by Stephen Downes
September 17, 2007
Moncton in September
If you're finding the website a little slow, I hear you - the traffic has surged in the last few weeks and the web server is struggling under the load. Especially the database. So I need to try to find a way to make the site more efficient. Speaking of home - I took these photos from around the city of Moncton here over the last few days. And pictured directly above is my home, the house where I live. Stephen Downes, Flickr September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: Flickr] [Comment]
The Great E-Book Debate
Another attempt to revive e-books. Nielsen writes, " Xplana Learning has assumed a leadership role in the development of e-books and online learning platforms, and has indeed redefined e-books in order to maximize usability and engagement." Well fine. But here's the thing. If you look at, say, Project Gutenberg, you'll see that we've pretty much solved the problem of putting books online. We can use plain ASCII, we don't need a special player, and it all works pretty well. The thing with e-books, is that they promise to deliver what publishers want, and not so much what readers want. And therein lies the dilemma of assuming a "leadership role" in the field. Erica Nielsen, XplanaZine September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: Usability, Online Learning, Books, Leadership] [Comment]
60 Quality AJAX Resources and Tutorials
As the title suggests - 60 AJAX tutorials. So you can learn how to make Web 2.0 applications. many of them are familiar to me, so it looks like a good list. Via Mohamed Amine Chatti. Lee Sherman, SoftwareDeveloper September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: Web 2.0] [Comment]
If you're looking a wiki website where you can create a secure wiki for your class without having to submit email addresses, this wiki, found by Kathy Schrock, looks like it may do the trick. "First you type in some sample text to create the site, next you choose settings to create your unique URL, and then you simply put in a password to claim your site." Kathy Schrock, Kaffeeklatsch September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]
The First Step On a Journey to Excellence?
The old Matt Groening cartoon in this post is worth the price of admission. The discussion surrounding the cartoon focuses on the question, "Would you sacrifice occasionally excellent for consistently good?" Like all hypotheticals, it assumes that both horns of the dilemma are attainable (I look for 'occasionally good' - anything else is a bonus). Anyhow, Don Ledingham writes, "we all too often in education - worldwide - conspire to 'protect' children from the impact of a weak teacher. Perhaps the first step we need to take on our 'Journey to Excellence' is to work together to ensure that no teacher could ever be descibed as being weak." I personally think that the whole 'excellent teacher' vs 'weak teacher' dialogue is misplaced. Mostly, people aren't generically 'excellent' or 'weak' - they have good days, they have bad days, they work well with some students and not so well with others. Don Ledingham, Don's Learning Blog September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]
One Laptop Per Child - Where in the World Is That Cool Green and White Laptop?
What's interesting about this post is not so much that it's about the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) XO computer, but that it's blogged by Nortel Chief Technology Officer John Roese. And maybe it's pushing things at Nortel in the right direction - "this initiative has been a great tool to get some of our R&D professionals to 'think differently' about the changing world of Hyperconnectivity." Nortel has some corporate blogs, but I've added only the Roese blog to Edu_RSS. John Roese, Weblog September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: Web Logs] [Comment]
How the Social Web Came to Be (Part2)
Trebor Scholz has posted the second part of his length presentation on the history of social networking. It's interesting to look at social networking retrospectively, though when he asks, "is the history of the social web the history of mainstream culture?" the answer seems to be "yes". My own perspective is different, of course, and I see many of the companies formed and the books published as things that happened after the fact as people began to cash in on the phenomenon. Trebor Scholz, collectivate.net September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: Books, Networks] [Comment]
Leaked Media Defender E-Mails Reveal Secret Government Project
This was a pretty big story in the hacking and file sharing community over the week-end. After repeatedly denying it was trying to set up 'honeypot' lures for file sharers, MediaDefender, a site affiliated with music publishers was caught red-handed after hundreds of leaked emails showed them heavily involved in a site called MiiVi. Allegations were originally made last July but the story broke this weekend with the release of the emails. "Apparently, MediaDefender employee Jay Mairs forwarded all of his company e-mails to a Gmail account, which was eventually infiltrated." The emails not only contained detailed descriuptions of the project and contracts with Universal Music Group, but also information about government participation in the project. Ryan Paul, Ars Technica September 17, 2007 [Link] [Tags: File Sharing, Books, Video, Google, Project Based Learning, Hackers] [Comment]
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