Saturday, April 06, 2002

More from the Spring Lecture Series. This week's talk was given by Dr. Charles Friedman Professor and Director of the Center for Biomedical Informatics at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Friedman talked about his experiences as one using technology to teach physicians. Very interesting stuff.

Have to admit though, I'm still digging through resources from last week's talk by Terry Anderson. I've been exploring the world of metadata and the semantic web. This is some extremely powerful stuff. XML-based solutions for sharing (or charging for) knowledge across the breadth of the 'net.

I've been particularly impressed with the CanCore specification. A specification, CanCore tells us, "that focuses not on technical matters but on those of semantics and interpretation."

For the last 4 months I've been looking for a realistic model for a "reusable learning object (RLO)" (developed by Dr. Ruth Clark for Cisco Systems, Inc., following the work of M.David Merrill) that I could use as the "building blocks" for instructional design and educational efforts at SMART Technologies, Inc.

I've heard that Cisco is currently giving it's RLO an overhaul and I'll be interested to see the "new and improved" version; however, I can't wait around.... I've got academic and professional (thankfully the same thing in this instance) work to get done.

While researching object-based design, teaching, and learning, I've encountered the work of David Wylie and Norm Friesen. The work of these two academics has given me some hope that I might be able to come up with a design for an "education" or "learning" object that will work. I'm still struggling with the notion of granularity. Well, not so much the granularity as the "reconstitution" of components of learning.

Wiley's writing about learning objects and Friesen's examples of how CanCore may be applied, are helping in this regard, I think.

Watch this space for progress reports!

Wednesday, April 03, 2002

I posted this to OISE/UT 1602S a couple of minutes ago:

Quick post to advise of a particularly nasty case of linkrot I encountered with my site. To this point, I've only seen the term used in reference to dead links.

Tonight I was checking the links on my pages to see that all was well, links working and such, and I clicked on "Map" of Learning Styles by Universal Educator, LLC at

The time it took to load should have been a clue. Anyway, rather than merely being dead -- it forwarded me to which immediately opened a cascade of popup windows. I had to shut down IE to escape.

Anyway, I'm about to remove it and wanted to post this as an apology to anyone inconvenienced by this nasty link.