by Stephen Downes
Jan 18, 2017
Beall's List, a collection of what the author called "predatory" journals, was suddenly removed from the internet this week. The story broke on Twitter Sunday night and on Debunking Denialism Monday. The site contained "thousands of journals and publishers that Beall alleged exploit open-access publishing for their own profit -- for example by spamming researchers with invitations to publish their findings or present at conferences, then pocketing publication or registration fees while providing little or no quality review." The emerging consensus is that the list was removed due to legal threats, but I have seen no formal confirmation of this. Beall was previously threatened in 2013 and 2016. The list still exists on the Internet Archive; check here. You can also use thinkchecksubmit.org, "a cross-industry initiative led by representatives from ALPSP, DOAJ, INASP, ISSN, LIBER, OASPA, STM, UKSG, and individual publishers," to verify publications. More coverage: Science Magazine, Ottawa Citizen.
Design of an Embedded Engineering Learning on Social Cloud Model to Enhance Creative Thinking and Creative Product
Sathaporn Yoosomboon, Pallop Piriyasurawong, International Journal of Online Engineering, 2017/01/18
This paper (9 page PDF), as the title suggests, describes the use of embedded systems to promote creative thinking in engineering. An embedded system "is a programmable or fixed in capability device iscontrolled by a computer or the combination of computer hardware and software re-modeled for a specific purpose." They are placed in medical equipment, industrial equipment, airplanes, cars, appliances, vending machines, cameras and toys. But these embedded systems don't have to be mounted in equipment - they can be served from the cloud as though they were actually installed in equipment and used for learning and experimentation by individuals or groups. That's what this paper describes.
This article summarizes two reports from UNICEF on pre-school programs in rural Cambodia. The emphasis is on both early childhood education and on multilingual education, both of which are important for a student's future success. Pre-school teacher Chey Nita... has seen firsthand the difference that can be made through multilingual education in pre-schools. She has also seen the impact that early education, both for her students and her family." What strikes me looking at this is the complete absence of technology in the school - even the whiteboard is too small, there are no chairs, and of course there's no sign of electricity at all. More information on Cambodia can be found on the UNICEF country page.
This is a routine report on MOOCs with a focus on associations, but note the zinge rat the end: "Education outside of the university system could gain momentum through MOOCs, especially with the growth of certifications. That’s good for associations, which tend to offer a lot in the way of education." We are rapidly approaching the day when universities have competition for certification, which will mean that they (like the New York Times) will have to rely on the quality of their offering. One wonders whether they are up to that.
This is an internal report that the New York Times has shared with the world (and plugged with an article) describing how it needs to modernize its approach to journalism (archive version on Scribd). One of the keys is its decision to focus on a subscription-first model. "We are not trying to maximize clicks and sell low-margin advertising against them." This approach requires that the product be compelling, which is what the bulk of the report addresses. They're looking at a more visual product, a "digitally native mix of product forms", and greater reader interaction. Poynter, in addition, covers an internal memo that was circulated to staff addressing staff cuts in editorial, a need for diversity, and the creation of 'thematic tams' to cover major stories.
This newsletter is sent only at the request of subscribers. If you would like to unsubscribe, Click here.
Know a friend who might enjoy this newsletter? Feel free to forward OLDaily to your colleagues. If you received this issue from a friend and would like a free subscription of your own, you can join our mailing list. Click here to subscribe.