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by Stephen Downes
January 4, 2008

The Top Inventions Of 2008
It's hard to understate the importance of this: "As time goes one, more and more virtual libraries of this size will become available in these small files that allow an entire library, 30,000 books of a million characters each, to be worn on keychains, necklaces, bracelets, etc." Think about it. "5 books in 2 megabytes. 30,000 books in 12 gigabytes. That's all the words in the books of an average US Public Library. 2008 will see 12 gigabyte USB flash drives for under $100." Which means that "'The Digital Divide' in terms of potential access is becoming moot, and you have to take that into account when you hear 3 billion of a new variety of cell phones have gone into operation just recently." But (and this, to me, is one of the great moral questions of our age, "there are still many ways to keep 'THEM' out of the system and to preserve most of the goodies for 'US.'" Via Peter Suber via Jopseph Hart. Michael Hart, Global Politician January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Dynamic Instructional Content Exchange
From the email: "To address the opportunities presented by the next generation textbook, IMS GLC has formed a Project Group Under Formation Special Interest Group (PUFSIG) on Dynamic Instructional Content Exchange (DICE). The initial purpose of the DICE PUFSIG will be to develop use cases and end-user requirements for a dynamic, digital substitute for the traditional student textbook." Because, of course, there's been no work on digital textbooks, so IMS will have to invent it from scratch. There's no indication of a website; it appears to be part of the Common cartridge initiative, to which I link in the headline, but there's an email address you can contact. Nice communications strategy. Sheesh. Unattributed, IMS January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Glue, Web 2.0 and the Next Google
Pretty accurate observation, in my view: it is well worth tracking the way 'brand' has taken over search results. And I think networks are the best (and only) route to this: "So the next Google. Not only will it be better at searching - we're only impressed by the current Google because the competition is so absolutely dismal. It will also be about expressing diversity rather than hierarchy. About delivering the truth in all its facets rather than the definitive answer. It won't produce a list; it will produce a crystal." Ian Delaney, twopointouch January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

The Evolution of Personal Publishing
Is 'heavy' content, like blogs, more 'corporate' than 'light' content, like Twitter and Facebook status updates? No - I think it's more a function of the newness of the latter, not their weight. Should they gain wide acceptance (the jury's still out) it is only a matter of time before things like status updates and Twitter posts become encumbered by corporate policy - and corporate messaging. Via still reading. Alex Iskold, Read/Write Web January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Intel Can't Take the (Low) Heat and Power of OLPC XO
So Intel has jumped off the board of the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project (more from Catherine Howell, more from the BBC, more from Wesley Fryer), and Charbax (whoever that is, I can't find a name anywhere) suggests that "Intel did not achieve or want to achieve any of these technological and pricing advancements in an Intel-powered XO and thus in fear of being ridiculed at CES with a more expensive Intel-powered XO with shorter battery life, Intel, as a last resort, decided to quit OLPC and blame it on Nicholas Negroponte." Maybe. It might also have to do with whether or not the OLPC will ever run Windows. Related: is the XO a hardware and software success? Maybe more the former than the latter. Charbax, One Laptop Per Child News January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

F2F Event + Social Networks = Increased Likehood of Richer Connections
There is a point to be made here, that social networks help foster connectoons that might otherwise be lost. I'm not sure whether Facebook itself is specifically the answer (I do know that sites like MySpace and Orkut and even LinkedIn have played no role whatsoever). But like Janet Clarey, I do tend to let contacts drop once I have moved on - not because they're "not useful" (heaven forbid) but simply because I'm not that outgoing to begin with and get busy and focused and forget to talk to people who aren't right in front of me. Facebook, this year, has put them right in front of me, in the same way that discussion lists and blogging put people in front of me in the past. Janet Clarey, Brandon hall Research January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , , , , ] [Comment]

Instructional Designers with Degrees: Survey Update
It's a smallish survey, but in accord with my own perceptions: "About 27% of instructional designers have an advanced degree in ID. And 73% of us don't." I found the following comment most interesting: "I'm one of the unfortunate ones with a actual honest to goodness Masters Degree in EdTech. The degree opens many doors but that's about it. Nothing I learned is actually applied today." I wonder whether this realization informs his approach to instructional design. Cammy Bean, Learning Visions January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Facebook Invited To Join The DataPortability Work Group
Robert Scoble has had his Facebook account reinstated (big surprise). Facebook, meanwhile, has been invited to join the DataPortability Workgroup. Duncan Riley, TechCrunch January 4, 2008 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]


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Copyright 2007 Stephen Downes

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