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Learning Ecosystems -- My new home

This will be my new virtual home. Why?

  1. For those familiar with technology and blogging, you have been shaking your head at me for far too long -- and I don't blame you.
    You know that (in addition to numerous other reasons), using something like WordPress to set up and run a blog is much more time efficient than running a website such as this one. With more things continually trying to make their way onto my job/time plate, I need -- no scratch that -- I have to do this.

  2. RSS feeds are not supported on Calvin's personal websites. I have appreciated your patience in continually having to return/check-in here on this site, but it's time to move on to a better way of doing things.

I will keep this site up for reference sake -- as I've worked hard to obtain the information on the various topics located herein. Thankfully, some of this site has been helpful to other people.

Archives of my postings related to 1:1/personalized/customized learning are listed below.
For up-to-date postings, I'll see you over at my new "Learning Ecosystems" blog!



  • Personalized Learning Environments (PLE's), Electronic Personal Tutors (EPT's), 1:1 Computing; Individualized Instruction, Intelligent Tutoring Systems, Intelligent Web Teacher, Individualized Learning Systems, Learning Companion Systems, Lifelong Learning Companions, 1:1 Technology Enhanced Learning, Adaptive (Educational) Hypermedia, Learning Design Technologies, Adaptive Hypermedia Generators, and/or Adaptive Systems. Reinforcement learning, learning retrieval agent, learning bots, bots, spiders, intelligent agents, harvesting bots, data miners/data mining, business intelligence, artificial intelligence, semantic web, semantic networks)



NewsCred relaunches: build a personal newspaper in five minutes


Ed Publisher Offers Multimodal Instruction System for Struggling Students -- from The Journal by Scott Aronowitz
Brainchild, a publisher of educational assessment and intervention programs, is offering a new approach to instruction that keeps students continuously working and engaged while in the classroom.

The Brainchild Academy Concept (BAC), launched at the FETC 2010 conference Wednesday in Orlando, FL, combines educational technology resources with in-class interaction between a teacher and students. Rather than simply having the teacher lecture or the students do written work, the method involves three separate components all in use simultaneously, making the classroom a center of continuous activity for students who might otherwise have difficulty focusing.

The three components, or "stations," of BAC are:

  1. Brainchild Achiever!--a diagnosis and assessment tool that detects a student's strengths and weaknesses and subsequently matches the student with the appropriate tutorials, which are integrated into the system, aimed at facilitating improvement;

  2. Study Buddies--handheld learning devices that allow students to work at their own pace, either alone or in groups;

  3. Worksheets--students solve problems based on what they've learned at the previous stations, reinforcing their newly acquired knowledge and skills.


Items from Steve Knode

  • 'Artificial intelligence' 221b Sherlock Holmes game
    Good example of the use of a chatterbot to mimic human interaction. This chatterbot is based on similar technology to ‘cleverbot’ (see following link).

  • PopSci's Future Of: Cleverbot
    Cleverbot is one of the more ‘intelligent’ chatterbots and continues to learn automatically. Already this agent can hold a fairly stimulating conversation on almost any topic.

  • The Future of Learning Agents and Disruptive Innovation
    Teachers and administrators won't be the only educators in the new learning landscape. Discover new roles envisioned for learning agents in educating our children in the future, and examine ways in which we might prepare today's emerging educators for […]  
    • Executive Summary
    • Section One: Disruptive Innovation Areas: Forces Shaping New Agents of Learning
      • Chapter 1: Open Education
      • Chapter 2: Flexible Public Narratives
      • Chapter 3: Institutions give way to Exstitutions
      • Chapter 4: An Emerging Sociogogy
      • Chapter 5: The Rise of Transliteracy
      • Chapter 6: The Black Box Deconstructed
      • Chapter 7: Educitizens
    • Section 2: Future Roles for Enabling Agency in Learning

The Future of Learning Agents and Disruptive Innovation


1:1 Schools


Michio Kaku On Artificial Intelligence -- from
An excellent video by one of the best futurists, Michio Kaku, on the subject of Artificial Intelligence. evolve and learn new things.

Situational Interaction (video) -- from
Good explanation of how intelligent agents will replace humans for some activities soon. This avatar receptionist can function quite well.

A.I. Anchors Replace Human Reporters In Newsroom of the Future -- from
Another example of how intelligent agents will perform human functions soon, this time reporting the news.


Semantic Web 3.0 -- from The Center for Internet Research


Google personalized search for everyone -- from Liberal Education Today by Bryan Alexander
Google extended its Personalized Search functionality to every user last week.  This means that every Web search using Google – the world’s most popular search engine – is now inflected by previous searches from that same computer. According to Google, this means “customize[d] search results for you based upon 180 days of search activity linked to an anonymous cookie in your browser.” One leading search observer thinks this is extremely important.


2010 Semantic Technology Conference
June 21st25th, 2010  Semantic Technology Conference— at Hilton Union Square, San Francisco, California

Related thoughts/items from:
The Third-Generation Web is Coming -- from on December 17, 2006 by Nova Spivack
Web 3.0, expected to debut in 2007, will be more connected, open, and intelligent, with semantic Web technologies, distributed databases, natural language processing, machine learning, machine reasoning, and autonomous agents.

More intelligent Web
The threshold to the third-generation Web will be crossed in 2007. At this juncture the focus of innovation will start shift back from front-end improvements towards back-end infrastructure level upgrades to the Web. This cycle will continue for five to ten years, and will result in making the Web more connected, more open, and more intelligent. It will transform the Web from a network of separately siloed applications and content repositories to a more seamless and interoperable whole.
A more precise timeline and definition might go as follows:

Web 1.0. Web 1.0 was the first generation of the Web. During this phase the focus was primarily on building the Web, making it accessible, and commercializing it for the first time. Key areas of interest centered on protocols such as HTTP, open standard markup languages such as HTML and XML, Internet access through ISPs, the first Web browsers, Web development platforms and tools, Web-centric software languages such as Java and Javascript, the creation of Web sites, the commercialization of the Web and Web business models, and the growth of key portals on the Web.

Web 2.0. According to the Wikipedia, "Web 2.0, a phrase coined by O'Reilly Media in 20041, refers to a supposed second generation of Internet-based services—such as social networking sites, wikis, communication tools, and folksonomies—that emphasize online collaboration and sharing among users." I would also add to this definition another trend that has been a major factor in Web 2.0—the emergence of the mobile Internet and mobile devices (including camera phones) as a major new platform driving the adoption and growth of the Web, particularly outside of the United States.

Web 3.0. Using the same pattern as the above Wikipedia definition, Web 3.0 could be defined as: "Web 3.0, a phrase coined by John Markoff of the New York Times in 2006, refers to a supposed third generation of Internet-based services that collectively comprise what might be called 'the intelligent Web'—such as those using semantic web, microformats, natural language search, data-mining, machine learning, recommendation agents, and artificial intelligence technologies—which emphasize machine-facilitated understanding of information in order to provide a more productive and intuitive user experience."

Web 3.0 Expanded Definition. I propose expanding the above definition of Web 3.0 to be a bit more inclusive. There are actually several major technology trends that are about to reach a new level of maturity at the same time. The simultaneous maturity of these trends is mutually reinforcing, and collectively they will drive the third-generation Web. From this broader perspective, Web 3.0 might be defined as a third-generation of the Web enabled by the convergence of several key emerging technology trends:

Ubiquitous Connectivity
Broadband adoption | Mobile Internet access | Mobile devices

Network Computing
Software-as-a-service business models | Web services interoperability | Distributed computing (P2P, grid computing, hosted "cloud computing" server farms such as Amazon S3)

Open Technologies
Open APIs and protocols | Open data formats | Open-source software platforms | Open data (Creative Commons, Open Data License, etc.)

