February 11, 2006


roseg[Edit][Delete]: Zero Sum Laude, Random Selections [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: 2 Hits] A rare Saturday issue of OLDaily, partially because I'm behind in my coverage and partially because I need something to do. I am home again from Sweden and will be home for twelve days (I checked) before heading for Alaska. I'm still a little jet lagged (it will catch up with me tomorrow), pensive, reflective and conflicted. That's OK, that's my usual state of being (including, these days, the jet lag). Which brings me to this post, which describes what amounts to an advertsing campaign by a certain soft drink company that not only apropriates our medium for its own ends, but also even the number zero. I won't point to that site (you can get it from the link) but I will point to the alternative, one that is more reflective of my values and indeed even my mood: "Drinks don't need cheesy theme songs, a posse of trucks, or plastic/aluminium containers. But thanks to companies like Coke, land is cleared and waste and pollution are created just to make sure people have sweetened, chilled beverages. All this in a world where one person in five has ZERO access to clean drinking water." So let me put this in perspective and put it a bit bluntly: when Coca-Cola puts as much money into providing drinking water to people who have none as it does into its advertising, then I will be interested in what it has to say to me and may even buy some of its products. Not until (this may seem to have little to do with today's issue, but follow this theme through the rest of today's posts and see whether we're not, in fact, talking about the same thing). [Tags: Marketing] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Jeremy Price[Edit][Delete]: Technology As Trickster, Smelly Knowledge [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: Hits] I'm pretty firmly in what is described here as the 'Canadian camp': "technology brings with it powerful but subtle biases.... If technology is not a tool to be chosen for use, then, what is it?... Perhaps one suggestion might be an ecological or environmental metaphor (as in, for example, the common phrase online environments). Perhaps technology is like the water we drink and the air we breathe. Water and air are not tools. We cannot choose to breathe the air or drink the water.... Technology is not a tool which we can choose to use or not; whether wisely or not. Technology exists. Such an ecological/environmental metaphor allows us to examine different approaches to its use and its potential impact." So what of the 'American' idea of technology and progress? Maybe the distinction is this: the American sees technology as a tool to be used, while I see it (and everything else) as an environment to be experienced. We are not something apart from our creations. Our choice of a technology says something about us, our use of a technology changes us (just ask anone who carries a handgun). There's a world of difference between these two views, a world of difference. [Tags: Canada, United States, Experience] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Christian Long[Edit][Delete]: 10 Brain Things...and One Reminder that People are the Curriculum!, think:lab [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: 4 Hits] Eleven posts - some of which have been seen before in these pages - juxtaposed under the heading of 'brain things'. An interesting gestalt. "See the 'box' even though there are only a few line segments. Your eye does the rest. The Greeks offered constellations, night star 'stories'. And patterns are truths (again, my opinon) much as the "medium is the message" (thank you, Marshall)." No, patterns are not truth - patterns are perception, how we see the world. I am a specialist in pattern recognition, and I am aware more than most (perhaps) that when our mind leaps into some sort of recognition of what it 'sees' there remains considerable room for error. You and I will each see different things when we look at these ten stories. And that is true of experience in general. That is why people (and not merely facts and brains and syntax) must be, will be, the ultimate objective of any pedagogy (or epistemology). [Tags: Experience] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Rob Wall[Edit][Delete]: New Edublog - The Illuminated Dragon - and Some Good Questions, StigmergicWeb [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: 12 Hits] Rob Wall introduces us to this new edublog by Donna DesRoches. A sample: "Shouldn't teachers play with new knowledge and information? Why should learning be serious work? Is this the feeling we impart to our students about learning? If teachers cannot find joy in learning is it possible to create students who are life-long learners?" These questions alone could fill a blog. [Tags: Web Logs] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Iain Wallace[Edit][Delete]: RSS Feeds for Journal Tables of Contents, Spoken Word Matters [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: Hits] This is a good idea, though I hasten to point out that it took six clicks (including one cut-and-paste) to get to a page that wanted to charge me $30 to view an article. Goodness. Considering how long it takes me to read an article, space travel is less expensive. Oh well, we must absolutely keep the poor people from reading publicly funded research, I guess. [Tags: Research] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Scott Wilson[Edit][Delete]: CoComment: Automating Distributed Conversations?, February 11, 2006
