Monday, February 19, 2018

Extending Guardian print to the online world

So far fewer posts this year, have concentrated on visits to BETT and Learning technology. So more about this over time.

But today seems to be a clearcut Guardian in print, time to revive what I have been repeating and maybe find a way forward.

Page 36 Emily Bell on Social Media, danger that we "cosign ourselves further to a world where we abandon standards of a civilised society to a savage and sometimes dangerous market".
Editorial. p2 of the middle bit you are supposed to extract , on the "duopoly of Google and Facebook" expanding on Russian propaganda. "keyboard warriors" used as a term seems to include Russian bot coders  and also sometimes used about Corbyn supporters, whether or not they have ever also bought copy of newspaper. p4 same section reader editor on Design Museum till 6th May has examples of print design around Guardian. No mention of website design or how print supposed to work with this.

So my guess is that the G has no idea what to do online other than knocking copy for Facebook and Google. Still no copy that includes any fact about Guardian Unlimited Talk. Do they think the readers will eventually forget their own experience? My guess print is no longer that strong.

Maybe this post should have been in Read G but somehow the blogs are coming together, even though it may seem from a series of outbursts.

My constructive proposal is for more investigation or speculation around Russian bots and Brexit. The Guardian editorial is too concerned about Facebook and Google to mention any UK aspect of FBI investigation. ( Maybe they have stats on the website views, but don't forget UK please at least in print version) . Matthew d'Ancona p 5 argues that the case against Corbyn should be considered  (Fleet Street still pretty solid, if one thinks there is a story then not likely another says this is junk) but maybe there should be some reporting resource for security threats more recently?

My guess there could well be Russian money associated with Breitbart and Brexit support. Mostly associated with newspapers though. There could have been a shift between the referendum and election on where buzz comes from. As a blogger I can only guess and compare bits of txt.

Analysis and developments more likely online than in newspapers, some might say.

comment welcome

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Hello Chris Grey, any update on Management Theory at Work ?

Have found Chris Grey on Twitter but this post because needs more space.

There is a possible repeat of a conference on Management Theory at Work, as at Lancaster a while ago. Also there may be an update of a version for radio in Exeter in June. Previous posts for how I have done a sort of social media version to continue something.

As memory serves the first one started ok as a mix of academics and managers. I had though the closing sessions would reach some conclusions but as memory serves Chris Grey spoke about a role for universities as outside commerce, valued for a critique role and not in hazard to results.

This discussion can be part of such an event but maybe nearer the beginning, should we start at all? ( The radio one is based on an FM licence so something happens whatever the discussion)

Currently find Chris Grey writing much sense about Brexit, seems very practical content.

So what to think recently? Links please to public posts, ( journals possible to find but much delay)

Not sure this will find Chris Grey so any comments or clues welcome from anyone with a view


If still reading, my concern started with the opening keynote from John Burgoyne about how the idea of a learning organisation changed with computers and the web. Still an issue as OU critiqued for putting so much funding into Futurelearn. My guess is that as they offer degrees online the business model will work out but there are still issues around values.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Is Mode 1 an Imaginary? ( checkout Wikipedia )

Learning Technologies starts tomorrow, so I am in panic mode to get ready for Thursday. This is a short post, maybe more on @wenotno show at 12 on @phonicfm.

Still thinking about knowledge as Mode 1 and 2. Still cannot find much recent. In Wikipedia there is a longish page on Mode 2 but very short mention for Mode 1.

Also there is some critique of what Mode 1 claims

Steve Fuller, in his book The Governance of Science (Chapter 5) has criticised the 'Modists' view of the history of science because they wrongly give the impression that mode 1 dates back to seventeenth-century Scientific Revolution whereas mode 2 is traced to the end of either World War II or the cold war, whereas in fact the two modes were institutionalized only within a generation of each other (the third and the fourth quarters of the nineteenth century, respectively). Fuller claims that the Kaiser Wilhelm Institutes in Germany, jointly funded by the state, the industry and the universities, predated today's "triple helix" institutions by an entire century.

So something to come back to. My guess is that at Olympia most of the knowledge will be in the context of practice. Also there seems to be fewer stands from HE and more from MOOCs or similar. More next week, am staying in London for weekend.

