Stephen Downes

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Niggles about NGDLEs - lessons from ELF, Jon Dron, Athabasca Landing, Jun 29, 2015

Jon Dron gets it right in his response to Malcolm Brown's defense of the concept of the NGDLE. "It has been done before," he writes, "over ten years ago in the form of ELF, in much more depth and detail and with large government and standards bodies supporting it, and it is important to learn the lessons of what was ultimately a failed initiative. Well - maybe not failed, but certainly severely stalled." You read the history of that here on OLDaily, first as the E-Learning Framework, and ... [Direct Link]

The Most Popular Educational Technology Diagram, Ever, Catherine Howell, EDUCAUSE Blogs, Feb 08, 2006

I didn't catch the significance of Josie Fraser's post when it came out, but this article helpfully contrasts the diagram it describes to the E-Learning Framework diagram "(which quickly became known as: 'Another Brick in the Wall')" and links, in turn, to a fascinating Flash visualization of some of the approaches in the educational space. I think there's a story being told here, in many ways (as the author suggests) a personal story, but also too, one of transformation. [Direct Link]

PLE Reference Model, Colin Milligan, Scott Wilson, the personal learning environments blog, Nov 23, 2005

One of the outcomes of the conference on personal learning environments last week in Edinburgh was this PLE Reference Model. I like the way they map various usage scenarios, and the entity diagram (slide 19) is a thing of beauty. Still. Does it map into the e-learning framework (or whatever it's called this week) as suggested? Doeds the flow diagram (slide 25) capture what the PLE is really supposed to be? I feel a tension between what the PLE ought to be and the constraints being imposed on ... [Direct Link]

The e-Framework for Education and Research: An Overview, Bill Olivier, Tish Roberts, Kerry Blinco, Eccos Revista Científica, Oct 06, 2005

Certainly one of the clearest papers on the E-Framework initiative (nee E-Learning Framework, or ELF). Diagram 3 (p.10) is especially useful. The authors additionally capture the most pressing problem with the E-Framework thus far: in so many words, nobody knows what's going on. Thus, they write, "coherent map is needed." No argument from me! What I'm also sensing in the E-Framework is a bit of a loosening of control. Check the statement of principles at the end of the document, calling for a ... [Direct Link]

Reference Models, BPEL and Stitching Web Services Together, Christina Smart, JISC e-Learning Focus, Aug 08, 2005

Summary of a recent E-Learning Framework (ELF) developers' forum. The 'BPEL' in the title refers to "Business Process Execution Language" and is used "to orchestrate assessment rendering, sequencing and packaging web services to deliver an adaptive learning sequence." Several other projects are described; the author concludes, "through the reference model projects and the use of BPEL, the community is now unpacking the detail of each of the ELF bricks and working out how services can be ... [Direct Link]

e-Learning Tech That is Fit For Purpose, Innovative and Sustainable, Wilbert Kraan, CETIS, Aug 01, 2005

Wilbert Kraan asks the question central to e-learning standards: "for a new type of tool, do you agree an interoperability specification first, and then build applications, or build applications first, and then agree a spec later?" A bit of both, he seems to argue; that's why the E-learning Framework (ELF) is being developed iteratively. He eventually steers toward my way of thinking: "Finally, there is sheer, blinding simplicity. Not just to make sure the spec is consistent and coherent, but ... [Direct Link]

Workflow and Web Services, Jul 12, 2005

Just to keep you up in the rapidly changing world of e-learning frameworks, JISC and DEST have agreed to collaborate, the major result being (naturally) a name change - the E-Learning Framework is now joined by (replaced by?) the The e-Framework for Education and Research - and a new website. Be sure to read Scott Wilson's paper, Workflow and web services (PDF), for a good grounding in the fundamentals of the approach. Note well his description of 'composite applications' - "A Composite ...

Resources for Round One of the Toolkit Projects Now Available, Sarah Holyfield, Eccos Revista Científica, Jun 17, 2005

These resources relate to the E-Learning Framework as supported by Britrain's JISC. Navigation to the resources themselves is just awful; the link you are given opens this page, where you need to notice links to the projects have opened in the left margin; click on a project such as APIS and then back to the left hand margin where (look carefully now) a link to the project resources page has opened. You're still not there. You need to click on the link titled APIS project web site (buried in ... [Direct Link]

e-Learning Framework Toolkits, Various authors, Jun 17, 2005

Here is what the preceeding item should have done instead. Here is a list of projects, their project home sites, and direct links to code (or to downloadables, where code is not available): CRLFCRLF[site] [code] Assessment Provision through Interoperable Segments (APIS) CRLFCRLF[site] [code] Brokerage for Deep and Distributed e-Learning Resources Discovery (D+) CRLFCRLF[site] [code] Integrating Simple Sequencing (ISIS) CRLFCRLF[site] [code] Middleware for Distributed Cognition (MDC) (... [Direct Link]

Building the ELF (e-Learning Framework) Community, Various authors, Eccos Revista Científica, Mar 14, 2005

