The Floating Library!

Submitted by Dana Haugh on Wed, 09/03/2014 - 2:36pm.
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Hi everyone!

As you may have heard, from Sept. 6 - Oct. 3 the historic Lilac Museum Steamship will be host to a Floating Library! That's right--a steamship that's been transformed into a library! This pop-up space is free and open to the public, the only stipulation is that visitors power down their mobile devices before boarding to "encourage visitors to be more engaged with their surroundings."

Laura and I will be volunteering throughout the month and encourage everyone to stop by for this unique experience!

The ship will be docked on Pier 25 along the Hudson River and will feature twenty roundtables, performances and workshops that will shine a spotlight on maker culture, DIY politics, sustainability issues and community engagement.


EdLab Seminar: Breaking the Sound Barrier - The Muse Seek Project, 09.03.14

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Wed, 09/03/2014 - 11:26am.
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Please add your thoughts to the vialogue embedded below. And explore the original blog post to learn more about this event.


Will the College of the Future have a Membership Model?

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:30am.
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EdSurge guest author and "envisioner", Sean Brennan, explorers his version of Higher Ed's not-so-distant future in this EdSurge article. I have taken the liberty of sharing some of my takeaways and highlights from this article below. Do you agree with Brennan's take both on Higher Ed and Generation Z? Overall, it seems that the college of the future may, if Brennan is right, more resemble a startup or design firm than the traditional college of yore.

Thoughts from Brennan's piece:

  • Outdoor spaces at colleges are underutilized as learning spaces and have the potential to give learners a "maker" experience in crafting a custom environ
  • Higher Ed programs need to collaborate and mimic cross-functional teams found in startups (D-Schools seem to be the most adept at this already)

A Faster Web Experience with the Picture Element

Submitted by Hui Soo Chae on Wed, 09/03/2014 - 6:44am.
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Check out this article from Ars Technica about a new HTML element that will make browsing the web much faster.

It's a great story of how a small group of developers (at the Boston Globe) engaged a broader community of developers and then some established institutions (as well a crowd funded campaign) to solve the problem of slow loading responsively design websites.

Here is how it works:

When the browser encounters a Picture element, it first evaluates any rules that the Web developer might specify. (Opera's developer site has a good article on all the possibilities Picture offers.) Then, after evaluating the various rules, the browser picks the best image based on its own criteria. This is another nice feature since the browser's criteria can include your settings. For example, future browsers might offer an option to stop high-res images from loading over 3G, regardless of what any Picture element on the page might say. Once the browser knows which image is the best choice, it actually loads and displays that image in a good old img element.


Having a Positive Work Ethic to Avoid Getting Fired

Submitted by Ahmed Bagigah on Wed, 09/03/2014 - 1:15am.
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Work ethic is an important part of maintaining a job. Employees usually tend to overate themselves when it comes to their performances at work. However, research has shown that those who usually deny slacking off at work are most likely the ones not doing their work. It maybe that they are always tired at work, coming in late, and not doing the work at hand. Bosses and managers usually see what we cannot see about our work performance. Bosses hate unreliable employees and rather have people they can trust to be at work on time every day. This means even an employee being late once a month will be seen as unreliable. Managers see employees constantly asking for directions as unproductive as they prefer employees who try and figure things out and then ask for clarification.

Having a good work ethic means that you do your work at all times even if it means others can do it if you do not do it. This means that you are doing the bare minimum and not being productive enough. Companies like an employee who is always at work and ready to go. Employees with too much emergencies and family problems are often a big burden to the company. Constant complains and bad mouthing the company and its staff might lead to dismissal when word goes around. It is important to remain positive and keep negative comments and gossip to yourself. Going on social media sites and other sites that are not work related is to be avoided because bosses see it as a sign of unproductiveness. It is always important to work hard and stay interested in the work you doing even when the work is not interesting. Try to remain focus and inventive to challenge yourself to do you task.


Google Classroom?

Submitted by Ting Yuan on Tue, 09/02/2014 - 9:27am.
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Is it just a converged system for better managing all the Google apps, or a site with newly developed personalized functions? It first needs a personal domain to start with. Check out this early review from The Chronicle of Higher Education about some trials on the site.


My Summer Internship Experience at JPMorgan

Submitted by Ahmed Bagigah on Tue, 09/02/2014 - 12:31am.
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This summer I had an opportunity to intern at JPMorgan for six weeks. My internship experience was very good as I was exposed to the financial world and gained a lot of knowledge about banking. I was placed under the stock loan division under the prime brokerage department, which focuses on servicing hedge funds and other financial institutions. Going into the internship, I felt that Wall Street had a very strict working environment. However I was proven wrong by how welcoming and friendly the people were, especially towards interns. The stock loan team had over 20 members, which made it difficult for me to know everyone. However everyone made themselves available to help me become comfortable.

I really liked how I was able to shadow my coworkers and ask them questions about what their work or any specific projects at JP Mogran. I was able to attend meetings, ask questions and sought new work once I was done with a task. This was important because it allowed me to grow and gain confidence. My boss and supervisors made themselves available to talk about work, school and life. I learned a lot about stock loan, and banking in general. Overall my time at JPMorgan was amazing and my biggest takeaway is to always have the will to learn, work hard, be creative and open to new ideas and feedback.


Poor Quality Education in South Asia

Submitted by Bismark Appiah on Sat, 08/30/2014 - 11:58pm.
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For the past decade, South Asian countries have made an effort in expanding access to schooling. However, a recent report from the World Bank indicate that a lack of quality education is holding the region back. Due to a lack of inadequate school resources, students are not performing at their very best. For instance, up to one-third of students who complete primary school lack basic numeracy and literacy skills. Not only that, nearly 13 million children, ages 8 to 14 years, remain out of school in the region. After all, teachers who barely know more than their students are teaching in rural schools.

Improving student learning is a difficult task because of different factors such as student background. Challenges faced by the region alone makes the task of improving student learning outcomes more complex. For example, most countries in the region have conflict-affected areas and thus learning remains a extremely challenging. In their report, the World Bank made recommendations on how to improve student learning and establish a better education system.


Old Fashioned Puppet Show

Submitted by Brian Sweeting on Fri, 08/29/2014 - 11:11am.
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Teachers College Record is full of hidden gems, and this is one of them.

Reposted from Alumni Activities: Fine Arts Puppet Show (1922) for consideration in Old Learning Times:

At a fall meeting of the Fine Arts Club of Teachers College, suggestions were made concerning the starting of a new "Hobby" group. The speaker of the evening, Professor Grace Cornell, had a great many suggestions to offer and Miss Lucia Dement explained how a group might write the play for, and produce, an original American Indian puppet show...

Read the rest!


Twitter Opens-up their Analytics Dashboard to EVERYONE

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Thu, 08/28/2014 - 10:51am.
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Previously Twitter has made a fairly robust analytics dashboard available only to advertisers. Then, they made a similar dashboard available to those with "Twitter Cards" enabled (code dropped on the back-end of a site that will pull a summary of that content, plus an image and include this in your Tweet "summary"). Now, Twitter has opened-up an analytics dashboard for EVERYONE (no ad $ or development time needed). Give it a try and experiment with successful (and less so) content on the world's favorite microblogging platform.

Here are some possible additional experiments I would like to consider running with our roster of EdLab Twitter accounts:

  • Does varying the time of day (or night) a Tweet is shared lead to REAL engagement (re-tweets, referrals etc.)? Or just more clicks?
  • Will shorter tweets lead to more engagement? Longer?
  • Does including location have an impact?
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