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VA: Youth Video Production Camp | Arlington Independent Media

VA: Youth Video Production Camp | Arlington Independent Media | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

This summer, take a break from watching television and playing video games and learn to make a movie instead! Tell a story, collaborate with others, learn the basics of video production, produce a movie that will air on cable television AND become a well-informed, critical-thinking media consumer - all in two weeks! 

 

 AIM’s Video Production Camp is for youth ages 9-13. Working together, along with the guidance of specialized instructors and media professionals, participants will develop a script, shoot footage, and edit their own short video. In the process, they will be introduced to the basic concepts of media literacy and critical thinking.

 

At AIM, we want to change the way youth relate to media. We teach skills that transform youth from passive  consumers of media to active creators of media. AIM Video Production Camp will not only give kids the technical and creative skills needed to produce video, but it will also help them become more critical consumers of media.

 

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Digital Media Creation Learning, Production & Distribution Centers are coming online around the World to fill the Need for Content
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Doing it right: Quality 3D prints are all about 3D printing materials | Philippe Chiasson | Inside3DP.com

Doing it right: Quality 3D prints are all about 3D printing materials | Philippe Chiasson | Inside3DP.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

When it comes to 3D printing there is a lot of discussion about which printer is the best. Anyone who has browsed the internet looking for a filament based printer (also known as Fused Deposition Modeling) has seen ample charts comparing kits to assembled models, delta to cartesian style printing and everything else in between. However, with the FDM 3D printer market quickly becoming saturated, the quality of the filament is often being overlooked.


Many people are unaware that one of the greatest contributors to a high quality print is not necessarily in the printer itself, but the base materials. Low quality filament can lead to many jams, inconsistent gaps in layers and sometimes it can even damage your printer. To help you overcome some of the pitfalls of low grade filament, here are a few tips to keep your printer running smoothly.


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5 Ways to Design Effective Rewards for Game-Based Learning | Vicki Davis Blog | Edutopia.org

5 Ways to Design Effective Rewards for Game-Based Learning | Vicki Davis Blog | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Learning by playing games can be a powerful way to teach.


Just as drama coaches set the stage for a play, smart teachers set the stage for game-based learning.


I use these five easy elements in my classroom to get my students ready to learn as they play.


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Teachers enlivening classrooms with free role-playing game | Innovate My School

Teachers enlivening classrooms with free role-playing game | Innovate My School | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Classcraft, the first online educational role-playing game that teachers and students play together for free, recently announced the launch of a fully-updated version of their product for the new academic year. This revised version boasts new features such as free iOS apps for iPhone and iPad, interactive forums, student analytics and customisable characters, all of which will be useful for both teachers and students. Also included are French, Chinese, Dutch, German, and Spanish translations, which has made the game even more accessible to classrooms worldwide. To date, more than 30,000 students in 50 countries around the world are playing the game.

In order to keep students engaged, the Quebec-based team of education professionals are keen to inject the mechanisms of popular social games into learning. Playing in teams, students can become mages, warriors and healers, each with unique powers. The more a student excels, the more they gain points and real powers, like the ability to take notes into an exam. Teams can lose points by disrupting the classroom or submitting homework late; consequences can include detention and and less time to finish assignments.


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NASA's MAVEN spacecraft provides first look at Martian upper atmosphere | David Szondy | GizMag.com

NASA's MAVEN spacecraft provides first look at Martian upper atmosphere | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

After completing its 10 month-long voyage, NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft is taking its first look at the Martian atmosphere. Part of the unmanned orbiter’s commissioning phase, it limbered up its sensors by observing the effect of a massive solar event and returned its first images of the fountain-like coronas that are slowly peeling away the Red Planet's atmosphere.

Launched in November of last year from Cape Canaveral, Florida, MAVEN arrived at Mars on September 21 and has since moved to a lower orbit. Its first observations included taking ultraviolet images of the tenuous oxygen, hydrogen, and carbon coronas in the upper atmosphere, and creating a comprehensive map of its ozone layers. During this process, NASA scientists say that the instruments are working better than expected.

MAVEN’s main mission is to study the effect of the Sun on the Martian atmosphere and has hit the ground running. On September 26, a flare erupted from the Sun, arriving at Mars on the 29th, where it was observed by MAVEN's Solar Energetic Particle instrument. These events occur at irregular intervals and scientists believe that they are a major reason why the Martian atmosphere is so tenuous. Energetic solar particles are powerful enough to strip away air molecules. Earth's magnetic field protects us from this, but the Martian magnetic field is extremely weak and spotty.


