Open Education

  • fOSSa 2015 was such a great conference that I and Wouter Tebbens already wrote four other posts about it (see below). Here are the last bits that are worth sharing but did not fit elsewhere.Open Education What Mitja Jermol and his colleagues are doing in Slovenia is REALLY interesting, go check it out. Seriously. I can only add that they seem in a great position to, in addition to what they are already doing, _also _bring Open Data in/from schools, as I suggested here a while ago.
  • I had (at least) three big reasons to be at the fOSSa 2015 conference, a couple of weeks ago. Two already covered elsewhere and one, “Citizen Cloud: Towards a more decentralized internet?”, that deserves its own separate post. Before getting to that, however, let me quickly remind the first two reasons: first, I and Wouter Tebbens had to present a great research project we of the Free Knowledge Institute are working on, that is Digital Do-It-Yourself (DiDIY).
  • The Italian Publishers Association (Aie) just launched the “è-book” (“it’s an (e-)book”) contest, addressed to all Italian university students, to find the slogan that will publicize a series of digital university textbooks. Aie is an association that Garamond, an Italian publisher who is heavily betting just on digital textbooks, abandoned last year because Aie: protects only the interests “of three or four large groups, which are increasingly dominant in the Italian publishing market, especially in the school sector in which we (Garamond) operate.
  • Software Architecture is a 162 pages course book on, you guessed it, software architecture. The book, which is a contribution to the Open University Netherlands (OUNL) to the Free Technology Academy is released under a Creative Commons Attribute ShareAlike License and downloadable for free and without any registration, from the URL above. The LinuxQuestions.org website Tradepub, a partner of LinuxQuestions.org (which is just one of the many partners of Tradepub, and is mentioned here because it is the website from which I and others arrived to the Tradepub pages shown here: please note their URL, the logo in the top left corner of the first one and above all the explanations from LinuxQuestions in the comments!
  • (this is part of a paper originally proposed for a conference) Abstract: making custom integrated circuits at home or school that are more powerful and much more flexible than the popular Open Source Arduino platform is still a relatively unknown concept. This activity, however, is not just much more affordable and easy today than just a few years ago thanks to FPGAs: it may also have important social and educational consequences.
  • (this is a reformatted version, in two parts, of a paper originally proposed for a conference) Abstract: making custom integrated circuits at home or school that are more powerful and much more flexible than the popular Open Source Arduino platform is still a relatively unknown concept. This activity, however, is not just much more affordable and easy today than just a few years ago thanks to FPGAs: it may also have important social and educational consequences.
  • (this is a follow up to my first article about A little know but very powerful tool for homeschooling: Free Software. The information below may not be all up to date anymore: I collected it shortly after the first piece but, for several reasons, was unable to use it earlier. However, it is still relevant, in my opinion, because it really consists of reports from the trenches: parents who actually have done, or are still doing, homeschooling with, and just thanks to, Free Software)
  • 67 years ago Primo Levi was deported to Auschwitz. 64 years ago he published a book about that experience titled If this is a man. 24 years ago Primo Levi died. Today Primo Levi reminded me of the absurdity of certain laws and wastes of public money, and how the technology could help culture. Today I met a high school student who, having to read If this is a man to write a report, borrowed in the closest Public Library the copy that you see in these photos.
  • This is an answer to this and other comments from “Anonymous” to my article Software is too important to leave it to programmers. Dear anonymous, let’s start from this: I work in a law office. I’m quite familiar with legal citations used throughout the country. In my first answer to you I said “governmentS”. Plural. The world is not the USA, it’s much bigger than that. I don’t write for USA only audiences and you should never assume that something is only about USA only because it happens to be in English.
  • (this page is part of my Open Data, Open Society report. Please follow that link to reach the introduction and Table of Content, but don’t forget to check the notes to readers!) Practically all the real-world examples presented in these pages confirm a few general facts and principles of Open PSI. One is that what is really useful are the relations between different, apparently unrelated types of PSI generated by independent public bodies.