October 10, 2008

Is Google Making Us Stoopid?

A question about the article "Is Google Making Us Stoopid?" The question -- do we buy the argument that Google and other Web 2.0 tools are necessarily pushing us to think broad but not deep. They also push the ideas from Information Behavior and the Research of the Future. I also recommend reading Miler's classic paper, The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on Our Capacity for Processing Information.

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July 3, 2008

Day 3, Session2

He is talking about their social software projects, including their work in Drupal. He likes Drupal because it allows us to encourage students to develop a "community of practice", each student with a blog that can be syndicated to the home page of the course. He spoke about Axel Bloom's model of usage, to help students self-identify as users (consumers) or as producers.

Their project is called They had students add their projects to mytoons and then used the social networking opportunities therein to have them review one anothers work. Its very similar to the project we did at USC in YouTube. Their big finding was that usability is important, and unusable sites are not that useful, which is fairly expected, I imagine.

May 13, 2008


I just got wise to jott, a multi-media version of twitter. while i don't twitter constantly, i do like to twitter now and again, and i think i may get psyched about doing some jotting. i'm not sure how long the jott message can be...they seem pretty short. it would be cool if i could call from my phone and record an entire yoga class, and have an instant podcast of my class...

April 22, 2008

Journal talks on YouTube

A colleague of mine forwarded on an announcement from the Journal of Number Theory staff about their new YouTube channel. The basic idea is that, once you've had a paper refereed and accepted, you can post a short talk of the paper so that people can get the highlights of it -- sort of like an ongoing virtual conference. I like it -- I think its a great idea. Another colleague who I shared this with suggested that this should also be the model we use for talks at conferences -- that is, you put up a short version of the talk before you go, so people can shop around a bit for the talks they are most interested in. Again, I think this is a great idea. Thoughts?

April 18, 2008

Video presentations for Academic Journals

Yesterday a colleague sent me an email from the Journal of Number Theory explaining that, for the future, the authors of all accepted papers will be invited to submit a video presentation of a "talk" of their paper for the Journal's YouTube channel. To me, this makes so much sense I am sort of surprised that no one has thought of it before. We're all so busy, and watching a simple video presentation of a paper seems as if it would really provide a nice cognitive organizer for the paper, providing another "type" of learning opportunity that could deepen understanding of the paper when you read it. I like it. But will it just make reading of papers obsolete? Will the talks become like Cliffs Notes, actually replacing the reading of papers altogether? Possibly, but I think the risk is worth it. Personally, I never have time to read all of the papers that I should be reading; this would give me the opportunity to actually connect with a much wider body of research than I am able to currently.

January 24, 2008

Cognitive load and Web 2.0 technologies

I've been noodling on this idea of cognitive load and its relationship and how Web 2.0 technologies might be used to address issues of cognitive load as they relate to the news media. Assuming one could address the challenges associated with extraneous cognitive load (from the technology itself), could we begin to use syndication and aggregation (and disaggregation) as a means of reducing cognitive load and allowing people to make more and better sense of the news related to a topic? I feel a study coming on...

September 20, 2007

The Web 2.0 blog from the Madison conference

This blog came from the 2007 Madision conference on distance learning.