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My Best Shot 24 "The Miracle of Life" | Cyber Art Exhibition

My Best Shot 24 "The Miracle of Life" | Cyber Art Exhibition | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

“Miracle of Life” was taken in the Hajjar Mountains near Ras Al Khaimah. How a lone tree can survive up there is a beyond belief, hence the title of the picture. Being the highest mountain range in the eastern Arabian peninsula meant I needed to use a zoom lens to see anything. It was an unusually bright, clear day with very little sand and dust in the air. I took a single shot knowing I’d nailed it first time. Centering the tree in the picture works well and the ratio of sky to earth is near perfect with the deep blue sky and electric green of the tree contrasting each other nicely.

 

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Zaha Hadid to design mathematics gallery for London Science Museum | Adam Williams | GizMag.com

Zaha Hadid to design mathematics gallery for London Science Museum | Adam Williams | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Zaha Hadid has been selected to design a new mathematics gallery for the London Science Museum, as part of the museum's ongoing redevelopment which also includes a new library and research facilities. The gallery is set to open in 2016 and will be named after David and Claudia Harding, who provided a £5 million (over US$8 million) donation.

The architect, who studied mathematics at the American University in Beirut, looks a good fit for the project and described how a visit to the London Science Museum aged 10 inspired her. From the renders Hadid's office has provided to the press, the gallery looks to feature the architects usual trademark style – albeit with a subtle math twist.

The gallery will be arranged so as to follow the turbulence field data of a Handley Page airplane exhibit, which will be suspended from the ceiling and serve as centerpiece of the gallery. The biplane dates back to 1929 and was used to research the aerodynamic requirements of taking off and landing slowly, and relied on complex interactive equations.


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ESA's bug-eyed "fly-eye" telescope to watch for Earth-threatening asteroids | David Szondy | GizMag.com

ESA's bug-eyed "fly-eye" telescope to watch for Earth-threatening asteroids | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

One aggravating property of the housefly is that swatting one is harder than it looks. One of the reasons for this is flies have eyes designed for avoiding such a day-ruining event by detecting motion over a wide field of vision. Since asteroids have the potential to do to Earth what rolled newspapers do to flies, ESA is developing a telescope based on a fly’s eye as a new asteroid-hunting tool that could be the basis for a new asteroid defense network.

The prospect of a rogue asteroid slamming into the Earth is certainly an unsettling one, so its small wonder that ESA, NASA and others are keen on identifying any potential candidates that might need dealing with in the future. Ideally, the solution would be to set up a telescope to repeatedly scan the entirety of the heavens, but it’s very big sky and an approaching asteroid might not give much notice. It’s a bit like a ship’s lookout. One person can’t look at the entire horizon without a good chance of missing something, but a team has a better chance.

In the case of asteroid hunting, the lookouts would need to be a global network of telescopes because the targets are far too small and faint to be seen with the naked eye. But it would be fantastically expensive just to buy all the telescopes required for such a network, and those scopes wouldn’t necessarily be the best instruments for hunting asteroids. That’s because telescopes are very good for capturing images, but what an asteroid hunter needs is the ability to track movement across the sky.


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Primary and back up landing sites for Roseatta's Philae probe selected | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com

Primary and back up landing sites for Roseatta's Philae probe selected | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The Rosetta mission's Landing Site Selection Group has selected the primary and back up landing sites for the ESA's Philae probe ahead of an attempted touchdown on comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko on November 11. Selecting sites J and C as the primary and back up sites respectively was no easy task, with mission operators weighing up various factors and racing against time since the spacecraft entered orbit around the comet on August 6. Prior to this, the comet had simply been too far away to characterize.

As the distance closed between Rosetta and its target, and the instruments aboard the spacecraft got a better look at the comet 67P, the list of possible sites was reduced to five. Each of the sites had its own virtues and disadvantages, making the process a balancing act between the scientific, practical and realistic dangers.