Open Identity
Open identity (OpenID) | Open reputation | Portable identity and personal data (for example, the ability to port your user account and search history from one service to another)

The Intelligent Web
Semantic Web technologies (RDF, OWL, SWRL, SPARQL, Semantic application platforms, and statement-based datastores such as triplestores, tuplestores and associative databases) | Distributed databases—or what I call "The World Wide Database" (wide-area distributed database interoperability enabled by Semantic Web technologies) | Intelligent applications (natural language processing, machine learning, machine reasoning, autonomous agents)

The Web vs. The Semantic Web
 The advantages of the semantic web

-- from A Hands-On Overview of the Semantic Web (2009)


5 Higher Ed Tech Trends To Watch in 2010 -- from by Bridget McCrea

  1. More Interactive Classrooms
  2. More Information at Your Fingertips
  3. Mashed-Up Technologies
  4. Breaking Out of Technology Isolation
  5. Capabilities That Go Beyond 1:1 -- Last year saw college students using more devices and technology applications than ever before, and universities scrambling to keep up with those tech-savvy students. Expect the trend to pick up speed in 2010, said Shannon Buerk, education design strategist at Dallas-based consultancy Cambridge Strategic Services. Netbooks, online education, social networking, smart phones and podcasting will continue to play a role in the typical student's life, as will "4:1 computing" as a replacement for the more traditional 1:1 (one device to handle one task). "The traditional 1:1, standardized computing is too rigid in today's educational environment, where students are tapping into multiple technologies and switching gears quickly between them," said Buerk, who said she sees the university landscape as being ripe for even more technological innovations in 2010. "When it comes to [technology], there are no boundaries in the learning environment."


Items regarding Intelligent Agents

  • 2009 IEEE Symposium on Intelligent Agents -- from IEEE
  • The Intelligent Software Agents Lab -- Carnegie Mellon
  • Classes of Intelligent Agents --
  • Intelligent Agents - Knowledge Bases -- from
    Intelligent agents are programs that carry out a task unsupervised and apply some degree of intelligence to the task. The intelligence may be pretty minimal but often will include some degree of learning from past experience. For example, an agent that searches the Internet for interesting material can be told by the user whether what it found was interesting or not. In this way it can be trained to be more successful in the future.Some intelligent agents can also interact with one another. There is considerable ongoing research in this field, with many exciting possibilities.
  • Intelligent Agents in Desire 2 Learn (D2L) -- from James Moore, DePaul
    I have been teaching a class in Desire2Learn (MKT 595: Internet Marketing) as part of long-term study and comparison of Learning Management Systems (teaching in Blackboard, D2L and Moodle to explore the respective advantages and disadvantages of each system). My colleagues in SNL, SoE and SPS are doing the same. I had not posted about my experiments here, but have decided that I should. This week I decided to see how well Intelligent Agents could be put to use. Intelligent Agents are scriptable events that send out e-mails based upon a set of criteria. You could use them to send a gentle nudge to students who had not logged into the course for several days, or who had not completed an assignment before the deadline. This is a great feature, but I did not want to send students automated e-mails until I had tested things for myself. What I did instead was to create an intelligent agent that sent me e-mail as each of students completed milestone tasks. This highlighted some issues that I would have to work through...
  • Intelligent Agents: A Physics Education Opportunity in Latin-America -- from
    Abstract: Intelligent Agents are being applied in a wide range of processes and everyday applications. Their development is not new, in recent years they have had an increased attention and design in learning and as mentoring tools. In this paper we discuss the definition of what an intelligent agent is; how they are applied; how thy look like; recent implementations of agents; agents as support in learning process; their state in Latin-American countries and future developments and trends that will permit a better communication between people and agents. Keywords: Intelligent Agent, Software Development, Tutoring System, Web-based Systems, Artificial Intelligence.
  • Intelligent Agents Software -- from
  • IVA 09
    Intelligent virtual agents (IVAs) are interactive characters that exhibit human-like qualities and communicate with humans or  with each other using natural human modalities such as  speech and gesture. They are capable of real-time perception, cognition and action that allows them to participate in a dynamic social environment.
  • Using Intelligent Agents to Change the Delivery of Education -- from John Rosbottom, University of Portsmouth and Claude Moulin, Université du Havre IUT; Annual Joint Conference Integrating Technology into Computer Science Education
  • Designing Distributed Learning Environments with Intelligent Software Agents -- Fuhua Oscar Lin (Editor)


Radar Networks makes Twine. Think of Twine as your own artificially intelligent personal web assistant. That’s the message we get from Radar Networks CEO, Nova Spivack, about his new project from Radar Networks. Twine is a semantic web application that auto-organizes all your information and media based on an auto-tagging engine. It’s been in the works for some time, but will make its public debut soon. The company is funded by Leapfrog Ventures and Vulcan Capital, Paul Allen’s venture firm.

Create your customized view of the news using Google News
Go to and click on the Add Section in the upper right portion of the screen

Google news


The Future Of The Web: Where Will We Be In Five Years? -- from Noupe by vitaly

Semantic Code: What? Why? How?
An excellent article from Boagworld on the importance of semantic coding.
Semantic Web
Wikipedia’s entry on the semantic Web.
The Semantic Web
An older article from Scientific American on the future of the semantic Web.
Semantic Web Road Map
The official road map from the W3C.


Journals focusing on Articificial Intelligence

  • AI - Artificial Intelligence
  • JAIR - Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research
  • AIM - AI Magazine
  • JAR - Journal of Automated Reasoning
  • JIIS - Journal of Intelligent Information Systems
  • EXPERT - IEEE Expert / IEEE Intelligent Systems
  • IJRR - International Journal of Robotic Research
  • AAMAS - Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems
  • ALIFE - Artificial Life
  • AROBOTS - Autonomous Robots
  • AMAI - Annals of Mathematics and Artificial Intelligence
  • AIR - Artificial Intelligence Review
  • AAI - Applied Artificial Intelligence
  • ARTMED - Artificial Intelligence in Medicine
  • AICOM - AI Communications
  • JETAI - Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Artificial Intelligence
  • IJAR - International Journal of Approximate Reasoning
  • AIL - Artificial Intelligence and Law
  • IJSN - International Journal of Security and Networks
  • IJIS - International Journal of Intelligent Systems
  • IJHIS - International Journal of Hybrid Intelligent Systems
  • JVCIR - Journal of Visual Communication and Image Representation
  • Journal of Scientific Computing
  • IJMTM - International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management
  • JIFS - Journal of Intelligent and Fuzzy Systems
  • IJIQ - International Journal of Information Quality
  • JOCCH - ACM Journal on Computing and Cultural Heritage
  • ACM SIGMOD Digital Symposium Collection
  • ACM SIGSMALL Newsletter
  • ACM SIGPC Notes


Camarillo company's AI software interacts on Web in complex ways -- resource/quote below from
"Another example of an ‘intelligent agent’ performing operations that normally only humans can accomplish. The agent, for example, uses an artificial intelligence program to provide online chat assistance to customers of different Web sites."


I Finally Get It – It’s Personalization, Not Publication in Social Media -- from Engaged Learning
Here is another ‘ah-ha’ moment for me.  Again, it was something that I always knew, but the importance of it became even more glaringly obvious. I was reading a ReadWriteWeb post from back in September on Personalization.  To make their point, they quote Ken Fromm as saying,

“The Internet is shifting from discrete units of websites and Web pages to discrete units of information [...] organized in ways that are relevant and personal to each individual, using data gleaned from social graphs as well as recommendation and personalization services that allow users to set their preferences.”

Much of our focus is on sharing data.  To do that we want to create web pages and portals – the vehicles of web information. But that is seen from the creator side of the pond.  Look at the consumer side: I want information to come to me. And only on topics I find interesting. I want to follow the streams of interesting people and learn from them. I want to share information that I find useful. And I want it in one place, if possible.  But if not, I want to control where they come to and what it looks like. (Notice the number of ‘I’s.)

From DSC:
I don't agree with everything said here, but he brings up some good points. The danger w/ his viewpoint regards information literacy -- i.e. how valid/reliable is the information that we are "receiving"?


Technologically Externalized Knowledge and Learning -- from Connectivism by George Siemens
Introducing [something that I haven't named yet]
Here’s the basic concept: technological advances in how content is created and how individuals interact are at a sufficient stage to serve as a replacement to traditional classrooms. Enter Technologically Externalized Knowledge and Learning (TEKL). Or Connector. Or Learnometer. Or learnalyzer. Or Learnabler. Or future learning approach. I have no idea what to call it without evoking the cheesy Batman “pow” images and shark repellant from the 70’s. For know, I’ll stick with the acronym TEKL.

What is TEKL? TEKL is a physical, wearable device that captures our physical and virtual interactions and assist us in recognizing and forming knowledge connections based on our past interactions, our social network, and our current work or personal interest needs. The image below expresses the elements of TEKL and provides additional detail on the function of various agents.



