I have immense admiration for a current Wikimedia Australia project.

A group of volunteers are developing a history of Australian Paralympic Sport.

Recent contributions have included:

1962 Commonwealth Paraplegic Games

Ray Epstein

Australia at the 2012 Paralympic Games

Kerri-Anne Connor

Carolyn Connors

Paralympic Coaches (Brad Dubberley; Iryna Dvoskina; Scott Goodman; John Eden; Louise Sauvage; Gerry Hewson)

I am in awe of the personal investment in authorship for this project.

This week an important issue has been raised about the equity of treatment for athletes in Wikipedia. My understanding is that this issue is about Notability.

I do not visit many Wikipedia Talk pages but I will be following the conversation about paralympians. At present there is a vibrant discussion between Roger and DJ Sasso.

Roger’s opening remarks:

According to WP:NOLYMPICS an athlete is presumed notable if they have competed at any Olympic games, but for Paralympic athletes the barrier is set far higher as only medallists are presumed to be notable. “Athletes from any sport are presumed notable if they have competed at the Summer or Winter Olympic games or have won a medal at the Paralympic Games”. I propose to change this so that Olympians and Paralympians are treated equally: “Athletes from any sport are presumed notable if they have competed at the Summer or Winter Olympic or Paralympic Games. Roger (talk) 13:56, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

Amidst the exchange between Roger and DJ Sasso, the latter points out that “All information included in Wikipedia, including articles about sports, must be verifiable. In addition, standalone articles are required to meet the General Notability Guideline.

The growth of the Paralympic project will provide an important focus for the notability debate on Wikipedia. What I do find remarkable is that there advocates and custodians who can animate this debate.

A remarkable group of people discussing another remarkable group of people.

Photo Credits

xx0992 Barcelona Paralympics (101)

xx0992 Barcelona Paralympics (104)

Kurt Fearnley

Quick Response (QR) Codes


A few days ago I received a Diigo Teacher-Librarian alert to Gwyneth Jones’s QR Code Comic Tutorial. Her comic format is a great vehicle for sharing basic information. Her picture reminded me about a Scholarly Kitchen post by Michael Clarke (11 December 2009) Get a Whiff of Google’s Augmented Reality Stickers.

Some Discoveries

I followed up that link with a visit to The Big Wild campaign that is using posters in seven Canadian cities, “hoping to entice smartphone owners to scan the image and access one of our mobile-friendly petition pages.”

The Big Wild poster uses “a QR code, or 2-D barcode. These codes–they look kind of like crossword puzzles, can be read by the cameras on smartphones. They can store text information, SMS messages or (as is the case with our campaign) a URL for a website.”
From the Big Wild I visited the Wikipedia entry on Quick Response Codes, then went on to learn more about Denso Wave’s development of QR code as a particular form of 2-D code and noted that QR Code is a registered trademark of Denso Wave Incorporated. (I was surprised to learn that it was developed in 1994 “with the primary aim of being a symbol that is easily interpreted by scanner equipment”.) This is a link to QR Code Features. This is a link to Denso Wave. From Wikipedia I noted that “The use of the QR Code is free of any license. The QR Code is clearly defined and published as ISO standard. Denso Wave owns the patent rights on QR Code, but has chosen not to exercise them.”
Thereafter I found the 2d Code Blog edited by Roger Smolski. From 2d I followed up on some Australian links including: JMango and Ilan Oosting; and Jarrod Robinson.  I found Jarrod’s Prezi on Qr Codes, and his blog. Whilst searching for Jarrod I discovered a great post in the Physical Educator by Joey Feith.

After this journey of discovery I am very excited by the potential of QR codes to inform and develop my work. I am delighted that I traveled the globe to find a PE teacher in country Victoria but profoundly disappointed that I have only just found his work. Gwyneth and Jarrod embody for me the wonderful altruism teachers exhibit and exude. I am going to monitor their work very carefully and hang where the wild things are.
After posting this item I have discovered:
QR Codes: The nuts and bolts (David Hopkins, 17 January)
QR Codes in a Journal (Kent Anderson, 31 January)
Why QR Codes Will Go Mainstream (Hamilton Chan, 9 March)
QR Codes in Education (Steve Anderson, 8 March)
I did blog about QR codes throughout 2011. This is a link to all my QR posts.
Photo Credits
QR codes generated by Kaywa

Op Shop, Connectivism and Mutual Flourishing

This is another post that has been waiting to be written! Michael Clarke’s post on Sounding the Revolution gave me the impetus I needed.

I like the idea of Op Shops. Wikipedia points out that:

Charity shops are a type of social enterprise. They usually sell mainly second-hand goods donated by members of the public, and are often staffed by volunteers. Because the items for sale were obtained for free, and business costs are low, the items can be sold at very low prices. After costs are paid, all remaining income from the sales is used in accord with the organization’s stated charitable purpose. Costs include purchase and/or depreciation of fixtures (clothing racks, bookshelves, counters, etc.), operating costs (maintenance, municipal service fees, electricity, telephone, limited advertising) and the building lease or mortgage.

I take connectivism to be a kindred social enterprise. Each day, because of the generosity of others, I discover wonderful opportunities to learn and then share. I have an opportunity to participate in the move from information to coordination.

Recently I was struck by Sally Fincher‘s Op Shop credentials. I found her work through a Mark Guzdial post Tell Sally Your Stories: Monthly for a Year. The Share Project is researching teaching practice. Sally points out that:

we are investigating how academics represent, share and change their practices. One strand of our investigation (this one) is designed to collect material on the everyday lives and normal routines of academics. If you sign up, we’ll ask you to keep a diary for a day—the 15th day of each month—detailing what you do (especially with regard to teaching) and what you think and feel about it.

I was struck by a post by Kent Anderson in the Scholarly Kitchen that prompted me to think that this really is the age of social enterprise:

An interesting change has come in the modeling of society over the past few decades, namely the move from a generation gap to a fixation on youth to a reorientation on youth showing elders the way. Now, a study from the Pew Research Center indicates that older adults are adopting social media quickly, with those 50-64 years old picking it up at an 88% greater rate in just one year. Overall, 47% of people in this age group now use social media, up from 25% in April 2009.

Tools like Greplin are giving us the opportunity to range far and wide in our sharing.

As a conclusion to this post I thought I would add Clay Shirky’s TED video from 2009 about the transformed media landscape and the Internet as a site of coordination.