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by Stephen Downes
Jan 19, 2015

Feature Article
Stephen Ibaraki Interview with Stephen Downes
Stephen Downes, Jan 19, 2015.

The latest blog on the interview can be found in the IT Managers Connection (IMC) forum where you can provide your comments in an interactive dialogue.

Enclosure: 2015_01_15_-_Stephen_Ibaraki_interview_of_StephenDownes.mp3
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[Comment] [Tweet] 63314

Tweeps 2 OPML
Brett Slatkin, Website, 2015/01/19

This is a nice project. It looks at your list of friends (or, in an update, the people on a list), scans their Twitter account to find their URL, then scans their URL for the associated RSS or Atom feed (if any). On finding the RSS feed, it adds it to an OPML file that people can import into their RSS feed reader. Why is this good? Because when you share via RSS, you don't need the approval or support of a centralized service like Twitter. One day this will be important. Here's the code in Git for Tweeps2OPML, written in Go.

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Women seen as lacking natural 'brilliance' may explain underrepresentation in academia
Jamie Saxon, News at Princeton, 2015/01/19


As a philosopher, I find it flattering that people think that my field of study demands innate brilliance. The problem is, I don't believe there is such a thing as innate brilliance. Anyone could be as brilliant as I am thought to be, though there are some preconditions: they have to have good pre- and post-natal nutrition, as I did, they have to receive early childhood education, as I did, they have to live in an environment where academic success is valued and expected, as I did, and they have to have the resources to promote self-study, as I did. These are usually (but not always) the consequences of privilege. The same people also tend to be taller and to live longer. That's why there is this perception that they are somehow superior. But this perception is false. Often, people with these advantages do not live up to their potential. And often, people without these advantages find other advantages. Via Academica. See also The Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed.

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Are we getting closer to having a real universal translator?
Nora Young, Spark from CBC Radio, 2015/01/19


Roland Kuhn is a constant source of delight in NRC staff meetings and you won't want to miss his interview with Spark, a radio show about science and technology. From the promo: "From Star Trek's universal translator to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy's Babel Fish, sci-fi has long given us a glimpse into possible futures where everyone can understand each other with the help of technology. Now, both Skype and Google are each coming out with consumer products that promise simultaneous language translation. We ask Roland Kuhn, the Statistical Machine Translation lead at the National Research Council Canada, to weigh in on the future of machine translation and speech recognition."

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A 16-Year Old Programmer Just Made a Plugin That Shows Where Politicians Get Their Funding
Mbiyimoh Ghogomu, The Higher Learning, 2015/01/19


Campaign financing is a bit different in Canada and individual politicians don't really get direct support from funders (at least I think they don't). Still, we have to applaud the concept. And even more, take note, this incredibly useful application was created by a self-taught 16-year old. Original story on The Bulletin. "You can download the Greenhouse plugin for free here." Story and longer interview in Vice (probably the original source for the story).

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Copyright 2010 Stephen Downes Contact: stephen@downes.ca

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