OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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July 13, 2011

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Do trees communicate? Network, network
Brian Lamb, Abject, July 13, 2011.

Yes, trees in a forest communicate, by means of interconnected roots. And young trees that are connected have a greater chance of survival. Just as, in a digital age, schools that succeed are schools that connect.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Networks]

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Model Lesson Featured at ISTE 2011
Unattributed, 21st Century Information Fluency, July 13, 2011.

This was shared by on Google Reader and I'm displaying it here to make a point. And the point is this: why are we only focused on ethical use of the information? Have we been so brainwashed by the copyright lobby that we don't think of ethics anywhere else? Why would we not question whether the information has been ethically sourced, ethically authored and ethically shared? The News of the World scandal should make it clear to us that some (in my view, most) of our news agencies are unethical. Should we be passing along any information from Murdoch's empire (which includes Fox News and the always-biased Wall Street Journal)? In science, we do not use research results unless we know the results have been obtained ethically. The same should apply to our news and other sources of information.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Research, Google, Copyrights]

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Google Plus Stream
Stephen Downes, Google Plus, July 13, 2011.

So I've been playing quite a lot with Google Plus, learning how the system works and trying to make it do things it wasn't designed to do. If you want to follow my work on Google Plus, here is my stream. You can also subscribe to my Google Plus Feed - here it is. Note that this is an unofficial feed, not supported by Google, but rather hacked and cobbled together. It will stop working when Google starts messing around with the site design. This post describes how to do it. There's also a Chrome extension that allows people using G+ to share (on an occasional basis) to Twitter and Facebook. In this post I explore an automated G+-to-Twitter system which ahs worked well for other people but not yet for me. Here I demonstrated that G+ does not support hashtags. Here is my Google Ecosystems post (you'll enjoy the comments). Here is my post on Google+Tweet, which I do not recommend, as it proved to be malicious, taking over my Firefox search.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Twitter, Google Chrome, Google]

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The merits of chasing many rabbits at the same time (part 1)
Alain Désilets, Alain Désilets' Blog, July 13, 2011.

I just discovered fellow NRCer Alain Désilets's blog today and so of course can't resist passing it along (I wish more NRC researchers would blog - I wish all of them blogged, I'd organize it all together and create a great leading-edge science newsletter). This is a two part post (Part One, Part Two (currently offline)) on the merits of chasing many rabbits at the same time. By 'rabbits' Désilets means of course multiple research projects. "It can be quite nerve-wracking to put all your eggs in one basket," he writes, "If the basket falls to the ground, you end up having spent years working on a project, with no perceptible impact to show for it." Yup. This first post has a half dozen links to his projects in speech recognition and translation. The second post offers advice on how to succeed at this: choose your rabbits well, use agile methods (short focused bursts), watch for impact, kill the ones that aren't working, and be prepared to drop everything else if one of them takes off.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Project Based Learning, Research, Web Logs, Newsletters]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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