Beyond RSS – Four sites that can tell you what you want to read -- from Royal Pingdom by Thursday Bram


Disney debuts do-it-yourself thrill ride -- from by John D. Sutter
(CNN) -- Any kid can dream up a roller coaster. But those who visit a new exhibit at Walt Disney World's Epcot theme park can actually take a ride on their fantasy creations. Epcot on Wednesday opened a new attraction called "Sum of All Thrills," which lets kids use computer tablets to design a virtual roller coaster, bobsled track or plane ride. After inputting their designs, kids climb into a robotic carriage that uses virtual-reality technology to help them experience the ride they've created. "This is really the next generation -- where there's a lot more personalization involved" in the amusement-park experience, said Eric Goodman, Disney's lead project manager on the ride.

Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation -- October 14, 2009

Have you registered for an AALF Online Institute yet? If not, sign up today and don't miss this opportunity to work with some of the top educators in 1-to-1 laptop learning. AALF's Next Steps Institutes and 21 Steps to 21st Century Learning Online Institutes are not brief one-hour overviews, but rather multi-session detailed explorations of specific planning or pedagogical issues faced by 1-to-1 schools and schools planning 1-to-1 programs. We are pleased to have international pioneer of 1-to-1 learning and president of the Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation, Bruce Dixon, as well as experienced laptop teacher and pedagogical coach Karen Ward, as facilitators for our upcoming institutes.

Please have a look at the summary of our course offerings below and click the titles to access more detailed information about the courses, the materials AALF provides, and the registration fees and process. If you have already registered for any of the institutes, thank you! You will receive an email with additional course information prior to the start of each institute.

'We've Got Laptops- Now What?!'
November 3- 12, 2009 | 4 one-hour sessions
This online course provides participants with essential frameworks to organize, manage and design the learning and teaching culture for 1-to-1 classes, reflecting many of the best practices of highly effective 1-to-1 classrooms. It will be led by Karen Ward, experienced laptop teacher and coach for AALF, Central Valley Educational Leadership Institute (CVELI) at California State University Fresno, and Springboard Schools, a California non-profit educational organization.

21 Steps to 21st Century Learning Online Institute- Implementation
October 27- November 24, 2009 | 5 one-hour sessions
About to implement laptop learning in your school or district and aren't sure where to start or what options there are? Or, have you already implemented your program, but feel there are steps you may need to reconsider? The Implementation Institute provides you with a clear understanding of how to put your laptop plan into action. Topics covered include pedagogical capacity and change management, learning spaces, essential 1-to-1 policies, learning devices and software, preparing for parent questions and concerns, support and service, deployment, and more. These are the "nuts and bolts" to ensure your investment in 1-to-1 achieves the goals you set.

All institute sessions will be held using the Elluminate online course system. Register as an individual or as part of a school or district team. Spaces are limited, so register as soon as possible! We look forward to seeing you online!

Susan Einhorn | Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation


It's Personal: Learning Spaces, Learning Webs

Steven Wheeler -- Presentation

NOTE from DSC:
The CMS/LMS is but one piece of this environment.

The problem is one of operationalizing this -- institutions don't go with this type of setup because we don't know how to implement it and suppport it. We do what's manageable, but do we do what's best for the students? What would happen if we would let students build their own learning ecosystems? Would it be chaos or would we stand back in amazement?

How about this model?


I’m sick of teaching: OR all about my plan to grow self-learners -- from iLearn

PLE from iLearn


Upcoming Online Symposium -- from George Siemens
The Personal Learning Environments and Networks Conference (more info here) starts next week (Oct 13-16). The event is free to attend. We’ll be posting summaries on The Daily, so you might want to sign up for the week to keep track of the conference. Recommended pre-conference readings: Learning Networks and Connective Knowledge(Stephen Downes), Learning or Management Systems? (George Siemens), and PLE Diagrams (Scott Leslie).

The Semantic Web Cometh – 2 -- from the Upside Learning Solutions Blog
"While individuals currently build a knowledge network using services like iGoogle or feed-manager, the semantic web will mark a drastic change – moving from services to subjects and content types. Personal learning agent software will trawl through all semantically available content on the networks identifying content and creating a content synthesis just for the personal learning need at that time. Similar to what I mentioned in my previous post, a report would include all possible networked sources of information. We’ll spend less time looking for information and more time actually engaging with, learning from and ultimately extend it to the workplace or life in general. It is the semantic web that will finally make the web an effective information repository, easily configured for learning."


Have You Gone Organic? -- from by Judith Boettcher
Emerging design paradigms for online courses mean open, authentic, and customized learning experiences. Are you ready?

INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION technologies have helped bring on an evolution (dare we say revolution?) in the instructional design process by providing tools to create open, authentic, and learner-customized experiences. This means that new challenges are facing technology leaders in how they ensure their IT infrastructure supports this emerging "organic" paradigm for eLearning courses.

The assumptions that have guided traditional course design in the past-- analyze, design, develop, implement, and evaluate, known as the ADDIE process-- need to be updated [emphasis DSC]. Learners today are more hands-on and engaged; content for personalized learning is now much more accessible; a wealth of resources and communication tools are now literally at everyone's fingertips (check out the Top 100 Tools for eLearning). Linear learning experiences won't satisfy these learners, nor will they leverage the powers of new technologies available to higher education.

An organic design process acknowledges the sea change that has occurred in learners and their tools, and allows us to create and support learning experiences that make the most of the serendipitous intersection of immersive learners, faculty open to experimentation, the challenges of learning outcomes, and the characteristics of the technologies available.

Classic and Organic Course Designs with eLearning Strategies and Tools


Marc Rosenberg -- the value of personalized learning

New view of blended learning -- Marc Rosenberg


21 Steps to 1:1 success


From DSC:
This is where we are headed -- at least in part.


What would this concept look like if applied within higher education?

AALF NEXT STEPS INSTITUTE: 'We've Got Laptops- Now What?!'
Join Karen Ward, experienced laptop teacher and coach, as you learn the best practices of highly effective 1-to-1 classes 
November 3- 12, 2009

Join AALF President Bruce Dixon, international pioneer of 1-to-1 learning, as he takes you through the steps you should follow to successfully plan and implement a student laptop program and tailor the program to your vision and your school's needs. October 20- November 17, 2009


Maine Ingredients -- from The Journal by John K. Waters
The nation's first-ever statewide 1-to-1 laptop program marks its seventh birthday by expanding into high schools, providing an occasion to celebrate-- and to examine the components of its success.




Related item:
Revolution in the Classroom -- from The Atlantic by Clayton Christensen and Michael Horn
States looking to win education stimulus funds and offer truly student-centric, customizable learning experiences, need to get their classrooms online.


Sentenceworks an automated writing tutor for students of all levels. A web-based software, Sentenceworks works one-on-one with students to develop sentence-level writing skills and reinforce proper citation habits. Students upload drafts of their writing assignments to Sentenceworks to receive immediate instructional feedback on over 100 points of grammar.



Back from 7/21/09:
Groundbreaking "School of One" is Prototype for 21st Century Instruction -- from NYC Dept. of Education
Two-Month Pilot Program Uses Technology to Transform Students’ Classroom Experience
Chancellor Joel I. Klein today visited the School of One, a first-of-its-kind summer school pilot program that uses technology to provide students with highly individualized and innovative classroom instruction. The School of One pilot program combines traditional teacher-led instruction with cutting-edge instructional software like virtual tutors and other tools that customize instruction to meet each student’s academic needs and learning style. The School of One pilot program is part of NYC21C, a research and development project launched at the NYC iSchool in spring 2009 with the goal of innovating instructional practices to help schools better prepare students for careers in the 21st century. The two-month pilot program is being held in the summer school of M.S. 131 on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.

Curriculum and Literacy in the Digital World -- from Education Innovation by Robert Jacobs
“Instead of being the same way for all people, it can instantly rearrange itself for each person and each person’s current task.” It is not possible to differentiate instruction and learning to the level that is possible when a student does it for their particular individualized needs. The web makes it possible to match a student with his or her interest and ability far easier than one teacher alone could. Each click brings the student just what they need in the way they need it. Learning that is truly customized and differentiated on demand. The digital world will bend to your needs when you want it, where you want it, and how you want it. That is the future of learning.


One-to-One Computing: Promises and Perils -- from Education Week
Thursday, August 6, 1 p.m. Eastern time
Putting a mobile computing device in the hands of every student and teacher isn’t just a matter of buying the machines. Implementation, professional development, and integration into the curriculum can be major hurdles, and evidence that such programs improve student achievement remains thin. Still, experts say interest in one-to-one computing is on the rise, because of its potential to improve access to online curricula, collaboration on school projects, and communication between teachers and students.