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US Air Force's top secret X-37B spaceplane breaks orbital endurance record | David Szondy | GizMag.com

US Air Force's top secret X-37B spaceplane breaks orbital endurance record | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A secret mission came to a public end this morning as the US Air Force’s top secret X-37B spaceplane landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.


The unmanned reusable spacecraft touched down on the runway like a conventional aircraft this morning at 9:24 am EDT after a record-breaking 674 days in orbit. According to the Air Force, the automatic landing was monitored by the 30th Space Wing and occurred without incident.

The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle mission 3 (OTV-3) launched on October 25, 2012 atop an Atlas/Centaur rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, and has achieved the longest time in orbit by a reusable spacecraft; breaking the record set by OTV-2 in 2012, which launched on March 5, 2011 and returned to Earth on June 16, 2012. With Friday’s landing, the program has so far clocked up a total of 1,367 days in orbit.


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50% of Universities will be Bankrupt in 10-15 years, a Second Look | Chris Hilger | ExtensionEngine.com

50% of Universities will be Bankrupt in 10-15 years, a Second Look | Chris Hilger | ExtensionEngine.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

One of our most popular posts this summer was “50% of Universities Will Be Bankrupt in 10-15 years”. This article was a summary of one of Clayton Christensen’s talks on Disruptive Innovation.


As a follow-up, we wanted to take a deeper look into one of the famous charts Christensen uses to demonstrate disruptive innovation, and describe its relation to Higher Ed.


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The university experiment: Campus as laboratory | Nature.com

The university experiment: Campus as laboratory | Nature.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Modern universities are heirs to a thousand-year tradition of scholarship. But they are also being buffeted by twenty-first-century upheavals in technology, economics and society. Through trial, error and experiment, they are now trying to find new ways of thinking and acting that will help them to prosper.

GERMANY: The innovative universityBy Alison Abbott

When chemist Wolfgang Herrmann began his first term as president of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) in 1995, he was determined to challenge an academic status quo that had prevailed for more than two decades.


Germany had responded to the social upheaval of the 1960s by declaring that all universities were equivalent and taking steps to prevent the development of a privileged elite, a move that tended to undermine any competitive spirit in the faculty. New rules had also guaranteed a place for any student with a school-leaving certificate — which meant that universities had no say in who took their courses — and kept faculty members bound to bureaucratic civil-service laws. The result was an inward-looking ivory-tower culture that had stagnated intellectually and financially.

Herrmann's vision was to turn the TUM into a nimbler, more internationally competitive 'entrepreneurial university' that would encourage innovation, risk-taking and business initiative among students and faculty members alike. To do that, he restructured the TUM along the lines of successful US institutions such as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge. In 1999, he made one of his first — and, within Germany, pioneering — reforms by installing a board of trustees that replaced the Bavarian education ministry's direct control of the TUM and allowed for much quicker decision-making.


Since then, he has used that freedom to introduce some of the first German graduate schools: institutions that provide PhD candidates with rigorous common standards for coursework, instead of leaving them to the vagaries of individual supervisors. Herrmann has also created a private fund-raising foundation to allow flexible and independent financing of some university projects; formed an institute of advanced studies; and launched a tenure-track system that obliges the university to promote and permanently employ academics who make the grade, and sack those who do not. The latter system is a familiar concept in the United States, but revolutionary in Germany.


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Ohio Manufacturing Institute's curator insight, Today, 8:40 AM

Culture changes in regard to applied research and industry outreach are part of the recipe.

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Guide to Creating Tech-Friendly Classroom Management Strategies | Edudemic.com

Guide to Creating Tech-Friendly Classroom Management Strategies | Edudemic.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

If you’re a teacher who grew up in the pre-Internet era, you understand how tech innovation has revamped the educational landscape. Gone are the days of the blackboard and mimeograph. Teachers today carry a heavier (and more complicated) toolbox than ever before. The question is, how efficiently are you using your tools?

One of your jobs as a modern-day teacher is to invite your students to the technology table. Since most kids get a lot of their at-home entertainment from computers, tablets, and smartphones, it’s not hard to entice them. The trick is to convince them that tech gadgets aren’t just for entertainment; they’re also for learning.

