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by Stephen Downes
June 7, 2007

Biking to Belgium

I finished up around four my last day in Holland and so had time to do something I'd always wanted to do - to bicycle from town to town in rural Europe. My expedition grew as the hours passed and eventually became a push for the Belgian border. My zig-zag path (which would have benefited from a map) attempted to avoid the hills at the border and resulted in my reaching the highest point in Holland. A nice way to finish my trip. I also have photos from 's-Hertogenbosch, Rotterdam and Maasterich. Stephen Downes, Flickr June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Open Source Assessment
Post I wrote explaining the concept of 'open source assessment' I have been tossing around lately. Were students given the opportunity to attempt the assessment, without the requirement that they sit through lectures or otherwise proprietary forms of learning, then they would create their own learning resources. But if assessment is closed and proprietary, then we are still facing an accessibility issue. Stephen Downes, Half an Hour June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

Personal Work and Learning Environments (PWLE) - More Discussion
An article worth reading. I will mention in passing that I am opposed to the trend coming from the corporate learning side of the house to treat PLEs as work tools. What is it about people in corporate learning that they feel the need to perpetuate the attitude of servitude it seems all learners must adopt. We don't exist to work for a corporation; our learning, our minds, our most valuable asset of all, ought to serve our own purposes first and foremost. But I guess it's employers, not employees, paying the bills for corporate e-learning consultants, and thy wanna hear what they wanna hear. Meanwhile - for the rest of us - the reason we call them personal learning environments is that they are indended to serve our needs, not someone else's. Tony karrer, eLearning Technology June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

The Radical Impossibility of Teaching
I take thi as a serious question: "Is the whole process of teaching a paradox? When teachers teach and learners learn, what is the nature of the causal link between the two, if any? How does teaching produce learning? Does teaching produce learning?" I think the causal relationship between teaching and learning is much less direct than popular wisdom suggests (which is why on my own account the teacher is limited to modeling and demonstrating). John Connell, Weblog June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Intel .V. OLPC?
The undercurrent of discussion around the conflict between Inter and the OLPC project just won't go away. And the more I see of this, the more I think that the design changes which could allow the OLPC to run Windows are a response to the competition. I'm sympathetic with Negroponte - but to a point. Because, in a way, what Intel is doing to him, he did to the Simputer project. John Connell, Weblog June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

PLEs Are Power Tools
A couple of nice posts from Tom Haskins. In the first, he suggests that "PLE's are power tools. They empower the powerless to break out of their boxes. PLE's invites self-directed learning." Then, in the second, he draws a distinction between 'fortunate' and 'unfortunate' learners, drawn roughly along the level of power, or amount of learning independence, the person has. Depending on our position as a fortunate or unfortunate learner, we will view PLEs differently. Tom Haskins, growing changing learning creating June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

How the World Was Populated
This is a very nice animation, displaying the spread of the human population across the globe through history, connecting the story with the artifacts and artwork that documents the history. Via Graham Glass. Unattributed, Bradshaw Foundation June 7, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]


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Copyright 2007 Stephen Downes

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