Despite this, the final decision was arrived upon with unanimous consent. Site J represents an option with enough outgassing activity nearby to make the site extremely appealing scientifically, whilst also offering a relatively good chance of actually getting the lander down in one piece. Stephan Ulamec, Philae Lander Manager at the DLR German Aerospace Center highlighted the difficulties involved in making the decision, stating, “none of the candidate landing sites met all of the operational criteria at the 100 percent level, but Site J is clearly the best solution."


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NYC Court Tells Anti-Vaxxers: Keep Your Unvaccinated Kids Away From Schools! | John Prager | AATTP.org

NYC Court Tells Anti-Vaxxers:  Keep Your Unvaccinated Kids Away From Schools! | John Prager | AATTP.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A Brooklyn Federal District Judge has ruled that, at least in New York City, the Constitutional right of free exercise of religion does not allow someone to place the entire population at risk with the biological ticking time bombs that are unvaccinated people.

New York City schools require all students to get a series of basic vaccinations in order to attend classes, but the state of New York allows parents to opt-out of vaccinating their children because they are stupid for religious reasons.

Three families in the city obtained those exemptions, but their children were barred from attending school because they chose to not properly vaccinate their children. Their children were kept home, sometimes months at a time, because of the city’s policy that unimmunized children may not attend public school when another student has a vaccine-preventable illness.

They, of course, filed a suit against the city.

Citing a 1905 Supreme Court ruling that Massachusetts was legally able to fine a man for refusing a smallpox vaccine, Judge William Kuntz ruled that the court had “strongly suggested that religious objectors are not constitutionally exempt from vaccinations.”

“Disease is pestilence,” one of the plaintiffs said, “and pestilence is from the devil. The devil is germs and disease, which is cancer and any of those things that can take you down. But if you trust in the Lord, these things cannot come near you.”

Recently, vaccine-preventable illnesses have made a resurgence as a result of lies and propaganda pushed by celebrities like Jenny McCarthy and Donald Trump. In March, AATTP reported a record measles outbreak in California due to parents foregoing vaccinations because Baywatch and Hairpiece told them vaccines cause autism–a link that has never been proven.

The plaintiffs plan to appeal the court’s decision.


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NASA's Dawn spacecraft recovers after two malfunctions | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com

NASA's Dawn spacecraft recovers after two malfunctions | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

NASA's Dawn spacecraft has recovered from an unexpected phenomenon that resulted in the robotic explorer going into safe mode on September 11, mirroring a similar event that affected the spacecraft three years ago as it approached the protoplanet Vesta. Dawn was launched in September 2007 atop a Delta II-Heavy rocket with a mission to explore Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres.

Currently, the unmanned explorer is well under way to its final scientific destination, Ceres, that it is due to reach in April 2015 – a full month later than originally scheduled, thanks to Thursday's setback.

The probe carries three instruments: a visible light camera, a gamma ray and neutron spectrometer, and a visible and infrared mapping spectrometer. By examining Vesta and Ceres with these instruments, Dawn will compare the evolutionary paths taken by each of the celestial bodies, informing current theories on the processes that formed our early solar system.


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NASA Mars Spacecraft Ready for Sept. 21 Orbit Insertion | NASA.gov

NASA Mars Spacecraft Ready for Sept. 21 Orbit Insertion | NASA.gov | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft is nearing its scheduled Sept. 21 insertion into Martian orbit after completing a 10-month interplanetary journey of 442 million miles.

Flight Controllers at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Littleton, Colorado, will be responsible for the health and safety of the spacecraft throughout the process. The spacecraft’s mission timeline will place the spacecraft in orbit at approximately 9:50 p.m. EDT.

“So far, so good with the performance of the spacecraft and payloads on the cruise to Mars,” said David Mitchell, MAVEN project manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “The team, the flight system, and all ground assets are ready for Mars orbit insertion.”

The orbit-insertion maneuver will begin with the brief firing of six small thruster engines to steady the spacecraft. The engines will ignite and burn for 33 minutes to slow the craft, allowing it to be pulled into an elliptical orbit with a period of 35 hours.

Following orbit insertion, MAVEN will begin a six-week commissioning phase that includes maneuvering the spacecraft into its final orbit and testing its instruments and science-mapping commands.