But how do you convince a die-hard Zelda fan that algebra games are fun on the iPad? How do you persuade a Facebook addict that Edmodo can be just as fun when shared with friends?

Your kids won’t reach their learning goals if you don’t lure them in. Also, once you hook them, there’s also a question of keeping them under your control. Any teacher with experience knows that classroom management is a delicate dance that often crumbles at the first misstep.

Relax. Take a deep breath. Hold the following strategies close to your heart as you lead your students on their next high-tech adventure.


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BATs Challenge Arne Duncan to Listen to Them | DianeRavitch.nct

Marla Kilfoyle and Melissa Tomlinson wrote this challenge to Arne Duncan in response to his article in The Washington Post, where he salutes the cutback on testing for which he is responsible, where he simultaneously salutes high-stakes testing and warns of its overuse.


He claims that other nations are leaving us in the dust, but neglects to mention that any shortfall occurred on his watch. The combination of No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top have left the U.S., in Duncan’s own words, in an era of “educational stagnation.” He promises more of the same.


Kilfoyle and Tomlinson urge him to listen to experienced teachers:


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Earth's magnetic field could reverse in just one lifetime | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com

Earth's magnetic field could reverse in just one lifetime | Colin Jeffrey | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A new study by a team of scientists from Italy, France, Columbia University and the University of California, Berkeley, demonstrates that the Earth's magnetic field could change polarity in less than 100 years. The last magnetic reversal occurred some 786,000 years ago and was previously thought to have taken several thousand years but, if the researchers are right, the real time it may take for the flip to occur could actually be closer to the span of a human life.

At the heart of the Earth is a solid inner core of iron with a temperature of around 5,700° C (10,200° F), and about two thirds of the size of the Moon. It is solid at this temperature because of immense gravitational force, however, it also has an outer layer about 2,000 km (1,240 mi) thick composed mainly of iron and nickel that is fluid. It is the flow and movement of this liquid iron that generates electric currents which, in turn, create magnetic fields.

Changes in temperature, the flow up and down of various metals, and reactions to centuries-long changes in composition densities are all theorized to be in some way responsible for the shift in the direction and intensity of this magnetic field.

The new research into this phenomenon is based on measurements taken of the magnetic field alignment of sedimentary layers in a prehistoric lake site in the Sulmona basin of the Apennine Mountains east of Rome, Italy, which show the change in magnetic alignment of material captured as sediment and frozen in time.


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The myth of religious violence | Karen Armstrong | The Guardian

The myth of religious violence | Karen Armstrong | The Guardian | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

As we watch the fighters of the Islamic State (Isis) rampaging through the Middle East, tearing apart the modern nation-states of Syria and Iraq created by departing European colonialists, it may be difficult to believe we are living in the 21st century. The sight of throngs of terrified refugees and the savage and indiscriminate violence is all too reminiscent of barbarian tribes sweeping away the Roman empire, or the Mongol hordes of Genghis Khan cutting a swath through China, Anatolia, Russia and eastern Europe, devastating entire cities and massacring their inhabitants. Only the wearily familiar pictures of bombs falling yet again on Middle Eastern cities and towns – this time dropped by the United States and a few Arab allies – and the gloomy predictions that this may become another Vietnam, remind us that this is indeed a very modern war.

The ferocious cruelty of these jihadist fighters, quoting the Qur’an as they behead their hapless victims, raises another distinctly modern concern: the connection between religion and violence. The atrocities of Isis would seem to prove that Sam Harris, one of the loudest voices of the “New Atheism”, was right to claim that “most Muslims are utterly deranged by their religious faith”, and to conclude that “religion itself produces a perverse solidarity that we must find some way to undercut”. Many will agree with Richard Dawkins, who wrote in The God Delusion that “only religious faith is a strong enough force to motivate such utter madness in otherwise sane and decent people”. Even those who find these statements too extreme may still believe, instinctively, that there is a violent essence inherent in religion, which inevitably radicalises any conflict – because once combatants are convinced that God is on their side, compromise becomes impossible and cruelty knows no bounds.

