Connecting, Sharing and Curating

The New Year has prompted a range of posts about trends in connecting, sharing and curating.

Some examples I have found in the last few days:

Stephen Downes linked to Nick DeNardis’s post Why now is a great time to do an OAuth audit. Nick points out that “The beginning of the year is a great opportunity to start fresh and look at everything with a new set of eyes. Something that is easily overlooked is who (or what) has access to your social media accounts. It’s easy to change your password and revoke access from co-workers but it isn’t as easy to identify which websites and services have access to your accounts.”

Alistair Gray shared a link with the International Sports Management LinkedIn Group to a Dan Schawbel discussion of optimising use of LinkedIn. Dan identifies two fundamental principles of networking in his conversation with Jan Vermeiren, the founder of Networking Coach: the networking attitude (give and receive); and the Know, Like, Trust factor.

A Diigo Teacher-Librarian Group link from a page to an Apollo Research Institute Report (April 2011) on Future Work Skills. The Report identified ten skills “vital for success in the workforce”:

  • Sense-making: an ability to determine the deeper meaning or significance of what is being expressed
  • Social intelligence: an ability to connect to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions
  • Novel and adaptive thinking: a proficiency at thinking and coming up with solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule-based
  • Cross-cultural competency: an ability to operate in different cultural settings
  • Computational thinking: an ability to translate vast amounts of data into abstract concepts and to understand data-based reasoning
  • New media literacy: an ability to assess critically and develop content that uses new media forms, and to leverage these media for persuasive communication
  • Transdisciplinarity: literacy in and ability to understand concepts across multiple disciplines
  • Design mindset: an ability to represent and develop tasks and work processes for desired outcomes
  • Cognitive load management: an ability to discriminate and filter information for importance, and to understand how to maximize cognitive functioning using a variety of tools and techniques
  • Virtual collaboration: an ability to work productively, drive engagement, and demonstrate presence as a member of a virtual team

Robin Good observes that:

By looking at the set of emerging skills that this research identifies as vital for future workers, I can’t avoid but recognize the very skillset needed by any professional curator or newsmaster.

This week’s presenter in the #change11 MOOC, Howard Rheingold has discussed five essential literacies:

I’ve concluded that one important step that people can take is to become more adept at five essential literacies for a world of mobile, social, and always-on media: attention, crap detection, participation, collaboration, and network know-how. The effects of these literacies can both empower the individuals who master them and improve the quality of the digital culture commons.

Stephen Downes shared a great link to Alec Couros’s end of year Social Media and Open Education blog post about student work. Alec notes that:

I wanted to use the last post of the year to share a few examples of the great work that is being done by my graduate and undergraduate students. I am so very fortunate to have creative & hard-working students who are committed to improving their knowledge of teaching and learning in light of our new digital landscape. I hope that some of these examples will inspire you to take up new challenges in your own context.

These examples included student projects using: stop-motion technique; Glogster; Freemind; Xtranormal; Screenr; Jing; Voicethread; TikaTok; Prezi; and Knovio.

SlideShare compiled 12 presentations that look at change in 2012. I was particularly interested in Skytide’s 7 Online Video Trends to Watch in 2012 and the discussion of Adaptive Bitrate Streaming. Skytide suggest “As adoption of adaptive bitrate protocols grows, providers of legacy streaming methods will find themselves under increased pressure to prove their added value. Witness the recent decision by Adobe to cease further development of its mobile FlashPlayer.”

I noted from an iSportConnect alert that the Philadelphia Wings Lacrosse team is using Twitter handles on its shirts (and following on a lead from two football teams (Valencia and Jaguares de Chiapas). Whilst looking at the Twitter possibilities I saw the Twitter blog post about New Year’s Eve activity. The post includes a video visualisation of tweets.

Phil Davis has written a post for The Scholarly Kitchen, Tweets and Our Obsession with Alt Metrics, that offers another perspective on tweeting. He discusses Gunther Eysenbach’s paper in the Journal of Medical Internet Research (JMIR), Can tweets predict citations? Metrics of social impact based on twitter and correlation with traditional metrics of scientific impact. The comments on this post make for fascinating reading and raise some salutary issues for me about connecting, sharing and curating.

I thought I would end this post with a link to Tagxedo. It is a word cloud generator and I have used it here to summarise the content of this post.

Photo Credits


Share Your Ideas

Librarian Action Figure

Cirrus 120104

It has been a quiet two weeks in my RSS feeds.

Some of the items that did reach me:

What Americans Keep Ignoring About Finland’s School Success (via LinkedIn and OLDaily). A post by Anu Partanen that includes a link to Pasi Sahlberg, director of the Finnish Ministry of Education’s Center for International Mobility and author of  Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland? (Last year I wrote about what sport can learn from Finnish education.)

