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October 14, 2010

Learning Perspectives: 2010
Nigel Paine ans Elliott Masie, eds., Masie Center, October 14, 2010.

files/images/front-book-cover.png, size: 110493 bytes, type:  image/png The Masie Center - which has been drifting around the edge of relevance recently - has made a spash publishing this open access e-book on learning perspectives. From the summary: "This eBook divides neatly into four sections. The first section shares some new paradigms for learning. The second is a collection of views of the 30 Under 30 Group, who entered into the spirit of the book by producing their visions, views and comments in a very short amount of time. The third section presents a range of case studies based on organizations that are alive and well today. They have called it Learning in Action. The range is very broad. Finally, they look at the future and focus on what will change or stay the same." The articles are by necessity short, but well-written and informed authored by people who know what they're talking about. I haven't read it all, but I've like what I've read. Via Helge Scherlund.

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Open Source eLearning Tools : eLearning Technology
Tony Karrer, eLearning Technology, October 14, 2010.

If you ever need to name a half dozen open source tools supporting e-learning off the top of your head, you can't do better than to refer to this list of, oh, 71 sources.

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Stalking in English Class
Clarence Fisher, Remote Access, October 14, 2010.

files/images/IMG_3978-1024x768.jpg, size: 160979 bytes, type:  image/jpeg This is kind of interesting - having students learn about what happens to the information you share online by having them "stalk" a well-known personality, in this case, Will Richardson. I can only imagine what they would find if they stalked me. The horror. Would they find stuff that would embarrass me? Probably. That would cause someone not to hire me? Almost certainly! That I regret? Not a word of it. Because, you see, that's the other side of the lesson - you can find out this information, but it's a lot harder to actually harm me (and probably easier if you did it the old fashioned way).

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Best Evidence Encyclopaedia
Various Authors, Website, October 14, 2010.

The problem with adopting an 'edvidence-based policy' in ediucation is that nobody agrees on what the evidence is (much less about what it means). At a meeting today I heard someone seriously proposing to compare learning systems by having students take test and see which learning system 'won'. Really? That's evidence? So anyhow, Seb Schmoller points to this Best Evidence Encyclopedia, "a free website maintained by the Institute for Effective Education (IEE)." The criteria for inclusion suggest a very specific theory about evidence and methodology, one requiring "quantitative summaries of evidence on the effectiveness of programmes or practices used with primary and secondary school-age pupils, focusing on achievement outcomes." If your view of education is one where you force-feed students knowledge like it were chicken, well, then this may appeal. It doesn't to me.

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Opera's Next Act: Add-ons, Hardware Acceleration, Android
Scott Gilbertson, Webmonkey, October 14, 2010.

I spent a good amount of time working with Opera today, and while there's a lot I like about it - the integrated email and calendar, for example - I'm not happy with the mail filtering system that stubbornly refuses to filter emails (what's up with that?), an inability to create directories, and most importantly, the lack of an ad-blocker. The next release, which will support extensions, may support some of this. And the overall browser is very slick, very useful.

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From "Radical Extremism" to "Balanced Copyright": Canadian Copyright and the Digital Agenda
Michael Geist, Weblog, October 14, 2010.

Open Access online book about copyright law reform in Canada, edited by Michael Geist, a University of Ottawa law professor and newspaper columnist who has made a well-respected name for himself writing about and analyzing the field. "This book represents an effort by some of Canada's leading copyright experts to shift away from the sloganeering that has marked the debate to date by moving toward an informed analysis of Bill C-32... to assess Canada's plans for copyright reform and the digital agenda in this timely volume that features context for the reforms, analysis of its impact on technology, business, education, and creators." Two essays directly address copyright and education, Margaret Ann Wilkinson on copyright collectives, and Samuel E. Trosow on fair dealing. I must say, though, that it is very off-putting to have to check a box "agreeing" to the Creative Commons license. It's irrelevant whether or not agree; the license is the license, and I resent being drawn into the publisher's fantasy-worldl.

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BackChannel Conversation Tools
Miguel Guhlin, Around the Corner, October 14, 2010.

Coverage of and discussion about backchannel tools, the list of which unfortunately does not include my own CChat, which world just fine and is free for anyone to use (well, the Twitter interface probably needs to be fixed because of the OAuthcalypse, but besides that...), but does mention several others, including Backnoise, Backchan, Today's Meet and Chatzy.

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Welcome to OAPEN
Various Authors, Website, October 14, 2010.

files/images/logo.png, size: 7951 bytes, type:  image/png From the announcement: "On October 6, the OAPEN Library was successfully launched at the Frankfurt Book Fair. This marks the start of the first dedicated collection of freely available academic books in the Humanities and Social Sciences from across Europe."

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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