By Stephen Downes
June 3, 2004

Gurus versus Bloggers Take 2
Another fun installment of Design by Fire's 'Gurus versus bloggers' design showdown. I'll spare you the suspense: "Another shutout: Bloggers, 8. Gurus, Zilch." I'm not even slightly surprised. The 'gurus' talk a good game, but it's the bloggers that actually pay attention to design. Which reminds me, it's time to redesign this creating heap of a website. I've been playing around with some interesting ideas using a great resource as a starting point. Still. It's not there yet. By Andrei Herasimchuk, Design by Fire, June 2, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Collaboration Supercharges Performance
Really nice set of notes (and I love his use of images) from Jay Cross on collaboration. Note well the diagrams showing the evolution of computing models and the evolution of learning models. If you're still doing 'expert-led' you're working with the wrong model. While you're at his blog, be sure to read Jay's reflections on Henry Mintzberg. By Jay Cross, Internet Time, June 2, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Take-Off DataPoint Workshop
Robin Good explains this nicely in today's newsletter: "The Take-off RSS news reader from DataPoint gathers RSS news and sends them directly into a Microsoft Access database. From there they can be easily pulled inside one or more presentation slides. Thus, you could have fresh and updated news feeds to show on your class opening presentation slide or you could display the latest relevant stock, or future prices for the very items that you have been covering in your presentation." I haven't tried it, but it's a great concept. Almost as good as sending your emails to an RSS feed (though you have to install a script on your your email server to use it - and almost nobody has access to their email server). By Various Authors, Take-Off, June, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Fine-Tuning Your Filter for Online Information
The New York Times take on RSS, offering ti as a content filtering service. This isn't a bad interpretation, since as many commentators have noted, RSS feed readers are a lot more efficient that email or web browsers. "R.S.S. avoids Pointcast's pitfalls because it lets individuals request the information when they want it." Aside from that, it's a pretty basic article; note how the Times defies the convention of everyone on the planet and punctuates the name RSS. It feels weird to see it that way. By John R. Quain, New York Times, June 3, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Web Users to Gain Creative Commons Access to the BBC
This came to me from a few sources: the BBC is licensing all of its content under Creative Commons. I like the author's observation that this "could help to drive broadband and the take-up of new, faster PCs." By Graeme Wearden, ZDNet UK, May 27, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

ODRL Workshop Report
The official workshop report from the first Open Digital Rights Language (ODRL) conference is out. Of most interest is the Future Directions at the end of the report. "The key next steps are to develop a work plan for the technical development of the next version of ODRL and to establish the ODRL International Advisory Board to manage the goverance processes for the Initiative." By Renato Iannella and Susanne Guth, June 3, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Microsoft's Sacred Cash Cow
A victim of its own success, writes this author, a former employee, Microsoft depends on its Windows operating system for revenue - a system that is full of usability, stability and security flaws and won't be updated again for years. Though cash rich, the company is right now innovation poor, and shows no signs of the capacity to innovate that marked its earlier years. Thanks, Todd, for the link. By Jeff Reifman, Seattle Weekly, June 2, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2003 Stephen Downes
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