By Stephen Downes
July 19, 2005

Evaluation and the Culture of Secrecy
I have always agreed with this point of view. Assessments and evaluation should not take place in secret. "Open access offers more advantages than a defense against bottom-dwelling character assassins. It also improves the quality of information.... Open access can also help people become better scholars and teachers." By Leonard Cassuto, Chronicle of Higher Education, July 22, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Introducing Django
Short version: Django is like Rails for Python. Long version: Django creates a standard framework for creating data driven websites. These frameworks are useful because they make creating a website a lot easier. But they add complexity if you want to share your code, since the framework needs to be installed first. I'm not sure which way to go on this. By Simon Willison, Simon Willison's Weblog, July 17, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

On Data, Schlock Social Science, and Big Brother
Everybody wants to do tracking and reporting of student activities in an online course. But what are they measuring, exactly? Good discussion. By Lanny Arvan, Lanny on Learning Technology, July 15, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Sun: Make Education Open-Source
According to this article, "Scott McNealy, CEO of Sun Microsystems, is cited as advocating public commons educational texts." Well, yeah, me too. But McNealy is probably in a better position to make it happen. The article refers to the Global Education and Learning Community (GELC) which appears intended to address this objective. One day. For now, well, judge for yourself. Via KairosNews. By M. Madhavan, The Star (Malaysia), July 14, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

IT Forum Debate on Open Education and Publishing
The copyright and open access debate erupted on ITForun last week, with two of the major discussants being David Wiley and Larry Lipsitz. Wiley offers his summary of the debate at this link, and you can see the entgire spread of comments (numerous people contributed) at the ITForum archive. By David Wiley, Iterating Toward Openness, July 14, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Apertures of Articulation
OK, I've said this before: "We work and learn in living networks. Together, we comprise great bodies of knowledge and expertise." but this author asks the important question: "How does it work?" As a beginning of a response, the author offers the aperture as a metaphor, "A speaker acts as a lens--an aperture for the knowledge of others in the network behind the speaker." But we don't just simply relay information; "the aperture always imprints itself on the light passing through." Via elearnspace. By Steve Barth, KMWorld, July/August 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

Students refuse to buy a single song from Napster
Heh. You may have read about some universities signing deals with Napster in an effort to curb file sharing. These agreements are foisted on students whether they want them or not, including students at the University of Rochester. The students have now had their own say about these agreements, refusing to buy even one song from the download service. Via EDUCAUSE. By Ashlee Vance, The Register, Julyn 9, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

This is the kind of email I love receiving. Zach Chandler from Colby College has taken the slides and audio of the talk I gave in Utah las year and remixed it, creating a six minute video. Remix, feed forward. That's how it works. Link is to the .mov file. By Zach Chandler, July 19, 2005 [Refer][Research][Reflect]

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Copyright 2005 Stephen Downes
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