language in fact is possible, then if the first theory is correct, then it should change how those fluent in multimedia think. But if the latter thesis is correct, then it is much less likely that a multimedia language could exist at all. By Unknown, The Economist, January 8, 2003 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

21CIF Self-Guided MicroModules
This is a useful resource that has some good features. It is a page of short, self contained modules addressing specific concepts in information literacy. They are thus good examples of reusable resources. I found, however, the pretest to be annoying - there was no way to get around the form, even on my second visit. Still, designers should at least have a look at this site as an instance of somethinmg that is on the right track. Their next step should be this: create an RSS index contain learning metadata and make these resources available to the wider community. By Various Authors, Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, January, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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