Posts Tagged ‘education’
Vincent sez, “Our high school film class from Oak Park High in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada made this zombie-themed PSA to spread the message about a worker’s right to refuse unsafe work. It’s a big issue. In Canada, in 2010, 1014 workplace deaths were recorded in Canada – that’s almost three deaths every day! Between 1993
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Zombie work safety PSA made by high school students
On May 14-15, Make is hosting its second annual Hardware Innovation Workshop in San Mateo, CA. There’s a pretty amazing speaker lineup, but perhaps most exciting is a “Maker Pro Master Class” with Andrew “bunnie” Huang, one of the great hardware hackers of our age.
Microsoft is planning to update Windows Phone 8 later this year to support 1080p displays and it appears that close partner Nokia might be ready to take advantage of the new resolution. The Financial Times reports that the Finnish smartphone maker is working on a large screen smartphone that’s similar in size to Samsung’s Galaxy Note series. The device is said to be part of Nokia’s Lumia range of smartphones. A Nokia “EOS” PureView Lumia is also allegedly planned for July. The Verge previously revealed “EOS,” a Lumia with a similar sensor that’s found on Nokia’s 808 PureView handset.
American public schools in 9 states sharing every conceivable personal detail of their students with third parties
Greg Costikyan sez, inBloom, a Gates-funded non-profit to harness data to improve grade school education, has partnered with New York and eight other states to encourage the development of apps to “further education” by using intimate data about students, without parental consent and with no ability for parents to opt out. Among the data shared
In the ongoing battle between Microsoft and Google over the market for office software, Massachusetts legislators are now considering considering a bill that would restrict cloud computing services from using student data for commercial purposes like (but not limited to) advertising. According to The Wall Street Journal , the bill is the work of Microsoft, which is trying to protect its lucrative Office business from encroachments by Google’s free Apps for Education. A Microsoft spokesman articulated the company’s position. “We believe that student data should not be used for commercial purposes; that cloud-service providers should be transparent in how they use student data; and that service providers should obtain clear consent…
What is textbook publisher McGraw-Hill Education doing at the Consumer Electronics Show? Demoing the company’s new “Smartbook” — a digital textbook for computers and tablets, not a janky smartphone-netbook hybrid . Smartbooks were developed with technology partner Area9 and are scheduled for availability in 90 course areas by spring 2013 on Mac, PC, iOS, and Android for a price of $19 and up per text.
John Franklin Stephens, a 30yo man with Down Syndrome, writes an open letter to Ann Coulter. The professional political troll recently used the word “retard” to refer to the president of the United States.
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The Classics are must-see, must-read, must-play works revered by The Verge staff. They offer glimpses of the future, glimpses of humanity, and a glimpse of our very souls. You should check them out. A Mind Forever Voyaging is a text-based, interactive fiction computer game released by Infocom in 1985. Created by Steven Meretzky, who had previously designed the successful IF version of Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy , AMFV is quite possibly the best text adventure game ever
The Classics: ‘A Mind Forever Voyaging’
The Obama administration has said that it wants all students using digital textbooks within five years , and newly signed legislation in California should help to bring that goal closer to reality. Last week Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr signed a number of education-related bills, two of which relate to the use of digital textbooks. Bills SB 1052 and SB 1053 will give students access to free textbooks for “50 strategically selected lower division courses” at both the University of California and California State University, as well as community colleges throughout the state
Now that Nokia has revealed when its big Windows Phone 8 launch event will be, it’s time for the company to start building up the hype and it’s doing it by taking aim at its biggest competitor: Samsung. Chris Weber, formerly Nokia’s US president and currently a part of its leadership team as executive VP of sales and marketing, has taken to Twitter to boldly call Samsung out: Continue reading…
PolygamousRanchKid sends this excerpt from ZDNet: “Research In Motion’s enterprise services unit have attracted the interest of IBM, which has made an ‘informal approach’ on potentially acquiring the division. The division operates a network of secure servers used to support its BlackBerry devices, a source who declined to be named told Bloomberg in a Friday report. However, no party has yet shown interest in buying all of RIM or the division which manufactures its BlackBerry phones, but the Canadian company will wait for the rollout of BlackBerry 10 phones next year before making any decisions on a sale, the person said.
We all know the feeling. You’re sleepless in the sad hours of the night or stumbling around early on a hazy weekend morning in need of something to read, and that pile of unread books just isn’t cutting it. Why not take a break from the fire hose of Twitter and RSS and check out our weekly roundup of essential writing from around the web about technology, culture, media, and the future? Sure, it’s one more thing you can feel guilty about sitting in your Instapaper queue, but it’s better than pulling in vain on your Twitter list again. On celebrity John Herrman explores how former NBA aspirant David Johnson uses read receipts to track the hundreds of emails that he’s sent to Jay-Z
The best tech writing of the week, July 22
The UK government has agreed to meet the requests of a recent proposal that will make publicly-funded research accessible to the general public for free. The move comes as a result of a proposal made by sociologist Janet Finch, who suggested the changes be made in order to better maximize the results of research funded by public dollars. In a letter written by the UK’s Minister of State for Universities and Science, David Willets, several changes are outlined, including making research available to the general public — increased access through public libraries is also mentioned — as well as extending the for-pay licensing available to universities and businesses. Another issue, however, is where the funding will come from to publish… Continue reading…
Michael Geist sez, The Supreme Court of Canada issued its much anticipated rulings in the five copyright cases it heard last December. It will obviously take some time to digest these decisions, but the clear takeaway is that the court has delivered an undisputed win for fair dealing that has positive implications for education and
Do you think you can write a computer model to accurately score students’ essays? If so, Kaggle (a platform for predictive modeling competitions) is hosting a $100,000 competition called the Automated Student Assessment Prize that you should look into. Competitors’ models need to be able to predict the human scores of a stack of essays, and the writers of the three best models get to split up the cash ($60,000 for first place, $30,000 for second, and $10,000 for third). It turns out that a lot of people in education, including competition supervisor Mark Shermis, think that teachers would give more writing assignments if they could get some automated help grading them.
