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by Stephen Downes
February 6, 2009

Serialized Feeds
OK, I'm going to soft-launch the project I've been working on for a bit. This article describes the serialized feeds system I've build on The idea of this site is to enable people to create their own serialized feeds. The article describes how I set it up. You can create your own feed here - create a new account first; your OLDaily account will not work on this site (I really want to keep the two separate) but OpenID will. You can also subscribe to the RSS feed I created as a test by going here and clicking on the RSS feed - you do not have to register to subscribe to a course. The article on my half an Hour blog is unfinished, but it's enough to get us started. Your comments and ideas would be most welcome; I have a lot I want to build on to this service, which is (so far as I know) unique in ed tech. Stephen Downes, Half an Hour, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment]

How Not to Monetize WPMu
Yesterday's post on how edublogs makes its money has resulted in a series of posts on whether what they're doing is allowed under the GPL, the license under which WordPress is distributed. What set it off was this comment on the original article: "Long story short, it's fine to sell things, including exactly what you're doing on the site today, but insofar as the code links or uses any core WP functions it should also be GPL licensed." James Farmer responds here, which set off another discussion, summarized by Roger Benningfield: "The GPL is specifically designed to be "sticky" in this fashion, and it only applies to public code releases… if you keep your mods in-house, the GPL cannot be used to take it from you." Jim Groom, bavatuesdays, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Web 3D: Students Using OpenSim Reflect On the Pressing Issues That We All Ask About Using Virtual Worlds
The video will start playing right away when you click on this link, which is really annoying. And the same video is posted twice - presumably this will be fixed by the time you see it. But do take the time to watch the video - it's great to hear students talk about their experiences (and don't miss the huge uncovered yawn at 1:56 and the first-bump at 5:40). Vicki Davis writes, "Listen to our terraforming team talk about our island, the uses of Open Sim in schools (We use and LOVE it!), and their vision of what they'd like to see happen. Also, hear the reflections of the other students about their work in virtual worlds." A second group of students comes in at about 8:00 and a third group at about 17:00. Vicki A. Davis, Cool Cat Teacher Blog, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

European Views On the Present and Future of E-Learning
Interesting set of perspectives from a European institutional perspective opn the current state of e-learning and the conditions that will need to be in place for it to move forward. While my own perspective is probably most similar to the non-European Tony Bates, I am encouraged to find, amid the slowness and lack of innovation, signs that institutional e-learning is inching forward - a self-directed product based approach here, a wiki there. The writers are almost unanimous in the belief that management and administrative support is necessary. The article occupies the first thirteen pages of this magazine PDF; the rest is in Croatian. Tony Bates, E-learning and Distance Education, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

OLDaily Por Stephen Downes
In case you haven't seen this, El Blog Boyacense has been running translation of OLDaily into Spanish. My thanks to El Blog Boyacense! Various Authors, El Blog Boyacense, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Readers Build Vivid Mental Simulations Of Narrative Situations
This accords well with my own experiences, and also with my dreams. "Psychologists and neuroscientists are increasingly coming to the conclusion that when we read a story and really understand it, we create a mental simulation of the events described by the story." What this means, I think, is that layers of neurons activated by the senses, creating experiences and perceptions, can also be activated in the same way by alternative stimuli, such as stories, or recalled stimuli, such as memories and dreams. It goes without saying that reactivation of these experiences reinforces the connections between elements of the experience and the elements that reactivate it. Helge Scherlund, Weblog, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Cheese Making Illustrated
Today's newsletter is delayed a bit because I could not tear myself away from this wonderfully detailed set of instructions on how to make cheese. Makes me just want to go out and get myself some rennet. You'd probably have to practice a bit to really learn how to make cheese, but these instructions really look like all you'd need to get going. It's also important to have previously seen and tasted cheese, so you know what success looks like. Via Kottke. David B. Fankhauser, Website, February 6, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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