From DSC:
These ideas are specially meant for you entrepreneurs and vendors out there! Including such vendors and products such as Zoom, Cisco Webex, Microsoft Teams, Adobe Connect, and others!

This idea could also be profitable and fun for CMS/LMS vendors and products such as Instructure/Canvas, Blackboard Learn, D2L, Google Classroom and others!


How might we take engagement within an online-based learning environment to an entirely different level? Well, check out these ideas!

What if learning could feature more personality? Be more fun? Have shades of game shows even!? Yet at the same time, if you are a learner who ventures into the ideas that I’m about to suggest, you had better be ready to back up and explain your perspective/position!

Here’s what I’m getting at. You know when you are messaging you can insert some fun motion graphics into your message?

 

Well, what about if we could select from a bank of very short video clips during a live/synchronous discussion — or during an asynchronous-based discussion board posting — that contained a famous movie clip/message? Then, if you choose to do that, you are then required to explain your perspective/position.  

 

Video What the video could mean
“Beam me up Scotty! There’s no intelligent life down here.” This is ridiculous. No one’s making any sense here. 
“You meddling kids.”
 From various bad guys on Scooby-Doo.
 You’re messing with me. I don’t agree with your perspective, and here’s why.
“That does not compute.”
Spock from Star Trek. 
I don’t agree with your answer. That doesn’t make any sense and here’s why.
“You can’t handle the truth.”
Jack Nicholson in “A Few Good Men.”
Are you sure you want to know the truth about this topic? Can you handle such a truth? This is about to get real in here.
“Do. Or do not. There is no try.”
Yoda. Star Wars
 Take action on something; do something.
“I’ll be back.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger in various films.
I’m stepping away from my desk…but I’ll be back soon.
or
You may have one this round, but I’ll be back for another round.

Learners within a learning community could use entertainment and have some fun while also having to backup their position/perspective! Talk about engagement! Shooooot.

And/or…learners could be like DJ’s at radio stations — and, on the fly, select from a bank of songs, audio-based noises and sounds!

The danger here is that humor can sometimes backfire and/or offend someone. So we would need to watch the content that’s available to choose from within the repositories of media. We would want to do some serious beta testing here to make sure things stay on the fun, entertaining, and educational sides of things.

Such an approach could introduce opportunities for creativity and for honing one’s ability to think on one’s feet. Also, learners could work on their communication skills as well as their ability to debate or persuade, or to practice some critical thinking.

While more gameshow-like on the surface, if you use such media, you have to explain why you used that media.

 

Addendum on 1/17/22:

  • Fortnite Is Back On Apple iOS, for Some Users — from threstreet.com by Tony Owusu
    Beta testers for Fortnite on streaming cloud gaming service GeForce Now will have access to the third-person shooter through Apple’s Safari web browser.
 

Frequently Asked Questions About Metaverse — from 101blockchains.com by Georgia Weston

You can also discover many other interesting use cases of the metaverse, such as creating virtual learning spaces or virtual tourism. 

 

Also see:

Top 5 Blockchain And Crypto Projects In The Metaverse — from 101blockchains.com by Georgia Weston

 

From DSC:
As the article below clearly relays, MOOCs did NOT fail! In the last decade, they have reached 220 million learners worldwide!

I don’t know the total number of graduates from the Ivy League — throughout all of the relevant institutions’ histories — but I would bet you that MOOCs have reached far more learners. And MOOCs did so in less than a decade. 

And you’re going to tell me MOOCs have been a failure?!!!! Are you being serious!?!?!  You can talk about completion rates all that you want to (and that misses the point, as some people sign up for MOOCs without ever intending to finish the entire course). As with other things, people get out of something what they put into that thing.


A Decade of MOOCs: A Review of Stats and Trends for Large-Scale Online Courses in 2021 — from edsurge.com by Dhawal Shah

Excerpts:

Now, a decade later, MOOCs have reached 220 million learners, excluding China where we don’t have as reliable data, . In 2021, providers launched over 3,100 courses and 500 microcredentials.

Originally, MOOC providers relied on universities to create courses. But that dependence is declining as more and more of the courses are created by companies every year. These corporate partners in course creation include tech giants Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook.