Despite the valiant attempts by Barack Obama and David Cameron to insist that the lawless violence of Isis has nothing to do with Islam, many will disagree. They may also feel exasperated. In the west, we learned from bitter experience that the fanatical bigotry which religion seems always to unleash can only be contained by the creation of a liberal state that separates politics and religion. Never again, we believed, would these intolerant passions be allowed to intrude on political life. But why, oh why, have Muslims found it impossible to arrive at this logical solution to their current problems? Why do they cling with perverse obstinacy to the obviously bad idea of theocracy? Why, in short, have they been unable to enter the modern world? The answer must surely lie in their primitive and atavistic religion.


But perhaps we should ask, instead, how it came about that we in the west developed our view of religion as a purely private pursuit, essentially separate from all other human activities, and especially distinct from politics. After all, warfare and violence have always been a feature of political life, and yet we alone drew the conclusion that separating the church from the state was a prerequisite for peace. Secularism has become so natural to us that we assume it emerged organically, as a necessary condition of any society’s progress into modernity. Yet it was in fact a distinct creation, which arose as a result of a peculiar concatenation of historical circumstances; we may be mistaken to assume that it would evolve in the same fashion in every culture in every part of the world.


We now take the secular state so much for granted that it is hard for us to appreciate its novelty, since before the modern period, there were no “secular” institutions and no “secular” states in our sense of the word. Their creation required the development of an entirely different understanding of religion, one that was unique to the modern west.


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Kara Walker Addresses Reactions to 'A Subtlety' Installation | Clover Hope | Jezebel.com

Kara Walker Addresses Reactions to 'A Subtlety' Installation | Clover Hope | Jezebel.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Remember all those obnoxious people who took selfies with Kara Walker's "A Subtlety" installation this past summer? The artist finally addressed the foolery in her first interview since the exhibit wrapped in July.

The photos, which were searchable on Instagram or Twitter via the hashtag #karawalkerdomino, were a classic example of the problem with white gaze in the realm of black art and how easily ignorant jokes can undermine historical significance.

Carolina A. Miranda spoke with Walker for the L.A. Times at a sold-out event on Oct. 11 for the Broad's "Un-Private Collection" talk series, in which Walker and film director Ava DuVernay discussed their artistic process as black creatives.

Speaking with Miranda before the event, Walker addressed some of the responses from white viewers of her art. The full name of the installation: "The Marvelous Sugar Baby, an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant."

Walker says:


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Copyrights and Wrongs (9-12) | Common Sense Media

Copyrights and Wrongs (9-12) | Common Sense Media | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Students explore the legal and ethical dimensions of respecting creative work. First, they learn a basic foundation of legal principles and vocabulary related to copyright. They understand how such factors as the rules of copyright law, the values and intent of the original creator, and the audience and purpose should affect their decisions about using the creative work of others. Using the Mad Men Student Handout, students then apply these principles to a simulation activity in which they act as advertising executives who have to choose a photo for an ad campaign.

Students will be able to ...

  • identify the legal and ethical considerations involved in using the creative work of others.
  • understand an individual’s rights and responsibilities as a creator and consumer of content.
  • practice critical thinking and ethical decision making about the use of creative works.


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NASA Mars probes watch comet near-miss | David Szondy | GizMag.com

NASA Mars probes watch comet near-miss | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

After a dramatic, one-in-a-million-years close encounter between Mars and comet Siding Spring on Sunday, all five functioning US Mars probes survived and are reportedly healthy. NASA confirms that the Mars Odyssey, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), and the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) orbiter, along with the rovers Curiosity and Opportunity came through without a scratch and are returning valuable data on the comet.

According to NASA, C/2013 A1 Siding Spring is a newcomer to the inner Solar System as it makes its first ever visit from the Oort Cloud that lies on the outer fringes of the system. Discovered in 2013 by Australia’s Siding Spring Observatory, its trajectory was calculated to take it so close to Mars this year that astronomers at one time feared that it might impact the Red Planet. However, as it drew closer, more precise observations showed that it would only come within a cosmic hair’s breadth.

On October 19 at 11:27 am PDT, Siding Spring reached its closest point to Mars, passing within a mere 87,000 mi (139,500 km) of the planet. For comparison, that distance is about a third of the distance between the Earth and the Moon. NASA’s orbiting probes were in no danger of colliding with the comet, but with it traveling at a speed of approximately 125,000 mph (56 km/sec), the dust from its tail that reached Mars 100 minutes after the encounter posed a threat like a blast of shrapnel. To avoid this, NASA ordered the probes to carry out an orbital maneuver that placed Mars between them and the comet during the danger period.

