news (external)

Bots are the new apps, only they suck (for now)

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 22:15

Max Willens, Digiday, Oct 06, 2016

I have resisted the urge (so far) to blast OLDaily to subscribers through What's App and Messenger. But I could - and I could even make it interactive - send me some indication of what you're interested in, and I could keep you up to date. Your wrist would tingle and you'd get a new note any time something happened in the world of, say, MOOCs. But should I do this? Goodness, no. I probably shouldn't even have a Twitter channel (and I have shuttered as useless my Facebook channel). But I want to be useful - a stark contrast from advertisers, who want to be in your face, no matter what. Privacy, security, trust - these elude the world of social media, and will continue to so long as we depend on centralized platforms like Facebook.

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An ethnographic interview with an AI

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 22:15

D'Arcy Nor, man, D'Arcy Norman Dot Net, Oct 06, 2016

This is a video of a presentation by Genevieve Bell from Intel at O’ Reilly’ s AI Conference. D'Arcy Norman comments, "I don’ t think of AI as trying to invent an artificial human, but it’ s extremely important to think about the cultural, moral, racial, and gender biases that get baked into code through histories of projects." We are reminded of Microsoft's attempt to create a chatbot that went terribly wrong. It's a dilemma. If you want society to get bnetter, your AIs have to do more than merely draw what they know from society. But 'guiding' these AIs then becomes a position of great responsibility, and who exactly is well-placed to take this on? Besides me, I mean.

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The Commoditization of Deep Learning

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 22:15

Geoffrey Bradway, Medium, Oct 06, 2016

'Deep Learning' is the use of neural networks to do smart things, like grade papers or make recommendations. This article addresses the "commoditization" of deep learning, that is, the trend toward making the data and algorithms available for free. That's why you could use an open source library like  Tensor Flow to do neat things with open data. It still takes some smarts, but it's getting easier. The point of this article, though, is that it still takes computing power - quite a lot of it - and that's what companies like Amazon and Google really want to sell you. And they can charge more for it if the complementary products - data and software - are free. And it gives them a market advantage, because while anyone can produce data or write algorithms, it takes a large enterprise with a lot of resources to set up data and computing centres. So that's the play.

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Scaling Learning in an Exponential World

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 22:15

John Hagel, Edge Perspectives with John Hagel, Oct 06, 2016

You've been reading a lot of the same stuff by writers featured in these pages over the years. In this article, John Hagel argues that scaling learning "means developing new shared practices that can increase impact in a world of mounting performance pressure." It may seem like it's more efficient to focused on standards and best practices, but against this is the need to learn on an ongoing basis. "The key imperative in a rapidly changing environment is to find ways to develop new knowledge, rather than merely sharing existing knowledge." This has to happen where the knowledge is being used, and not in a research lab or training room. "The goal is to improve performance more rapidly – that’ s why focusing on developing new shared practices is so powerful. It provides us with results that we can measure and learn from." See also: Institutional Innovation.

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For Tim Cook and Apple, the Future is AR

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 22:15

Emory Craig, Digital Bodies, Oct 06, 2016

AR stands for 'augmented reality' and it's the idea that we can overlay the real world with digital objects. The first instance of mass-AR is probably Pokemon Go, though people have been trying with things like QR codes for decades, it seems. The trick is to make AR (a) useful, or at least, fun, and (b) easy. Using identifiers like QR codes have the advantage of being very precise, but you need a reader. Using GPS coordinates is easier, but less precise, and doesn't really work indoors. We'll probably find there are competing AR 'networks', each using the physical world, but overlaying different (and incompatible, naturally) interpretations. It won't be long where it will be as natural for a web site to have a GPS identifier (latitude and longitude, the way photos do now) as it is to have a URL.

