by Stephen Downes
Apr 30, 2015
Game of Fear
At some point in the past advertisers decided computers and video games were only for boys, and women have been paying the price ever since. This article describes what one writer called "the nauseating pathology behind Gamergate." I can't read this without getting angry. And every time someone dismisses opposition to media content as mere 'political correctness' I want to wave this in their face, and show them the real cost of what people are doing (except, of course, I can't, because it doesn't impact me directly, and I can barely comprehend it). "Quinn also wants to change the vocabulary we use to describe online abuse. 'These aren’t trolls,' she says. 'And it’s not online bullying. Bullying is something that gets you a pink slip in high school. These are people stalking, sending death threats, trying to get the cops to raid homes. These are criminals.'"
Turnitin Announces Availability of Turnitin Scoring Engine for Automated Writing Assessment
So what can you do if you have a large database of essays that schools have forced students to contribute in order to prevent plagiarism? Well if you're TurnItIn you can use the database to create an automated essay grading system (one which presumably also detects plagiarism). But I find the news release odd. It states: "Turnitin Scoring Engine analyzes the lexical, syntactic, and stylistic features of writing, such as word choice and genre conventions, unlike other automated essay scoring programs that rely on simple metrics like word count." For one thing, it has been very clear for some time that other essay graders do not simply rely on word count. For another thing, Turnitin's description does sound like a word count system. So don't wax too enthusiastic - automated grading is a very competitive field, and Turnitin needs to do much more to establish itself. Image: Tuomo Kakkonen. Via Campus Technology.
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