…the majority of the new courses launched on Coursera in 2021 are not from universities anymore.

These mass online courses were born without a business model. Yet within a decade, MOOCs went from no revenue to bringing in well over a half a billion dollars annually.

 
 

TechReport 2021: Cloud Computing — from lawtechnologytoday.org by Dennis Kennedy; with thanks to Cat Moon for this resource

Excerpt:

The 2021 ABA Legal Technology Survey Report will be important historically because it gives us the first look at how lawyers responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. Spoiler alert: we did not see anything like the movement to the cloud we expected in 2020. In fact, the 2021 results might be interpreted as another example of lawyers being late arrivals to technologies widely in use in other professions and businesses.

Nonetheless, we still expect the practice of law to be much more cloud-intensive in the near future than it is now, with courts and clients driving many of the changes. Do you think Zoom meetings, online court hearings, and other forms of online collaboration tools will really go away after what we’ve seen in the pandemic?

In the legal profession, it’s still a much different story. Legal is a lagging industry in cloud use. That said, it is still surprising that even in 2021 the reported use of cloud computing in law practice stayed flat or even declined—despite the pandemic and all the news coverage about Zoom meetings and working from home. This result is difficult to comprehend, let alone explain.

 

 

From DSC:
From my perspective, both of the items below are highly-related to each other:

Let’s Teach Computer Science Majors to Be Good Citizens. The Whole World Depends on It. — from edsurge.com by Anne-Marie Núñez, Matthew J. Mayhew, Musbah Shaheen and Laura S. Dahl

Excerpt:

Change may need to start earlier in the workforce development pipeline. Undergraduate education offers a key opportunity for recruiting students from historically underrepresented racial and ethnic, gender, and disability groups into computing. Yet even broadened participation in college computer science courses may not shift the tech workforce and block bias from seeping into tech tools if students aren’t taught that diversity and ethics are essential to their field of study and future careers.

Computer Science Majors Lack Citizenship Preparation
Unfortunately, those lessons seem to be missing from many computer science programs.

…and an excerpt from Why AI can’t really filter out “hate news” — with thanks to Sam DeBrule for this resource (emphasis DSC):

The incomprehensibility and unexplainability of huge algorithms
Michael Egnor: What terrifies me about artificial intelligence — and I don’t think one can overstate this danger — is that artificial intelligence has two properties that make it particularly deadly in human civilization. One is concealment. Even though every single purpose in artificial intelligence is human, it’s concealed. We don’t really understand it. We don’t understand Google’s algorithms.

There may even be a situation where Google doesn’t understand Google’s algorithms. But all of it comes from the people who run Google. So the concealment is very dangerous. We don’t know what these programs are doing to our culture. And it may be that no one knows, but they are doing things.

Note:Roman Yampolskiy has written about the incomprehensibility and unexplainability of AI: “Human beings are finite in our abilities. For example, our short term memory is about 7 units on average. In contrast, an AI can remember billions of items and AI capacity to do so is growing exponentially. While never infinite in a true mathematical sense, machine capabilities can be considered such in comparison with ours. This is true for memory, compute speed, and communication abilities.” So we have built-in bias and incomprehensibility at the same time.

From DSC:
That part about concealment reminds me that our society depends upon the state of the hearts of the tech leaders. We don’t like to admit that, but it’s true. The legal realm is too far behind to stop the Wild West of technological change. The legal realm is trying to catch up, but they’re coming onto the race track with no cars…just as pedestrians walking or running as fast as they can….all the while, the technological cars are whizzing by. 

The pace has changed significantly and quickly

 

The net effect of all of this is that we are more dependent upon the ethics, morals, and care for their fellow humankind (or not) of the C-Suites out there (especially Facebook/Meta Platforms, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Google, and Apple) than we care to admit. Are they producing products and services that aim to help our societies move forward, or are they just trying to make some more bucks? Who — or what — is being served?

The software engineers and software architects are involved here big time as well. “Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.” But that perspective is sometimes in short supply.

