By Stephen Downes
July 14, 2005

Filtered in Iran

Mahzoon is reporting on his blog that downes.ca is filtered in Iran. He writes (in the right margin): "HELP: Stephen Downes site is filtered in Iran. I told the officials that this is an educational site, but it seems that they have no ear. Can anybody subscribe me to his content." Well, I can't help but feel a little hurt by this. Many Iranians have used my services over the years, and I have always respected and admired what they contributed to the blogosphere. I hope that the government of Iran will relent, and to my readers in Iran, be sure to know that you have a friend here in Canada who wishes you nothing but the best. By Esmail Yazdanpour, Mahzood, July 14, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

OCW Finder
I like it when David Wiley finds the time to write some code. It's not exactly how I would approach it, but his remix of the del.icio.us director to create an OpenCourseware Finder is still a very nice demonstration of of what to expect in the future. By David Wiley, iterating toward openness, July 13, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

New Zealand Schools Go Open Source, Linux
A fairly significant announcement: "Novell has signed a national agreement with the New Zealand Ministry of Education to provide all state and state-integrated schools with a range of Novell software, including SUSE linux operating systems." By Stuart Yeates, Open Source in Higher and Further Education, July 14, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

EDUCAUSE Review 20-4
It's interesting to read the articles in the new EDUCAUSE Review, especially in light of Ubiquity's interview with Leonard Kleinrock, the father of packet-switching. Kleinrock: "I should be able to talk to the environment. It could respond with voice, or perhaps displays pop up or holograms. Maybe there's a keyboard around. Maybe there's some kind of other input device, or output device. But I want it to be there when I get there and not have to import all of the technology with me." Now read Long and Erhmann: "imagine being able to embed, in specific physical locations, situational instructions that would tell students' devices how they should be configured and behave while in that local environment." You see - we talk to the environment, and the environment talks back. We need, as Johnson and Lomas describe, to think of designing a space, and not just classrooms. By Various Authors, EDUCAUSE Review and Ubiquity, July, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Education Week General Manager: How We Came to Charge for Premium Content
Michele Givens, a general manager at Education Week magazine, explains the organization's decision to begin charging subscription fees. Some bits don't ring true - like this: "We definitely took a hit on page views when we introduced registration on edweek.org, although they mostly recovered." While still recovering from the loss registrations caused (note the use of the future tense, as in "the normal decline in page views will be mitigated") it seems the magazine is prepared to take a further hit. "We’re poised to take the next big step, the introduction of our paid content model." Yes, and there's now a wide-open niche for free content in the same space. By Gary Kebbel, morph, July 12, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Study Great Ideas, but Teach to the Test
The author argues that teaching a standard way to write a paragraph may help students pass the test, but at the cost of lessening their capacity to write expressively and well. One of a series of ten pretty good articles in yesterday's New York Times (follow the links at the bottom of each article). Via Golden Swamp. By Michael Winerip, New York Times, July 13, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

IMS ePortfolio Specification
The IMS e-portfolio specification was recently released. The intent of this specification is to encourage interoperability between e-portfolio systems, as is clear in the use cases. And it seems to reflect a view of portfolios as being used in assessment, or at best, as a sort of resume. I don't know, maybe that's good. What I did like was the idea of support for different 'views' of a portfolio, allowing an owner to tailor the output for different pruposes. Also worth noting is the identification of portfolio owners using the IMS Learner Information Package, which again enables (and maybe assumes) a tight connection between learner goals, learning outcomes, portfolio contents, and assessment. See also An overview of e-portfolios, by George Lorenzo and John Ittelson. By Various Authors, IMS, July, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

An Assessment of the Academic Achievement of Students in Two Modes of Part-time Programme in Nigeria
The latest edition of the International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning (IRRODL) is out. The best article in a weak issue is this assessment of learning outcomes in two part-time programs in Nigeria. The authors warn that the desire to increase access may result in substandard programs, thereby defeating the very objectivce these programs are intended to attain. By Kola Adeyemi and Austin Osunde, IRRODL, July, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

[Refer] - send an item to your friends
[Research] - find related items
[Reflect] - post a comment about this item

Know a friend who might enjoy this newsletter?

Feel free to forward OLDaily to your colleagues. If you received this issue from a friend and would like a free subscription of your own, you can join our mailing list at http://www.downes.ca/cgi-bin/website/subscribe.cgi

[About This NewsLetter] [OLDaily Archives] [Send me your comments]

Copyright © 2005 Stephen Downes
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.