Various authors: Joint DCMI/IEEE LTSC Taskforce, DCMI November 2, 2005
I got this by email today and then from Albert Ip and CogDogBlog: "At the most recent LOM (Learning Object Metadata) WG meeting in Orlando, it was decided that the work on the LOM RDF binding will be discontinued. The reason quoted is the formation of a new taskforce between IEEE LOM and Dublin Core Metadata Initiative." This link is to the task force wiki; there is also an associated mailing list. For my own part, I think this is a step in the right direction. [Tags: Online Learning, Web Logs, Metadata] [Comment]

Robert Brumfield: Wikibooks to offer free eTexts for education, ESchool News November 2, 2005
Coverage in eSchool News of the Wikibooks project, a plan to provide free school textbooks. Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia comments, "I think that Wikibooks and projects like it will challenge licensed textbooks in the same way that Linux [the open-source computer operating system] and other free software and licensing models are challenging the software world." [Tags: Wikipedia, Online Learning, Operating Systems, Project Based Learning, Schools] [Comment]

Tim Porter: The Rise of the Norgs, First Draft by Tim Porter November 2, 2005
Interesting post that looks at what newspapers need to consider as their medium dies (the average age of newspaper readers is now 55 and circulation continues to decline). Specifically, they need to turn to their core value, which is 'news', not 'paper' - and cast themselves as 'norgs' (News Organizations). Many of the same considerations apply in learning as well, with the result that maybe colleges and universities should recast themselves as 'lorgs'. [Tags: None] [Comment]

Luigi Canali De Rossi: Benefits Of Web-Based Applications And Microsoft Announcement Of The "Live" Era, Robin Good November 2, 2005
There's discussion all over the internet today about Microsoft's announcement that it will introduce web applications. Microsoft is once again playing catch-up as applications as diverse as Bloglines, Writely and GMail have captured a lot of user loyalty. But few companies can throw the resources at a problem that Microsoft can. Success factor? Whether these online applications are multi-platform, or Windows-only. [Tags: Bloglines, Microsoft] [Comment]

Gail Fosler: Advanced Economies Losing Lead In Education, Says Analysis by The Conference Board, The Conference Board November 2, 2005
There has been much angst expressed in western economies about the rise of the less wealthy nations. But I see this as an unprecedented opportunity, not only for the people living in those regions, but for us in the west as well, to draw from and learn from the rich variety that constitutes global culture. [Tags: None] [Comment]

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Stephen Downes

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Stephen Downes

Copyright 2004 Stephen Downes
National Research Council Canada

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I want and visualize and aspire toward a system of society and learning where each person is able to rise to his or her fullest potential without social or financial encumberance, where they may express themselves fully and without reservation through art, writing, athletics, invention, or even through their avocations or lifestyle.

Where they are able to form networks of meaningful and rewarding relationships with their peers, with people who share the same interests or hobbies, the same political or religious affiliations - or different interests or affiliations, as the case may be.

This to me is a society where knowledge and learning are public goods, freely created and shared, not hoarded or withheld in order to extract wealth or influence.

This is what I aspire toward, this is what I work toward. - Stephen Downes