By Stephen Downes
May 28, 2004

The Educational Semantic Web
I haven't had time to write summaries for each of the papers in this issue, though they certainly deserve that (maybe next week). But I don't want to delay announcement of this special issue of JIME, featuring some of the major writers in the field, including Diana Oblinger, Rob Koper, and yes, myself. Each of the nine essays is commented upon by such people as David Wiley, Rory McGreal and Robin Mason. This volume is a must-read, and a great way to spend your weekend. By Terry Anderson and Denise Whitelock, JIME, May, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Improving Metadata Quality: Augmentation and Recombination
Nice paper looking at some of the issues faced by the National Science Digital Library in the process of incorporating from diverse sources. The problems encountered are typical of those documented elsewhere: missing data, incorrect data, confusing data and insufficient data. One way to address these is to perform 'transforms' from the original source, producing a standardized data set. But another, more effective way, is to think of metadata in a different way. "If a metadata record can be seen as a series of statements about resources, then it should be possible to manage the metadata at the statement or element level, rather than the record level. Aggregating both complete and fragmentary metadata from many sources provides the opportunity to build a more complete profile of a resource." The remainder of the paper describes this process using concrete examples. By Diane Hillmann, Naomi Dushay and Jon Phipps, National Science Digital Library, May, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Elsevier Gives Authors Green Light for Open Access Self-Archiving
The details are not yet completely clear, but this move by Elsevier is a significant step forward. Writes Stevan Harnad, "Authors have the publisher's official green light to self-archive both their pre-refereeing preprints and their refereed postprints." It's a bold move by Elsevier, putting the ball squarely in the authors' court. "Let researchers and their employers and funders now all rise to the occasion by adopting and implementing institutional OA provision policies." By Stevan Harnad, BOAI, May 27, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

PeopleSoft a Focus of Budget Fight at Calif. University
This is the other shoe that will begin dropping with increasing frequency as people look at expenses like $15 million for software and ask whether they are receiving value for their money. Via University Business. By Todd R. Weiss , Computer World, May 21, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Clear Channel Limits Live CDs
Selling a CD of a concert right after the show - seems pretty obvious, right? Not to the U.S. Patent Office, which granted a patent for it, and not to Clear Channel, which now intends to enforce this patent. This sort of action is what prompts a general and widespread contempt for the concept of intellectual property. By Steve Knopper, Rolling Stone, May 24, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2003 Stephen Downes
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