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Institutional Repositories: Response to comments

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 19:15

Richard Poynder, Open and Shut?, Oct 06, 2016

Today's new word is 'Quasitory' and I believe it is invented (in this use) in  Stevan Harnad's response to Richard Poynder on the role of institutional repositories. Poynder is clarifying emarks he made in a recent interview, and in particular responding to the Confederation of Open Access Repository (COAR) Executive Director Kathleen Shearer's response("The reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated"). Poynder writes, " 22 years after Stevan Harnad began his  long campaign to persuade researchers to self-archive, it is clear there remains little or no appetite for doing so, even though researchers are more than happy to post their papers on commercial sites like and ResearchGate." These commercial repository sites - which Harnad calls 'Quasitories' - "are doing just as badly as IRs." And the largest Quasitory of all, Google Scholar, is waiting patiently for academia to get its act together, writes Poynder. The same story is being played out in the field of open educational resources, and (as Harnad says) "the optimal and inevitable outcome of all this will be: The Give-Away literature will be free at last online, in one global, interlinked virtual library.. and its [peer review] expenses will be paid for up-front, out of the [subscription cancellation] savings." Image: most image search results were of British politicians, but here's a picture of Laurel and Hardy which also turned up (from a MoneyAM  discussion forum from 2005).

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Crafting Connected Courses: How The Web Is Won at DML2016

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 16:15

Alan Levine, CogDogBlog, Oct 06, 2016

I wish people would listen to old time radio westerns. Not the kid shows from the 40s, but the so-called 'adult' westerns like GunSmoke, Fort Laramie, Frontier Gentleman, and others. They're mostly from the 1950s - a time that included post-war trauma, the Korean conflict, and the Red Scare. But they work against all that - if you can ignore the cigarette commercials, you'll be surprised to see how progressive these shows are. Now all of this has nothing to do with the Alan Levine article I'm linking to here, except for this: you see the same values in today's open learning movement that you do in those 1950s radio westerns: the value of cooperation, the need for network, the importance of every person in the community, the encouragement of diversity, and more. "Connected is the way the web is won."

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From Dabbling to Doing: 6 Tools That Excite Kids About Coding

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 16:15

Tanner Higgin, Mind/Shift, Oct 06, 2016

This is a bit of a listicle, but I liked the way the six items selected progress from very simple stuff (Scratch, Puzzlets) to more involved coding platforms (Google CS First, Vidcode). Computer science today gets pretty deep in a hurry and developing a basic aptitude for formalization at an early age is probably essential. But like everything involving learning, students have to want to do it, so lively applications that get students creating (and seeing what they've created) right from day one are the way to go. I especially like the Karaoke machine students can create and share with VidCode.

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Map of the Internet

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 16:15

Quartz, Oct 06, 2016

I think the presentation is the most interesting part of this series of articles offering an overview of today's internet. The individual articles address things like the undersea cables, the physical infrastructure in pictures, and challenges of censorship and the potential break-up of the internet. At the same time, there's a well-deserved sense of awe. "What allows all this to happen is the most complex piece of physical infrastructure ever created."

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An Inside Peek Into the Education World’s Obsession with Minecraft

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 16:15

Cameron Main, EdSurge, Oct 06, 2016

My own experience with MUDs served a similar function for me, though of course I was a lot older. The closest equivalent from my childhood is, I guess, the sand pile in our back yard. È The collaboration, engagement, and exploration opportunities that Minecraft provides are well-suited to give kids the experiences they need to build tomorrow’ s solutions— but Minecraft is just where they start."

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Shaken By Economic Change, ‘Non-Traditional’ Students Are Becoming The New Normal

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2016-10-06 02:02

by Eric Westervelt, NPR

While colleges and universities have seen enrollment growth follow every recession since 1980, the boost in enrollment following the Great Recession was far greater than previous. And a growing number of those students enrolling are older, working, have a family -– or all three. Nearly half of those enrolled in higher ed today are so-called “non-traditional” students. One quarter of all students are over the age of 30. The increase is driven mostly by tough financial realities and a changing economy. More colleges and universities need to become better equipped to address the needs of older students. And soon. The already large adult student population is projected to grown even larger in coming years.

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Microsoft Launches Subscription-Based LinkedIn Learning Skills Training Service

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Thu, 2016-10-06 02:01

by Microsoft

Microsoft recently launched its subscription-only online skills training platform, LinkedIn Learning. The 450 million members are now potential clients of LinkedIn’s in-house premium skills training system. Microsoft has decided that LinkedIn members should get their skills training right inside LinkedIn’s website. It is a new product aimed at empowering individuals and corporate clients.

