Stephen's Web

By Stephen Downes
July 24, 2002

Open Source Play for Real? Discussion of this week's announcement from Real Networks that its 'universal' Helix Media Streaming software is being released as open source. This isn't completely true, according to the article. "The company is holding back core technology, such as the proprietary codecs that contribute to the quality of the user experience." True. But the product is far more open than its major competition from Microsoft and Apple, and this may give it the edge it needs. By Dan Farber, ZDNet, July 23, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Academic-Occupational Integration as a Reform Strategy for the Community College: Classroom Perspectives TCRecord launches an ambitious series consisting o an article and nine case studies promoting the idea of academic-occupational integration for community colleges. "Community college occupational programs have been criticized for being narrow and insufficiently concerned with literacy and critical thinking. At the same time, academic instruction has been characterized as being irrelevant and unmotivating to students preparing for careers. Integrating occupational and academic instruction may help overcome these problems." By Dolores Perin, TC Record, July, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Are You Blogging Yet? Good article on blogging as a repository for one's ideas and opinions. A blog is a way to capture and ensure proper credit for your own work. Personally, as this story implies, I think all professors should blog. A professor reads an article, published in a (free online) journal, and reacts: this reaction is typically the source of valuable insight. Combined with some sort of knowledge management and discussion tol, a personal blog is probably more useful to researchers than a slew of academic papers (or so I will find out, I guess, as my newsletter production vastly outpaces my academic paper production).

Indeed: it's probably a question worth putting to the readers of OLDaily, who have now had time to experience my personal approach to the blogging phenomenon. Would you rather I spent the same amount of time producing a half dozen publishable quality academic papers a year, or would you prefer to see the newsletter continue? Which would be more useful? Which would provide a more lasting contribution to the field? (Comment by clicking on the [Reflect] link). By John Foley, InformationWeek, July 22, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

The Science of Education (2) Countering the view to view the definition of science as a monolothic enterprise, this article explains in more detail how education could be viewed as a science and relates the development of the semantic web with the development of education as a science. By Stephen Downes, Stephen's Web, July 24, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Celebrating Complexity: Understanding the Culture of e-Learning Good article describing the influence of culture on e-learning. Attending to culture means more than merely attending to national, religious, and political differences. It means understanding differences in definitions of knowledge, learning and innovation. And culture differs not only betwwen nations and peoples, but also between organizations, age groups and professions. By Piers Lea, E-Learning Magazine, July 18, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2002 Stephen Downes