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What the future holds for AR and VR

News & Thoughts - Fri, 2017-10-27 17:07

by Mike O’Brien, ClickZ

There are still have some obstacles facing VR and AR before they achieve critical mass, such as the bulkiness of the hardware and the expense, both for the people creating content and consuming it. There are also some misconceptions about the technology that marketers need to keep in mind. “Some people thought it would become a daily habit of all users to put on a headset every day. But they overlooked what you’re actually asking somebody to do: Tune out the entire rest of the world and give their undivided attention to the VR experience,” says Alex Krawitz, SVP of Content Development at Firstborn, a digital agency which has created immersive VR experiences for brands like Mountain Dew and Patrón. “Compare that to mobile or any other screen, where it’s pretty easy to multitask.”  “My sense is that next year, we’re going to start seeing a really slow ramp-up and then it’s going to be a hockey stick,” she says. “Mark Zuckerberg wants to get a billion people in VR. That Facebook is so committed to make this happen gives me a lot of hope.”

https://www.clickz.com/what-the-future-holds-for-ar-and-vr/113716/

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Online textbook service saving college students hundreds of dollars

News & Thoughts - Fri, 2017-10-27 17:02

by Matt Stewart, Fox4KC

The price of going to college continues to rise, but there is a movement nationwide to reduce some of the costs. It’s called the Open Textbook Library, and it’s saving students hundreds of dollars every year. Instead of having students spend $300 on one hardcover textbook for one class, they can now get many of their class materials online for free. Students going to UMKC, Mizzou, KU and many other local colleges have access to the Open Textbook Library. All a student needs to do is search for their textbook on the website and download it to their computer.

http://fox4kc.com/2017/10/23/online-textbook-service-saving-college-students-hundreds-of-dollars/

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Move over, Bitcoin: Ethereum is the next big thing in cryptocurrency

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:25

by Mashable

While both Bitcoin and Ethereum are public blockchain networks, Bitcoin only offers one use of the blockchain technology: a digital monetary system that can be used for online Bitcoin payments. The Ethereum blockchain, on the other hand, uses a more advanced scripting language that allows it to run the programming code of virtually any decentralized app, from title registries to electronic voting systems. What’s more, Ethereum’s cryptocurrency (called the ether) runs on “smart contracts,” a type of blockchain technology that uses an “if:then” system — meaning it can only be traded if certain conditions are met. It’s easy to see why Ethereum has quickly become the second most valuable cryptocurrency on the market just two years after its launch. With the help of The Complete Ethereum Blockchain Mastery Bundle, a collection of four online courses taught by Certified Bitcoin Professional Ravinder Deol, you can become an early adopter of this valuable new cryptocurrency and reap the resultant rewards for less than $30.

http://mashable.com/2017/10/17/ethereum-cryptocurrency-online-course/#TRl8WJiCWqqH

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Quiet Power

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:21

by Karen Costa, Inside Higher Ed

I completed course work for my most recent graduate degree almost entirely online. I’m confident in saying that I was one of the most active participants in my courses. One of the things that I noticed as an online student is the importance of the time I was allowed to reflect on ideas due to the asynchronous nature of my courses. When I took traditional 55-minute land-based courses, I often thought of an answer to my professor’s questions four hours after class ended. I always felt like I was two steps behind everyone else, because introverts need time to process and consider internally. Like Joe, land-based courses made me feel like a fish out of water. As an online student, I could finally swim. Very little has been written about whether introverts are more successful in online courses, but Rick Harrington and Donald Loffredo did consider the question in their 2009 article “MBTI Personality Type and Other Factors That Relate to Preference for Online Versus Face-to-Face Instruction.” In their admittedly small study, they found that introverts were more likely to prefer online courses while extroverts were more likely to prefer face-to-face.

https://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2017/10/17/how-online-education-benefits-introverted-students-essay

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Duke’s digital education administrator talks co-curricular learning, online classes