The Fourth Dimension is a new app for iPhone and iPad that has a slightly loftier goal than most: it seeks to help its users perceive another plane of existence. The app takes the form of a short interactive book and lets you play around with onscreen objects to glean an understanding of four dimensional geometry. It’s conversationally written without the slightest hint of jargon, despite the complexity of the subject on hand, and by the time you’re done you’ll likely feel like you’ve learned something. Even if you’re not sure entirely what. We see the world in three dimensions, so the abstract concept of a fourth is a really difficult thing to explain — textbook chapters or even Wikipedia pages with animated GIFs don’t quite cut it…
The ease with which folks are able to blog, reblog, and otherwise reproduce (as well as remix) other people’s work is definitely among the revolutionary powers of the internet — at the heart of which is the reduction of everything to ones and zeros, which lends itself to not only to obscuring the provenance of a particular work, but also to reducing the perceived value of content in general. This is a concern to anyone who values quality content, of course: if people and organizations aren’t getting paid to create, their ability to create is severely limited. At The Verge, we follow a time-tested method of attribution. When a story is not the result of original reporting by one of our writers, we place an easy-to-read link at the…
SXSW: David Carr and the Curator’s Code
Google’s minimalist home page leaves unknown layers of complexity to the imagination, but now you can dive into some of the mystery behind Google search: the company has released uncut video footage from its internal weekly search meeting, where Google engineers discuss possible improvements and make decisions about its search product. In this particular discussion, Google employees ponder something seemingly minor — how to perform search spell checks with more than ten terms in a search query — but as it turns out there are myriad issues with making even small changes to the system. If you’ve ever wondered how the brain trust at Google gets together to solve problems, now’s your chance. Continue reading…
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Watch Google employees talk about search algorithms
A century-old museum designed to catalog and connect the world’s knowledge is getting some help from search giant Google. In the latest of several European philanthropic partnerships , Google will be sponsoring a traveling exhibit on the Mundaneum, a “paper internet” that includes over 12 million index cards meant to capture the sum of human understanding. It will also help set up a series of talks on Internet issues and may eventually digitize the archive’s contents, says the Mundaneum’s director Jean-Paul Deplus. In return, the museum will use the Google+ social network as part of its outreach efforts.
Last month, McGraw Hill Education was announced as one of Apple’s major publishing partners for iBooks 2, providing textbooks and other educational materials using the iPad. In an interview with Talking Points Memo , the company’s VP of New ventures Vineet Mafan says that — despite the impressive specs of the new iPad launched last week — the heavy discounts that have been applied to the iPad 2 (with the 16GB model costing just $399) could be bigger news for education. This price point brings the iPad far closer to the $200-$300 mark, which Madan sees as the “tipping-point price” for tablets. The company currently has more than 50 titles available via iBooks, either published directly or via partner firm Inkling
A new method for managing irrigation with drones may be easier and more effective than anything used by farmers today. It’s designed to solve a pressing problem for California orange farmers: getting the coveted “Fancy” quality classification for their fruit. Left at a constant irrigation level, some orange varieties will develop creases that make them worthless for anything but juicing, so farmers must temporarily restrict water levels throughout the season, testing trees periodically to see how much water they’re receiving. Normally, this is done by driving out to the field and applying a pressure gauge to leaves from random trees, testing the liquid content
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Drones that capture infrared orchard pictures could spell an end to ugly oranges
If you’re feeling a little guilty over that new iPad preorder, you could try convincing yourself you’ll use it for something positive. The Khan Academy may be of assistance there, as it’s just released an iPad app that makes over 2,700 educational videos available for free. The videos are all in Salman Khan’s trademark low-tech style, involving Wacom tablet doodles and simple, conversational explanations to help you get to grips with a whole range of topics from computer science to the history of art. The app is pretty straightforward, but offers useful features like subtitles, progress tracking, and the ability to download videos and playlists for offline viewing. It’s free and available in the App Store right now
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Khan Academy iPad app available now with over 2,700 educational videos
Wi-Fi deadzones more effective at engaging student attention than pole-dancing to Toto’s Take My Hand from Dune: the official soundtrack
Yale professor Alexander Nemerov found a great way to get students to pay attention: lecturing in a Wi-Fi dead zone. Glenn Fleishman, writing for The Economist: The good professor is no Luddite. He realises that a request to turn off the hall’s Wi-Fi routers during a class may meddle with other nearby needs. (And it