By Stephen Downes
February 4, 2005

Sound Recording Tips and Techniques
Some rounding up to do in the world of podcasting. In this item Doug Kaye links to some sites offering tips and advice on sound recording (the whole Blogarithms site is well worth the time - and I really like the site design). Matt Pasiewicz also offers some links to Audacity tutorials (Audacity is free sound recording software). You'll also find on the EDUCAUSE blogs site various links to numerous links to talks and interviews recorded at the recent NLII meeting and posted for all to hear - here, for example, and here and here and here (and more - explore the site). I think they've done a really nice job with this - I've been sort of sitting on these links because I wanted to listen to everything - but there's no way. By Doug Kaye, Blogarithms, January 31, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

"New and already improved," edugadget features product-specific blog posts intended for educators. I like the nice clean look, the organization of content, and the product-by-product theme, which over time, will result in a really nice database of product reviews. By Steve Brooks, February, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

When Blogging Goes Bad: A Cautionary Tale About Blogs, Email Lists, Discussion, and Interaction
James Farmer notes that an article such as this that points out the downside of educational blogging "is as valuable as 10 papers on why blogging is great." As with any other medium, student "more or less said that they needed the direction of a teacherly assignment to write, and they weren't going to 'just want to write' in a blog space." For this and other reasons, the blogs simply did not generate the community discussion the instructor had hoped. Readers may enjoy some of the other article in Kairos as well. By Steven D. Krause, Kairos, Fall, 2004 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Tag Team
Overview of the phenomenon known as 'tagging' - that is, the use of user-created keywords (or 'tags') to classify digital content. The resulting (and some say 'emergent') organization of categories is sometimes known as a 'folksonomy'. Tagging is used by sites such as Flick, del.icio.us and Technorati. Worth noting: tag spam. "These 'self-organising effects' aren't always benign. Some bloggers showed that the 'teens' tag on Tech norati brought together innocent photos from Flickr and links to pornographic sites." More on folksonomies here and here via George Siemens. And news that Lulu plans to adopt folksonomies to make its catalog more accessible. By Jim McClellan, The Guardian, February 3, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Corporate Desktop Linux - The Hard Truth
First of what looks like a good series on the 'hard truth' about total cost of ownership of Linux desktops in a corporate environment. This article tells us what we (may) have known all along: that you can't save money buying a desktop with Linux installed; the computer stores, if they sell them at all, sell them for as much or more. By W. McDonald Buck, OSDir, February 4, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Technology and Education; What is to Be Done?
Interview with Susan Patrick, Director of the Office of Educational Technology at the U.S. Department of Education. Here's a flavour: " Our first one is, we have a goal to blur the lines between administrative and instructional technologies. What I mean by that is that our goal is to integrate data systems, so that we have better use of all data to help drive student achievement.... You know, the students want to know how they are doing, too. Just like when they play the video games, they hit a button, numbers come up, and they can tell where they are behind, and they work like crazy at it until they improve." By Mitch Weisburgh, Pilot Online Learning , February, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Is Instructional Video Game an Oxymoron?
Overview of the use of games in learning, with descriptions or examples from UNICEF, the American Cancer Society, Greenpeace and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. "Through online games, we're teaching a whole generation to authenticate their currency," said Dawn Haley, a spokeswoman [for the Bureau]. "It was one easy way to get children involved. Gaming is huge these days." By Matt Richtel, New York Times, February 4, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Senses Special: The Art of Seeing Without Sight
Fascinating article about a blind man who has learned to paint realistic scenes. The suggestion is that, despite his blindness, his visual cortex remains active and informed by other senses, allowing him to imagine what he ought to be seeing. Via elearningpost. By Alison Motluk, New Scientist, January 29, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

GLOBE presentation at CORDRA meeting
Link to a brief presentation on Globe, the federated learning object repository search. The slide of interest was the second last, in which the issues being considered by Globe are listed. By Erik Duval , ErikLog, February 4, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2005 Stephen Downes
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