Open Source last couple of days

Hi all – just a quick reminder that we’re nearing the end of our discussions and activities about Open Source Emerging Markets here: http://onlinelearning.kwantlen.ca/course/view.php?id=311&edit=0&sesskey=kUaW371Qf2. The dialogue has been incredibly robust and it’s really exciting to see so much action on the site. We’ll be having a synchronous chat on the site tomorrow night (Sunday)  at 8:30pm for those who can join us. We’ll also be posting a transcript of the chat and a summation of the activity that’s happened this week shortly after our week is up for those who’d like to see it in that form.

Thanks for all the fantastic contributions!

Mary

October 18, 2008   3 Comments

Welcome to Open Source Emerging Markets

Good Morning and Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

The Open Source Emerging Markets team invites you to join us in a Moodle shell. Please go to http://onlinelearning.kwantlen.ca , create an account and log into the course called “Group 6 Open Source”. Once there, you’ll see a list of activites in which to participate with accompanying instructions.

Thanks, Marc, Bryan, Dave and Mary

October 13, 2008   13 Comments

Digital textbooks

You are all probably aware that this is my particular preoccupation, but I thought this article from Inside Higher Ed yesterday was worth sharing with everyone. It has an interesting analysis of the crumbling business model for large textbook publishers, who have been the key supplier of course-related material, which plays nicely into some of the discussions we’ve been engaging in. The comments following the article are also very much worth reading:  http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/10/07/ut

The key concept this raises for me is that of ‘unfair’. Because I see this from the inside, I wonder if when students say prices are ‘unfair’ they recognize how much labour goes into a textbook. Content creators (writers, photographers, graphic designers) have to be paid, the people who fact check, line edit, and proofread have to be paid. The people who design and typeset have to be paid. Do without these aspects and students and profs complain about texts being ‘unengaging’ and ‘full of errors’.

One of the deeply troubling aspects of open source to me is the question of payment for creators. In the great open source future, will everyone just be expected to volunteer their labour?  Is the assumption that only the truly driven will create resources, because they will do so despite not being paid for it? If that is the case, is it okay? We pay people now for their intellectual labour (for example, the Davids’ salaries as paid by UBC) – will a system emerge that takes on this role?

I’m curious to hear the group’s thoughts on these issues. And despite where I sit right now, I’m genuinely curious about, and open to, alternative futures – I think that’s why we’re all in this course.

Laura

October 8, 2008   10 Comments

Resource: Opening Up Education

Just came across this link…

http://mitpress.mit.edu/catalog/item/default.asp?ttype=2&tid=11309

Opening Up Education
The Collective Advancement of Education through Open Technology, Open Content, and Open Knowledge
Edited by Toru Iiyoshi and M. S. Vijay Kumar
Foreword by John Seely Brown

“… Opening Up Education argues that we must develop not only the technical capability but also the intellectual capacity for transforming tacit pedagogical knowledge into commonly usable and visible knowledge: by providing incentives for faculty to use (and contribute to) open education goods, and by looking beyond institutional boundaries to connect a variety of settings and open source entrepreneurs.”

http://mitpress.mit.edu/catalog/item/default.asp?ttype=2&tid=11309

Katherine

September 14, 2008   2 Comments