May 24, 2006


Garret Sern[Edit][Delete]: Time for Higher Education to Be Heard on Net Neutrality!, EDUCAUSE Blogs [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: Hits] I take net neutrality as one of those really obvious things. The attempts to end net neutrality are not about improving things, they are about controlling the marketplace and eliminating the competition, about appropriating the public infrastructure, rights of way, and other easements that we provide them for their own personal gain. When this happens, important public services, such as education, lose out to commercial traffic. So it's no surprise to see EDUCAUSE coming out in favour of net neutrality. No surprise, and really, if we want anything like a public sphere online, no other choice. [Tags: ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Jeff Jarvis[Edit][Delete]: Everybody's a Network, BuzzMachine [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: 12 Hits] Question of the day: "what if media isn't a business anymore? What if it becomes like poetry -" lots of people do it, but nobody ever expects to make any money from it." Or, what if education isn't a business anymore - people share what they know as part of their day-to-day routine or part of the job, everybody does a little, and nobody makes any money? "The smart network response to all this is to liquify. You let your stuff be found anywhere, in any medium and any network. You let your public distribute for you (see Jon Stewar's Crossfire rant)." [Tags: ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Unattributed[Edit][Delete]: Student TV Finds Home on Web, ESchool News [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: 2 Hits] Innovative: "Student-produced shows across the country might have gotten their big break.... The Open Student Television Network (OSTN) launched in April 2005, and it has signed up a wide array of schools in the past few months: the network now claims 30 member schools, with access at 208 institutions." the idea is to provide a distribution channel for student productions. "The launch of these broadband channels parallels an explosion of amateur TV and film content on the web, fueled by the ever-dropping cost of producing a professional-looking product." OK, so what we're waiting for now is the anti-video backlash: articles complaining that the files are too large, that video is inaccessible, that the content might be harmful, that the videos violate copyright, that they are not quality videos or quality education - the usual. [Tags: , , , , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Angela Regnier[Edit][Delete]: Open Letter to Ministers Oda and Bernier, Canadian Federation of Students [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: Hits] In 1985 or so I wrote an article in the student newspaper, the Gauntlet, titled 'CFS is Dead'. It just goes to show, not all of my predictions are accurate. I'm happy to have been wrong, though, because this week the Canadian Federation of Students has come out with a statement urging a "balanced" approach to copyright laws. "Students are concerned that the collectives and the major publishing and recording industries - entities motivated by profit - have been wielding too much influence in the process to-date, thereby drowning the legitimate concerns of teachers, researchers, librarians, and students." Hear, hear! More, from Michael Geist. [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Catherine Howell[Edit][Delete]: Mirror, Mirror: Refining the reflexion Element in the IMS e-Portfolio Specification, EDUCAUSE Blogs [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] I haven't been too involved in the discussion of e-portfolios because I think a lot of that discussion is misplaced. This set of observations on the 'reflexion' element is a perfect example. Catherine Howell argues that the definition, in the IMS specification, is fuzzy, and insufficiently distinguished from an assertion. Quite right, but I would go further and ask what the point is of distinguishing between a reflection and an assertion at all, and even what the point is of placing these (via a form???) into an e-portfolio in the first place. It's this whole idea that everything must be contained in a single format rearing its head again. And it's the old idea of thinking of one thing as composed of another (instead consisting of links to other (self-defining) things - see, for example, the second paragraph in this item). [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Jonathan Bailey[Edit][Delete]: The New Plagiarism, Plagiarism Today [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: Hits] At the best of times I am pretty sceptical about accustaions of plagiarism. In this case, where the author depicts a type of (what he considers to be) excess block quoting with attribution to be a new form of plagiarism, I am inclined to side with the numerous critics of the piece. To be sure, there are blogs of the type he describes in our field. But I have never detected any loss of readership or confusion about attribution as a consequence. Most people eventually follow the quotes to their source, so unless your only motivation for blogging is Google Adsense click-throughs, you're probably fine. Via Emma Duke-Williaqms. [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Will Richardson[Edit][Delete]: eLIVE 2006... Live, Weblogg-Ed [Edit][Delete]Weblogg-ed [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] Summary of a talk by Alan November at eLIVE 2006. Some interesting points, but I really think the point of view is skewed. Here's a quote: "What is the problem? The problem is not technology or teaching children technology. The problem is that India is ramping up in technology and education, online learning. China outstrips the US by the year 2050." These are not problems. These are enormous opportunities, not to mention a long overdue balancing of wealth and resources worldwide. The quote continues, "It means a lot more people have a lot more money to spend to use up the world's natural resources. We could lose over 17 percent of US jobs to offshoring." What it means is that the need for more equitable income distribution is more pressing than ever, both worldwide, and within those countries that consume most of the world's resources. [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Jay Cross[Edit][Delete]: The Power of Dialogue, Informal Learning [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: Hits] Jay Cross offers a post that stirs a variety of emotions in me as he examines the nature of authentic dialogue. "One individual brought up an aspect of dialogue, vulnerability. She wondered if naked wouldn't be a better term. Another said it was about showing one's real self. The apt term for me was authenticity. In retrospect, maybe the hip term for the honesty present in our discussion is transparency. Whatever it was, the dialoguers got out of their element, were no longer 'on,' suspended their egos, and acted as other-empowered human beings." I know what a powerful experience this can be and it is the need for more of this sort of interaction that is motivating, in part, the new post-hiatus version of myself. [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Edit] [Delete] [Spam]

Ewan McIntosh[Edit][Delete]: Will Richardson: What Are the Changes in the Read-Write Web?, edublogs [Edit][Delete] May 24, 2006
[link: 1 Hits] Good set of notes from what appears to have been a good talk summarizing what changes when Web 2.0 meets e-learning. For example: "We have to learn not to push information any more. We have to teach our students how to pull information that is relevant to them." And, "It's insane to make kids do their own work. Working together, finding and making connections, learning how to work in a collaborative world (because that's what's out there in the business world) is all that matters." That last is a bit overstated but the set of points is nonetheless generally reliable and worth a quick look. [Tags: , , , ] [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.

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Stephen Downes

Copyright � 2006 Stephen Downes
National Research Council Canada


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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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