By Stephen Downes
April 26, 2005
Some Principles of Effective
The keys to effective e-learning are interaction, usability and relevance. Or so I argue, at least, in this paper prepared for attendees of the upcoming CSTD Conference in Fredericton. By Stephen Downes, Stephen's Web, April 25, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]
WebCT Announces the Beta Release of WebCT
Campus Edition 6
WebCT announces the release of Campus Edition version 6 of its learning management system in what Scott Leslie calls an attempt to get into the market before free and open source competition such as Sakai has a chance to hit its stride. By Scott Leslie, Ed Tech Post, April 26, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]
This site, the misleadingly titled Open Media Network, is one part of a wider strategy to see Microsoft DRM technologies become the de facto standard for online multimedia (and in particular, video). More. While it appears that the dawn of free video content has finally arrived, the Microsoft DRM world is a very restricted universe - you have to have Windows, of course, and be using the proper DRM. Moreover, as the Open Media Network website makes clear, "only authorized Producers can publish content into OMN." This is just the latest in a series of such announcements. For example, MTV Overdrive launched a free video service yesterday - it also requires Windows - the site tells Linux users (and presumably Apple users) that their operating system won't support the Microsoft DRM used by overdrive. Less heralded launches have also been announced in the last month by, among others, Maxim, Bell Canada (French language), ArtsPass (educational), IFILM (film), Penn Media (historical footage), CBS (news), Sympatico (french video), Magic Lantern (video), and many more. The web is changing as we watch - and where it is headed is not yet clear. Will people give up the ability to produce and publish free content in exchange for all these offerings from the major producers? Or will the blogging and podcasting revolutions sweep into video as well? By Various Authors, April 26, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]
Online Music Lovers 'Frustrated'
There ought to be some lessons learned from the chorus of complaints being raised by Britons being subjected to DRM problems in their downloaded music. This complaint is typical: "One confused reader said he had spent £40 in an online store. Although his MP3 player played Windows Media Audio (WMA) files that he created, it would not play the copyright-protected WMA files he had purchased." Writers have also noted that music publishers are raising prices for demonstrably inferior products. The backlash could be significant. By Unattributed, BBC, April 25, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]
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