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I’m proud to say that my boss Phil Ker has a blog. Phil is one of the most progressive education bosses I’ve met, and while blogging isn’t necessarily an indication of that, in the education sector – a CEO blog is pretty progressive.

I certainly hope Phil will use it to express and develop his ideas and network with the rest of us who do so. Phil leads and supports our work in flexible learning, recognition of prior learning, student centered ‘teaching’, and open education to name only a few of the many things I know he does. I’m looking forward to reading more about what he thinks on those things, as well as the things I don’t yet know about him and his work.

Hats off to Sarah Stewart for getting Phil to post number one.

I’ve added Phil’s blog to the list of Otago Polytechnic staff who actively blog. Of course, if “big phil” lets it slip and never posts again, we’ll have no option but to remove him from this list 😉

Next step is to see Phil using an RSS News Reader to stay in touch with the rest of us.. Sarah?


I spoke at the Distance Education Association of New Zealand (DEANZ) 2008 Conference yesterday.

Educational Development at Otago Polytechnic.

An inverted IP policy, intensive use of social media, and prolific development of Open Educational Resources and practices

Here’s the:

  1. audio recording
  2. the slides
  3. the paper

HeyWire8 Think Tank

Otago Polytechnic in collaboration with the Commonwealth of Learning are hosting an open think tank for New Zealand educational practitioners, policy makers and decision makers to explore opportunities and pathways for building a national OER initiative.

  • Place: Otago Polytechnic Forth St Campus, F Block, Level 3 – The Council Room
  • Date: 22 August 2008 (lunch will be provided)
  • Time: 09:30 – 16:30

I met Minhaaj through the Wikieducator project. Later we started skyping about this and that until one night (for me – day for him in Pakistan) we started talking about Islam. Minhaaj is a religious person following Islam, and I am a person interested in that. Moreover,  Minhaaj is a very competent Linux user (in my eyes) and knowledgeable with insight on social media.

Minhaaj is participating in the Facilitating Online Communities, and I think his post for the question What is an online community – is a moving account of the great potential in online communication and communal-ism. The idea that online communities somehow transcend prejudice. So far, of all great posts from the participants in the course, I think Minhaaj gives us an authentic insight into something unique, something deeper and in need of consideration regarding online communities.

Did you know the New Zealand Police Act Review is a wiki!? Nor did I, until Cathy Decker (a participant in the Facilitating Online Communities course) pointed to a very interesting video of Harold Rheinghold interviewing Mark Elliot about Stigmergy and citizen wikis.

  1. iPhone completely blocks free software. Developers must pay a tax to Apple, who becomes the sole authority over what can and can’t be on everyone’s phones.
  2. iPhone endorses and supports Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) technology.
  3. iPhone exposes your whereabouts and provides ways for others to track you without your knowledge.
  4. iPhone won’t play patent- and DRM-free formats like Ogg Vorbis and Theora.
  5. iPhone is not the only option. There are better alternatives on the horizon that respect your freedom, don’t spy on you, play free media formats, and let you use free software — like the FreeRunner.
  6. Its way over priced for something that WILL break in your pocket (OK, I added the last one 🙂

FSF July 2008

Thanks Mike 🙂


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