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by Stephen Downes
December 15, 2009

Blackboard, Desire2Learn Announce Patent Cross License Agreement and Settlement of Litigation
Huge news: Blackboard and D2L cross-license patents and settle litigation. "We are pleased to have resolved our differences with Desire2Learn," said Michael Chasen, President and CEO of Blackboard. "Bringing this matter to resolution is in the best interests of both of our organizations, our respective clients and the broader education community." And: "We're pleased to enter this agreement, and believe it is in the best interests of the educational community," said John Baker, President and CEO of Desire2Learn. "We will continue to focus our attention on our clients, as well as the development of our products and services." Additional details of the settlement were not disclosed. Statement, Desire2Learn, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , , , , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

iPhone apps for college media
It's stupid, isn't it, to have a separate 'app' for every single web site? It seems to me to be very much a major step backward. But that's exactly what you get in the world of the iPhone, where (among the 50,000 other 'apps' Apple boasts about, we now see separate apps for college media. Well, you know what, Apple? I know a system that has a billion apps. It's called the internet, it supports content, interactive applications and crazy multimedia, and it's free. Bryan, Innovation in College Media, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment] [Tweet]

FeedBurner Socialize: Add Your Feed to Twitter
Well it took exactly that long before Google unrolled a 'blog post to Twitter service' via FeedBurner. (I still think mine is better, and it won't hide tracking data hidden in the (naturally) URL shortener). So - get ready. Here comes the deluge of blog posts in Twitter feeds. Blog Herald, meanwhile, points out that Google may have just killed TwitterFeed. Well, that's how a behemoth rolls. Alex Chitu, Google Operating System, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Footprint in your pocket and head in the cloud -The Little Black Device
Is the iPod dead? Maybe not, but the shift from mobile players that are mere storage devices - such as the old iPod - to devices that access content live from the web is well underway. There are various ways to access this data - through a telco's 3G network, through WiFi, and in the future, through 802.11n networks or WiMax - and (importantly) the cost of accessing that data will (begin to) decrease. But which route will we take? The closed and proprietary model offered by Apple and the Kindle, or something that is (or appears to be) more open, such as Android. The Apple products may be cool, but historically, people have opted for open, which is why the Mac, despite its cool factor, historically never rises above a small percentage of the overall market. Dick Moore, Tools and Taxonomy, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

What Matters Now: get the free ebook
It's disjointed, inconsistent and at times incoherent but a lot of people will like Seth Godin's ebook. It touches (oh so very lightly) on many of the themes of today's web technology - power, harmony, passion, parsing - as authored by individuals (from is own network) as collected and voted 'up' by readers on his Squidoo network (and hence, the book is effective marketing for Squidoo). The one-page one-article format for an Acrobat e-book is attractive, and I'm tempted to try it myself, but I think that if I were to really seek to create a 'book' I would try for some sense of harmony and unity - or at the very least, a consistent typeface. Via Jane Hart. Seth Godin, Weblog, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Here come the indicators, wait for the task corruption
Jones's cynicism is evident in this title: here come the indicators, wait for the task corruption. The context is a discussion of the Australian government's new plan for higher education focusing on results-based funding, performance, targets and quality. David T. Jones argues that we need "quite a significant mind shift from the current simplistic, quasi-corporate decision making being adopted around learning and teaching to an approach more informed by what we know about complex systems and the motivations and cognition of human beings. David T. Jones, The Weblog of (a) David Jones, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment] [Tweet]

DC-Ed Use Cases Summary
Dublin Core's DC-Ed use case summary, in a spreadsheet, with links and analysis of elements. Useful for people following the suddenly resurgent talks on learning resource metadata in Dublin Core and ISO (with some overlap from IEEE-LTSC, and even some renewed interest from LETSI). You can also view a recording of today's DC-Ed online conference. Various Authors, Google Docs, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Information literacy: its history and problems.
How we recognize information illiteracy may point to what we think constitutes information literacy. And we do recognize information illiteracy: the person who clicks through a phishing email, the person who forwards chain mail messages, the person who believes, based on one fake email or web site, that Canada has changed its climate change policies. And while I agree with Doug Belshaw that information literacy may be seen as some sort of process, there is a clear sense in which the term 'information literacy' recognizes achievement, the being of a person in some state such that they would not make mistakes such as are described above (and perhaps even know why not). I would like to have seen more in this post; it is definitely worth a lookd you want to linger in a summary of the rich resources in this field. Doub Belshaw, Weblog, December 15, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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