As you've been following OLDaily you've probably noticed I've been having some glitches with my email newsletters lately. It's all a result of a transition to a new PLE-based version of gRSShopper, and fixing the email has moved to the top of my list of priorities. One longstanding thing I'd like to fix is responsive emails, so it's really easy to read them on computer or on the phone. Here are some of the options I've been considering. Or I might just update my own CSS. Those are the sorts of choiuces facing designers today, and programming has become more and more a case of selecting and applying frameworks.
In an email from Kevin Kelly, Ed.D. (not Kevin Kelly of Wired) I read the following: "Piazza (https://piazza.com/) is a free discussion tool with a fantastic origin story (https://piazza.com/about/story). I've seen it in action and it is well thought out. Piazza offers LTI integration with LMS solutions, which may also work for websites in platforms like WordPress." I like that it has specific accessibility features. If you want to try it out I've created a school called 'OLDaily' and a class (in spring, 2018) called 'OLDaily' - search for them in Piazza and you'll be able to sign up. It's all free (the moneymaker is probably Piazza Careers).
One of the more telling criticisms in comedian Michelle Wolf's talk at the White House correspondents' dinner was that the media loves Donald Trump. "You pretend like you hate him, but I think you love him... He’s helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster, and now you’re profiting off of him." I think the same thing applies in the case of Twitter. "Though the company has taken significant steps in recent years to remove bad actors, it hasn’t shaken the lingering impression that it isn’t trying hard enough to make the service a safer space." The bad actors help pay for Twitter, just as they help serll newspapers and cable television shows. Commercial mass media, whether online or offline, offers the same incentives and creates the same problems.
All credit is due to the Chronicle for exposing a much-quoted (in the supposedly trustworthy traditional media) and fake commentator on student loan data. " After The Chronicle spent more than a week trying to verify Cloud’s existence, the company that owns The Student Loan Report confirmed that Cloud was fake." So now we're told that the company is sorry it deceived people. Yeah. They're sorry they were caught. Meanwhile, there is no word on whether traditional media will begin reading and quoting real educators, or stick with their strategy of citing fake shills.
This is a bit of nonsense being served to us as a three-point list by an author who doesn't recognize the irony. Carmine Gallo wants us to believe that narratives - stories - are better than bullet points, and supports this with two argument: first, that Jeff Bezos thinks this, and second, that a "prominent neuroscientist" friend of his confirmed "the human brain is wired for story." Gallo's use of Aristotle's forms of rhetoric - "ethos, logos, and pathos" - is a knowing nod to home-schoolers who still believe in things like the trivium. But "pathos" isn't 'story', pathos is experience - the senses and the passions. And the brain isn't hard-wired for narrative (though it does perceive time), it is hard-wired for recognition and metaphor. And the idea of having executives in a meeting sit and read silently for half an hour is utter idiocy. So why does a mainstream magazine publish this nonsense, and why does academia let it pass without criticism?
I think a lot about the idea of knowing things that other people just take for granted, things that may have been part of their childhood experiences, but not of mine (or vice versa). This article looks at just some of them - the skills learned in a kitchen, for example, Or, from the perspective of science, the skills learned in a lab. Some of these cross over; some do not. The author wants to cast these as breeding " resilience, creative problem solving, and mastery of technical skills," but these are just empty words that really mean "knowing how to cook," "knowing how to apply make-up," "knowing how to weld," and similar capacities that are later so useful in learning science and technology.
This newsletter is sent only at the request of subscribers. If you would like to unsubscribe, Click here.
Know a friend who might enjoy this newsletter? Feel free to forward OLDaily to your colleagues. If you received this issue from a friend and would like a free subscription of your own, you can join our mailing list. Click here to subscribe.
Copyright 2018 Stephen Downes Contact: email@example.comThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.