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Online Education Is Now a Global Market

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 01:13

Jeffrey R. Young, Chronicle of Higher Education, Oct 05, 2016

The Chronicle interviews FutureLearn head Simon Nelson. The gist of the interview is, first, that universities have completely absorbed MOOCs, and second, that this is opening up international markets. "Universities are using MOOCs in a whole range of much more strategic ways. To teach their own students, to create pathways into their core programs, to work in different ways with employers and transform the way they offer training and development services to them, etcetera. I don’ t see any of that narrowing the supply of free open courses to the world. Actually, I think it’ s going to significantly expand it."

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Citizen scientists now do more than collect data

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 01:13

Layne Cameron, Futurity, Oct 05, 2016

I've always felt that there is a huge learning opportunity here. "The nature of citizen science is changing; citizens aren’ t simply used solely for data collection,” says Steven Gray, assistant professor of community sustainability at Michigan State University and the study’ s lead author. “ They are designing the protocols, conducting the experiments, securing funding, and implementing the plans. They may not have the credentials of scientists, but they have the capacity to engage in the same approaches.”

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Coursera’s superheroes: Meet the Mentor team

OLDaily by Stephen Downes - Thu, 2016-10-06 01:13

Kapeesh Saraf, Coursera Blog, Oct 05, 2016

Coursera is now - and a bit surprisingly - drawing on volunteer labour. "Coursera Mentors are learners who volunteer to provide academic support in courses they’ ve already completed on Coursera. To be eligible to be a Mentor, a learner must have passed the course with a good grade and an exemplary forum participation record. Mentors also complete a 2-week training course that covers best practices..." You can see some of them here.

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Welt-Rheumatag am 12.10.2016

Gesundheitsberichterstattung - Thu, 2016-10-06 00:00
Ausgewählte Informationen zum Welt-Rheumatag am 12.10.2016
Categories: Science News

Krankenhausstatistik - Grunddaten

Gesundheitsberichterstattung - Wed, 2016-10-05 08:00

Die im Informationssystem eingespeicherten gestaltbaren Tabellen aus der "Krankenhausstatistik - Grunddaten der Krankenhäuser und Vorsorge- oder Rehabiliationseinrichtungen" des Statistischen Bundesamtes wurden um das Jahr 2015 ergänzt.

Categories: Science News

Resources Abound For Students New to Online Learning

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2016-10-05 02:06

By Joe Cote, Southern New Hampshire University

There’s a lot to think about when you’re thinking about returning to school and choosing to go to school online may add to the questions you have to consider. Whether you have children to care for or a demanding job or any of a thousand commitments, choosing to continue your education is sure to make life even busier. Having recognized that, whole teams of people at Southern New Hampshire University have built support programs to help students new to online education make an easy transition. Support for new students runs the gamut from academic advisors and an online writing center to webinars and tutoring programs. “We’ve been very deliberate about trying to build out this community, this network of support we can provide students with,” said Matthew Thornton, associate vice president of Student Technology Experience.

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UA System tightens online-degree rules

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2016-10-05 02:05

By Aziza Musa, Arkansas Online

Colleges and universities in the University of Arkansas System will face more scrutiny when proposing new degree programs that are fully online. Now, chancellors who want to add an online-degree program that already exists within the UA System must explain why another distance-education offering is needed. The justification is just for degree programs — not courses — that are completely online. “I didn’t draw a line in the sand and say, ‘No never,’” UA System President Donald Bobbitt said. “But, I will tell you that the scrutiny on a proposed program is going to be intense.”

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Why colleges and educators should build their own online communities

Online learning update by Ray Schroeder - Wed, 2016-10-05 02:03

BY ROB WENGER, eCampus News

Over the past decade, many college administrators (and other related campus groups) have relied on LinkedIn groups to build community among their peers, professors, student groups and more. Today there are hundreds of these groups among LinkedIn’s 400 million users, but with Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn this past spring, the signs are here: LinkedIn’s focus will no longer be on helping their communities to thrive. College administrators can, and should, look to build their own online communities now that the technology makes it easy and the benefits of owning a community are many. But they should learn from the mistakes of LinkedIn and do it right the first time to create a thriving, active and engaged community. Here are the seven most important things colleges and other academic institutions should keep in mind when launching their online communities:

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