OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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July 30, 2012

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Scientists Create an Ultra Secure Subconcious-based Password System
Unattributed, How-To Geek, July 26, 2012.

From the science fiction department, some neuroscientists have devised a password system based on subconscious pattern-recognition. It "hinges on the principle of implicit learning, wherein your mind learns new information and patterns but in a fashion which you don’t consciously recall learning the information." Don't expect this soon.

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Personal Learning Environments: Context is King!
Graham Attwell, Pontydysgu, July 26, 2012.

In all the fuss about MOOCs the topic of personal learning environments seems to be totally forgotten. I haven't forgotten them, though - neither has Graham Attwell. "Where as before we had many discussions about what a PLE might look like, there were now many examples of applications supporting PLEs, ranging from mash ups to Cloud services to institutional provision. Thus the focus shifted to the different contexts in which learning takes place and to pedagogic processed, in particular how to support learners in developing their learning through a PLE."

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Digital Scholarship
Various Authors, Website, July 26, 2012.

From an email on the OER-University discussion list:"The site is a portal to a collection of Open Educational Resources (OERs) accessed from repositories and institutions around the world. All these resources have been provided free by their authors under Creative Commons or other licence for anyone who wishes to use them for educational purposes.The UK Open University Digital Scholarship team, and partners in Nottingham, Leicester, and Manchester, reviewed and selected every resource listed on this site in order to ensure that it is a genuinely open access and high quality item of self-study material appropriate for students in the UK and elsewhere who wish to prepare themselves to study on research degrees in UK universities."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Open Educational Resources, Great Britain, Research, Portals, Quality, Discussion Lists, Learning Object Repositories, Open Access]

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Education: sometimes it’s not complex (a reply to Nick Dennis)
Doug Belshaw, Weblog, July 23, 2012.

This is a good overview of some of the arguments for and against 'independent schools', or what we would call here, 'provate schools'. It's a response to Niick Dennis's post Beyond Raincoats and Stereotypes, which defends the schools. My views align with Belshaw's. Specifically:

  • Independent schools are walled gardens that charge for entry.
  • We should address the causes of selfish behaviour, rather than institutionalize it
  • Choice and and better provision within the state sector are possible
  • Independent schools militate against a more equitable distribution of wealth
  • Sschools have charitable statuswhile charging £30,000 per year make a mockery of charities who do valuable work

In a nutshell, to my mind, independent (private) schools create a weakness in society by undermining its cohesiveness and creating greater power-law distributions of wealth and infleunce.

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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