Thereafter, MAVEN will begin its one-Earth-year primary mission to take measurements of the composition, structure and escape of gases in Mars’ upper atmosphere and its interaction with the sun and solar wind.


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Why Quality Professional Development for Teachers Matters | Ben Johnson | Edutopia.org

Why Quality Professional Development for Teachers Matters | Ben Johnson | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

"Please look at the labels on the walls and with your elbow partner; pick the top three priorities for educators and schools."


Posted around the walls were the words: Curriculum, Assessment, Instruction, Professional Development, Student Learning, Equity, Differentiation, and Classroom Management. I gave the principals a few minutes to chat and come up with a prioritized list and then we began discussing their conclusions.

Some thought it was an obvious trick question and chose student learning as the number one priority. Others chose curriculum because, "If you have nothing to teach, students can't learn -- beat that!" Still others countered, "But if you have the best curriculum but low quality instruction, students won't learn either -- so there!" "If only affluent students learn, then there is no equity for poor students -- try that on for size!" This lively discussion continued for each of the elements.

Eventually, the principals who chose student learning stated, "If students aren't learning, it doesn't matter what we do; we are just spinning our wheels!" and that convinced the rest that they were right. Yet all of them were wrong. To get them on the right track I asked the principals, "What can any teacher do to assure that students are learning?" One principal said, "Well, we can make sure we have the best teachers and the best curriculum."

"Does that guarantee that the students will learn?"

"Well, no, but it makes it more probable. You know nothing is guaranteed."

"Can we control student learning?"

"Not fully, but. . . ."

"Who can control student learning?"

"The teachers... or, hmm, the students themselves I suppose."

"Exactly! We cannot control student learning, only the student can. Student learning should be the eventual goal and outcome of all of our efforts, but it is not what we do to get there. Now let's rethink your priority list.


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FCC: E-Rate Reforms Could Bring Wi-Fi to Every Student in Five Years | Joan Engebretson | Telecompetitor.com

FCC: E-Rate Reforms Could Bring Wi-Fi to Every Student in Five Years | Joan Engebretson | Telecompetitor.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The FCC estimates that 10.5 million students per year could gain Internet connectivity inside their schools if the commission moves ahead with E-Rate reforms outlined in July. Within five years, all U.S. schools would have internal Internet connectivity, the FCC says.

The E-Rate program is an element of the Universal Service program administered by the FCC and funded by the telecom industry. In July the commission adopted an order that phases out E-Rate support for voice services and shifts funding toward internal connectivity, which most likely would take the form of Wi-Fi.

The FCC’s five-year internal connections estimate assumes E-Rate funding levels remain the same, that a total of $1 billion per year is directed toward internal connectivity and that the amount of support per student is capped at $150. If funding per student were not capped, fewer than four million new students per year would gain internal connectivity, the FCC said.

According to the FCC proposal, schools would be required to contribute at least 15% of the cost of a Wi-Fi deployment – up from a 10% level today.


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Pirate Bay Goes To College: Free Textbook Torrent Downloads Soar Amid Rising Costs | Jeff Stone | IBTimes.com

Pirate Bay Goes To College: Free Textbook Torrent Downloads Soar Amid Rising Costs | Jeff Stone | IBTimes.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

American college students struggling to afford textbooks are sharing copies of their books illegally on TextbookNova, the Pirate Bay and some of the same torrent sites that crippled the music industry. Many of the most popular books are available for free, with a correlation between the number of downloaders and the price of the book.

The College Board estimated in January that the average student spends $1,200 annually on textbooks. The price of books skyrocketed by 82 percent in the years between 2002 and 2013, a number high enough to convince 65 percent of students to decide against buying a book, according to a Government Accountability Office survey. Ninety-four percent of the GAO respondents who didn’t buy a book out of financial concerns admitted they did so even with the expectation that it would hurt them academically.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released numbers indicating the price of textbooks has risen by 800 percent over the past 30 years.

Some educators have begun to utilize open source technology, but numbers on popular piracy sites make it clear those professors are the exception to the norm. Students are uploading PDF copies of the books and sharing them on textbook-centric peer-to-peer sites as well as torrent behemoths like the Pirate Bay and KickAss Torrents.