NASA reports that during the encounter all but one orbiter maintained communications, and all were able to carry out observations that may provide scientists with a unique glimpse into what the Solar System was like four billion years ago.


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AP U.S. History: Why “Historical Thinking” Is Controversial | Lindsey Tepe | EdCentral

AP U.S. History: Why “Historical Thinking” Is Controversial | Lindsey Tepe | EdCentral | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

In fourteen hundred ninety-two / Columbus sailed the ocean blue. […]

October 12 their dream came true, / You never saw a happier crew!

Last week, students throughout the country took the day off on Monday in honor of Columbus Day, one of several federal holidays that over the years has increasingly come under public scrutiny. The criticism is warranted: For one, even the novice student of history may recall that Christopher Columbus did not actually land on the continent of North America, but rather in the Bahamas. And that other Europeans likely made the trip before him. Also, Native Americans.

The story of America is a sweeping tale filled with these grand heroes, epic battles, and the continuing struggle for the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. But American history is also full of inconvenient truths pointing out the fallibility of our heroes and the injustices perpetrated throughout the course of building this nation.


For critical thinkers, considering America’s past sins are an opportunity to reflect upon the promises this country has made to its citizens, and the ways that it might do better to meet those promises for everyone. But for those who would rather fit U.S. History into a predefined triumphalist narrative, past sins are embarrassments to hide.

This tension between myth and reality, as Vox’s Libby Nelson pointed out last week, has long been a flashpoint for debate on how history is taught in public schools. Earlier this fall when the College Board—the organization that produces the advanced placement (AP) high school assessments, in addition to the SAT and PSAT—released a new framework for their AP U.S. History course, that flashpoint was quickly ignited on the national stage. Far from dethroning the Common Core State Standards as the most controversial issue in education, as Nelson suggested, this recent controversy proceeds directly from the critical thinking skills emphasized by the Common Core.

The spark was lit when the Republican National Committee (RNC), in a resolution concerning the framework, said that the College Board’s update “reflects a radically revisionist view of American history that emphasizes negative aspects of our nation’s history while omitting or minimizing positive aspects.” From there, the fire spread as conservative commentators and media outlets denounced the changes as unpatriotic, anti-American, and worse: Ben Carson, potential 2016 GOP presidential candidate and frequent contributor to Fox News, indicated that students exposed to the new course framework would be ready to join the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).


Acting on these public denouncements, a local school board member in Jefferson County, Colorado submitted a proposal to formally review school curricula and materials, emphasizing that materials “should promote citizenship, patriotism, essentials and benefits of the free enterprise system.” The proposal indicates that one of the initial projects would be a review of the new AP U.S. History framework. (Since the proposal was submitted, Jefferson County students and teachers have been protesting the board’s proposed actions as a potential avenue for censorship.)


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Librarians Are Dedicated to User Privacy. The Tech They Have to Use Is Not. | April Glaser & Alison Macrina | Slate.com

Librarians Are Dedicated to User Privacy. The Tech They Have to Use Is Not. | April Glaser & Alison Macrina | Slate.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Adobe has made it extremely easy for unwanted eyes to read over the shoulders of library patrons. Earlier this month reports surfaced about how Adobe’s Digital Editions e-book software collects and transmits information about readers in plain text.* That insecure transmission allows the government, corporations, or potential hackers to intercept information about patron reading habits, including book title, author, publisher, subject, description, and every page read.

But the Adobe scandal is just the tip of the iceberg. Libraries sign contracts with technology companies to bring services to patrons all the time, and those contracts are not always favorable to library patrons. Whether it’s an agreement with an ISP to provide the library with Internet access, the publisher of a database of scholarly articles and primary source documents, or a children’s educational game vendor, these contracts are both commonplace and a relatively new development.

But problems arise when those contracts allow vendors to collect large amounts of user information, especially where, as we’ve seen recently, companies don’t always handle that information responsibly.

Libraries have long voiced a deep commitment to privacy in the digital age. In 2006 the American Library Association even issued a resolution on the Retention of Library Usage Records, which expressly urges libraries to avoid unnecessary collection and retention of personally identifiable data, and to transmit any such data over a secure protocol. However, all of this privacy-consciousness may be displaced when libraries are pressured to outsource user services to third parties that have different and inconsistent values.

