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by Stephen Downes
April 16, 2010

I wasn't thinking 'volcano' when I woke up this morning...

I was supposed to be arriving in Finland today, not grabbing one of the last available seats to return to Moncton on the morning plane. But yesterday's volcanic eruption in Iceland and subsequent no-fly zone established over Europe put an end to my travel plans. This will be the first scheduled talk I've missed since 1993 (when a car problem prevented me from presenting at the Canadian Philosophical Association in Calgary).

Getting Started With Gephi Network Visualisation App – My Facebook Network, Part I
More fun from Tony Hirst as he graphs his Facebook network. That's "getting started with Gephi... a way of using it to explore a graph in very general terms; but that's not where the real fun lies. That starts when you start processing the graph by running statistics and filters over it. Tony Hirst, OUseful Info, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Then and Now
Sometimes you have to read carefully to mine the gems in the articles I read for OLDaily. That's the case in this instance, where Lorna Campbell absolutely buried the lede in here position paper for this week's ADL conference. She writes, in the last paragraph of her submission, "During the course of the OER Pilot Programme CETIS have interviewed all 28 projects to record their technical choices and the issues that have surfaced. This information has been recorded in the CETIS PROD15 system and has been synthesised in a series of blog posts." What now? Here's the summary list of CETIS programs, and here is the evaluation wiki. Somewhere there's a series of blog posts, but I haven't found it yet. Lorna Campbell, Lorna's JISC CETIS blog, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Apple removes Scratch from iPad/iPhone/iTouch
Want to learn programming and reading at the same time? There's no app for that. Apple has removed Scratch from the iTunes store, which means it's not available for the Touch or the iPad. "Its a business decision," says a writer on Scratch forums. "Apple wants to be in complete control of what can make apps for their machines so they ban all app creators except their own." Tom Hoffman is less than sympathetic "considering their own lack of good faith and transparency in licensing, particularly for a publicly funded educational project." Mark Guzdial, Computing Education Blog, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Ning Update
The end of free Ning shows the danger of placing yourself in the hands of proprietary services. Ning's Jason Rosenthal, who has been CEO for a month, announced the end of free services (and the layoff of 69 staff) in a message this week. "My main conclusion is that we need to double down on our premium services business," he writes. "Our Premium Ning Networks like Friends or Enemies, Linkin Park, Shred or Die, Pickens Plan, and tens of thousands of others both drive 75% of our monthly US traffic, and those Network Creators need and will pay for many more services and features from us." Of course, it was on the basis of its free services that Ning got those paying accounts in the first place. Jennifer Wagner reflects, "as I took the time to digest this news I realized that I had placed myself in a box that I did not like." The Innovative Educator suggests that this will create opportunities for other educational service companies. John McDonald, Ning Creators, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: none] [Comment] [Tweet]

PeLC's digital footprint
Good set of videos and blog posts from the the 5th Plymouth e-Learning Conference (#PeLC10). With this week's volcanic apocalypse, it may be some time before anyone in Britain (or Europe, for that matter) travels to a conference on anything but the train. That makes the creation of archives like this all the more important. Steve Wheeler, Learning with 'e's, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Colleges Matter
It didn't matter that I took five years on my BA because I finished my Masters in one. I took five years mostly because I worked 16 hours a week, and because of the time I spent working on the student newspaper. If colleges want students to finish more quickly, students need to be able to live while studying, and to have quality educational experiences like the student newspaper. As for statistics showing highly selective private colleges have the best completion time, that's like saying that diet programs that select for thin people have the best results (yes, the analogy is from Anya Kamentez's book, which I'm reading now). Ben Miller, The Quick and the Ed, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Educational Software Blog
Enjoy these free educational applications for the iPad while they last. With Apple's distribution model, the likely business plan is to squeeze out the competition and either sell to Apple or to start charging for access. Lauren Grossberg, Learning Today, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Report on Emerging Technologies for the Classroom
Another Horizon report - Sarah Jackson summarizes: "The 2010 Horizon Report K-12 Edition," released by the Consortium for School Networking and the New Media Consortium with support from HP...
- One Year or Less: Cloud Computing
- One Year or Less: Collaborative Environments
- Two to Three Years: Game-Based Learning
- Two to Three Years: Mobiles
- Four to Five Years: Augmented Reality
- Four to Five Years: Flexible Displays."
Full text here. Sarah Jackson, Spotlight on Digital Media and Learning, April 16, 2010 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment] [Tweet]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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