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You Are Asking The Wrong Questions About Education Technology | Jordan Shapiro | Forbes.com

You Are Asking The Wrong Questions About Education Technology | Jordan Shapiro | Forbes.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Education technology is trendy. Hardly a day goes by that I don’t read an article or have a conversation in which someone makes the familiar argument that “education is the one industry that hasn’t embraced the technologies of the 21st Century.” The world has changed–so the story goes–and while business has adapted, school hasn’t.

It sounds convincing. We should certainly embrace tools and technologies that will help educators become more impactful. But we should do it because it works, not for the sake of modern humanity’s obsession with progress, newness, innovation, and disruption. These buzzwords of the industrial age, let’s remember, paved the road that led to the current landscape of education.
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The very notion of education as an industry is problematic. School is about transmitting values and principles from one generation to the next, not skillfully organizing labor toward productivity. Education is the child-rearing activity of civilization. We nurture our young into reflective citizens by teaching them the social and epistemological agreements of an increasingly global collective. Educators need to understand that reading, writing, and arithmetic are primarily just mutually agreed upon languages through which we make meaning out of human experience. These disciplines are essentially useful, but only fashionably industrial. That is to say: the languages themselves have much more longevity than the current applications.

For industry, however, applicability is always prioritized over ideology. Thus, running schools according to the wisdom of the business world is precisely the thought paradigm which led to the high stakes testing procedures that currently plague the United States. We account for learning outcomes as if they were profit margins. We measure the dividends returned on technology and infrastructure investments. We see children as industrial resources evaluated according to their ability to download ‘workplace skills.’ And for some bizarre reason–and despite all evidence to the contrary–we continue to expect that these metrics will somehow correlate with intelligent, ethical, and responsible adult individuals. We’ve chosen the wrong perspective.

Implicitly arguing that the problem is poor implementation of industrialization, education pundits around the world often blame inefficient government infrastructures for preventing schools from embracing the appropriate technologies. But when I look at the multi-national corporate world, I’m thankful that bureaucracy provides a necessary filter–it keeps us from moving too fast. After all, the global economy is itself evidence that the hastiness of the digital revolution has been as tumultuous as it has been beneficial. Popular technologies have, in many cases, increased corporate productivity and profitability at the expense of the humans who operate them.


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Model Of The Solar System Has Been Wrong This Entire Time! | EarthWeAreOne.com

Model Of The Solar System Has Been Wrong This Entire Time! | EarthWeAreOne.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

If you walk into any classroom today, and likely ever since you were a kid yourself , there is one model being taught regarding the structure of our Solar System. It’s the model that looks like this image above.


It’s the traditional orbiting model of the Solar System, or the Heliocentric Model, where our planets rotate around the sun.


While this isn’t entirely wrong, it’s omitting one very important fact. The sun isn’t stationary. The sun is actually travelling at extremely fast speeds, upward of 828,000 km/hr, or 514,000 miles an hour.


Our whole Solar System is orbiting the Milky Way Galaxy. In fact it takes 220-Million Years for the Sun to orbit our Galaxy.


Knowing this to be true, our visual model of the Solar System needs to change, and has been inaccurate this whole time. In fact, our planets are barreling through space with the sun, and literally creating a giant Cosmic DNA Helix, and a vortex similar to our Milky Way Galaxy.


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Intel putting 3D scanners in consumer tablets next year, phones to follow | Eric Mack | GizMag.com

Intel putting 3D scanners in consumer tablets next year, phones to follow | Eric Mack | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Intel has been working on a 3D scanner small enough to fit in the bezel of even the thinnest tablets. The company aims to have the technology in tablets from 2015, with CEO Brian Krzanich telling the crowd at MakerCon in New York on Thursday that he hopes to put the technology in phones as well.

"Our goal is to just have a tablet that you can go out and buy that has this capability," Krzanich said. "Eventually within two or three years I want to be able to put it on a phone."