An Economist article about The Disposable Academic and the place of PhD research. The article concludes:

Many of those who embark on a PhD are the smartest in their class and will have been the best at everything they have done. They will have amassed awards and prizes. As this year’s new crop of graduate students bounce into their research, few will be willing to accept that the system they are entering could be designed for the benefit of others, that even hard work and brilliance may well not be enough to succeed, and that they would be better off doing something else. They might use their research skills to look harder at the lot of the disposable academic. Someone should write a thesis about that.

An alert via PhilPapers about a forthcoming paper in Science and Engineering Ethics written by Ksenija Baždarić, Lidija Bilić-Zulle, Gordana Brumini and Mladen Petrovečki, Prevalence of Plagiarism in Recent Submissions to the Croatian Medical Journal. They analysed all manuscripts submitted in 2009–2010 with plagiarism detection software: eTBLAST , CrossCheck, and WCopyfind . They report that of 754 submitted manuscripts, 105 (14%) were identified by the software as suspicious of plagiarism. A manual verification confirmed that 85 (11%) manuscripts were plagiarized: 63 (8%) were true plagiarism and 22 (3%) were self-plagiarism. They conclude that “the prevalence of plagiarized manuscripts submitted to the CMJ , a journal dedicated to promoting research integrity, was 11% in the 2-year period 2009–2010”.

My feed provided a number of newspaper items from around the globe.

My feed has had some excellent items too.

Photo Credit

Here Sleep Deer

Making Room for Learning Spaces

Early Summer mornings are great times to catch up on overnight news.

This morning I had a alert to Colin Warren’s Technology and Curriculum Transformation page.

Colin linked to a Steve Wheeler post on Learning Precincts. Steve’s post was written at the New Zealand Tertiary Education Summit. In the post, Steve considers how universities might create learning spaces that are conducive to learning for all.

Steve shared news of Rob Allen’s talk on Auckland University of Technology’s Learning Precinct. The Precinct is due to be completed in 2013 and will increase the campus by 25%. Its features include:

  • a 12-floor tower, a plaza, glass atrium, and a green quad
  • linkages between key buildings on the City Campus and a major gateway to AUT
  • an additional 20,000 square metres of new facilities
  • lobbies and break-out spaces have been designed as collaborative social study areas, with a range of furniture types to cater for multiple ways of learning

I enjoyed reading Steve’s account and learning about AUT’s plans. The post has encouraged me to think again about how learning is supported by moments of concentration of people in spaces and their dispersal into other physical and virtual places. I am keen to find low cost, sustainable options for these interactions. I believe that connected (ubiquitous computing) social spaces are keys to convivial learning.

After a year of working without a fixed office on my University campus I am wondering about the possibilities of transforming all spaces to open spaces. This does involve being relaxed about Cloud based support for mobile learners.

It involves contemplating Betaville too! There was a comment on Steve’s post from Vincent Driscoll. Vincent is working on a Betaville project and points out that:

The emphasis is on self-sufficiency and taking responsibility for our own learning. We are encouraged to find the answers ourselves – we even get roped in to research topics and present our findings back to peers at workshops.  Information moves partly from the tutors to us, as you would expect, but also between the learners peer-to-peer. The programme is designed so that this happens spontaneously. We were told at the intro session that we should think of ourselves as essential parts of a system of learners, a learning organisation even and the Betaville project is just one, though significant, element designed to facilitate it.

I like the Betaville suggestion that:

the future of a street corner, a blank wall, a vacant lot, or an entire city can now be tinkered with on an ongoing basis at negligible cost by the full spectrum of subject matter experts: the people who know what it’s like to live there now, the people who know how to make new things happen… and people with great ideas to share, anywhere in the world, whenever they can and care to.

This kind of approach is helping me move further towards an edgeless university that is people-centric located within the community … organopónicos for learners and teachers.


Shortly after posting in this item I learned about the CAUDIT Study Tour of Learning Spaces and Technology that took place last week. Visits were made to the University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University, Victoria University and the University of Melbourne.

The aims of the tour were to:

  • Engage IT leaders in the area of good design for Learning and Teaching so they can appreciate and represent the holistic design concepts in their own institutions;
  • Explore identified exemplars in learning space designs and understand what facilitates good learning and teaching practice;
  • Develop some basic best practice guidelines around technology integration to share with the wider CAUDIT membership;
  • Establish a Community of Practice for Learning Space and Technology across Australia and New Zealand.

My colleague Danny Munnerley was on the tour and has alerted me to his collection of photographs of the tour and to James Sankar’s blog posts about each of the visits.

Photo Credit

AUT’s Brand New Precinct