Wikipedia has a page for "Imaginary" but will have to come back to why Mode 1 works for academics.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

LinkedIn Learning at Olympia

This is a draft post that may get to LinkedIn early next week ahead of the Learning Technologies show. Olympia is real space , not just online as social media. I have been at BETT this week but still waiting for all the news to turn up. I had thought the presentation by Futurelearn and Coventry University would be well reported but so far only a couple of tweets with stills. Maybe I will wait till it turns up on YouTube. BETT do get round to this sort of thing but obviously are busy at the moment.

Perhaps the news is the way such things are reported. The Guardian represents some academic opinion. I have commented already on the Peter Wilby interview with Peter Horrocks. Seems the anon negative take on cloud OU were what got the Guardian attention. This week nothing about BETT except opinion from Eliane Glaser. She sees children as tech addicts and schools as pushers. BETT is mentioned but I do not think she has been there. She claims Facebook is "selling expensive kit" though they are not there. Could it be the Guardian just finds something negative about Facebook whenever possible? I think they should level with the readers on what is happening to print finances. Anyway, more on the arguments about why you should stick with books and ignore screens later.

OU press releases concentrate this week on the Institute of Coding announced by PM May at Davos. I think it could have been promoted at BETT. Nothing noticed on Thursday. Futurelearn involved with courses that could fit with other campus based activity. Not much reporting I can find in newspapers.

Also I still cannot find much recent about Mode 1 and Mode 2 knowledge. In his Durham lecture about a fortress state of mind in HE Peter Horrocks mentioned that Linkedin for example could extend social media to cover degree style courses and certificates. Presumably this would be at the skills and practice end of things. Not clear what the scope is. Perhaps this will emerge through the later lectures in the Durham sequence.

At BETT I did think the Arts claimed as part of STEAM was weaker this year than last. (What will "Coding" include ) In the STEAM area there was no BBC and no BAFTA. So no Dalek to pose with and no games design awards.

I was reminded of the attack on BBC Jam so looked up the dates. Wikipedia has it for 2007.  The Guardian and others objected to the BBC giving away educational resources as this prevented commercial initiatives. Problem is that the Guardian and Channel 4 etc no longer attend BETT anyway so the result is just a loss of what the BBC was trying. It seems to suggest that the Guardian has backed off from any positive take on what online could mean for them. So expect more of a literary take on why tech is horrible and you should read a good book.

There is a more academic version around Mode 1 and 2 but still a bit of a mystery how this relates to Futurelearn scope. Will check next Tuesday in Guardian and / or search on Critical Management Studies.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Route to ExCEL via East India, help very welcome

Now planning trip to BETT next week. I am part of both Wild Show and @wenotno on Phonic FM . Chris Norton and Jon Mahy also coming so we need a route that is ok for access. Staying at Travelodge near East India in DLR. Need to travel back to Tower Gateway one evening.

Have found the "Avoiding Stairs Tube Guide" PDF and I think our best bet is to go from Paddington on Hammersmith and City line to West Ham, then DLR to Canning Town and head back West. But once you start the idea of going East for a modern railway it may be that Waterloo line would be better. Overground from Clapham Junction?

Shadwell looks ok on the map but how many stairs to link from tube to DLR?

Rail and Tube map PDF

West Ham and Canning Town both show some distance between platforms. How far is this?

Last year it turned out the "Circle Line" is not really  a circle. It stops at Edgware Road, one stop?

Friday we intend to wheel back along south bank then to Westminster, arrives back at Paddington on easy side of the platform.

Any clues or suggestions welcome.

Mapping #Futurelearn / #OU controversy around #BETT2018

Trying to remember about mapping a controversy from a FUN MOOC on Digital Humanities. I know one of the first things to do was to find a news story and identify who said what.

So seems best to start with Peter Wilby in Guardian, apparently based on interview with Peter Horrocks. Nothing new from Horrocks that was not said in Durham lecture a few weeks previously. The OU is moving into the cloud and will continue to invest in Futurelearn. The news aspect of the interview was what was said by Peter Wilby, based on anonymous comments by OU staff. Objections to closing buildings and face to face. Letters to the Guardian so far have supported the Wilby views.

Next week at BETT on the opening day there will be a presentation by Simon Nelson, Chief Executive of Futurelearn, and Ian Dunn, Deputy Vice Chancellor ( Student Experience ) for Coventry University. Probably this will include details of degree courses online. Some would say this is a new phase for MOOC technology, part of a viable business model. Others might object that there is no place for a "chief executive" in education and that the rot started when "student experience" became an issue.