Related Story: "1 to 1 Learning" (January 23, 2008)

Thomas Greaves, chairman, The Greaves Group
Leslie Wilson, president, One-to-One Institute
Craig Stone
, online production manager,, will moderate this chat.


Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation



One-to-one learning provides every student and teacher access to his or her own personal portable technology in a wireless environment allowing students to learn at their own pace and ability levels. The concept has rapidly gained momentum, worldwide, as a key to transforming education and better preparing students to succeed in a global marketplace. In the one-to-one classroom, students’ access to personal technology and the Internet enables them to be self-directed and receive highly personalized instruction. Teachers can create Individualized Education Plans for each child, addressing his or her unique needs. Students use their personal devices to do research, homework, problem-solve, team projects, email and academic coursework. At the same time, they gain valuable 21st century skills that will be beneficial throughout their lives and careers.

One-To-One Institute


Education for a Smarter Planet: The Future of Learning -- from IBM
Signposts for the future provide opportunities for transformation
IBM Global EducationLeaders from education and government aspire to improve their institutions' outcomes and value to society. They strive to meet rising expectations from students, communities and business with limited and increasingly constrained resources. Signposts for the future signal significant changes to all segments of education as well as to their funders. These five signposts – technology immersion, personalized learning paths, knowledge skills, global integration, and economic alignment – are rapidly converging to produce a new and transformative paradigm that we call the “educational continuum”. This continuum will further dissolve the traditional boundaries between academic segments, education providers, and economic development initiatives to create a single view of learning, skills development, and workforce training. The educational continuum creates a smarter way of achieving national objectives.


"Social interaction is key to everything," Sejnowski says. "The technology to merge the social with the instructional is out there, but it hasn't been brought to bear on the classroom to create a personalized, individualized environment for each student." He foresees a time when these social robots may offer personalized pedagogy tailored to the needs of each child and help track the student's mastery of curriculum. "By developing a very sophisticated computational model of a child's mind we can help improve that child's performance."

-- from Preview Of Tomorrow's Classroom


10 Things Teachers Should Know Before 1:1 -- from Free Technology for Teachers by Mr. Byrne

I was on a conference call this evening with some other educators and administrators in the state of Maine. The purpose of the call was to brainstorm ideas for a video about preparing for teaching in a 1:1 computing environment. In advance of the call we were asked to generate a list of things that teachers should know before teaching in a 1:1 environment.
This is the list that I generated with some help from my Twitter friends @ernieeaster @scmorgan and @edtech4me

1. Not all teenagers are digital natives.
2. The computer itself is not going to create student engagement.
3. Teaching with technology is a heterogeneous experience.
4. It takes longer than you think to get a room full of students on the same webpage.
5. You should keep a list of students' usernames and passwords.
6. Murphy's Law is strongest the first few times you try to teach 1:1
7. Close and Focus.
8. Project design is still about the content.
9. Better to stand behind students than in front.
10. Network administrators are not always up to date on Web 2.0 from the end-user perspective. (There's a difference between hardware people and software people).

Darcy Moore
wrote a great series of posts on this topic back in May. I encourage you to read his posts on the topic as he reached out to hundreds of people to generate his lists.


How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bot -- from O'Reilly Radar by Mark Drapeau

...why follow 100 military bloggers or 250 marketing gurus or 85 fashionistas when one or two bots can collate their best stuff and simplify your life? Who has time to find all these accounts, track up-and-comers, and listen to everything they say?


Related item:
Intelligent Virtual Environments -- from Ray Schroeder
The research goals of the British-based lab, Intelligent Virtual Environments, of the University of Teesside are to develop "new models of interactivity based on Artificial Intelligence techniques."

Intelligent Virtual Environments



S. Downes -- June 24, 2009 -- Beyond Management: The PLE

Stephen Downes Presentation
June 24, 2009 | Delivered to Ed Media, Honolulu, Hawaii


IBM Supercomputer to Compete on Jeopardy -- back from April 26 at; my thanks to Steven Chevalia with the T&L Digital Studio for this link
What's the best way to showcase your AI-powered supercomputer? For IBM, that solution will be to pit its question answering system, Watson, against humans on a popular game show.

Watson takes on Jeopardy



Online System Brings Individualized Learning to Colorado State Chem Lectures
-- from Campus Technology by Linda Briggs

Homework assignments in Lisa Dysleski's general chemistry courses at Colorado State University were supposed to help students--mostly freshmen--understand the subject better and make them reach beyond mere facts and actually think. Instead, students became frustrated with difficult questions, the assistant professor said, and were simply giving each other homework answers.

Frustrated, Dysleski and her colleagues in CSU's Department of Chemistry tried several remedies, then turned to a solution that has not only solved the problem completely--it has resulted in several other positive changes in the large, 250-student introductory chemistry courses that Dysleski and her colleagues teach.

The product is ALEKS, a sort of personalized online tutor that has replaced traditional homework in Dysleski's classes with Web-based individual study programs. The software assesses each student's skill level at the beginning of the semester, then tailors learning goals and homework questions throughout the course to match individual skill levels and learning paces. The result: Students can't share homework answers because ALEKS is assigning completely different questions based on skills and abilities.


1:1 LearningWhen every child in the classroom has a laptop, a world of possibilities opens up. Students have instant access to information, opportunities to increase their technology skills, and computers available to them at all times.

Do you want to make 1-to-1 learning a reality at your school? Are you trying to ensure that your laptop program is a success? If so, you will want to take advantage of the practical planning advice and implementation resources in 1-to-1 Learning: Laptop Programs That Work, Second Edition. Learn about successful laptop programs through case studies. New to this edition are chapters on 1-to-1 leadership, tablet PCs, and the shift to learner-centric environments.

1-to-1 Learning will lead you through the development of a successful laptop program, from planning to implementation.



Related K-12 item from Clayton Christensen (2009)

Innovators within Education


New school models focusing on individualizing learning -- from Clayton Christensen/Michael Horn

Related item:
Making the Technology Connection in Schools
June 3, 2009, Volo, IL - Don Johnston, a leader in assistive technologies for students with special needs, released a new Case Study today entitled, "Bridging Assistive Technologies with Daily Instruction for Students with Learning Challenges." This study describes an award-winning 2008-09 writing program used by special and general educators in Fulton County Public Schools, GA to improve the writing scores of students with diverse learning challenges.

SOLO Literacy Suite—4 Proven Tools in 1 Comprehensive Software Suite!
Cross-Curriculum - Ability Level: Grades 3-9 • Interest Level Grades: 3-12

SOLO Header Graphic

Because some students require support throughout the literacy continuum, while others struggle only with specific aspects, SOLO Literacy Suite places all of the right tools, and a wide-range of embedded learning supports, at their fingertips.  SOLO includes word prediction, a text reader, graphic organizer and talking word processor—putting students in charge of their own learning and accommodations. Students of varying ages and abilities have access to, and make progress in, the general education curriculum.


Web 1.0 -- 2.0 -- 3.0

Original link from
Web 3.0 Concepts Explained in Plain English (Presentations) --
By Amit Argarwal, Digital Inspirations



From DSC:
I post this because I think it's a good example of what could be useful within the world of education. It's like having your own set of personalized learning agents/spiders go throughout the web looking for information that you want to keep track of or learn about....and then bring it back to you.


Getting Students More Learning Time Online

Executive Summary:
Internal and external forces are simultaneously transforming elementary and secondary education. Complementary changes within the K-12 education community are sweeping schools in the form of one-to-one computing, online learning for students and teachers, and differentiated instruction. Students can choose from among schools, courses, and powerful educational tools and resources that never before existed. As a result, education for many students today bears little resemblance to their parents’ education. This transformation is a positive change when students are connected with the tools and opportunities that meet their individual needs.

Local and national economic conditions, increasing ethnic and cultural diversity, and global forces are among the new and growing external pressures on American elementary and secondary schools. Schools alongside families form the foundation for successful participation in communities, the workforce, and our democracy, and their job has therefore grown more complex and challenging. American schools, when compared to other developed nations, appear to need new approaches that increase their capacity to prepare students academically.


