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October 4, 2010 - 10:00pm
Smart move: The big publishers, (McGraw-Hill, Pearson, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Reed Elsevier), all realize that unless they change they will suffer a similar fate as the music publishers. Textbooks will be disaggregated. Content has gone from scarce to abundant. The open education movement, combined with cheap but powerful authoring tools, will insure that quality learning materials are available and discoverable.
October 4, 2010 - 9:42pm
My brother -- known to regular readers as Brother of Dean Dad -- sent me a nifty thought piece that I’d love to get my readers’ help explaining.
October 4, 2010 - 6:45pm
One of the policies Greenback U. has implemented, as it strives to be more environmentally and economically sustainable, prohibits vehicles from idling on campus for more than one minute at a time. Except in emergency situations, it applies to all cars and trucks -- university-owned, personal and commercial. The lawyers well me we can't restrict county- or city-owned vehicles, but signs at appropriate spots on campus don't make that exception explicit; if the driver of a Backboro city car thinks (s)he's covered by the policy and switches the motor off, I'm certainly OK with that.
October 4, 2010 - 3:15pm
This post is dedicated to my mom and every woman who has had to fight to be recognized as an expert with technology.
October 3, 2010 - 9:51pm
Here’s an interesting challenge for many of us who work in and around technology: can you explain your job – what you do – to your mom? What about the concept of Cloud Computing? Bonus points if you can help mom understand the link between Base 2 and Assembly Language?
October 3, 2010 - 9:30pm
The two most misused nouns in the American academy are “Professor” and “administration.” In a recent New York Times piece, “The Case of the Vanishing Full-Time Professor,” Samantha Stainburn wrote of the disappointment parents feel upon discovering that their child’s “Professor” is an adjunct, which means in most cases the instructor is NOT a Professor at all.
October 3, 2010 - 9:16pm
Twice in the last year, I’ve heard some statements on campus against affirmative action that have helped me understand some of the opposition to it. (Disclosure: though my politics aren’t conservative, my appearance is. Since I rarely talk politics at work, some people incorrectly assume from my appearance that I’m a conservative, and they tell me things that they might not otherwise. It’s an odd position to be in, but there it is.)
October 3, 2010 - 9:00pm
Last week, I was involved in a virtual summit on e-books to which I was probably invited to serve as a semi-notorious Curmudgeon-at-Large.
October 3, 2010 - 8:15pm
I love short books. Can you recommend any good, but concise, nonfiction? Great reads under 200 pages?Here are my 5 concise reasons to read Robert Reich's latest book "Aftershock: The Next Economy and America's Future"Reason #1 - Conciseness: Most books are too long. Aftershock is a blessed 192 pages; 4 hours and 29 minutes short in audiobook format.
October 3, 2010 - 5:49pm
Though it is difficult to demonstrate, even in the era of outcomes assessment, we all strive to provide an education that enhances integrity, civility, and compassion. For years, many of us have emphasized that increased education makes us better parents, citizens, and voters. And yet, today’s environment in the United States seems to be moving us in the opposite direction. We appear to be less enlightened and less civil. A mosque and community center near ground zero is challenged because the sins of a few radicals have been used to try and tarnish an entire faith.

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