And that pressure is mounting. Since the last financial crisis, library funding has been under attack. Indeed, in Camden, New Jersey, city officials actually proposed destroying library books. Yet that same crisis means library information services are in sharp demand. People who need to find jobs in a bad economy and can’t afford the steep cost of home Internet rely on libraries for information access, job searches, and email. Meanwhile, upper-middle-class patrons and library donors, less affected by the recession, are asking for library e-books and other digital services.

Facing the existential threat of closure and rumors of irrelevance, many library systems have invested in a digital update—which has led them to sign contracts with technology vendors. Unfortunately, the privacy policies and practices of these vendors aren’t always focused on protecting user data.


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Astronomers use astro-comb to seek Earth-like exoplanets | David Szondy | GizMag.com

Astronomers use astro-comb to seek Earth-like exoplanets | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Astronomers looking for exoplanets are using a fine-toothed comb – a fine-toothed astro-comb, to be precise. And just to make sure it works, the first planet they’ll be looking for is Venus. Developed by astronomers Chih-Hao Li and David Phillips of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, the astro-comb uses a new spectroscopic device installed in the Italian Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG) in the Canary Islands that will detect the beclouded planet by its gravitational effect on the Sun as a test of a potentially valuable tool in the hunt for Earth-like planets beyond our Solar System.

So far, astronomers have detected over 1,700 exoplanets with many more candidates awaiting verification. Most of these have been detected by NASA’s Kepler space telescope using the transit method, where changes in the brightness of a star caused by a planet passing in front of it provide clues to an exoplanet’s presence and characteristics. Considering the number of planets this method has discovered, it can’t be called anything but successful, but it has its limits.

The astro-comb provides another string in the exoplanet hunter's bow. According to the Harvard-Smithsonian team, its a form of frequency comb that detects exoplanets using the "radial velocity method." This is based on a common misunderstanding about how planets orbit their stars.


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TN: New course has Spring Hill High students getting down to business | Jay Powell | ColumbiaDailyHerald.com

TN: New course has Spring Hill High students getting down to business | Jay Powell | ColumbiaDailyHerald.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A new business communications course at Spring Hill High School aims to harness skills for the business world and help students get a leg up before college through customer call center training.

IBEX Global is one of the world’s largest customer contact center networks which, in Spring Hill, oversees customer service for DirecTV, Apple and AT&T. The class brings together all aspects of customer call center operations including Apple Computer basics, customer relations, conduct and video conferencing, although the course isn’t just early training for call centers.

“We’ve tried to tell the kids that it doesn’t matter if you’re going to work at a call center or not, you are learning skills that are going to help you in any work environment,” said instructor Pamela Thurman.

The course, titled “Business Communications,” was first discussed when The Tennessee College of Applied Technology in Pulaski noticed issues with incoming IBEX employees, mainly that they weren’t well-versed on Apple technology. The class, Thurman hopes, will give students the opportunity to be exposed and educated on the technology, nipping it in the bud early on.

“I assumed that most of them could use Macs because they all have iPhones. iPhones help because you know that the little compass means ‘Safari.’ They knew that Safari meant Internet and things like that, but that’s about all they knew and they struggled,” Thurman said.

TCAT initially donated 14 Apple computers to Spring Hill High School specifically for the course.

The course is broken down into two primary sections—electronic media and customer service.

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Instructional Design Models and Theories: Problem-Based Learning | Christopher Pappas | eLearning Industry

Instructional Design Models and Theories: Problem-Based Learning | Christopher Pappas | eLearning Industry | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Problem-based Learning (PBL) was introduced by Howard Burrows, an American physician and medical educator, in the late ’60s within the framework of the medical program at McMaster University in Canada.


The philosophy behind Problem-Based Learning is that knowledge and skills are acquired through a progressive sequence of contextual problems, together with learning materials and the support of the instructor. Its core lies in collaboration, as well as in personal reflection, as one of its main objectives is to foster independent and lifelong learners, where, however, teamwork substantially affects the quality of the work generated.

As a form of active learning, Problem-Based Learning encourages knowledge construction and integrates school learning with real life dynamics, where learners learn how to develop flexible knowledge, and effective problem-solving skills, acquire intrinsic motivation, exchange ideas and collaborate.


