Stephen's Web

By Stephen Downes
May 8, 2002

Scenario-Based E-Learning: A Step Beyond Traditional E-Learning This excellent article clearly distinguishes scenario based learning from traditional e-learning. "Scenario-based learning is learning that occurs in a context, situation, or social framework." It then presents a strong step-by-step description of how to implement scenario based learning online. If you want the template for designing online role-plays, simulations or similarly structured learning, this is it. By Randall W. Kindley, Learning Circuits, May, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Linux Case Studies Thirty-five case studies of implementations of Linux in a school environment. By Anonymous, SchoolForge, May 8, 2002 5:43 p.m. [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Link to Any Article, and it Will Link Back to You From the hot meme department, the next fad to sweep the net will be link-backs. Basically, the idea is that you capture the URL of all pages that refer to your website and list them as links on your page. This, if you link to a page, the page automatically links back to you. It may sound dumb at first - but only until you start using the linkback URLs as your major browsing tool. The major limitation so far is that the page must be CGI generated or requires a server side include - but I'm working on a way to deploy linkbacks for the masses. Stay tuned. By Anonymous, Disenchanted, May 8, 2002 5:39 p.m. [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Why Are Today’s Hottest Learning Technologies Producing Such Lukewarm Results? Expert Explains Why OK, beware, this is an advertising sheet for a consultant (which is why e-learning weblogs should always review and comment on these items and not merely paste them into the newsletter). That said, ignore the last three paragraphs and focus on the nugget that makes this item important: "Last year corporations spent 2.3 billion dollars on the latest breakthrough in employee training: e-learning. But did they get their money’s worth? Despite some success stories, most did not." Why not? Well, mainly, bad design. At least, according to the article. By Press Release, Internet Wire, May 6, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Lawrence Lessig: The "Dinosaurs" Are Taking Over Another interview with lawrence Lessign echoing themes that are now familiar to OLDaily readers. "If Stanford University law professor Lawrence Lessig is right, the Internet will soon belong to Hollywood studios, record labels, and cable operators -- corporate giants that he says are trying to cordon off chunks of the once-open data network. Lessig's mission is to stop them." You know, it occurs to me (as an old FidoNet hand) - if the media companies do succeed in capturing the internet, you can just bet that an alternative network will be developed, a network in which corporate ownership will be anathema. By Jane Black, Business Week, May 13, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

The 10 Products I Couldn't Live Without Cute little piece that tells me that I live in a very different world from David Coursey (or that he's less than candid in his columns). It got me to thinking about what my list would be. For one thing, I would have no use for a product that paged me each time I received an email, since I have a constant flow of incoming emails. Coursey's ten products are ten pieces of hardware; mine would be much more on the software side (the platform, after all, is irrelevant). Mine? So glad you asked: an email client, a web browser, Notetab, PaintShop Pro, WS-FTP, ICQ, my home network, my laptop, my digital camera, and cable TV. And I could probably ditch the cellphone; it's so analog. By David Coursey, ZD Net, May 8, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Digital Rights Management is Microsoft's Trojan Horse Useful and provocative discussion of Microsoft's plan to install its proprietary digital rights management (DRM) system on all Windows computers. This, according to the author, has the potential to give Mircosoft a stranglehold over its competitors. "Microsoft controls the certification. Thus, Microsoft also controls the revocation of these certificates, which means that Microsoft can remotely disable any software that depends on the certificate for communication. There are good reasons to disable certificates -- especially because they may be forged or used without authority to create unauthorized software. But revocation is a stunning power to put in the hands of a third party, especially if it's a competitor." Food for thought. By Curtis Karnow, ComputerWorld, April 18, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright © 2002 Stephen Downes