University

  • 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.
  • Last week I had a weird experience. I went to the Department of Communications and Social Research of the Faculty of Communication Sciences of La Sapienza, the first and biggest University in Rome. The reason I went there was to attend the presentation of the Italian Manifesto for Open Government, on which I’ll report soon in another article. The promoters of the Manifesto spent the whole morning explaining in detail all its ten articles, including the fourth and fifth that strongly assert the importance of opening public data, that is publishing them without restrictions in open file formats.
  • In november 2010 I discovered the existence of Federica, the tridimensional virtual square” that should be the innovative web-learning system of the Federico II University in Naples. Out of curiosity, I decided to visit it and all I got was a black screen and some perplexities. Some of them, which I described in another page are on the very sense of a website like that, others are more specific. I got a black screen because I use Linux, while (quoting from the University website):