‘I’m not sure that LMSs will become completely redundant, because they provide useful administrative functions, but I see them becoming less important or rather just one piece of a broader ‘personal learning environment’ that will include other tools, and over which the learner will also have some control with regard to tools and links. This personal learning environment is likely to be more like a customisable web ‘portal’ into which both academic designers and learners can add and withdraw tools as the technology changes. Indeed, the portal may vary depending on the device the learner is using. Thus a mobile phone with a limited screen size may have a different look (and different tools available) for the same course than a learner accessing the course through a high speed network.

-- from "Are Learning Management Systems obsolete?" by Tony Bates



College a la carte? -- from Edustir by Ron Bronson
I was reading Foreign Policy earlier today and ran across an article entitled “Personalized Education” as part of their “next big things” feature.


The 2009 Symposium on Multimedia

  • Multimedia systems, architecture, and applications
  • Multimedia networking and QoS
  • Peer-to-peer multimedia systems and streaming
  • Pervasive and interactive multimedia systems including mobile systems, pervasive gaming, and digital TV
  • Multimedia meta-modeling techniques and operating systems
  • Architecture specification languages
  • Software development using multimedia techniques
  • Multimedia signal processing including audio, video, image processing, and coding
  • Visualization
  • Virtual Reality
  • Multimedia file systems, databases, and retrieval
  • Multimedia collaboration
  • Rich media enabled E-commerce
  • Computational intelligence including neural networks, fuzzy logic, and genetic algorithms
  • Intelligent agents for multimedia content creation, distribution, and analysis
  • Internet telephony and hypermedia technologies and systems
  • Multimedia security including digital watermark and encryption
  • Mobile Multimedia Systems and Services
  • Multimodal Interaction, including Human Factors
  • Multimodal User Interfaces: Design, Engineering, Modality-Abstractions, etc.
  • Multimedia tools including authoring, analyzing, editing, and browsing


7 things you should know about... Personal Learning Environments -- from Educause


Exploring Differentiated Instruction
When: Friday, May 15, 3-4 p.m., Eastern time

With student diversity growing dramatically and schools facing mounting pressure to boost achievement, differentiated instruction—the craft of accommodating and building on students' individual learning needs—has gained increased attention in recent years. But it can be difficult to implement effectively, and interpretations of what it means for instruction can vary. In this chat, Carol Ann Tomlinson, a leading authority on differentiated instruction, will discuss the core principles of the practice and take your questions on using it in the classroom and as a strategy for whole-school improvement.

Carol Ann Tomlinson is the William Clay Parrish Jr. professor in education and chair of the Department of Educational Leadership, Foundations, and Policy at the University of Virginia. She is the author of many books, including The Differentiated Classroom: Responding to the Needs of All Learners. This chat will be moderated by Anthony Rebora, managing editor of and the Teacher Professional Development Sourcebook.


Connections Academy

Connections Academy -- free online public school
Connections Academy schools are growing throughout the United States.  Working with state education officials, leading education publishers, and curriculum experts, Connections Academy ensures that our program meets the highest accreditation standards in every state we serve as well as our own standards for excellence.  To learn more about our free, quality public education offered in your home state, simply select your local school below.

Customized Learning
Students learn best when lessons match their interests and abilities. Studies have shown that in conventional classrooms many instructional tasks are not matched to students’ skill levels.
Personalized Learning Approach

At Connections Academy, each student receives individualized instruction, including lessons tailored to that student’s academic strengths and weaknesses.

This is our Personalized Performance Learning® (PPL) approach—a dynamic process through which we evaluate each student's strengths and needs. We then develop individual approaches that work for the student along with our curriculum—all year long.

We also offer a unique instruction program designed for gifted and talented students. Students in grades 3 through 8 may be enrolled in specially designated gifted courses in language arts and mathematics. High School students benefit from rigorous college preparatory curriculum that provides an opportunity for students to participate in Honors and Advanced Placement courses.







Knewton Bags $6 Million Series B Round For Adaptive Learning Platform -- from TechCrunch by Robin Wauters


Online educational startup Knewton has raised $6 million in Series B financing from Bessemer Venture Partners and returning investors, which include VC firms Accel Partners and First Round Capital as well as several angel investors who had participated in the $2.5 million Series A round from May 2008, such as LinkedIn founder and CEO Reid Hoffman and Zenbe co-founder Peter Stern. The company says it will use the extra capital to better serve both the enterprise market (where it says demand for its adaptive learning engine is growing) and end consumers with its online test preparation services.

When Erick reviewed the service late last year, he wrote:

Adaptive learning tests are taken on computers. The questions get progressively harder or easier depending on each student’s answers. Thus, they adapt to each student’s knowledge and abilities. Knewton is taking the adaptive learning concept and applying it first to online test preparation services.

The service combines live video chat with an instructor in a whiteboard environment, along with learn-at-your-own-pace sample questions and tutorials. Knewton finds the best teachers it can get and pays them $500 to $800 an hour. In addition to the virtual classroom, Knewton keeps track of each student’s progress in mastering the thousand or so concepts that can be covered in each test. A “concept queue” keeps the students abreast of what concepts they have mastered and which ones they are weak on. They can click on each concept tag to dig deeper.

Read the full review here (it digs pretty deep).



Related posting:

Personal Learning Networks: The Power of the Human Network

Related posting:
The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google -- book by Nicholas Carr (2008)

From Publishers Weekly
While it may seem that we're in the midst of an unprecedented technological transition, Carr (Does IT Matter?) posits that the direction of the digital revolution has a strong historical corollary: electrification. Carr argues that computing, no longer personal, is going the way of a power utility. Manufacturers used to provide their own power (i.e., windmills and waterwheels) until they plugged into the electric grid a hundred years ago. According to Carr, we're in the midst of a similar transition in computing, moving from our own private hard drives to the computer as access portal. Soon all companies and individuals will outsource their computing systems, from programming to data storage, to companies with big hard drives in out-of-the-way places. Carr's analysis of the recent past is clear and insightful as he examines common computing tools that are embedded in the Internet instead of stored on a hard drive, including Google and YouTube. The social and economic consequences of this transition into the utility age fall somewhere between uncertain and grim, Carr argues. Wealth will be further consolidated into the hands of a few, and specific industries, publishing in particular, will perish at the hands of crowdsourcing and the unbundling of content. However, Carr eschews an entirely dystopian vision for the future, hypothesizing without prognosticating. Perhaps lucky for us, he leaves a great number of questions unanswered.


iGoogle -- note the continued trend of personalization.

iGoogle -- note the continued trend of personalization.


Online Math Game Lets Kids Learn at Their Own Pace -- from Take an e-Learning Break
This program uses a "recommendation engine" to watch how a child plays math games and provide new content according to what's observed.The recommendation engine, patented as GuideRight technology, watches every motion the child makes while playing the game, and then adjusts on the fly to present kids with a math curriculum that is most appropriate for them. With more than 350 math activities to choose from, the game can present more than a million different paths.Check it out:   Individualized learning with


NMC Profiles Six "Key Emerging Technologies" for Elementary and Secondary Education
Austin, TX (March 11, 2009) – The New Media Consortium (NMC) today released the Horizon Report: 2009 K-12 Edition, marking the first time the renowned research project has turned its attention to emerging technology use in elementary and secondary education. The report, unveiled at the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) annual conference in Austin, TX, identifies and describes emerging technologies that will likely have a significant impact on K-12 education.

Time-to-Adoption: One Year or Less
Collaborative Environments
Online Communication Tools

Time-to-Adoption: Two to Three Years
Cloud Computing

Time-to-Adoption: Four to Five Years
Smart Objects
The Personal Web

Key Trends

  • Technology continues to profoundly affect the way we work, collaborate, communicate, and succeed.
  • Technology is increasingly a means for empowering students, a method for communication and socializing, and a ubiquitous, transparent part of their lives.
  • The web is an increasingly personal experience.
  • The way we think of learning environments is changing.
  • The perceived value of innovation and creativity is increasing.

From George Siemens:

  • The Connectivism and Connective Knowledge 08 Solution
    Serialized RSS Courses. This concept is developed more fully here: “A serialized feed is one in which posts are arranged in a linear order and where subscribers always begin with the first post, no matter when they subscribe to the feed. This contrasts with an ordinary RSS feed, in which a subscriber will begin with today’s post, no matter when the feed started”. Be sure to read through to comments by Tony Hirst. I think this is an important concept and one that deserves more attention. The next stage is to find ways to allow subscribers to find, and connect to, each other. Information without social interaction is a reduction to MIT’s OCW.
  • Snowflake Effect
    “We now have the chance to invert our design assumptions from mass markets of similarity to singular markets of unique solutions for individuals. We now have the opportunity to adopt an approach which focuses on design for mass personalisation and uniqueness called the Snowflake Effect.” The article goes on to describe mashups as the means to personalize education…and introduces a variety of mashup “types”....Anyway, Hodgins article is well worth the time. The personalization of learning through mashups is a welcomed concept.

