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by Stephen Downes
December 11, 2009

Toward Simple Learning Design 2.0
In this paper Guillaume Durand and I propose a rewriting of the Learning Design specification. Stephen Downes, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Comment]

28 Rich Data Visualization Tools
Good list of (mostly) web-based data visualization tools. Generally, they work the same way: you give them some data (as JSON, say, or XML) and feed it to some application (Flash, say, or a Javascript framework) and it delivers nice graphs and tables you can view in a browser. Note that not all of them are free and some of them are not cheap. Theresa Neil , InsideRIA, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

5 K-12 Technology Trends for 2010
Ed tech predictions for 2010: ebooks, netbooks, smartboards, personal tech and custom curricula. These all seem pretty reasonable to me - and unsurprising. Via ASCD. Bridget McCrea, T.H.E. Journal, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Draft domain model for the DC-Education Application Profile.

Draft domain model for the DC-Education Application Profile, posted to Flickr. This model has attracted a lot of discussion on the learning resource metadata standards mailing lists lately. Sarah Currier, Flickr, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment]

Blogging for The Huffington Post: I'm Gonna Need Your Help
The Huffington Post is going to be adding a Tech+Education section to its blogs. Karl Fisch reports here that he will be one of the bloggers for the section. I wonder how long his 'neutrality' will last: "I don't want what I write about (and what we've all been talking about these last few years) to be viewed as being on one political 'side' or the other. I'm not very much interested in 'sides,' I'm more interested in solutions." Karl Fisch, The Fischbowl, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Energy, the economy and resilience
What impact will the rising cost of energy have on education, and will it act as a catalyst for change, especially technological change, in education? This post looks at the question via a detailed analysis of energy costs as related to household income, economic performance, and growth. "What other attributes, other than floor space and research activity could be used to measure resilience against the economic impact of an energy crisis?" Joss Winn, ../learninglab/joss, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

OLDaily on Twitter
I have created an automated Twitter feed for OLDaily. You can find it at This won't overlap with my @downes Twitter identity - @oldaily will be used for OLDaily posts, @downes will be used to report what I had for breakfast. Stephen Downes, Twitter, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

The history of new literacies
Very good article from Doug Belshaw summarizing his research on the origin and nature of 'new literacies'. Includes an extended discussion of the history of 'visual literacies'. What I find interesting is the subtext describing the different bases for 'literacies': the idea of a 'media grammar' literacy, literacy as 'entitlement or necessity', literacy as 'competence', literacy as 'skills' (eg., as in technological literacy), literacy as 'fluency', literacy as including both 'procedural skills' and 'conceptual skills', and literacy as 'tools based'. Related: Digital fluency. Doug Belshaw, Weblog, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

KAIROS funding cuts questioned in House of Commons
Kairos - which is quoted sometimes in these pages - is having its funding cut by the Canadian International Development Agency. Designed to pursue social justice, it has been funded through the last 35 years and currently receives $7 million a year. Though no explanation is being given for the cut, the consensus seems to be that the funding is being cut for political reasons, the National Post identifying it as a left wing group and GlobalBrief going so far as to say it had been infiltrated by activists. Readers can review their recent publications, most of which address climate change. There is also a worship and reflection page, with articles linking the organization's goals to its religious foundation. There is a petition online to protest the cut. Unattributed, Impolitical, December 11, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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