[link: 7 Hits] You may be interested to know that I have implemented conversations in Edu_RSS. It's not perfect, and so far utterly nobody has noticed (and there are far fewer conversations than you might suspect, which means I need a better way of detecting the good ones). Here's an example. But the main point here is that we are now only months, maybe weeks, from a functional system linking conversation threads between blogs - not a walled garden, but something that we can use, we can control, for ourselves. [Tags: Web Logs, Linking and Deep Linking] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Miguel Guhlin[Edit][Delete]: TCEA 2006: Podcast Roundup, Mousing Around [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: Hits] Tired of listening to the local radio station? Here's a full day of podcasts from the Texas Computer Education Association (TCEA) conference. Here is full coverage of the conference. Just a sample: "Out of step with a society racing towards technological nirvana, K-12 education struggles to keep up, clamoring for everything from more funding to an Office of Educational Technology Director. Some dismiss the conversations about educational reform on the Web as just so much sound and fury. 'It's easier to write a check,' said Anne Mulcahy (Xerox Corporation CEO), 'than it is to rethink the way you work.' Conversations are only the first step. It must be followed by action, then that action must be reflected on. And, perhaps, only by embedding technology in the fabric of society, can we achieve the desired changes." [Tags: Podcasting] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Terry Heaton[Edit][Delete]: TV News in a Postmodern World, Donata Communications [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: Hits] George Siemens picks up on what seems to ke a key quote from this article: "Application separation is the most important paradigm shift in the history of communications, and it will change things forever." Yeah, ok. But there's also this: "Some try to make the case that their information is somehow better or more important than what they see as the riffraff of the Web, but that foolish argument makes the dangerous and incorrect assumption that the audience NEEDS to trust in that which has been proven untrustworthy." This I think is the deeper truth, and what needs to be reflected upon, is that this applies not only to information (which is merely the most visible aspect of an information economy) but to a much wider array: to mangement, to government, to commerce and trade, just to name a few. The fact is - and how can we avoid concluding anything else? - that these institutions have each of them, one by one and in concert - proven themselves to be untrustworthy. When I reflect on, for example, a system of social and political organization that maintains it is rational (and rationalizable) to deny an education (or, for that matter, food) to most people, how can I (or any person of good conscience) call that anything but an abject failure? We are separating ourselves from our institutions, not simply because we (finally) can, but because we must. [Tags: Paradigm Shift] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Martin Belam[Edit][Delete]: Building An Effective Web Presence In A Large Organisation, Currybetdotnet [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: Hits] A year or two or so ago the people who run BBC's e-learning web offerings asked me for my thoughts on how the site should be organized, to which I responded with a long discussion about personalization and what I called at the time 'vectors' - essentially an approach to allow multiple perspectives to be offered on the same body of information. I don't know how much influence my comments had, if any, and I don't see them reflected particularly here, which is OK, because I think what the BBC has done is interesting and worthy of note. Martin Belam offers in this series of articles (Part One, Part Two, Part Three) an in-depth exploration of what the BBC has done with its site, a series well worth exploring if the design and management of large bodies of information is of interest to you. [Tags: Online Learning, Personalization, BBC] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Dave Cormier and Jeff Lebow[Edit][Delete]: Discussion with Larry Sanger of DigitalUniverse.net, Ed Tech Talk [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: 10 Hits] Following from its conversation with Wikipedia founder Jummy Wales, Ed Tech Talk interviews the other Wikipedia founder, Larry Samger, who has since moved on to propose a new approach to online information resources. "Larry Sanger is one of the true pioneers of the internet - he was there for the big bang of wikipedia and is now involved in the creation of a whole new universe, digitaluniverse.net. In part one of our discussion with Larry, he describes how he came to be involved with Wikipedia and more recently The Digital Universe. He then provides an overview of how Digital Universe will be structured and what business model it will use." Part One, Part Two. [Tags: Wikipedia] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Dave Tosh[Edit][Delete]: PLE's - Are They What the ePortfolio Promised to Be?, Dave Tosh : Weblog [Edit][Delete] February 11, 2006
[link: 7 Hits] I think this is a good question. "Did vendors and institutions kill the initial promise of e-portfolios by trying to turn the concept into a single tool (product) used to measure student achievement?" More: "As Helen Barrett said: 'I am very concerned that the current crop of commercial tools are 'perversions' (Lee Shulman's term) of the portfolio concept.'" Jeremy Hiebert offers a diagram that is closer to the concept originally envisioned. Back to the first question, though: do we have a reverse Midas phenomenon on our hands here, where everything they touch turns to dross? Like this? If so, how do we fix that? [Tags: E-Portfolios, Online Learning] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Browse through the thousands of links in my knowledge base sorted according to topic category, author and publication.