    George links to "The Snowflake Effect: The Future of Mashups and Learning (Wayne Hodgins) 2009" -- from Becta


Resources from Artificial Intelligence: Is the Future Now For A.I.? -- from, by Rama Ramaswami


Integrating bots into multimedia for a virtual reality interaction -- from, by Tracy Boyer

A map of ALICE's brain

A map of ALICE’s “brain” plotting all the words she knows, Courtesy of ALICE A.I. Foundation

What if intelligent agent simulators, also known as bots, could be programmed to create a virtual reality experience for multimedia storytelling? Stay with me on this one.


Definitely worth a read!Personal Learning Networks: Why Peers Are Better Than Classmates -- from Jay Cross

"Change is racing along so fast that the old learn-in-advance methods are no longer sufficient. While network infrastructure is evolving exponentially, we humans have been poking along. ... We've got to reinvent ourselves and get back on the fast track."

Informal learning evangelist Jay Cross thought of this idea already back in 2003. Traditional schooling is no longer sufficient to deal with the complexity of modern society. In a world which is going to be increasingly more specialized what is really going to make the difference is your ability to explore, research and find relevant information just-in-time via the personal connections you have created over time.

That's why the connections you establish with your peers, the personal learning network that you create, are really valuable. Sharing and learning with other individuals who have your own passions and interest, is an opportunity to really learn and to get out of the traditional classrooms environment, where your desire to learn is too often suffocated by dogmatic principles and grade scales.

Get used to that: knowing things per se, and filling your walls at home with certificates, doesn't mean you're a good student or that you are better than anyone else. It just means that you can answer pre-determined questions when you are asked to. And, is this really the skill you need to be successful in your life?

Personalizing Education for Teachers, Too -- from Weblogg-ed by Will Richardson
I finally got around to finishing up Sir Ken Robinson’s new book “The Element” which, for the most part, was a great read. He lays out a pretty compelling case for the power of passion in learning, and the absolute need for schools to help students identify their own passions through which they can learn just about anything they need. I’ve said in the past that the one thing I want from my own kids’ teachers is for them to help them find what they love to do more than anything else and then support them in their learning endeavors around that topic. Unfortunately, that is not something the current public school system was build for.

Toward the end of the book, Sir Ken lays out the case for personalizing our kids’ educations in the context of transforming (not reforming) schools:

The key to this transformation is not to standardize education but to personalize it, to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of the each child, to put students in an environment where they want to learn and where they can naturally discover their true passions (238). The curriculum should be personalized. Learning happens in the minds and souls of individuals–not in the databases of multiple-choice tests (248).


Related item:

Caspian Learning

Generation is Not the Issue
-- from Net Gen Nonsense [or is it Skeptic now?] by Mark Bullen
Here is the presentation of the results of the research that looked at how students at the BC Institute of Technology are using information and communication technologies. The results clearly show that generational differences are not the issue. Contextual issues such as the nature of the program are more important considerations when making decisions about the integration of learning technologies.

Net Gen P Day


The Snowflake Effect: The Future of Mashups and Learning (Wayne Hodgins) -- from Becta
In this article Wayne Hodgins explores the emerging area of web mashups and how they can be used for learning and teaching in new and innovative ways. He gives many examples of use and then goes on to argue that the true power of mashups is in seeing them as a wider concept that can bring elements of customisation and personalisation to any number of different areas. This development of mass customisation and unique solutions tailored to the needs of the individual are put forward as a way of achieving the personalisation of learning. Download the report - Word


100+ Free E-Learning Tools for Employee Training and Personal Learning -- from Brandon Hall Analyst Blog by Janet Clarey


After settling on the right tools, they were categorized:

  • Assessment, Testing, Polling, and Survey Tools
  • Audio and Podcasting
  • Blogging Tools
  • Browsers, Browser Plug-ins, Browser Extension, Start Pages
  • Content and Learning Management Systems
  • Course Authoring, Rapid E-Learning Development, Presentation and Conversion Tools
  • E-Learning Content, Resources, Directories
  • Microblogging Tools
  • Presence Technologies
  • Project Management, Office Management, Team Collaboration Tools
  • RSS and Aggregator Tools
  • Social Bookmarking/Tagging and Information Management
  • Social Networking Services
  • Video
  • Virtual Worlds
  • Visualization
  • Web Conferencing and Screencasting/Screen Capture Tools
  • Wikis

7 Characteristics of Creative Professional Learning Communities -- from Education Innovation by Robert Jacobs
Professional Learning Communities are a proven element of building successful schools. While a major proponent of PLCs, I argue that creativity is often lost in the meeting process and the examination of student achievement data. Author of Group Genius, Keith Sawyer, has spent years researching what makes for effective creative teams. Not just effective, but teams that are creative and innovative at what they do. Keith has identified seven key characteristics of creative teams...


Personal Learning Environments: The future of education? -- by Graham Attwell

Personal Learning Environments: The Future of Education?


Personal Learning Environments -- from Robin Good


In the future, competences will be just one way (and an unusually employer-centered way) to select learning opportunities. What we will see, rather, is that the selection of learning opportunities will not be a stand-alone activity, but instead will be embedded in other activities. (e-Lead, 2008)

One can imagine how players learn in the course of a game, for example. They do not first learn how to play the game, and then play it. Rather, they begin playing the game, and as they attempt to achieve goals or perform tasks, the learning they need is provided in that context. (Wagner, 2008)

The personal learning environment’ (PLE) is a collection of concepts intended to express this idea. ( Liber, 2006)

The PLE is not an application, but rather, a description of the process of learning in situ from a variety of courses and according to one’s personal, context-situated, needs. The process, simply, is that learners will be presented with learning resources according to their interests, aptitudes, educational levels, and other factors (including employer factor and social factors) while they are in the process of working at their job, engaging in a hobby, or playing a game.

The environment that they happen to be in, whether it be a productivity tool, hobbyist web page, or online game, constitutes (at that time) the personal learning environment. Resources from across the internet are accessed from that environment: resources that conform to the student’s needs and interests, that have been in some way pre-selected or favorably filtered, and that may have been created by production studios, teachers, other students, or the student him or herself. Content - interaction, media, data - flows back and forth between the learning environment and the external resources, held together by the single identity being employed by the learner in this context.

In time, the learning management systems deployed by educational institutions will evolve into educational delivery systems usable by personal learning environments. They will, in essence, be the ‘remote resource’ accessed from a given context.

Educational delivery systems will recognize the identity of the student making the request and will coordinate with other online applications (which may include commercial brokers, open resource repositories, or additional student records) to facilitate the student’s learning activity.

We might think that these educational delivery systems will be delivering learning objects. This is not entirely incorrect, although a learning object today has come to be seen as more like a unit of text in a textbook or a lesson in a programmed learning workbook. It will be more accurate in the future to say ‘learning resource’, since many such resources will be available that do not conform to the traditional picture of a learning object - and may be as simply as a single image, or as complex as a simulation or training module.


8 Stages of PLN (Personal Learning Network) Development -- from The Power of Educational Technology by Liz Davis

From Miguel Guhlin


Personlized Learning Environment (PLE) Project Job Opportunities -- from Stephen Downes; link from George Siemens

The NRC's Personal Learning Environment (PLE) project received formal approval today, and job postings have been announced. I will be managing this project.

The positions, which are for three years, include:

- Researcher specializing in education and pedagogy
- Researcher specializing in art, design and new media
- Researcher specializing in library and information management
- Technology specialist with an emphasis on database support
- Technology specialist with an emphasis on application development.

The R&D activities will focus across two dimensions: how access to a wide variety of learning opportunities can best be managed in an online environment; and how technologies can be assembled to best provide seamless access to a large variety of educational resources and services. In essence, the scientific problem is one of designing an educational infrastructure based on future best practices and then developing an educational application that will work within that infrastructure.