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:15

By Sarah Kerman, Duke Chronicle

I think the culture is really innovative here. I think there’s a reputation that we got where we are now by being more willing to change and more forward looking in our outlook relative to our peer institutions. There’s a certain nimbleness and creativity and willingness to experiment in the culture here that is distinctive. In the digital sphere, you saw this in the iPad in the classroom project. You also saw it in the digital humanities, which Duke is a leader in, and obviously in our online success—we’re one of the top institutions in online learning today. We have 4.7 million learners and that is a huge credit to Duke and its leadership.

http://www.dukechronicle.com/article/2017/10/dukes-digital-education-administrator-talks-co-curricular-learning-online-classes

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Cost & availability of quality content to hamper VR growth

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:11

by Aritra Sarkhel | ETtech
The technology has not been adopted beyond few gaming and entertainment platforms and remains a case of hype in many industries apart from few odd use cases in medical and education space. Cost & availability of quality content to hamper VR growthAlthough the global virtual reality (VR) market is expected to reach USD 48.5 billion by 2025, according to a report by Grand View Research and will grow at a CAGR of 48.89% during the period 2017-2021, the technology has not been adopted beyond few gaming and entertainment platforms and remains a case of hype in many industries apart from few odd use cases in medical and education space.

https://tech.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/technology/cost-availability-of-quality-content-might-hamper-vr-growth/61153568

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Unizin Announces Strategic Alliance with edX to Advance Education

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:04

by Cision

Unizin, a nonprofit consortium of 25 universities, today announced a partnership with edX.org, the leading nonprofit online learning platform founded by Harvard and MIT. Unizin will operate and invest in the Open edX platform, the learning experience platform that powers edX.org. The software will serve as a hosted platform for Unizin’s member universities, and key enhancements to the software will be coordinated and shared with the Open edX community. Ohio State University, Indiana University, and University of Michigan have committed to the hosted Open edX software from Unizin. Unizin and edX will collaborate to advance education technology standards and to open access to data for users of the Open edX learning experience. This partnership will shape the future of education both on-campus and online and will increase the scale and speed as well as enhance the mission of both communities.

http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/10/prweb14827464.htm

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MIT Pilots Digital Diplomas Based on Bitcoin’s Blockchain

News & Thoughts - Thu, 2017-10-26 17:02

By Joshua Bolkan, Campus Technology
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has begun offering some students the option to receive digital diplomas through an app, in addition to a traditional paper degree. Based on Bitcoin’s blockchain technology and integrated with the school’s identity provider, the new diplomas are the result of a partnership between MIT and Learning Machine, a local software company. The electronic credentials were rolled out over the summer and offered to 111 students as part of a pilot program. Dubbed Blockcerts Wallet, the app allows students to share a tamper-proof diploma with employers, schools, friends or family.

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2017/10/19/mit-pilots-digital-diplomas-based-on-bitcoins-blockchain.aspx

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Is blockchain the answer to higher ed’s cybersecurity problems?

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:25

BY ALAN HEPPENSTALL, eCampus News

The implications for the industry are huge: using blockchain means we can now offer credentials that are unhackable and unfakeable. It also means that we can help remove the stigma for employers when interviewing candidates with certifications from lesser-known or non-traditional institutions. Not everyone can graduate from an Ivy-League school (or a traditional college or university, for that matter), and rarely does anyone take the same road to educational and professional achievement. With blockchain verification, we can help the world place their trust in a sound technology, rather than relying on preconceived notions on how or when something should be learned. Businesses constantly weigh risk: financial, reputational, economic or competitor-related. In an age where reputation and trust mean everything, verifying an individual’s educational attainment is both consequential for the legitimacy of online learning, and the future of the workforce.

https://www.ecampusnews.com/ed-tech-leadership/blockchain-cybersecurity-problems/

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Deep learning is a new chapter for every sector: Andrew Ng, Coursera

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:25

By J Vignesh, Economic Times

The very first Coursera course was on machine-learning (ML)… it was six years ago. I helped a lot of people get into ML, more than 1.8 million enrolments over the last six years. I hope we can now bring an equally large number of people into deep-learning. Deep-learning will transform every single industry. Healthcare and transportation will be transformed by deep-learning. I want to live in an AI-powered society.

