Stephen's Web

By Stephen Downes
November 7, 2002

No Newsletter Tomorrow For daily readers, there will be no issue of OLDaily tomorrow (November 8) because I am flying to Italy. For weekly readers, this week's OLWeekly comes to you a day early for the same reason. Though I will have internet access at least some of the time, my schedule and variable access may result in some missing issues over the next few days. Thanks for your patience. By Stephen Downes, November 7, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Problems and Issues in Online Learning In general the issues surrounding the location, distribution and reuse of learning resources online have to do with system architecture and resource based on what I call the "silo model." On the silo model, resources are not designed or intended for wide distribution. Rather, they are located in a particular location, or a particular format, are intended for one sort of use only. By Stephen Downes, The Learning Place, November 7, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Collaboration Tools Must be Natural It's a simple point not nearly well enough understood by developers: people are not likely to change their habits to adapt to a new technology. "There have been tons of teamware applications available for years ... but they don't get used because the browser interface is not the most natural interface for people to get their work done." This means that tools like collaboration software must resemble forms of interactions they already know... the quick meeting in the hall, the phone call, the quickly jotted message. By Sam Costello, InfoWorld, November 9, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

The Problems of Acquiring Knowledge Elliott Masie discovers just-in-time learning (or Google Reseach, I'm not sure which). "One way is to develop a feature that lives on people’s workstations which enables them to submit a learning request categorised by, say, the content area, the type of knowledge requested, or even the level of urgency. These requests could then acted on by a learning desk, an automated function or other process." I think that the idea is sound and is probably a lot futher along in development than Masie imagines. By Elliott Masie, IT Training, November, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Halloween VII: Survey Says Another clash in the hard fought battle between Microsoft and open source advocates. In this item, Eric S. Raymond (well known for his advocacy of open source) obtains and criticizes an internal Microsoft document outlining the company's strategy against open source. Entertaining reading. The term in the title refers to Microsoft's infamous 'Halloween Document' launching its attack against open source. By Eric S. Raymond, Open Source, November 7, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Tablet PCs Put New Twist on Computing The tablet computers are being unveiled today. Well within the five year window I predicted in my 1998 essay, The Future of Online Learning. By Mike Langberg, San Jose Mercury News, November 7, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

RSS DevCenter A lot of my thinking about learning object repository networks is cenetered around my knowledge of and work in Rich Site Summary (you can, for example, get an RSS version of OLDaily). I like RSS a lot because it has a very low entry barrier and because it is an actual working network instantiating many of the ideas already at play. This page is a general resource on RSS that Rod sent to me, a great source for a detailed understanding on the specification and its uses. By Various Authors, O'Reilly Network, Undated [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Electronic Privacy Information Center The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has written a letter urgin universities not to monitor the P2P activities of their students. "While network monitoring is appropriate for certain purposes such as security and bandwidth management, the surveillance of individuals' Internet communications implicates important rights, and raises questions about the appropriate role of higher education institutions in policing private behavior." By Marc Rotenberg,, EPIC, November 6, 2002 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright © 2002 Stephen Downes