Through collaboration, learners are able to identify what they already know, what they need to know, as well as the way and the source of information they need, to successfully reach to the solution of the problem. Instructors facilitate learning, by supporting, guiding and monitoring their learners’ progress, building their confidence, encouraging them to actively participate and stretching their comprehension.


This method gives learners the opportunity to master their problem-solving, thinking, teamwork, communication, time management, research and computing skills.


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PA: Local public-access TV gets participants ready for prime time | Michaelle Bond | Philly.com

PA: Local public-access TV gets participants ready for prime time | Michaelle Bond | Philly.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The 25 or so people squeezed into a small television studio deep inside the Tredyffrin Township municipal building were told to relax, to accept not being ready for prime time.

"The worst problem I have is, people beat themselves up because they're not Steven Spielberg," Gene Donahue, studio manager and a township employee, said to his class of aspiring producers. "Well, guess what? Steven Spielberg wasn't always Steven Spielberg."

Most students don't have experience shooting with a professional camera. But to produce shows on the township's public-access TV station, they don't need any.

And most local-access cable stations carry public meetings, but Tredyffrin Township Television, or "Triple-T V," is one of the few in the region that offers original programming by residents.

The station does broadcast meetings - on a program called T-SPAN. But over the years, its content has included shows about cooking, sports, the environment, and health, even a short-lived sitcom. Donahue, who has been teaching the class for 18 years, has trained some of the producers.

The national trend toward statewide franchising among cable companies has led to a decrease in community-access stations during the last few years, said Gretjen Clausing, executive director of the Philadelphia Public Access Corp., which runs Philadelphia's public-access TV station.

She said the Tredyffrin station is one of the fortunate ones. "It definitely is a challenging environment, so it's great that they have the support of the township," Clausing said.

Over the last 30 years, Tredyffrin residents have produced about 50 individual shows.

Comcast Corp. said it has roughly 100 active channels for community access programming - public-access, educational-access, and government-access - throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and northern Delaware.

Kalen Wilson, 21, flew from where he lived in South Carolina to Tredyffrin, where he grew up, so he could take Tredyffrin Township's class.

"It's a beginning for what I'm going to be doing for, hopefully, the rest of my life," said Wilson, who is studying film and art and is staying with his family.

He plans to volunteer at the Tredyffrin studio, learning what he can and adding the experience to his resumé.


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Air Force’s super-secret space drone comes home | Michael Cooney | NetworkWorld.com

Air Force’s super-secret space drone comes home | Michael Cooney | NetworkWorld.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The Air Force’s acknowledged one thing about its secretive X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle today—it has returned from a 674-day trip into Earth’s orbit – or wherever else it might have snuck off too while it was up there.

According to the Air Force, the X-37B landed at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base on Friday (Oct. 17) at 9:24 a.m. local Pacific time (12:24 p.m.) EDT. It was the only update the public was given since the spacecraft took off on Dec. 11, 2012. It was the Orbital Test Vehicle program’s third mission.

The Air Force in a statement did say "the OTV-3 conducted on-orbit experiments for 674 days during its mission, extending the total number of days spent on-orbit for the OTV program to 1,367 days."

Beyond the take-off and landing, little else is known of this mission.


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NASA readies its fleet of scientific assets for a once-in-a-life-time photoshoot | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com

NASA readies its fleet of scientific assets for a once-in-a-life-time photoshoot | Anthony Wood | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

NASA is busy readying its considerable arsenal of scientific instruments, spacecraft and rovers for a close encounter with comet C/2013 A1 on Sunday, Oct 19. The comet's closest approach with a planetary body will be with Mars, at which point it will miss the Red Planet by only 87,000 miles (140,013 km), less than half the distance between Earth and our moon, traveling at speeds of up to 126,000 mph (202,777 km/h).

C/2013 A1, also referred to as Siding Spring, originated in the Oort Cloud, a doughnut-shaped region of space containing over a trillion icy bodies, located far beyond the orbit of Pluto. Material contained in the Oort Cloud is thought to be more or less unaltered since the birth of the solar system. This essentially makes Siding Spring an icy time capsule, a detailed analysis of which could provide a once-in-a-life-time opportunity to understand the formative period of our immediate celestial neighborhood.

"This is a cosmic science gift that could potentially keep on giving, and the agency’s diverse science missions will be in full receive mode," stated astronaut and associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate John Grunsfeld. "This particular comet has never before entered the inner solar system, so it will provide a fresh source of clues to our solar system's earliest days."