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/small-biz/security-tech/technology/deep-learning-is-a-new-chapter-for-every-sector-andrew-ng-coursera/articleshow/61148845.cms

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How AI can help you stay ahead of cybersecurity threats

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:20

By Maria Korolov, CSO

Barclays Africa is beginning to use AI and machine learning to both detect cybersecurity threats and respond to them. “There are powerful tools available, but one must know how to incorporate them into the broader cybersecurity strategy,” says Kirsten Davies, group CSO at Barclays Africa.  For example, the technology is used to look for indicators of compromise across the firm’s network, both on premises and in the cloud. “We’re talking about enormous amounts of data,” she says. “As the global threat landscape is advancing quite quickly, both in ability and collaboration on the attacker side, we really must use advanced tools and technologies to get ahead of the threat themselves.” AI and machine learning also lets her deploy her people for the most valuable human-led tasks. “There is an enormous shortage of the critical skills that we need globally,” she says. “We’ve been aware of that coming for quite some time, and boy, is it ever upon us right now. We cannot continue to do things in a manual way.”

https://www.csoonline.com/article/3233951/machine-learning/how-ai-can-help-you-stay-ahead-of-cybersecurity-threats.html

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7 MUST-HAVE APPS, TOOLS, AND RESOURCES FOR MAXIMUM STUDENT ENGAGEMENT

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:20

by Matthew Lynch, Tech Edvocate

These days, it can seem more difficult than ever before to keep kids excited about learning. With tablets, online games and text messages, students seem so easily distracted. But the good news is that this technology does not have to be the bane of your existence. You can use those devices in the classroom to make learning fun with these trustworthy, user-friendly apps and tools.

http://www.thetechedvocate.org/7-must-apps-tools-resources-maximum-student-engagement/

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Google’s machine learning AI has been able to replicate itself for the first time

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:14

by Harry Pettit, Daily Mail

Google’s machine learning artificial intelligence software has learned to replicate itself for the first time. The firm first revealed its AutoML project in May – an AI designed to help the firm create other AIs. Now, AutoML has outdone human engineers by building machine-learning software that’s more efficient and powerful than the top human-designed systems.
The achievement marks the next big step for the AI industry, in which development is automated as the software becomes too complex for humans to understand.
The breakthrough could one day lead to machines that can learn without human input.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4993416/Google-s-machine-learning-AI-learns-replicate-itself.html

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Duke’s digital education administrator talks co-curricular learning, online classes

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:10

By Sarah Kerman, Duke Chronicle

I think the culture is really innovative here. I think there’s a reputation that we got where we are now by being more willing to change and more forward looking in our outlook relative to our peer institutions. There’s a certain nimbleness and creativity and willingness to experiment in the culture here that is distinctive. In the digital sphere, you saw this in the iPad in the classroom project. You also saw it in the digital humanities, which Duke is a leader in, and obviously in our online success—we’re one of the top institutions in online learning today. We have 4.7 million learners and that is a huge credit to Duke and its leadership.

http://www.dukechronicle.com/article/2017/10/dukes-digital-education-administrator-talks-co-curricular-learning-online-classes

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How to fail your online classes: The truths and fears behind virtual learning

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:06

by Briana Hammontree, Ferris State Torch
While many students opt for the traditional form of learning there is always an option for students to take any of the 29 online courses offered at Ferris. “There are a variety of reasons students might find online courses challenging. For one, students may believe some common myths about online courses—for example, that they are easier or less time-consuming than face-to-face classes. Online courses can be just as demanding as face-to-face courses, so students who go into an online course expecting an ‘easy A’ might be caught off-guard and quickly fall behind,” Rowan said.

http://fsutorch.com/2017/10/17/how-to-fail-your-online-classes/

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Deep learning is a new chapter for every sector: Andrew Ng, Coursera

News & Thoughts - Wed, 2017-10-25 17:02

By J Vignesh, Economic Times

The very first Coursera course was on machine-learning (ML)… it was six years ago. I helped a lot of people get into ML, more than 1.8 million enrolments over the last six years. I hope we can now bring an equally large number of people into deep-learning. Deep-learning will transform every single industry. Healthcare and transportation will be transformed by deep-learning. I want to live in an AI-powered society.