Krzanich and a few of his colleagues demonstrated the technology, which goes by the name "RealSense," on stage using a human model and an assistant who simply circled the model a few times while pointing a tablet at the subject. A full 3D rendering of the model slowly appeared on the screen behind the stage in just a few minutes. The resulting 3D models can be manipulated with software or sent to a 3D printer.


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Machiavelli and Oligarchic Democracy | Del Lorenzo Savio and Matteo Mameli | Turth-Out.org

Machiavelli and Oligarchic Democracy | Del Lorenzo Savio and Matteo Mameli | Turth-Out.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Machiavelli wrote that when we are trying to understand politics and the history of human societies, much can be explained in terms of the eternal conflict between two fundamental desires.


One is the desire of the grandi - that is, the super-rich and the super-powerful - to protect their wealth and power, and to accumulate more wealth and power.


The other is the desire of ordinary citizens - that is, anyone who is not super-rich or super-powerful - to live in peace and freedom without being subjected to the predatory activities of the grandi.


As stressed by John McCormick, Machiavelli thought that the predatory tendencies of oligarchs were the gravest threat to the liberty and well-being of ordinary people.

Machiavelli was right. Many things have changed, but what was true then is still true today. Oligarchic appetites are an enormous threat to liberty and freedom. Machiavelli used his writings to try to convince those in power that oligarchic greed needed to be curbed; his critique of oligarchic domination has often been misunderstood.


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NASA's Curiosity Rover reaches Mount Sharp | David Szondy | GizMag.com

NASA's Curiosity Rover reaches Mount Sharp | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

After over two years on Mars, NASA’s Curiosity rover has reached its primary objective, Mount Sharp. Located in the center of Gale Crater, where the unmanned explorer has been studying geology of the Red Planet, Mount Sharp will be the centerpiece of a new program of study to locate areas where could or once could have supported microbial life.

NASA says that Curiosity will now follow a shorter path than originally planned by heading up the slopes of the mountain rather than carrying on to the farther Murray Buttes. The agency says that this decision was due in part to a better understanding of Martian geology gathered since landing in 2012, though NASA may also be taking into account a blistering review (PDF) of the Curiosity team’s science performance that suggested better focus in future.

Another reason for the change of course was to take some of the pressure off Curiosity’s aluminum wheels, which have worn more quickly than expected and have suffered from the sharps rocks on the Martian terrain – there are now holes in four of the probe’s six wheels. In response to this, the team is sending Curiosity over a milder, more sandy path.


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NASA probe will reveal 3D architecture of forests from space | Richard Moss | GizMag.com

NASA probe will reveal 3D architecture of forests from space | Richard Moss | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

NASA is developing a laser-based instrument for deployment on the International Space Station that will probe the depths of Earth's forests from space in a bid to reveal more about their role in the planet's carbon cycle. After its completion in 2018, this Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) lidar will join the likes of the Soil Moisture Active Passive satellite in studying Earth's vegetation on a global scale.

"GEDI will be a tremendous new resource for studying Earth's vegetation," said Piers Sellers, deputy director of the Sciences and Exploration Directorate at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. "In particular, the GEDI data will provide us with global-scale insights into how much carbon is being stored in the forest biomass. This information will be particularly powerful when combined with the historical record of changes captured by the U.S.’s long-standing program of Earth-orbiting satellites, such as Landsat and MODIS."

GEDI carries three specialized lasers and an optics system that divides the three beams into 14 tracks on the ground. These tracks will be spaced 1,640 (500 meters) apart, covering a total of around four miles (6.5 kilometers). And the system will systematically canvas all land between 50 degrees latitude north and south – enough to cover most of the tropical and temperate forests.


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Spaceship Earth Grants competition offers chance of a trip into space | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com

Spaceship Earth Grants competition offers chance of a trip into space | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Spaceship Earth Grants (SEG), a US public-benefit organization and an affiliate of the Buckminster Fuller Institute, has launched a contest that aims to give away one space flight for every 50,000 applications it receives. With a judging panel made up of former NASA astronauts, industry experts, space enthusiasts, and others, this new program aims to be a crowd-driven and crowd-funded effort to send private citizens into space.

