January 11, 2006


Shelley Powers[Edit][Delete]: Debate on DRM, Burningbird [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: Hits] Good discussion of digital rights management. Read past the initial post and into the comments, where the real action happens. I appreciated, though, the author's comments on debate: she's quite right - the A-listers of the world don't debate, they quip - and usually only to each other. But what happens in the comments is a known-down all-out debate, with some knowledgeable people (Seth Finklestein, Julian Bond, Michael Bernstein) who do debate - and on other peoples blogs! Most views are well represented here; this quote (from mcubed) most closely represents my own: "The biggest fear of DRM is that it will preclude other means of distribution, access and perhaps even creation of content." [Tags: Web Logs, Digital Rights Management (DRM)] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Bruce Schneier[Edit][Delete]: Real Story of the Rogue Rootkit, Wired News [Edit][Delete]Wired news [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: 2 Hits] The office is shut down for our big move (which is no joy for me, but that's a different story). So this morning it was down to the dentist, where my results were unusually happy. So, in a slightly less gloomy mood, I walked across the street to the mall, went to the Sony store, and complained about the Sony rootkit to a sales clone. Just thought you'd like to know. [Tags: ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Lorcan Dempsey[Edit][Delete]: Flickr and the Library Pictures, January 11, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] Interesting item on a collaboration between Flickr and Library Australia which allows people to upload images to the Picture Australia service through Flickr. The tag-line is what's intriguing: "Putting the library in the user environment, rather than expecting the user to be in the library environment. Creating structures for user contribution. Presenting a library service through emerging web and social tools." Yeah. Hard to "exploit" though. Via CETIS-metadata. [Tags: Metadata] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Christopher D. Sessums[Edit][Delete]: Interactive Learning Fails Reading Test (Or Does It?), Christopher D. Sessums : Weblog [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] What appears to be an irresponsible study showing that multimedia detracts from literacy education is gaining traction in Australian media (I say 'appears' because the study is behind a subscription wall, and therefore blocked from public scrutiny). In the study, children viewing and manipulating partially irrelevant graphics while listening to and reading a story performed less well than students not using the graphics. Of course, children trying to read while someone banging a drum in their ears would also perform less well, but nobody considers that to be an argument against music education. Still, this does not deter study author David Buckingham, who argues that "an interactive story book may provide their children with more entertainment than education," and in the context of another study, urges, "Policy makers should refrain from any further investment in ICT and literacy until at least one rigorously designed trial has shown it to be effective in increasing literacy outcomes." Perhaps the best comment is from the generally useful Slashdot discussion: "We've got to sell papers by scaring you, and this is going to get your attention for the thirty seconds we've conditioned you to spend on a newspaper article that can't possibly do justice to the topic at hand." [Tags: Books and eBooks, Online Learning, Subscription Services, Children and Child Learning] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Unknown[Edit][Delete]: Personal Learning Environments and Virtual Learning Environments, myWORLD Open Source ePortfolio [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: Hits] This is a very useful analogy and might be the best approach yet to the divide between personal learning and learning management systems: "To explore hostile environments we bring micro-climates with us in the form of clothing, space suits, boots, sea kayaks, ships, aeroplanes, etc. I may well choose to enter a VLE clad in my PLE or go off exploring on my own or with friends without feeling the need to let the teacher know." The blog author's name appears nowhere on this blog, which I am seeing for the first time. [Tags: Web Logs] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Michael Geist[Edit][Delete]: IDRC Launches Open Archive Initiative, January 11, 2006
[link: Hits] You don't hear about the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) much, a Canadian aid agency, but it has been around for a long time (they were a fixture, and a lot of help, when I was involved in development education in the 1980s with the Arusha Centre). But as Michael Geist writes, "In 2004, it provided financial support to Creative Commons South Africa, playing an important role in making that initiative a reality. Now it has set its sights on a major new open archive that will provide full Internet access to the IDRC research archive." Outstanding. Perhaps my own research agency could take note and do something along similar lines. [Tags: Canada, Research] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

: An Incomplete Manifesto for Growth, Bruce Mau Design [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: Hits] Interesting and relevant. A document, as James McGee points out, "to get you beyond thinking differently but doing differently." A good start, but it seems to me that the objective is to get to the point of, if you will, 'being differently' - to become the changes you want to see in your life. As in, "Allow events to change you. You have to be willing to grow. Growth is different from something that happens to you. You produce it. You live it. The prerequisites for growth: the openness to experience events and the willingness to be changed by them." The commentary is about personal growth, but I see no reason why we should not think of it as applying to social growth as well. It's certainly a much better measure than Gross Domestic Product. [Tags: Experience, Games and Gaming] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

James Farmer[Edit][Delete]: The Inevitable Personal Learning Environment Post, Incorporated Subversion [Edit][Delete]Incorporated subversion [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: 3 Hits] The barrier to the personal learning environment (PLE) is not technological, argues James Farmer. "Major institutions aren't going to start switching their LMSs to our PLEs any time soon and yes security, ip, maturity and (above all IMO) the structuralist transmissive models that LMSs on the whole play up to and re-enforce make this a difficult journey." Still, "stranger things have happened." Farmer suggests that personal aggregation will play a key role (and I agree) and that the blog (such as offered by WordPress) forms the basis of this environment. I'm not as inclined to say "easy peasy" as Farmer, but my view of the structure of the PLE is similar to his. See also Marc Sheffner on this item. [Tags: Web Logs, Security Issues] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Tony Vincent[Edit][Delete]: Podcasting News, Learning in Hand [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] Good overview of recent developments in podcasting, which (as we see from the article) has been discovered by the mainstream educational press. Some recommendations and some software updates (especially for Apple fans). [Tags: Apple, Podcasting] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Segun Oni and Bolaji Onibudo[Edit][Delete]: Open Source: The Future of IT in Nigeria, Vanguard [Edit][Delete] January 11, 2006
[link: Hits] This is what I believe: "there's something very wrong with a world in which crops, energy systems, essential drugs, access to information, methods for providing clean water, and so on are priced outside the reach of billions simply because of the legacy of past development patterns. They are proprietary knowledge." Via Alec Couros. [Tags: ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

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I want and visualize and aspire toward a system of society and learning where each person is able to rise to his or her fullest potential without social or financial encumberance, where they may express themselves fully and without reservation through art, writing, athletics, invention, or even through their avocations or lifestyle.

Where they are able to form networks of meaningful and rewarding relationships with their peers, with people who share the same interests or hobbies, the same political or religious affiliations - or different interests or affiliations, as the case may be.

This to me is a society where knowledge and learning are public goods, freely created and shared, not hoarded or withheld in order to extract wealth or influence.

This is what I aspire toward, this is what I work toward. - Stephen Downes


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