Browse through the thousands of links in my knowledge base sorted according to topic category, author and publication.

Stephen Downes

About Me
Bio, photos, and assorted odds and ends.

You know, the ones that appear in refereed journals of Outstanding Rank.

Lectures, seminars, and keynotes in a wide variety of formats - everything from streaming video to rough notes.

All my articles, somewhere around 400 items dating from 1995.

Audio recordings of my talks recorded in MP3 format. A podcast feed is also available.

What I'm doing, where I'm doing it, and when.

Newly updated! A collection of my photographs. Suitable for downloading as desktop wallpaper.

Stephen's Web
Since 1995

About this Site
Why this site exists, what it does, and how it works.

OLDaily RSS Feed OLDaily
Edu_RSS RSS Feed Edu_RSS
FOAF (Friend of a Friend) FOAF
Podcast Link
OLDaily Audio


About the Author

Stephen Downes

Copyright � 2006 Stephen Downes
National Research Council Canada

Contact: stephen@downes.ca

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License


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


[2 Cents Worth]
[A Difference]
[A List Apart]
[A poke with a sharp stick]
[Abel Newsletter]
[Abject Learning]
[Academic Commons -]
[ADLNet.org Event RSS Feed]
[ADLNet.org General News RSS Feed]
[adult and community e-learning: uk [ace:uk]]
[adult literacy meets technology (AL-T)]
[Alan November Weblog]
[alt tags]
[Andy Carvin's Waste of Bandwidth: The DDN Edition]
[Archer central]
[Australian Flexible Learning Framework Case Studies]
[Australian Flexible Learning Framework News Headlines]
[B.Mann Consulting - Technology Consulting in Vancouver]
[blog of proximal development]
[BoardBuzz: NSBA's Daily Weblog]
[Brad Jensen's Posts]
[Bud the Teacher]
[Canadian Journalist]
[Central Ranges LLEN News]
[CETIS: Standards in Education Technology]
[Chris Correa]
[Christopher D. Sessums : Weblog]
[Chronicle.com - Today's News]
[Civilities - media structures research]
[Clay Shirky's Essays]
[CNN.com - Education]
[Cognitive Daily]
[Cognitive Dissonance]
[Column Two]
[Connect Learning, with David Warlick]
[connect.educause.edu - Technology In Academia -- Connect @ EDUCAUSE]
[Connectivism Blog]
[considering education]
[considering education]
[Cool Cat Teacher Blog]
[Couros Blog]
[Creative Commons Blog]
[Curb Cut Design]
[D'Arcy Norman Dot Net]
[Dan Atkins on CLEAR]
[Dan Gillmor's blog]
[Daring Fireball]
[Dave Tosh : Weblog]
[Dave's Educational Blog]
[David Davies' Weblog]
[Distance-Educator.com's Daily News]
[DJ Alchemi]
[e-Clippings (a division of blogoehlert)]
[e-Learning Acupuncture]
[E-Learning Queen]
[E-Portfolios for Learning]
[Eamonn's Home]
[Ed-Tech Insider]
[EdBlogger Praxis]
[Edge Perspectives with John Hagel]
[editThisPage News]
[EdNA Home Page Headlines]
[EdTechTalk.com - Educational technology that talks -]
[EduBlog Insights]
[Education/Technology - Tim Lauer]
[Educational Technology]
[Educational Weblogs]
[EDUCAUSE RSS | Recent Recent Library Submissions Listings]
[EduResources Weblog--Higher Education Resources Online]
[elearning-reviews.org: new reviews]
[eSchool News Top Stories BETA]
[Ferl Newsfeed]
[FLOSSE Posse]
[Fortnightly Mailing]
[Forum on Information Technology and Research Universities]