The winner (or winners) will receive a trip aboard a spaceflight provider flight available at the time of the award announcement. In other words, should the likes of space tourism companies like Virgin Galactic or Space Adventures be capable of offering trips into space at the time, then the winning candidate would be booked aboard one of their flights. Subject, of course, to availability and the various restrictions one or all of these companies may impose, along with the rider that no promise is made to be able to fly on a particular carrier.

Included in the major prize will be a Spaceflight Training package from SEG's Star Harbor Space Training Academ, and all travel expenses, including basic airfare to and from the participants home country or state, along with meals, ground transport, and accommodation.

To be eligible, applicants need to be at least 18 years of age. To enter, participants must first create an account on the SEG website and then pen a short essay (with the option to also submit a 90-second video) in answer to the question: "How will you use this experience to better yourself, your community or our planet?" The answer to this question will form the primary selection criteria regarding the applicant’s demonstration of a clear ability to communicate this benefit to the judges.


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Why big data evangelists should be sent to re-education camps | Stilgherrian | ZDNet

Why big data evangelists should be sent to re-education camps | Stilgherrian | ZDNet | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The last time I wrote about big data, in July, I called it a big, distracting bubble. But it's worse than that. Big data is an ideology. A religion. One of its most important gospels is, of course, at Wired.

In 2008, Chris Anderson talked up a thing called The Petabyte Age in The End of Theory: The Data Deluge Makes the Scientific Method Obsolete.

"The new availability of huge amounts of data, along with the statistical tools to crunch these numbers, offers a whole new way of understanding the world. Correlation supersedes causation, and science can advance even without coherent models, unified theories, or really any mechanistic explanation at all," he wrote.

Declaring the scientific method dead after 2,700 years is quite a claim. Hubris, even. But, Anderson wrote, "There's no reason to cling to our old ways." Oh, OK then.

Now, this isn't the first set of claims that correlation would supersede causation, and that the next iteration of computing practices would "make everything different".

"Japan's Fifth Generation Project of the early 1980s generated similar enthusiasm, and many believed it would make Japan dominant in computing within a decade, based on parallel processing and an earlier iteration of 'massive' databases. Now, obviously that didn't happen, and it was an expensive and embarrassing failure," said Graham Greenleaf, professor of Law and Information Systems at the University of New South Wales, on Tuesday night.

Greenleaf was speaking at the launch of the latest UNSW Law Journal, to be posted on its website early next week, which includes a theme section on "Communications Surveillance, Big Data, and the Law". Greenleaf described that section as "pessimistic".

Privacy issues are obviously a concern. As I've said before, privacy fears could burst the second dot-com bubble. But the journal articles also cover issues of discrimination, automated decision making, democracy, and the public's right to access information.


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Art group MMMM..'s typography based bus stop in Baltimore | NetDost.com

Art group MMMM..'s typography based bus stop in Baltimore | NetDost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Art group MMMM has created a simple and playful letter shaped bus stop for the Baltimore's bus system.


The Bus stop doesnt loose any of its functionality owing to the unorthodox design, it provides all the facility a normal bus stop would provide.


This public art sculpture cum street furniture is created using wooden planks riveted to a steel frame which gives it a familiar look.


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Geek of the Week: LA's first chief data officer | Asher Klein | Los Angeles Register

Geek of the Week: LA's first chief data officer | Asher Klein | Los Angeles Register | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Turns out a political philosophy and policy nerd has a hard time just thinking about those issues when his bosses find out he’s good at coding.


That was Abhi Nemani’s experience as an intern at political-advocacy nonprofits like the Center for American Progress: he always wound up being the guy doing tech stuff.


“I was always kind of the geek in the room, and I could build a web app or a website pretty quickly,” Nemani said.


It worked out for him, since Nemani combined his interest in politics and government with technology as one of the first people to show cities can hire chief data officers. He became L.A.’s first chief data officer, a job he started Sept. 2.


Just 25, he’s already spent six years on “getting entrepreneurs to solve the problems that governments face,” as he put it in an interview last month, by building up an innovative startup called Code for America.


