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by Stephen Downes
September 7, 2009

The Cloud and Collaboration
In this presentation I describe the concept of the internet as a form of global consciousness. I look at the idea of human nature as it has traditionally been represented but suggest that a more appropriate model is that of a collection of neurons. With this model I analyse what a global consciousness would look like - not collaboration, as in the organization of a company or a nation, but cooperation, as in the actions of autonomous but interdependent and connected individuals. Text written for the talk is available online (this is not a transcript). Presentation by Stephen Downes, Ars Electronica Symposium on Cloud Intelligence, Linz, Austria, [Link]

Ars Electronica

These are photos taken mostly September 3 and 4, 2009, in preparation for my talk at Ars Electronica in Linz. Stephen Downes, Flickr, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

Open and on-line at Alt-C
The annual Alt-C conference in Britain will be more open and accessible this year with a number of presentation and sessions available live online starting Tuesday and continuing through the week. Graham Attwell has details. Graham Attwell, Pontydysgu, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Manchester PLE to be launched this week
I don't know anything about this project, but it's about PLEs (or so they say) and therefore of inherent interest to me. "Informed by social constructivist and constructionist perspectives mPLE is designed to support individual and group learning activities. The intent is for mPLE to be used by self-directed and peer-assisting groups of learners (possibly teacher-led, but without any special status for teachers in the PLE). In order to support this vision of learning, mPLE combines a social software layer with advanced multi-user multi-media spaces where learners can meet and collaboratively perform learning activities in real time." More information is available on the site. Graham Attwell, Pontydysgu, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

SCoPE - 7 Principles For Cultivating CoPs
I can't find any particular fault with these seven principles, though I'd like some discussion of why they apply. Via Graham Attwell. Sylvia Currie, Slideshare, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

Education Needs to Be Turned on Its Head
The basic argument, in a post. "People often grow up to be competent learners, and achieve great things, after going through the traditional school system. But this is in spite of the system, not because of it. We are pretty adaptable people, inherently curious, and we can learn without an authority, but the current school system tries to beat this down. It usually fails to some degree, but to the degree it succeeds, it harms people." What I write about here, of course, is how to do that using technology. Via Tim Stahmer. Leo Babauta, Zen Habits, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

The best (and only) picture of a hickory horned devil I have ever seen. Tom Woodward writes, "That's what I want out of schools. I want them to create more opportunities for teachable moments, more chances for kids to follow their passions and interests, more pathways and more flexibility. I want schools orchestrating chances for serendipity." Tom Woodward, Bionic Teaching, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment]

President Obama's Speech to Students: A Great Opportunity for Synchronous, Live Discussions
I read that some people are opposing the broadcasting of the speech to students at the start of the school year, calling it an intrusion of politics into the classroom. This is ridiculous, of course, as a reading of the speech shows. But the accusation is revealing. The people making the accusation belong to a political movement prone to the psychological condition known as projection - that is, finding your own faults in others (whether or not the others actually have those faults). Anyhow, here's a link with discussion aids and other information about the speech. And I like the take in Learning is messy: "I do not want my children to watch President Kennedy's speech about going to the Moon..." Wesley Fryer, Moving at the Speed of Creativity, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment]

MERLOT's new Second Life campus
MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resources for Learning and Online Teaching) has for some reason set up a Second Life site. It looks like stacks of books. All I'm going to do is pass this information on to you ans wash my hand of it. KerryJ, Weblog, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

Open Course preparation 2 – introduction au technologie emergentes
Dave Cormier outlines preparations for his upcoming open course on emergent technologies (though the course is being offered enfrancais this post is in English. He is posting the curriculum on Wikiversity, here. Now, as for me, I need to once and for all figure out how to print accents and special characters on OLDaily, otherwise I won't survive a semester of writing about this. Dave Cormier, Dave's Educational Blog, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment]

How to Build a Popularity Algorithm You can be Proud of
Pretty interesting post describing how the popularity of a link can be calculated. The author eventually reaches a modified Bayesian algorithm, but takes the reader step by step so it can be followed - to a point. Unattributed, linkiblog, September 7, 2009 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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