 
 

LinkedIn rolls out its freelance services marketplace globally after picking up 2M users in smaller US beta — from techcrunch.com by Ingrid Lunden

Excerpt:

LinkedIn, the Microsoft-owned platform for those connecting with others in their fields of work and those looking for work, has been known best in recruitment for sourcing candidates and advertising job openings for permanent work. Now, to complement that, LinkedIn is opening up a new front in the job market for freelancers.

Today it is taking the wraps off its Service Marketplace, a new feature that will let people advertise themselves for short-term engagements to those looking to hire people for such roles, competing against the likes of Fiverr and Upwork for sourcing skilled knowledge workers.

 

Microsoft announces plan to cut cybersecurity workforce shortage in half by 2025 — from cnbc.com by Lauren Feiner

Excerpt:

  • Microsoft will partner with community colleges across the U.S. and provide free resources in an attempt to help end a shortage in cybersecurity workers, the company announced Thursday.
  • The company believes it can help train and recruit 250,000 people into the cybersecurity workforce by 2025.
  • Microsoft also believes the effort will help diversify the cybersecurity workforce.
 

Mental Canvas will unleash some serious creativity!

Cehck out what you can do with Mental Canvas! The app seamlessly combines 2D and 3D!

 

Also see:

Mental Canvas: App for drawing in 3D  — from microsoft.com in Germany; Google translated the excerpt below:

When I first saw Mental Canvas in action, I was instantly impressed. Drawings are created in 3D in the app. You can even fly through your own sketches and comics. Mental Canvas offers teachers completely new possibilities to design blackboard pictures, to illustrate content and to try out creative things. The tutorials and examples immediately make you want to draw in three dimensions. Mental Canvas is currently available as a free download. In this blog article you will get to know the app.

 

Zoom product updates showcase the art of the possible for hybrid work — from diginomica.com by Derek du Preez
Zoom’s annual conference – Zoomtopia – kicked off with a number of impressive product updates that highlight how we should be thinking about the future of hybrid work.

Excerpt:

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan kicked off the collaboration vendor’s annual conference – Zoomtopia – with a swathe of product updates that effectively showcase how we should be thinking about the future of hybrid work.

What’s clear is that Zoom is thinking well beyond its video call roots and is creating a platform that’s an effective place for people to get work done. Upcoming integrations with the likes of Google Drive and Dropbox are just part of this.

Features such as being able to continuously access and collaborate on content in a meeting, whether that be chats or files, whilst also having call transcriptions instantly accessible within the Zoom client after a call is completed, and having access to Zoom Whiteboard to create visual presentations – and being able to do this wherever you are – gives you an idea of how the vendor is thinking about making remote work as seamless and productive as possible.

From DSC:
The intense competition between vendors like Zoom, Cisco, Microsoft, and others will only benefit all of us in the longer term. Here’s to innovation! Online learning may never be the same again. For that matter, learning may never be the same again.

 

Fintropolis is an educational Minecraft world that teaching middle schoolers finance — from pixelkin.org

Excerpt:

Two years ago, Ally Financial, a financial services company, hired four interns from Historically Black Colleges and Universities through their Moguls in the Making program to promote financial literacy in younger students. The four college students, Erin Martin (Alabama A&M), Earl Perry and Keishon Smith (Florida A&M), and DeMari Tyner (North Carolina A&T) designed Fintropolis, a world in Minecraft, available now for free in Minecraft and Minecraft: Education Edition.

Also see:

Learn about life-boosting financial skills, including careers & jobs, taxes, budgeting, savings, credit, identity protection and investing.

 

OPM + MOOC = OPX. 244 University Partnerships in the first half of 2021 — from HolonIQ

OPX has well and truly arrived. 2U’s acquisition of EdX. Coursera’s IPO. SEEK’s 50% stake in FutureLearn and their ownership of OES. UpGrad’s rumored $4B valuation. Shorelight Live. Minerva’s OPM pivot. The list goes on, and meanwhile 244 University Partnerships were forged in the first half 2021.

 

 

How to Add a Signature in Word on a PC or Mac — from businessinsider.com by Melanie Weir

Excerpt:

  • You can add a signature to a Microsoft Word document in several ways, depending on the computer you’re using.
  • You can upload a physical signature using a scanner or a cell phone, add additional text like your job title, and then save it to be reused later.

 

 
© 2021 | Daniel Christian