So how to map this? Clues please. I think the MOOC has not been repeated recently but there must be other resources available. More later when BETT is over. This could be a major news item but my guess is there will be a few tweets from #Futurelearn fans and not much else unless someone is critical.

See previous posts for more links.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Notes background on Futurelearn ahead of BETT

Next week at BETT there will be a presentation by Futurelearn and Coventry University. So far I have done a post for LinkedIn and also a moment for Twitter. The post is about Mode 1 & 2 knowledge, something to check out given what is happening online. After posting this there was an article in the Guardian by Peter Wilby with a critique of Peter Horrocks policy on OU and Futurelearn. At least it links to a Horrocks lecture at Durham, text PDF available from OU, video now on YouTube. Links in the tweets.

When I did stories for OhmyNews I often stored away bits of background and waited for a news event to open with. In this case BETT is an occasion but the announcement is known. There could be more details on actual courses launched. This blog is more likely to look at how it is reported if at all. The Guardian is interesring as Peter Wilby seems to have been prompted more by the anon comments on Horrocks than the news value of what he was saying. The lecture was in November.

Just checking Class Central , source for news on the MOOC. They have a 2017 report on Futurelearn showing moves towards viability in 2016 and 2017. Charges for certificates and continued access to content. Degree courses starting with Deakin, now Coventry and others. On numbers of learners, 5th in world. Claims on social learning may be credible to distinguish from other platforms.

Other reports for 2017 are on the Class Central pages. One links to this comparison of Futurelearn with other platforms. There may be more competition from China later but Futurelearn is doing ok, definitely in with a chance on a global basis. So far no mention of this in the Guardian for example. Degrees online could work out as well, eventually from OU as well as other UK sites.

Education Intelligence seems to be from August last year, so probably lots more happening.

After BETT, expect more of the same txt but in a different order.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Comment on Peter Wilbey / OU / Guardian / Futurelearn

Today Guardian mention for MOOC. Not really reporting as in trends and numbers. Main point is negative opinion from anon staff on policy to move to cloud. There is an interview with Peter Horrocks, OU vice chancellor and he is reasonably quoted. But the drift of the Guardian editorial view is hostile.

Maybe not surprising as the lecture at Durham started by comparing unis with UK newsrooms before the digital shifts ( continues on ReadG ) , I think the newspapers are reluctant to report the MOOC and other EdTech because of the implication for their own business model.

A few details, more later. I have to get ready for @wenotno on @phonicfm later today. Maybe some more rave but short between music.

Money will also go to FutureLearn, a commercial offshoot offering Moocs(massive open online courses) from the OU and other universities around the world. Seven million “learners” (in Horrocks’s word) already use its courses.

So what do we mean by learning? Has it got to be in quote marks if not part of a campus based event? What word would the Guardian use? Full disclosure, I have done several Futurelearn courses , some more than once. Social learning seems to make sense to me, see previous posts.

“Our worry,” one senior academic told me, “is that the current management is running the university down. They see its future not as an academic institution but as a media platform.”

Blended learning assumes a mix, worth a discussion.

Many academics, however, see conflicts of interest between the OU and FutureLearn. It was recently announced, for example, that FutureLearn will provide the platform for 50 all-online degrees, initially postgraduate but possibly also undergraduate in future, offered by Coventry University. Why is the OU promoting its competitors’ courses, academics ask. “We could lose thousands of students,” said one.

This seems to me to ignore completely what is happening online. Maybe because UK media do so little reporting. Futurelearn is top 5 or top 10 on global platforms list, depending how many to include from China. they all work with a number of university brands / campus sites.

Main news event not mentioned, presentation at BETT , ExCEL end of the month. Futurelearn and Coventry. Durham lecture will be on YouTube later I think, previous ones in series are. 


Also in Guardian , Peter Scott on why unis still needs lots of money and to be left alone. Nothing on Mode 2 as in EdTech or what Mode 1 might be nowadays, see recent posts.

There is a risk public opinion will turn against higher education. English universities cut their moorings to the public sector – and wider public interest. They have embarked on the choppy seas of what is justly perceived to be another tawdry privatisation. Universities no longer feel like “ours”, the public’s.

So if you can use a voice interface to machine learning and find it useful, adjusting how you learn, what to think about a world that would then put learning into quote marks?

Comment welcome. Doubtless Peter Wilby has a source for the anon quotes but anything public would develop conversation.