December 19, 2005


Clarence Fisher: Validating Information, Remote Access December 19, 2005
I think there are answers to the concerns Clarence Fisher raises in this item, but I think it is important that the concerns be aired. He reaises two major objections to the concept of validating information through aggregation. First, students do not have the opportunity. "Most often our kids work in units of study." And second, "as St. Augustine says, 'volume does not make right.'" And I think Fisher is exactly right to point to WalMart's (and, I might add, Chapters's) book vending policies to show why you can't simply go with the aggregate. The point of my response is, essentially, not just any aggregate validates information, just as not just any pile of sand makes a castle. It has to be organized in a specific way. And right now, WalMart and Technorati suffer from the same sort of malformed organization - trying to identify emergent properties (and hence valid information) by counting things. It doesn't work that way. [Tags: Books and eBooks, Information, Children and Child Learning] [Comment]

Harold Jarche: Connecting Formal & Informal Learning, Jarche Consulting December 19, 2005
It's a bit like the Web 2.0 version of blended learning, I suppose - Harold Jarche draws on a couple of posts from Dave Tosh (of ELGG) mapping the linkages between informal and formal learning. "That's why I continue to recommend the Elgg and Moodle communities," writes Jarche, "because they are actively working on integrating these two layers." [Tags: Web Logs, Web 2.0] [Comment]

Various authors: International Journal for Educational Integrity December 19, 2005
A new open access journal launches. "The journal provides a platform for educators across all sectors to research issues in the multi-disciplinary field of educational integrity." Via ACRLog. [Tags: Web Logs, Research, Academics and Academia] [Comment]

Ben Crowell: All Systems Go: The Newly Emerging Infrastructure to Support Free Books, Light and Matter December 19, 2005
Some good discussion of the movement toward free books (or 'open source books'), with references to standbys like and (which I intend to use in the near future), wikibooks, and more. The author also considers the problem of "making contact" between books and their readers, exploring options such as Google Print ("about as successful as attempts to mate a Klingon with a Ferengi"). Via Joseph Hart. [Tags: Paradigm Shift, Web Logs, Google, Open Source] [Comment]

Rachel Smith: ArtXplore, Academic Commons December 19, 2005
People interested in mobile learning will want to have a look at this short item (with links). "Susan Tennant [developed] ArtXplore, a multimedia program running on a hand-held PDA... ArtXplore provides audio and visual content to the museum patron, including graphics, animation, video, and panoramas." [Tags: Online Learning] [Comment]

Linda E. Patrik: Using Blogs to Teach Philosophy, Academic Commons December 19, 2005
A project that is close to my own roots. Interestingly, the author writes, "Unlike academic writing in most other disciplines, philosophical writing frequently and strongly states the 'I' because philosophers have to develop and defend their own positions. They cannot weasel out of taking responsibility for their views, and thus the assertion of the 'I' means that they are willing to stand or fall with their expressed position." [Tags: Project Based Learning, Academics and Academia] [Comment]

Stephen Downes: Photos, Stephen's Web December 19, 2005
As part of my ongoing coding efforts I wrote my file upload routines last week, which gave me the impetus to update my photo galleries. I'm still writing captions, but all the photos are now accessible in my new gallery format. I'm planning a code release when I get back from the Christmas break; the gallery file upload and auto-generation will be a part of this (you have to take your own pictures, though). [Tags: Accessibility] [Comment]

Larry Rohter: Portable Stereo's Creator Got His Due, Eventually, International Herald Tribune December 19, 2005
It took 25 years of litigation against Sony, but the inventor of the Walkman is now finally able to be credited with his invention. [Tags: ] [Comment]

Rob Wall, EdTech Posse Podcast #011 - Breakfast Chat with Stephen Downes, part 3 of 4, EdTech Posse December 19, 2005
The neverending breakfast continues with discussion on DRM, the Sony Rootkit, podholes, and distributed governance. [Tags: ] [Comment]

Josie Fraser: EduBlog Awards December 19, 2005
The EduBlog Awards were handed out over the weekend and this website was fortunate enough to be selected as the Best Individual Weblog for 2005. Thanks to everyone involved. Live audio from the event was captured as Ed Tech Talk #30; you can tune in to hear the tears, the jeers, and the acceptance speech gaffes. [Tags: Web Logs] [Comment]

Projects & Collaborations
Browse through the thousands of links in my knowledge base sorted according to topic category, author and publication.

Browse through the thousands of links in my knowledge base sorted according to topic category, author and publication.

Stephen Downes

About Me
Bio, photos, and assorted odds and ends.

You know, the ones that appear in refereed journals of Outstanding Rank.

Lectures, seminars, and keynotes in a wide variety of formats - everything from streaming video to rough notes.

All my articles, somewhere around 400 items dating from 1995.

Audio recordings of my talks recorded in MP3 format. A podcast feed is also available.

What I'm doing, where I'm doing it, and when.

Newly updated! A collection of my photographs. Suitable for downloading as desktop wallpaper.

Stephen's Web
Since 1995

About this Site
Why this site exists, what it does, and how it works.

OLDaily RSS Feed OLDaily
Edu_RSS RSS Feed Edu_RSS
FOAF (Friend of a Friend) FOAF
Podcast Link
OLDaily Audio


About the Author

Stephen Downes

Copyright 2004 Stephen Downes
National Research Council Canada


Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License


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