OLDaily, by Stephen Downes

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February 6, 2013

MOOCs and OERs
Stephen Downes, February 6, 2013, Conference Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, via Hangout

Overview of some of the early MOOCs we created, along with some more extended duscussion of the design principles we employed in creating MOOCs.

[Slides] [Audio]

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Google, Mozilla Team Up for Skype-Killing Video Call Demo
Scott Gilbertson, WebMonkey, February 6, 2013

What's interesting about this post is not "Skype-killing video calls" but rather the technology behind it (which I might add could just as easily be used by Skype as anyone). "WebRTC is a proposed standard — currently being refined by the W3C — with the goal of providing a web-based set of tools that any device can use to share audio, video and data in real time." I'm not so sure the powers that be will want to allow people to have such technology in their hands - imagine having an application that allows you to share a perfect copy of a video or movie just as easily as making a Skype or Hangout call today. But I'm sure looking forward to it.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Video, Audio Chat and Conferencing, Google, Audio]

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Sony Rootkit Redux: Canadian Business Groups Lobby For Right To Install Spyware on Your Computer
Michael Geist, February 6, 2013

What's sad about this report from Michasel Geist is that it's completely believable. He reports that a group of 13 industry associations submitted "a lengthy document  that, if adopted, would gut much of the [anti-spam] law. The groups adopt radical interpretations of the law to argue for massive new loopholes or for the indefinite delay of several provisions. I will focus on some of the submissions shortly, but this post focuses on the return of an issue that was seemingly killed years ago: demands to permit surreptitious surveillance by the copyright owners and other groups for private enforcement purposes."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Copyrights, Spam, Canada]

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The Case for a Campus Makerspace
Audrey Watters, Hack Education, February 6, 2013

Here's my problem with the maker movement, 'makerspace' and all the rest of it: it's an advertising campaign for this magazine. As their own website states, "The launch of MAKE Magazine in 2005, followed by Maker Faire in 2006, jumpstarted a worldwide Maker Movement, which is transforming innovation, culture and education." The whole publication is used to sell 'getting started' kits and products. The entire operation is a branch of O'Reilly Media, which is doing for the word "make" much what it did for the term "web 2.0" - owning it. So while I encourage people to make things and create things, I caution writers like Audrey Watters against being unwitting press agents for O'Reilly. Let them pay for their own advertising.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Marketing]

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F# Promises a Big Return on Big Data
Tara E. Buck, Ed Tech, February 6, 2013

Here's a chance to learn a new programming language at tjhe dawn of its useful life, F# (pronounced 'F Sharp'). "Last week, Microsoft Research unveiled a new web-based platform, Try F#, to further the language’s use and open development." The link points to an online learning site where you can learn to code using F# in your browser (how's that for using online learning to support a new product?). "We are bathing in big data," says Evelyne Viegas, director of semantic computing at Microsoft Research. "People are talking about the tsunami of the data, the world of information out there. What F# 3.0 is really about is bringing the schema, the semantics of the data, to the fingertips of the programmers and the researchers." That would be really useful. But, of course, it puts another 'to do' item on my plate. Do I stop the other work I'm doing to learn F#? Ah, what a world.

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Microsoft, Schemas, Semantics, Research, Semantic Web, Online Learning]

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Lawrence Cremin on Educational Technology in 1989
Michael Caulfield, Hapgood, February 6, 2013

Mike Caulfield recommends this video. "Cremin is famous for writing one of the the definitive histories of education in the United States as well as for his book specifically on the history of Progressive Education in the United States... New technology tends to complement the use of old technology, not replace it. Lack of training and time to train for teachers is the part of technology adoption that tends to bottleneck the process."

[Link] [Comment][Tags: Books, Video, United States]

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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