His work shines a Silicon Valley light on the problems facing Sacramento or Washington, asking how to drive sustainable public sector innovation through things like startup accelerators, so people outside of government can chip in, as it were.


“Instead of another consumer game, they might say, let me build something for government. Let me build something for the people that matter,” Nemani said.


That’s part of his mission now in Los Angeles. It comes at a time when the city is heavily ramping up its investment in technology.


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Blended Learning: Making it Work in Your Classroom | Edutopia.org

Blended Learning: Making it Work in Your Classroom | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Blended learning is a core part of P. K. Yonge Developmental Research School. Since 2010, the school has taken a schoolwide approach to integrating digital content as part of their instructional framework. Driven by changes already happening at the higher education levels and the need to prepare students for the 21st century workplace, blended learning provides the school with a variety of ways to address student needs, differentiate instruction, and provide teachers with data for instructional decision-making.

P. K. Yonge views blended learning as the combination of digital content and activity with face-to-face content and activity. It looks very different in each class at the school. When a teacher has an activity that works well face-toface, there isn't any reason to look for a digital replacement. If they can find something digital that is more effective or efficient, then that is implemented.


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Silicon Valley has a proud record on innovation, a shameful one on equality | Jesse Jackson Op Ed | The Guardian

Silicon Valley has a proud record on innovation, a shameful one on equality | Jesse Jackson Op Ed | The Guardian | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A new climate of change, hope and progress is now gripping Silicon Valley and the hi-tech industry. Inclusion and equal opportunity in the technology industry are the 21st-century civil rights imperatives. They are today's dynamic, disruptive change agents reshaping the culture and character of the hi-tech industry.


Technology is supposed to be about innovation, opportunity and inclusion, but, sadly, patterns of exclusion remain the order of the day. In fact, the tech industry is perhaps America's worst industry when it comes to inclusion and diversity.


Rainbow Push, the social justice organisation I founded, has brought this message to the industry through direct participation and speaking at the shareholder meetings of HP, eBay, Facebook and Google. What we've been saying is that Silicon Valley is America's valley: built through American R&D, American education, American tax credits and tax havens. It should reflect America's best values and principles.


We also focused on the hard data documenting the race and gender composition of the tech industry's workforce, challenging an industry that staunchly resisted efforts to reveal data about minority participation in the industry. In 2010 and 2013, major technology companies successfully went to court to prevent the release of such data.


Since Rainbow Push launched its digital connections initiative in March of this year, these same companies, including Google, Apple, Linkedin, Yahoo, Salesforce and Pandora, have now released it.


The facts don't lie: black people comprise just 1–2% of the tech workforce of most companies, Latinos just 2–4%. Women lag far behind men. But we've gone from resistance to release, creating an unprecedented climate of transparency. The industry is now facing up to the sobering facts on inclusion and diversity and moving to change them.


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The World as it is: The Influence of Religion | David Pence Commentary | StarTribune.com

The World as it is: The Influence of Religion | David Pence Commentary | StarTribune.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Seldom has it been more important for Americans to form a realistic assessment of the world scene. But our current governing, college-­educated class suffers one glaring blind spot.

Modern American culture produces highly individualistic career and identity paths for upper- and middle-class males and females. Power couples abound, often sporting different last names. But deeply held religious identities and military loyalties are less common. Few educated Americans have any direct experience with large groups of men gathered in intense prayer or battle. Like other citizens of the globalized corporate/consumer culture, educated Americans are often widely traveled but not deeply rooted in obligation to a particular physical place, a faith or a kinship.

Most of the 7 billion people on Earth today are not such modern atoms. As in the past, they live in territorial ethnic groups and language communities — extended family units that in turn connect with national and religious identities uniting adult males. Such brotherhoods blend the blood ties of kinship with the shared blood sacrifice of religious military covenants.

If we are to be realists, we must understand that such large communal loyalties, for which men will gladly fight and die, explain a great many of the world’s conflicts ­— and mark the pathways to peace. American and European educated elites may be outgrowing the “superstition” of religion, the “chauvinism” of nations. But armed men elsewhere navigate by a different compass.