[foss4us blogs]
[Full Circle Online Interaction Blog]
[Golden Swamp]
[Graham Glass, etc.]
[Gurteen Knowledge-Log]
[Half an Hour]
[Harold Jarche - ... at the intersection of learning, work&technology]
[HeadspaceJ: Instructional Design and Technology Blog]
[Here at WCER]
[Higher Education Insight]
[How to Save the World]
[ICT in Education]
[Ideas and thoughts from an EdTech]
[IEEE Learning Technology Standards Committee]
[incorporated subversion]
[incsub - social software and open source for online education]
[Infocult: Information, Culture, Policy, Education]
[Inside Higher Ed]
[International Education Webzine]
[Internet Time Blog]
[IT Forum]
[iterating toward openness]
[iterating toward openness]
[Jeffrey Zeldman Presents: The Daily Report]
[jg's ramblings]
[JISC e-Learning Focus]
[Joho the Blog]
[Joi Ito's Web]
[Jon's Radio]
[Kairosnews - A Weblog for Discussing Rhetoric, Technology and Pedagogy]
[Keith's weblog]
[Lanny on Learning Technology]
[Latest Issue of SourceOECD Education & Skills]
[Lawrence Lessig]
[Learning - Educational Technologies :: Robin Good's Latest News]
[Learning in Hand]
[Lessig Blog]
[little train]
[Lost Remote]
[Marc's Voice]
[Mark Berthelemy's Connections]
[McGee's Musings]
[Meir Navon's Blog]
[Michael Geist Law RSS Feed]
[Michelle's Online Learning Freakout Party Zone]
[MicroContent Musings (RSS 2.0)]
[Mike Klonsky's Small Talk]
[Mousing Around - MGuhlin.net]
[Multiple Intelligences]
[National Coalition for Electronic Portfolio Research blogs]
[News Forum]
[Nouvelles de la Télé-université]
[Online Journalism Review]
[Online Learning Update]
[Online Rights Canada]
[Open Mind]
[Open Social Forum]
[OSS Watch Announcements]
[OSS Watch News Summary]
[OSS Watch Reports]
[OUseful Info]
[Portals and KM]
[Powered by Mambo 4.5.2]
[Practical Theory]
[Random Walk in E-Learning]
[Reflective Ramblings About Teaching and Learning and Other Inconsequential things]
[Release1.0 - The Conversation Starts Here]
[Remote Access]
[Rick's Café Canadien]
[Rik Abel]
[Robert Paterson's Weblog]
[Ross Mayfield's Weblog]
[Sakai Project News]
[Scott Sorley's Education Technology Guidebook]
[Scott Wilson's Workblog]
[Seb's Open Research]
[SEGA Tech]
[Simon Willison's Weblog]
[Smelly Knowledge]
[Socrates Technological University]
[spokenwordmatters News]
[Stephen's Web ~ by Stephen Downes ~ OLDaily RSS 2.0]
[Stievie's adventures in e-Learning]
[Student Self Directed Learning]
[Teach and Learn Online]
[Teach42 - Education and Technology, by Steve Dembo]
[Teachable Moment]
[Teaching and Developing Online.]
[Teaching Generation Z]
[The Business of Emotions]
[The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog]
[The Community Engine Blog]
[The Educational Mac]
[The Google Weblog]
[The Illuminated Dragon]
[The Intuitive Life Business Blog]
[The Learned Man!]
[The Learning Circuits Blog]
[The PLE Blog]
[The Shifted Librarian]
[The Wales-Wide Web]
[timbl's blog]
[TLN Teacher Voices]
[Trends in the Living Networks]
[Tuttle SVC]
[U.S. Department of Education]
[Virtual Canuck]
[Weblogg-ed News: The Read/Write Web in the Classroom]
[WeblogsInEducation News]
[What is the (Next) Message?]
[wiley.ed.usu.edu - thinking]
[Will at Work Learning]
[Write Technology]