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MIT team throws feasibility of Mars One mission into question | David Szondy | GizMag.com

MIT team throws feasibility of Mars One mission into question | David Szondy | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A team of MIT researchers has completed an analysis of the Mars One mission to colonize the Red Planet that throws the feasibility of the non-profit project into question. By analyzing the mission’s details, the team found that as the plan stands, there are a number of hurdles that must be overcome if the colonists aren't to end up dead within 10 weeks of landing.

Announced in 2012, The Mars One project aims at landing four colonists on Mars in 2025, where they would remain for the rest of their lives with additional colonists sent as Earth and Mars come back into the right launch position every 18 months or so. Living in habitats set up previously by unmanned rovers, the colonists would live off the land for their raw materials while being the focus of a reality television show beamed back to Earth.

Even though Mars One’s call for volunteers resulted in replies from 200,000 applicants, the feasibility of the mission remains an open question. In search of an answer, an MIT team developed a detailed settlement-analysis tool, which they used to carry out an assessment of the colonization plans. They used the plans, mission architecture, logistics, and assumptions proposed by Mars One, as well as the mission timeline and the intended use of existing technology. For comparison, the assessment used the International Space Station’s (ISS) systems and operations as a model.


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Kerry James Marshall, interview: Putting black artists into the textbooks | Hannah Duguid | The Independent

Kerry James Marshall, interview: Putting black artists into the textbooks | Hannah Duguid | The Independent | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The artist Kerry James Marshall became fascinated by art history at a young age, during art lessons at school in the South Central area of Los Angeles – this was the early 1960s, just before the racially fuelled, six-day-long Watt Riots broke out in 1965.


An early hero of his was an artist called Charles White who drew, painted and made vast murals of black people. White was a giant to younger black artists but it troubled Marshall when he studied art history books and White’s name never appeared.

“When I looked at his work it seemed as good as something anyone else ever made, and better than a lot of things other people made, but how come he’s invisible to art history? I became really obsessed with trying to understand why some artists were in art history and other artists were not, “he says.

Now 55, Marshall’s a serious speaker, informed and open about his work. A painter admired by peers such as Luc Tuymans, he paints consciously, deliberately. “It’s not about sensibility, it’s about choice,” he says, “and that choice is always intellectual.”

In Marshall’s series of new paintings, he places the black artist, and subject, back in art history. A desire to be noticed rests within his work, and motivation. Noticed as an artist, and for the figures in his paintings to be noticed, for an imagined and alternative art history, in which black subjects and artists are included, and celebrated.


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The Resurgence of the Public Education Nation | Sarah Jaffe | Truth-Out.org

The Resurgence of the Public Education Nation | Sarah Jaffe | Truth-Out.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Opposition to the Common Core standards is growing nationwide, and despite salacious headlines indicating that right-wingers are simply opposed to anything the Obama administration does, much of it is coming from teachers and parents opposed to overtesting.


Teachers' unions have won some recent battles over their contracts, famously in Chicago, less famously in Portland, Oregon and St. Paul, Minnesota. Reformers have taken charge of teachers' unions in Massachusetts and in Los Angeles. Student unions have sprung up across the country and have held "strikes," and shut down streets in protest to the way their schools are being handled.


Yet the opposition - the corporate-backed "education reform" movement, or what Massachusetts Teachers Association president Barbara Madeloni calls "predatory ed reform" - is only more determined. Just last week, the Philadelphia School Reform Commission unilaterally cancelled the district's contract with its teachers' union. And after a California court ruled that teacher tenure violated the state constitution, well-heeled union busters like Campbell Brown, formerly of CNN, are gearing up for similar suits in states like New York.


In the wake of all this, a group of teachers, parents, and students came together in Brooklyn the October 11 weekend for "Public Education Nation," an event hosted by the Network for Public Education focused on coming up with a positive vision for public schools. In contrast with "Education Nation," the big media event funded by deep-pocketed philanthro-capitalists like Bill Gates, the Waltons, and Michael Bloomberg, this event was put together by activists and funded by small donors with a bit of help from the Tides Foundation. The room was filled with well-known education activists (Diane Ravitch, Leonie Haimson, Brian Jones, Carol Burris), but it was some of the less-famed voices, including speakers from the crowd, who stole the show.


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