OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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December 14, 2011

Beyond Blogging as an Open Practice, What About Associated Open Usage Data?
Brian Kelly, UK Web Focus, December 14, 2011.

I've advocated open usage data in the past - in the form, say, of sharable RSS feeds - and had exactly zero take-up on the idea. I haven't seen anyone who is interested. Meanwhile, I'll continue to set an example of stats and hit counts, even though it severely compromises the marketability and monetization of my website. But, you know, understanding my impact isn't a matter of understanding my stats. Those are pretty irrelevant. It's a matter of understanding the impact of my ideas. Ah - but that's a lot harder to measure, first, to establish provenance, and second, to assess impact. Because, you know, by the time it shows up on a TED video, all original authorship has been pretty much expunged.

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KnowU: Harrison College’s Social Learning Network May Just Be The Future Of Education
Dr. Dennis A. Trinkle, Edudemic, December 14, 2011.

Well if there's anything universities know, it's walled gardens. Hence: "KnowU, a private social network just for Harrison College, is an advanced social network that safely connects the school community. So is this the future of social networks? Will behemoths like Facebook go back to their roots and start offering walled gardens where only certain people can join? Facebook is already considering it, according to recent reports."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Schools, Books, Networks, Online Learning]

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Putting Learners at the Centre: Delivering our ambitions for Post-16 Education
Linda Creanor and David Dyet, ALT, December 14, 2011.

Not much to say on this one except that unless I've somehow gotten this wrong, ALT has managed to go meta, pulling off the feat of authoring a response to its own white paper, thus achieving that which other research bodies can only dream.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Research, Push versus Pull]

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DTLT Today's 100th Episode
Jim Groom, et.al., bavatuesdays, December 14, 2011.

I thought I'd listen first to DTLT 99 on the subject of copyright - there's a good link to Andy Baio's post on "the idea of a generation of youth who simply don’t understand copyright law and don’t follow it." I would add only that this generation is like all other generations, none of whom gave a lick about copyright, and didn't have to. What may be unique about the current generation si that it may be the last to share freely, unless we regain control of our democracy right away. But the main point of this link is to note DTLT's 100th show - proving that if you do something daily, it takes just over three months to reach 100. ;) Bava's 6th anniversary took, um, longer. And in unrelated news, Brent Schlenker is also celebrating six years.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Copyrights]

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TED Live
Press Release, TED, December 14, 2011.

TED has certainly figured out how to monetize learning - and Alan Levine notwithstanding a big part of that, I would say, lies in offering opinions and talks that are safe for business people offered by speakers who are TV-pretty, speaking the language of the empowered, addressing first-world problems. Like, say, the speaker pictured above. A speaker who I know was interesting and impactful, but who would not have gotten the gig, no matter what she had to say, were she, shall we say, edgier. And it's the formula that allows TED to offer its latest venture, at a price that is tantalizingly attractive (and tax deductible) for business (or schools), a one-year subscription to 'TED Live', featuring live, remote webstream access to both the TED and TEDGlobal conferences, privileged access to a TED forum, and cross-marketed with Amazon to deliver 24 TED Books to "your brand-new Amazon's Kindle Fire color tablet." All this and eye-candy too.

p.s. I get Alan Levine's point that the message is important and should be heard. And I do not begrudge any of the value he derived from listening to it. My point is that if we weren't dazzled by things like TED, we'd see the message, in its more pure non-homogenized non-secularized form, all around us. Like in Rabbi Michael's talk on Kol Nidre, say. Or this spiritualists's gremlin-hunting. Or in this study ("well-being depends greatly on an individual's opportunity to correct the cause of their regrets"). Or in the Tao. As Doug Merritt said, "Regret, like anything, can be a negative, but it is not inherently negative. Its purpose is to teach us to follow a different path in the future than we did in the past."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Video, Subscription Services, Online Learning]

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E-learning in 2011: a retrospective
Tony Bates, online learning and distance education resources, December 14, 2011.

Tony Bates offers a useful overview of events in e-learning in 2011, and while his post as a whole is worth reading, the best bit is near the end, where he nails the ke problem with open educational resources (OERs) Properly So-Called: "Yes, content is becoming more readily accessible, but what really matters to many learners is open access to and interaction with quality faculty or instructors, leading to recognized qualifications, and many institutions that proclaim the principle of open content deny open access to learners, either through too expensive tuition fees or through too rigorous entry requirements. This is the reality of limited resources." So there you go - OERs are still for those who can afford to pay for them.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Open Educational Resources, Accessibility, Open Content, Interaction, Quality, Online Learning, Open Access, Tuition and Student Fees]

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University Grants Commission
Various Authors, Website, December 11, 2011.

Viplav Baxi writes, by email, "To get a sense of the structure of Indian Higher Education, it would be instructive to go through [this web page]. The University Grants Commission is the apex funding and standards body for the HE sector in India. The site carries a lot of useful information and statistics.

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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