OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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December 13, 2012

Do TIMSS and PISA tell us as much as media and political reaction imply?
Seb Schmoller, Fortnightly Mailing, December 13, 2012.

Short answer: no.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: none]

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Online photo sharing as harbinger of irrelevance
Brian Lamb, Abject, December 13, 2012.

Why do I still use (and pay for) Flickr? As Brian Lamb says, "For all of the missteps that Yahoo! has made since acquiring Flickr, that service embodies many principles from what I now think of as the bygone happy-hippie era of Web 2.0... Wow. Having a little nostalgia rush here… Tagging. RSS. Embedding. Open APIs. The web as platform." Yeah. "Isn’t it amazing how much 'old' functionality the 'new wave' of apps hasn’t bothered to support? And amazing how most professional technologists haven’t seemed to notice nor to care." Yeah. I was trying to show people in Ibague how to find their RSS and was astonished and concerned about how hard it is to find now - the feed subscription button has been completely depreciated from all browsers, and in some services (like, say, Google+ or even Prezi) RSS feedsa are not provided at all. Oh - and I don't have an Instagram account, nor will I get one; if I want bad digital photos I'll just use the Dolphin mini-cam I bought in 2001. See also Anil Dash, The Web We Lost, on the same topic.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Yahoo!, Flickr, Image Software, Web 2.0, Subscription Services, Google, RSS]

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Nine Ways Successful People Defeat Stress
Heidi Grant Halvorson, Harvard Business Review, December 13, 2012.

I do all nine of these things, so I think the article is worth linking to. But to my mind, there are two major elements of any effort to avoid stress:

  • realistically assess the consequences. If the thing you're stressing about happens, what then? Most of the time, life goes on, you adapt, and you put in place contingency plans. Most of the things we stress about are not, in the long run, such big deals.
  • don't dwell and stop cycling the same thoughts over and over. If you find yourself dwelling on something, deliberately distract yourself. This is generally a good idea even if we aren't dwelling on things. Play sports, go for a bike ride, watch a movie, and make yourself think of something else.

No nine-step or two-step plan is perfect, of course. Each person responds best to stress differently. Talk to people, get some alternative suggestions, and follow the course that best suits your needs.


[Link] [Comment][Tags: Traditional and Online Courses, Linking and Deep Linking]

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Forget ‘Do Not Track’ — Protect Your Privacy Today With ‘DoNotTrackMe’ Add-On
Scott Gilbertson, WebMonkey, December 13, 2012.

"If you’re serious about online privacy you’re going to have to do more than hope that advertisers voluntarily stop tracking you," writes Scott Gilbertson. "You’re going to have to actively block them." Quite so, and this is doubly important if you work in an industry that involves any sort of security, as tracking data i often the perfect intelligence. I use DoNotTrackMe which has receintly gone through "a major upgrade that blocks more trackers, adds some nice analytics and offers per-site tracking reports." I've also used use Ghostery in the past.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Marketing, Security Issues, Privacy Issues]

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Supporting EdTech Journalists
George Siemens, elearnspace, December 13, 2012.

George Siemens raises the question of how we support Ed Tech journalists and while on the subject makes a pitch for readers to support Audrey Watters by donating through her PayPay window. There's an interesting discussion between Siemens and Scott Leslie on the subject of network-supported work in the comments. I often think about how I would fund my own work if not gainfully employed (contrary to what you read in the media, there is no job security in the civil service). I think the PayPay donation route is a good avenue; I've considered using one to cover my own expenses.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Connectivism, Networks, Security Issues]

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Case Study 15: The Saylor.org Model
Jennifer Shoop, EDUCAUSE, December 13, 2012.

I don't think I've mentioned this before, but this paper is a quick outline of a course development model whereby designers conceptualize a course, do a "deep search" to find related open educational resources, and then apply these resources to the course outline. This is one of 21 Case Studies from the Game Changers book published by EDUCAUSE last May (worth an extended look if you haven't seen it already). I ran across it while testing the new OER Knowledge Cloud, which currently indexes 526  resources (including two of mine) on the subject of open educational resources.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Open Educational Resources, Traditional and Online Courses, Books, Research, EDUCAUSE, Tests and Testing]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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