Let us enter their world for a moment, in the name of realism.


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'The idea that young people are digital natives is a myth' | Angela McFarane | TES News

'The idea that young people are digital natives is a myth' | Angela McFarane | TES News | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Myths, by their very nature, are powerful things. For many years, the schools in Bristol were among the lowest performing in England. Despite many initiatives and much hard work by schools and the local council, they remained firmly at the bottom of the league tables.

A national survey of secondary-school-age young people revealed an interesting difference about the youth of Bristol. More than any other group, they believed that they would do well in life but that school would make little contribution to their success. It seems that they all knew of someone who had a cousin who had a mate who spent all their time playing video games and now made a fortune making them. Or had been discovered in a shopping centre and was now a top model, a reality TV star or had won the lottery. The idea that success and hard work were now uncoupled is a very compelling one and, it seems, one that had taken root in Bristol with far-reaching effects for the school system.

Another myth which it seems is playing havoc with our thinking about effective schooling is that of the digital native. The idea that anyone under 25 has some innate mastery of all things digital is almost taken as fact. Admittedly, we do have a very technologically savvy generation of teenagers and, compared to their older teachers, they may well be more confident with a wider range of tools and services. Or at least some of them will, not least as they have more time to spend using them. But a willingness to spend time and confidence do not necessarily add up to mastery. While there are young people who are doing remarkable things with digital technology, many, probably most, are rarely progressing beyond the trivial and banal.

During two long-term studies, which looked at learners who had personal connected devices or were using a powerful online learning community, we found that many users struggled to operate the basic tools. Those who were more active users, rather than somehow miraculously working it all out for themselves, in fact belonged to groups of active users among both friends and families. It seems that learning to be a competent user of technology is a social and cultural experience.


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"Solid" light reveals new insights about quantum mechanics | Richard Moss | GizMag.com

"Solid" light reveals new insights about quantum mechanics | Richard Moss | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Scientists have been observing the wave-particle duality of light for centuries, but never has light been seen to behave like matter. Until now, that is. Researchers at Princeton University have devised a method for giving light the properties of liquids and solids, with huge potential ramifications in the study of quantum mechanics and other areas of physics.

They are not, we should be clear, actually transforming light into a crystal, or any other form of matter – though turning light into matter and binding its photons together to form simple molecules are both being explored elsewhere. Rather, the research involved locking individual photons together in a lattice – what the researchers describe as "macroscopic quantum self-trapping" – such that they become like a solid or fluid object.

"Here we set up a situation where light effectively behaves like a particle in the sense that two photons can interact very strongly," said researcher Hakan Türeci, an assistant professor of electrical engineering at Princeton. "In one mode of operation, light sloshes back and forth like a liquid; in the other, it freezes."

The researchers constructed a small device made of superconducting materials that contain 100 billion atoms. These atoms were engineered to act together as a single unit, or an artificial atom. The artificial atom was then placed close to a superconducting wire carrying photons, whereupon the photons became entangled (linked or correlated, without necessarily being physically connected) such that they began exhibiting the properties of atoms.


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Dwarf galaxy suggests black holes may be more common than previously thought | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com

Dwarf galaxy suggests black holes may be more common than previously thought | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Astronomers from the University of Utah have discovered a dwarf galaxy that is the smallest ever recorded with a supermassive black hole at its center. The galaxy, M60-UCD1, which is located around 54 million light years from our solar system near the M60 galaxy, has been found to contain a black hole with a mass equivalent to 21 million times that of our own sun and whose presence may suggest that such enormous black holes could be more common than previously thought.

"It is the smallest and lightest object that we know of that has a supermassive black hole," said Anil Seth, lead author of the dwarf galaxy study. "It’s also one of the most black hole-dominated galaxies known."

The researchers claim that their discovery, which was made using the Gemini North telescope on Hawaii’s Mauna Kea and images captured by the Hubble Space Telescope, indicates that a large number of other ultra-compact galaxies may also harbor supermassive black holes. Furthermore, they also believe these diminutive galaxies could be all that remains of larger galaxies that have been ripped asunder during collisions with other galaxies.


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