Cultivating your Personal Learning Network -- from David Warlick

Art of Cultivating your PLN


12th International Conference on Interactive Computer aided Learning, Villach, Austria, 2009 -- from Tony Bates
This interdisciplinary conference aims to focus on the exchange of  relevant trends and research  results as well as the presentation of practical experiences gained while developing and testing elements of  interactive computer aided learning, especially in Engineering Education. Therefore pilot projects, applications and products will also be welcome. The conference will be organized by the Carinthia University of Applied Sciences, Villach/Austria in cooperation with:

    • Federal Ministries for Science, Education and Culture of Austria,
    • IEEE Education Society
    • European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN),
    • International E-Learning Association (IELA)
    • European Learning Industry Group (ELIG)
    • European Institute of E-Learning (EIfEL)
    • Austrian Computer Society (OCG)
    • International Society of Engineering Education (IGIP)
    • International Association of OnlineEngineering
    • IT Campus Carinthia

Topics of interest

ICL2009 will have a focus on Semantic Technologies,  Educational MashUps,  Collaborative Learning Environments as well as  E-Portfolios. General topics are for example:

  • Web based learning (WBL)
  • Life long learning
  • Adaptive and intuitive environments
  • Responsive environments
  • Mobile learning environments and applications
  • Computer aided language learning (CALL)
  • Platforms and authoring tools
  • Educational MashUps
  • Networks/Grids for learning
  • Knowledge management and learning
  • Collaborative learning
  • Applications of the Semantic Web
  • E-Portfolios
  • Standards and style-guides
  • Remote and virtual laboratories
  • Multimedia applications and virtual reality
  • Pedagogical and psychological issues
  • Evaluation and outcomes assessment
  • New learning models and applications
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Real world experiences
  • Pilot projects / Products / Applications

How has your Personal Learning Network Changed Your Life? -- from The Power of Educational Technology by Liz B Davis

Note from DSC:
You NEED to have a global network of colleagues/peers within your discipline. If you don't have one, then check out these resources.


VLEs slow to take off -- from Derek's Blog by derek.wenmoth; which links to The-virtual-reality-of-e-learning/(language)/eng-GB

User-Owned Technology Demonstrators -- from JISC; regards PLE's/ 1:1 and related projects


1-1 Computing, does it work? -- from Derek Wenmoth


Building a Digital Locker: Personal Learning Networks Explained -- from Edutopia.
Students drive their education with custom-made Web pages.


From Robin Good -- back in '07
Personal Learning Environments: What They Are And How To Implement Them


Personal Learning Environments -- article by Tony Karrer, mentions the following links:



Other examples of personalization/customization

PURE Lounge

PURE Lounge

"If you love radio, you’ll love the Lounge – your online gateway to the world of internet radio, listen again content, podcasts and PURE Sounds. Use it to find new stations that play the music you’re into, catch up with the killer radio show you’ve just missed, stream podcasts on thousands of different subjects or play sounds to stimulate, inspire and relax. Expand your listening choices with the Lounge."



Seeing the Future in NPR’s Custom News Podcast -- from the NY Times, by Saul Hansell National Public Radio has introduced a nifty little feature that lets you create your own custom podcast of NPR content on topics that interest you. Type in Obama or Madonna or whatever, and you can sign up for a stream of NPR clips that match your keywords that can be downloaded to your computer, smartphone, iPod or Zune.

mobileStorm Text–To–Screen -- my thanks to Mr. Nehemiah Chu for this link
Getting them there is half the battle. Next step: Marketers promoting events such as concerts and sports matches can leverage that interested audience thanks to mobileStorm Text-To-Screen—a premium service that allows marketers to create polls and quizzes especially for a particular event.

With mobileStorm Text-To-Screen, marketers have a way to ensure event attendees’ interest while adding excitement to shows, parties, major sporting events, or even a regular evening at a movie theater or nightclub. An event promoter or marketer can use giant video screens that are traditionally at these places to advertise a poll or quiz, compel the crowd to participate--and then post the results on that same screen, in real time! The service is also ideal for collecting consumer data—especially useful for future successful marketing campaigns.

Per Nehemiah Chu:
Also, here's a great podcast on why "short message service"/SMS marketing is the future This site catering to ecommerce merchants interviews the CEO of MobileStorm, a mobile marketing firm.


A Collection of PLE diagrams -- from EdTechPost blog

Networked Learning at Conferences -- from 2¢ Worth by David Warlick
"One of the distinctions that I discovered was that most of them saw their groupmails as their PLN — and rightly so.  This gave me the opportunity to say that PLNs are not new.  We’ve always had people and information sources we connected to.  The distinction today, is that our networks can extend beyond our geographies, and even more importantly, they extend through content.  The people in my evolving network are there, not because we speak the same language, grew up in the same neighborhood, look the same, or live the same culture.  We’ve connected through our ideas, through our questions and answers, experiences and insights."


I don’t get Twitter! -- from teaching & learning design, by dskmag
How important is networked knowledge? Why should you learn about personal learning networks? You’re doing just fine as you are, why is it important?


Networks of Everything -- from George Siemens
Apparently, by 2017, personal networks will consist of over 1000 devices. I’m not sure how they came up with that number, but it seems realistic. Most of us already deal with hundreds of devices on a daily basis. They’re not all networked yet…but they will be. The key to effective functioning with these multiple devices will be in how they are connected and in how we can use that connectedness in making decisions. Obviously, we need something more than just tying these devices together. We need new approach to managing the overwhelming information they will produce. That’s partly as software problem and partly a conceptual shift. As I’ve stated before, as information becomes more complex and abundant, we will begin to rely to a greater degree on technology to perform a grunt cognition role by deciphering and presenting patterns for us to consider.

From DSC:
The above posting by George backs up what I was trying to get at with this image -- from 5/31/08

Learning Agents -- Prediction from DSC



The 14th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED 2009)
July 6th - 10th 2009, Thistle Hotel, Brighton, UK

The International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED2009) is part of an ongoing series of biennial international conferences for top quality research in intelligent systems and cognitive science for educational computing applications. The conference provides opportunities for the cross-fertilization of techniques from many fields that make up this interdisciplinary research area, including: artificial intelligence, computer science, cognitive and learning sciences, education, educational technology, psychology, philosophy, sociology, anthropology, linguistics, and the many domain-specific areas for which AIED systems have been designed and evaluated.

AIED 09 will focus on the theme "Building Learning Systems that Care: From Knowledge Representation to Affective Modeling". This extends an AIED vision proposed some 20 years ago by John Self. The field has moved a long way since then. It is now widely accepted that effective learning environments are expected to care about both learners and tutors, and to have a good understanding of the variety of learning contexts. The key research question now is how to tackle the complex issues related to building learning systems that care, ranging from representing knowledge and context to modeling social, cognitive, metacognitive, and affective dimensions. This requires linking theory and technology from artificial intelligence, cognitive science, and computer science with theory and practice from education and social science.


Topics of interest to the conference include, but are not limited to:

1. Modeling and Representation

* Models of learners, facilitators, tasks and
* problem-solving processes
* Models of groups and communities for
* learning
* Modeling of learning contexts
* Modeling of motivation, metacognition, and
* affect aspects of learning
* Ontological modeling
* Dealing with learner dynamics
* Handling uncertainty and multiple Perspectives
* Representing and analyzing discourse during learning

2. Models of Learning Systems that Care

* Intelligent tutoring and scaffolding
* Intelligent games for learning
* Motivational diagnosis and feedback
* Interactive pedagogical agents and learning
* companions
* Agents that promote metacognition,
* motivation, and affect
* Adaptive question-answering
* Multi-agent architectures

3. Intelligent Technologies for Learning Systems that Care

* Natural language processing
* Data mining and machine learning
* Knowledge representation and reasoning
* Semantic web technologies and standards
* Social recommendations
* Social networks

4. Pedagogical Models for Learning Systems that Care

* Inquiry learning
* Social dimensions of learning
* Social-historical-cultural contexts
* Informal learning environments
* Communities of practice

5. Learning Contexts and Domains

* Learning in open web environments
* Collaborative and group learning
* Simulation-based learning
* Ubiquitous learning environments
* Learning grid
* Lifelong and workplace learning
* Domain-specific learning applications, e.g. language, mathematics,
science, medicine, military, and industry.

