I don't play around with Alan Levine's SPLOTs because they're tied to WordPress and I just don't have the bandwidth to involve myself in that platform. But that just me; WordPress is the go-to tool for thousands, maybe millions, worldwide. Anyhow, what we have here is something that is, well, really something. "I wondered if it was possible to put a thing right in the page to record audio and have it save to the media library," he writes. It was. Here's his demo. And here's more from the SPLOTbox.
Mike Caulfield makes the vary salient point that teaching students about ctl-F (ie., the 'Find' command in a web browser) helps them be more digitally literate, because it helps them fact-check more efficiently. That's probably true, and a good point. But what I like about ctl-F is even a bit more subversive. When we start using ctl-F we break out of the mindset that treats content as linear, where we have to start at the beginning and work our way to the end. And by escaping the narrative we become able to use the same resource in many different ways. One of which is debunking fake news.
I agree with the main concern here, specifically, that "“It is a concern that more young people than before appear to be picking their dream job from a small list of the most popular, traditional occupations, like teachers, lawyers or business managers." But I think we should be clear about cause and effect. The author writes, "Gender continues to exert a strong influence. Among students who score highly in the PISA tests, it is overwhelmingly boys who more often expect to work in science and engineering." No. This is not gender having an effect. It is parents and educators having an effect, based on their prejudices about gender. Anyhopw, the full report is available at OECD in user-hostile Issuu format (this 55 page PDF download might work for a while).
With the news that Clayton Christensen has died an an unfortunately young age, it is appropriate to take a few moments to reflect on his influence, not only on the business community, but on wider society as a whole, including educational technology. He and his institute have had their critics - I was one - but their impact cannot be understated.
Most of us - including me - cheered when a court said we could scrape sites like LinkedIn. Now we're seeing the other side of that ruling, a site called Clearview AI that scrapes social media photographs to allow security services to search for and identify people on the basis of a photograph. As this article suggests, Clearview might represent "the end of privacy". But let's take pause. What could be wrong with a service that catches bad guys? Maybe people would behave better if they knew they would be caught. What wrong by recognizing people by their faces? After all, that's why they're on passports and drivers' licenses? Yes, the tool could be used to do wrong - just like every tool ever invented.
I'm of two minds regarding this post. On the one hand I agree with Cory Doctorow that the world's copyright system is a mess. There's an ever tightening vice clamping down on the potential for innovation, competition, and even creativity. On the other hand, I don't care. Not because I am ambivalent, but quite the opposite. I see all that as their rules for their economy, but I have long ago moved past all that. I have always said I will make money in other ways, by offering services in person rather than content that needs protecting. I don't need or care about DRM in browsers in a world where content is shared. I don't worry about the 'feel' of music when I'm just making it for myself and my friends.
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