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/small-biz/security-tech/technology/deep-learning-is-a-new-chapter-for-every-sector-andrew-ng-coursera/articleshow/61148845.cms

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Where will UK online education be in five years?

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2017-10-24 17:25

by Geoff Webster, Times Higher Education

Given the uncertainties around Brexit, and idiosyncratic US leadership, it is brave to envisage what the sector will look like in five years’ time. However, of the 120 mainstream universities in the UK, we expect more than half to have committed strategically to online learning. Institutions will deliver a wide range of purely online and blended degrees, short courses, and other accredited activities to a broad range of domestic and global students. Some will be expansive, offering the broadest range of subjects and competing in multiple markets; others will seek to differentiate by specialising in their traditional niches. Online pedagogy and technology will, in turn, improve the on-campus experience of traditional students.

https://www.timeshighereducation.com/blog/where-will-online-education-be-five-years

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The latest AI can work things out without being taught

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2017-10-24 17:20

by the Economist

The result is a program that is not just superhuman, but crushingly so. Skill at Go (and chess, and many other games) can be quantified with something called an Elo rating, which gives the probability, based on past performance, that one player will beat another. After 40 days of training AlphaGo Zero had an Elo rating of more than 5,000—putting it as far ahead of Mr Ke as Mr Ke is of a keen amateur, and suggesting that it is, in practice, impossible for Mr Ke, or any other human being, ever to defeat it. Advances in AI often trigger worries about human obsolescence. DeepMind hopes such machines will end up as assistants to biological brains, rather than replacements for them, in the way that other technologies from search engines to paper have done. Watching a machine invent new ways to tackle a problem can, after all, help push people down new and productive paths. One of the benefits of AlphaGo, says Mr Silver, is that, in a game full of history and tradition, it has encouraged human players to question the old wisdom, and to experiment.

https://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21730391-learning-play-go-only-start-latest-ai-can-work-things-out-without

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Woz U and the Future of Learning

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2017-10-24 17:14

By Shayan Ushani, Bryant Archway
Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple and speaker at Bryant University in the Spring of 2017, has launched his latest venture – Woz U. Wozniak was always into learning and tinkering perhaps more so than his former business partner Steve Jobs. Now he wants to give back. Wozniak said, “People often are afraid to choose a technology-based career because they think they can’t do it. I know they can, and I want to show them how.” This is just one of many ventures that aims at solving the shift in demand for specialized skills in the labor market as well as innovating the education marketspace.

http://bryantarchway.com/woz-u-and-the-future-of-learning/

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Online Learning Consortium Announces 2017 OLC Fellows

News & Thoughts - Tue, 2017-10-24 17:10

The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) today announced the 2017 class of OLC Fellows as well as recipients of the 2017 OLC Awards and the 2017 Effective Practice Awards. Fellows and awardees will be recognized at the upcoming OLC Accelerate conference, in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 15-17.  Recognition as an OLC Fellow is conferred by the OLC Board of Directors on those who have contributed to advancing quality, effectiveness and breadth in online and blended education in areas represented by the OLC Pillars: learning effectiveness, access, faculty and student satisfaction and scale. Named to the 2017 class of OLC Fellows are:

Vickie Cook, Ph.D., Executive Director for Online Learning, Research and Service, University of Illinois Springfield
Laurie Dringus, Ph.D., Professor, Nova Southeastern University
Jill Buban, Ph.D., Senior Director of Research & Innovation, Online Learning Consortium

http://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/Online-Learning-Consortium-Announces-2017-OLC-Fellows-and-Recipients-of-2017-OLC-Awards-and-Effective-Practice-Awards-1001783815

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