6. Evaluation of learning systems that care

* Human-computer interaction
* Evaluation methodologies
* Experiences and lessons learned


* Full papers: - original and unpublished work
* Young researcher's track (YRT, including anticipated Doctoral
Consortium, DC):work-in progress by graduate students and other young
* Posters -- work-in-progress
* Interactive events (IE) -- demonstration of AIED systems
* Workshop proposals -- address hot topics in AIED
* Tutorial proposals -- overview of important AIED topics
* Panels -- bring together experts to discuss a topical issue in AIED

Submission instructions will be available at


* Papers, posters, YRT/DC, IE: 15 Jan 2009 (11:59 pm Hawaii)
* Workshop, panel, and tutorial proposals: 15 Jan 2009 (11:59 pm Hawaii)
* Author notification: 16 March 2009
* Workshops and tutorials approved: 16 March 2009
* Camera ready due: 15 April 2009
* Conference: 6-10 July 2009


* Conference Chair: Art Graesser
* Local Arrangements Chair: Ben Du Boulay
* Program Chairs: Vania Dimitrova and Riichiro Mizoguchi
* YRT Chairs: George Magoulas and Tanja Mitrovic
* Poster Chairs: Neil Heffernan and Tsukasa Hirashima
* Interactive Events Chairs: Jack Mostow and Katy Howland
* Workshop Chairs: Scotty Craig and Darina Dicheva
* Tutorial Chairs: Beatriz Barros and Stephan Weibelzahl
* Sponsorship Chairs: Roger Azevedo and Rose Luckin
* Publicity Chair: Genaro Rebolledo-Mendez


Lying about Personalized Learning -- from iterating toward openness blog


Weaving your own PLE - Session Outline -- from Chris Lott


Creating Personal Learning Environments with Web 2.0 -- from WCET


iClass -- link from Karen Romeis' blog posting entitled, "Personalized Learning"
iClass is based on a strategic thought process on technology enhanced learning (TEL) and technology enhanced personal development (i.e., education), which leads to an enlarged vision on the desired technology enhanced learning and personal development for the digital/knowledge/ postmodern society. This process goes systematically all the way towards the realization of a detailed and operational pedagogical model, methodologies and technological platform.

Report: Personalizing Assessments To Improve Instruction - Dave Nagel, THE Journal -- link from Educational Technology blog, which reads:
"Can technology improve the effectiveness of assessments? According to a new report issued Monday by the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA), it can when it's used in a less formal setting and applied for the purpose of improving instruction and outcomes for students rather than merely taking a snapshot of students' knowledge at a given point in time."


Why Have a Personal Learning Network? -- from The Innovative Educator


Call for research to be included in upcoming
Special Issue on “Real-World Applications of Intelligent Tutoring Systems”

IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies

The IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies seeks original manuscripts for a Special Issue on Real-World Applications of Intelligent Tutoring Systems scheduled to appear in the April-June issue of 2009.

Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS) appeared during the 70’s, most driven by the success of Knowledge-based Systems and Expert Systems. ITS are able to instruct and train students and professionals without the intervention of human beings. ITS introduce a set of ideas like the domain knowledge representation, most of times derived from a previous Expert System project, allowing the possibility to reason and explain automatically on domain problems. Developments were made in trainees’ models, instructional and pedagogical planning, and user interface. In the 90’s, with the web boom, some ITS ideas were incorporated in new computer-aided instruction paradigms, like e-learning, distributed learning, and more recently in learning objects. However there is a clear difference since these learning concepts are more centred in the interaction with the instructor.

ITS are a good example of the use and combination of Artificial Intelligence techniques. Besides expert systems, other areas like natural language, machine learning, planning, multi-agent systems, ontologies, semantic web, social and emotional computing have been used with success in ITS.

On the last years ITS have experimented a meaningful development. Many systems were developed and deployed, even for critical and complex domains. The reported benefits experimented by the users of these systems are impressive. ITS-taught trainees generally learn faster and translate the learning into improved performance better than classroom- trained participants. Today, ITS can be produced by authoring tools, and specific evaluation and assessment methods can be used.

Papers submitted to this special issue must follow the criteria used by IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies and defined by the nature of this special issue, namely by covering the following mandatory items:

- presenting original research;
- offering a critical review of the state of the art in the field;
- using Artificial Intelligence methods and techniques in the described ITS;
- illustrating the application of the described ITS in real-world cases;
- performing the evaluation of the proposed ideas.

Submitted articles must not have been previously published or be currently submitted for journal publication elsewhere. As an author, you are responsible for understanding and adhering to our submission
guidelines. You can access them at

The journal is now accepting submissions for this special issue through Manuscript Central at, which provides instructions about formatting and length. If you have
any questions, please contact the Peer Review Associate Manager, Jennifer Carruth, at jcarruth|at| or the guest editors at the addresses listed below.

Important dates:
• 28 Dec. 2009: Deadline to submit a full paper.
• 15 Feb. 2009: Authors notified of acceptance, rejection, or needed revisions.
• 1 Mar. 2009: Revisions due.
• 15 Mar. 2009: Notification of final acceptance.
• 22 Mar. 2009: Final versions due.

If you have any questions, please contact the editors of this special issue:

Carlos Ramos - Institute of Engineering / Polytechnic of Porto, Portugal, csr[at]
Claude Frasson - University of Montreal, Canada, frasson[at]
Sowmya Ramachandran - Stottler Henke Associates, Inc., USA, sowmya[at]


Saturday morning in a 1-to-1-household -- from Wes Fryer


Web 3.0, Web 4.0 and Personal Agents: Will They Open or Restrict Choice? -- from e-Learning Queen

Back from July 10th, 2008
The Web 2.0-native learner’s PLE


MIT Research Group Projects and Descriptions-- On Software Agents
Henry Lieberman, Xinyu H. Liu

Software Agents
Principal Investigator: Henry Lieberman

The Software Agents group investigates a new paradigm for software that acts like an assistant to a user of an interactive interface rather than simply as a tool. While not necessarily as intelligent as a human agent, agent software can learn from interaction with the user, and proactively anticipate the user's needs. We build prototype agent systems in a wide variety of domains, including text and graphic editing, Web browsing, e-commerce, information visualization, and more.


Personalized Learning Enviroments -- presentation from Scott Wilson, Institute for Educational Cybernetics, University of Bolton;

Also see


Lyon's 1:1 Laptop Program Aims To 'Level the Playing Field' for Students -- from, by David Nagel
This fall Lyon College, a four-year liberal arts school in Arkansas, will join the elite ranks of post-secondary institutions offering laptops to all incoming freshmen. The program is part of a larger initiative, called "The Lyon Experience," which aims to bring "additional value to the education" the school provides.


Special Track on Intelligent Tutoring Systems
At the 22nd International FLAIRS Conference (FLAIRS 2009), Florida, USA
Sanibel Island, Florida, USA | Sundial Beach and Golf Resort | May 19-21, 2009

We invite you to submit papers to the Special Track on Intelligent Tutoring Systems at the 22nd International FLAIRS Conference. This special track will bring together an international audience to present and discuss issues related to intelligent tutoring systems. The focus will be on ITS research applying modern AI techniques to problems of education, including, but not limited to:

* Game-based, narrative-based and virtual learning environments
* NLP and dialogue in tutoring systems
* Modeling and shaping the student's affective state
* Metacognition
* Gaming the system
* Ill-defined domains
* Educational data mining
* Web-based systems
* Authoring tools for non-experts
* Adaptive educational hypermedia
* Collaborative and group learning
* Open learner modeling
* Ontology engineering for educational purposes
* Novel interfaces

Personalized Learning Environments
A publication of

The Art & Technique of Personal Learning Networks -- from Warlick's CoLearners

Links re: PLE

What drives Web 3.0, the "semantic" web?

Idea --

Using a combination of artificial intelligence strategies, natural language understanding, computational linguistics and fuzzy logic strategies, SAGrader detects the presence of relevant content and responds with feedback and a score.

BECTA Report Concludes Personalized Learning Key to Educational Improvement (April 2008)

California District Approaches 1:1 Computing Through Virtualization - Dave Nagel, THE Journal

As we've reported previously, a number of education institutions and other types of organizations have moved toward virtualization to reduce overhead costs and address environmental concerns. Now one district in California, Dublin Unified School District, is taking it a step further by virtualizing student computers in an effort to move closer to 1:1 computing in the classroom. The idea was, once the school reached a certain number of computers per student, to move those computers out of labs and into classrooms. Then, by virtualizing those systems, more computer resources became available to students.