About Anything

The personal blog of Al Stevens. Focus is overrated.

Archive for January 19th, 2009

XO Laptaps in Nepal

without comments

Gaia Vince, in an article in Seed Magazine reports on  Open Learning Exchange Nepal, a non-profit organization headed by Rabi Karmacharya that develops curriculum-based content in the Nepali language to run on inter-connected XO laptops made by the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) consortium. At the start of the school year last April, the group began a test run of 200 computers, donated by the Danish IT Society, in two of Nepal’s rural schools. This April, the project is expanding to 15 more schools across five districts, distributing a total of 44,000 laptops.

Article: Nepal: Laptop School

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 1:51 pm

Guardian Suggests We are at the Dawn of the Cyber Student

with one comment

Harriet Swain, in an article in the Guardian reports:

In a single week, the Open University (OU) records about two million downloads from its presence on iTunes U, a source of higher education podcasts and videos freely available on the web. About 87% of these downloads are from outside the UK. …

Thanks to ever more rapid advances in technology, the university experience of undergraduates and academics in 2020 will be radically different from that of their 2008 predecessors. But it will be an experience these predecessors have helped shape, no matter what country they come from.

Article: University Challenge: Dawn of the Cyber Student

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 1:31 pm

Serious Virtual Worlds Report Published

without comments

The Serious Virtual Worlds (SVW) report, released today by the UK’s Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) explores the ‘serious’ – as opposed to the leisure-based – use of virtual worlds for educational purposes.

Written by Sara de Freitas, director of research at the Serious Games Institute, Coventry University, the report  provides an overview of many key virtual world sites to help the education community identify which is the most relevant to support a given learning context. It also explores how learners themselves are becoming a more central component in the use of immersive worlds, creating and enriching their own learning experiences and adopting more exploratory and collaborative modes of learning.

Report: Serious Virtual Worlds report

, says: ‘The use of virtual worlds has accelerated exponentially over the last two to three years. In that brief time, users and learners have already been engaged by the opportunity to take control of virtual worlds within social groups.’

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 12:59 pm

Green Technology in Education

without comments

Further and higher education establishments could save money and decrease CO2 emissions by introducing simple measures, according to a report issued today by the UK’s Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC). The report presents the findings of JISC’s Green Technology report. It outlines ways in which the intelligent use of technology can create savings of cost, energy or carbon output. The Green Technology Briefing Paper and Strategic Overview are available to read online now.

Press release: The ‘greening’ of ICT in education – new papers launched

Briefing paper: Green ICT: Managing sustainable ICT in education and research
Strategic Overview paper Managing Sustainable ICT in Further and Higher Education: Strategic Overview
Full report Sustainable ICT in Further and Higher Education: SusteIT Final Report

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Virtual Learning Environments Oversold?

without comments

John Spencer of Sirius Corporation, syndicated on ComputerworldUK rants (his word) about Virtual Learning Environments:

It’s been 8 years now, during which time VLEs have been massively promoted by Becta (the UK education quango) there are now loads of them, the best is the free software called Moodle but hardly anyone uses any VLE at all let alone the best one!

Article: The last VLE ever?

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 12:16 pm

ChildWise Monitor Released

without comments

ChildWise a UK-based market research and marketing strategy agency which specializes in research with children has released its 2009 Monitor Report focused on children’s and teenagers’ media consumption, brand attitudes and key behaviour.  This year, almost 1800 children aged 5-16 were interviewed in depth on a range of topics.

An article in the Guardian summarizes one of the results from the report: “Screen time has become so pervasive in the daily lives of five- to 16-year-olds that they are now skilled managers of their free time, juggling technology to fit in on average six hours of TV, playing games and surfing the net, it suggests.”

Guardian  article:  Internet generation leave parents behind

Report purchase information is on the ChildWise website: ChildWise Monitor

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 12:00 pm

Posted in Educational Things

Tagged with ,

Lingo Media Reports on 2008 Milestones

without comments

Lingo Media Corporation issued a press release summarizing  milestones they achieved during 2008. From the press release:

2008 was an evolutionary year for the Company as we achieved many key milestones and accomplishments, which established Lingo Media into a diversified online and print-based education company. We completed the integration of our newly acquired Speak2Me subsidiary including the conversion of its CD-ROM-based English language learning platform onto a web-based advertising supported platform. We believe our investment has positioned Speak2Me for significant growth through its Conversational Advertising(tm) platform. We expanded our product offerings available through Lingo Learning, our China-based publishing business. We successfully completed an equity financing of $5 million through a private placement of our common stock with Orascom Telecom.

Press release: 2008 A Year in Review

Written by Al Stevens

January 19th, 2009 at 11:32 am