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by Stephen Downes
September 18, 2008

Teen Gaming Diverse and Widespread: New Study
I found this report interesting, not only because of the statistics from this demographic (which places virtual worlds and sims at the bottom of the list) but also because of the way the different types of games are classified - a useful taxonomy. For myself, my favorites are sports games (EA Baseball and EA Hockey) and strategy games. The Pew study says that game playing is nearly universal among American teens. And game playing is social; "Although most teens play games by themselves at least occasionally, just one-quarter (24%) of teens only play games alone, and the remaining three-quarters of teens play games with others at least some of the time." Bryan Alexander, Liberal Education Today, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

10 Smart Javascript Techniques to Improve Your UI
Good article describing some of the things you can do with Javascript on your website. I plan in the near future to select a Javascript framework and use that to improve my own website (any suggestions? there are four listed on the page). Glen Stansberry, Nettuts, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

E-Portfolios: Tools for 21st Century Learning

"The publication explores good practice in the use of e-portfolios as a support for learning. It is being launched in conjunction with an e-portfolios infoKit4 which covers the main drivers, purposes, processes, perspectives and issues around e-portfolio use - created by JISC infoNet." Here's the direct PDF download. The document is light and breezy with good graphics, a useful '6 steps' near the end (pp. 35-36) and, for some reason, more pictures of women staring into computer screens than I have ever seen in a report. Via Derek Wenmoth. Lisa Gray, JISC, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Virtual Classroom Project - Final Video
Konrad Glogowski shares the 'final video project' from the virtual classroom project on the Second Life island of Jokaydia. Konrad Glogowski, blog of proximal development, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

Figure:Ground - Mashing Up the PLE (MUPPLE'08) Links
You have to love the name 'MUPPLE' for a conference. This post offers Tony Hirst's (somewhat opaque) slides for a presentation to the event along with quite a few links to things like "the Yale opencourseware feedification story" and "The Digital Worlds uncourse blog experment." It seems that everyone is messing around with this stuff now; just waiting to the mixture to crystallize into something neat, as it surely will. Tony Hirst, OUseful Info, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Maybe it's the designer in me, but I'll never get tired of tiled background patterns, even though I don't use them on my own site (that may change, though, as I look through some of these beautiful designs). Oh, and yes, I'm the sort of person who wants wallpaper to come back into fashion in home decor. Via Monkey Bytes. Various Authors, Website, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

I Dig My Diigo Classroom: Will You Help Me Test It?
As the title suggests, Vicki Davis has set up a 'Diigo classroom' and would like people to give it a test run. Diigo allows people to annotate web resources for each other. Vicki A. Davis, Cool Cat Teacher Blog, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

The Myth of the Tragedy of the Commons
You have no doubt heard of the 'tragedy of the commons', the idea that resources held in common will inevitable be abused by those who share them. While this story has been useful politically, justifying the 'enclosure' of the commons and transfer of it to private ownership, it is based less in fact than in propaganda. "Given the subsequent influence of Hardin's essay, it's shocking to realize that he provided no evidence at all to support his sweeping conclusions. He claimed that the 'tragedy' was inevitable -- but he didn't show that it had happened even once. Hardin simply ignored what actually happens in a real commons: self-regulation by the communities involved." Ian Angus, Monthly Review, September 18, 2008 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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