A report on the JISC/CETIS Conference on e-Learning Tools, Standards and Systems held in Oxford last November focusing mostly on the E-Learning Framework (ELF). As Scott Wilson summarizes, "the framework is a road map of functions that could be used in planning institutional e-learning systems." Dan Rehak noted, "we still do not have a common language to talk about developing e-learning system models," and that ELF would address this. In the summary slides, Rehak also notes that "Federated ... [Direct Link]

A Non-Technical Guide to Technical Frameworks - Part One, Sarah Holyfield, JISC e-Learning Focus, Mar 07, 2005

If you have been hearing about the E-Learning Framework and have been left scratching your head, this guide is for you. This first part explains the concept of web services in general; part two (not released yet) will look at educational applications in particular. Good stuff. Via EdTechPost. [Direct Link]

Repositories, Kerry Blinco, IDEA Summer 2005, Feb 14, 2005

This presentation introduces you to the Australian Research Repositories Online to the World (Arrow) project, an Australian repositories initiative, as well as detailed diagrams of the Flexible Learning Framework and the Tasmania Learning Architectures Project. Some alternative ways of viewing the E-Learning Framework and an interesting 'wheel' diagram depicting types of repositories. [Direct Link]

Distributed Engagement With Courses and Other Units of Learning, Scott Wilson, Feb 10, 2005

Scott Wilson pushes the concept forward a notch, discussing the array of services that would be needed to support an online course - or as he has decided to call it, a "shared learning context". After listing the various elements - resources, forum, portfolio - he then matches the requirements against the e-learning framework. Existing specifications - RSS or Atom, FOAF, iCalendar - are sufficient to provide most functions. ELF, of course, interprets each of these in its own way. Where he ... [Direct Link]

Can Web Service Technology Really Help Enable ’Coherent Diversity’ in E-learning?, Scott Wilson, JISC e-Learning Focus, Feb 01, 2005

Scott Wilson defends "a statement I once made that using a service-oriented approach to system design could lead to greater pedagogic diversity." The defense takes him straight down the path to RSS (which is what I would expect), and then looks at a wider range of similar technologies - iCalendar, for example, and IMS Enterprise, which extends the model using WSDL and SOAP (and here I begin to grumble a bit about the high overhead). From there, it is but a short jump to the E-Learning ... [Direct Link]

IMS Publishes Service Oriented Architecture Whitepaper, Wilbert Kraan, CETIS, Jan 24, 2005

Wilbert Kraan summarizes this paper, which was presented at Alt-i-Lab last summer, and has just been published by IMS. The topic of the paper is software services, that is, mechanisms for application programs to interact with each other. The authors describe a framework of consumer oriented services (that is, services described from the point of view of the consuming application), which may be software-specific (think of a Firefox plug-in, for example) and provider oriented services, which ... [Direct Link]

Frameworks: Work in Progress, Scott Wilson, Jan 20, 2005

Brief discussion and some links to the E-Learning Framework project being undertaken by JISC, Industry Canada, Australia's DEST and others. My take is similar to Scott Wilson's: "the work-in-progress ELF website's current incarnation does look an awful lot like another giant system architecture on initial glance, especially as very few outputs from JISC's projects have been linked in yet." As I've suggested to these organizations before: build something simple and extensible, rather than the ... [Direct Link]

E-Learning Frameworks and Tools: Is it too late? - The Director's Cut, Derek Morrison, Auricle, Sept 27, 2004

I missed this item when I was toodling around over the Pacific, but you shouldn't. This is a first-rate paper looking at plans for JISC, the state of e-learning technology, and the impending roll-out of web services. It's written strictly within a British context, but it would be well worth reading by anyone in the field. This item was pointed to in another item at Auricle referring to my current Australian tour. [Direct Link]

E-Learning Framework, Various authors, Sept 12, 2004

This was pretty much the consensus picture being presented at various conferences over the summer. The E-Learning Framework web site provides a clear list of the major architectural components of what Dan Rehak calls 'next generation' e-learning. Each item in the diagram is a link to a page describing the component in question. There are three major layers of services depicted: user agents, domain services, and common services. Following the links take you to a lot of blank pages, but that's ... [Direct Link]

Redwood Group Maps Managed Learning Environments, Wilbert Kraan, CETIS, Sept 01, 2004

After eWeek's take on the Redwood Group, covered here a few days ago, Wilbert Kraan of CETIS constributes with his own, less sensational, take on the group's work. Readers will want to note his reference in this context to the E-Learning Framework (ELF) being undertaken by Industry Canada, Australia's Department of Education, Science and Training (DEST) and JISC/CETIS. Kraan also notes that "the Redwood Group is open and pretty informal." I can attest to that - they let me join, even though ... [Direct Link]

The Global e-Learning Framework: An Interview with Badrul Khan, James Morrison, The Technology Source, May 01, 2003

It's hard to keep everything in mind when you are designing an e-learning solution. It's even harder to keep tabs on everything when planning to do this for an international market. So Badrul Khan's Global e-Learning Framework - nicely described and discussed in this interview - is a useful aid for anyone looking to provide services beyond their own borders. [Direct Link]

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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Last Updated: Jan 10, 2021 1:27 p.m.