Dancing with Robots

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Fri, 02/13/2015 - 11:06am.


(Image: Huang Yi and KUKA the robot in ‘Huang Yi & KUKA’ at 3LD Art & Technology Center (photo by Summer Yen/ discovered in Hyperallergic.com))

While searching for this AM's High Five leads for NewLearningTimes.com, I came across this interesting piece highlighting the premiere of a robot/human pas de deux. (As an aside, Hyperallergic.com has a great newsletter!) While not directly related to learning...

People Are Naturally Biphasic Sleepers

Submitted by Panisuan Chasinga on Thu, 02/12/2015 - 6:10pm.

Historians have recently come to believe that people are naturally biphasic in their sleep patterns. This means that before the dawn of civilization and electric lights, humans went to bed shortly after sundown and awoke during the middle of the night to cook, talk, read and reproduce.

They have also argued that before the Industrial Revolution,segmented sleep was the dominal form of human slumber in Western civilization, drawing evidence from documents from the ancient, medieval and modern world. A case has been made that maintaining such a sleep pattern may be important in regulating stress and all kinds of body functions related to hormones.

Now you know why it is so hard to drag yourself out of bed. You are meant to get up long before morning! (And of course, take a natural short nap in the afternoon).

Sociology Course on Cristiano Ronaldo

Submitted by Youssouf Bamba on Thu, 02/12/2015 - 12:21am.

A professor at the University of British Columbia is offering a course on soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese superstar is arguably the most famous athlete in the world. The sociology class will focus on Ronaldo’s cultural and social impact. The professor was inspired to offer the course after watching a Portugal game in which the announcers spent all game talking about Ronaldo.

What are your thoughts on this course? Will students take it seriously?

Using Hip Hop to Teach Students

Submitted by Malik Muftau on Wed, 02/11/2015 - 9:39pm.

Music has always form an integral part of our society. Technology has become very integral in recent times. Different people use both technology and music in diverse ways. How can we combine the two to improve educational outcomes? This article gives us enough reasons to believe that music and technology can converge to make learning easier. Flocabulary creates hip-hop videos that are based on an educational curriculum. These videos range from topics in science, mathematics and vocabulary. The founders of this platform highlighted that "magic happened" after they collaborated with teachers, musicians and video artists to create the platform. Almost 20,000 schools are reported to have adopted this initiative.

Will this platform produce a new era of scientific rappers?

Weird Wednesdays

Submitted by Dana Haugh on Wed, 02/11/2015 - 4:50pm.

Welcome to Weird Wednesdays.

Caption this photo and win a prize!

This image courtesy of PocketKnowledge.

Free Stock Photos (That Are Actually Beautiful)

Submitted by Panisuan Chasinga on Wed, 02/11/2015 - 9:27am.

We all know how hard it is to find free stock photos for our web projects or presentations. When you stumble upon them, they are actually pretty bad.

Rest assured, I've found a resource that collects all the resources of stunning stock photos from professional photographers that are actually beautiful and without a person smiling and looking straight into the camera.

Great photos leave a lot of space to be desired. They leave it for transformative feelings and imagination, or in some cases, just hero lines.

Without further ado, go explore NOW.

Bus Rapid Transit System

Submitted by Ahmed Bagigah on Wed, 02/11/2015 - 1:27am.

In most urban areas, pedestrians and vehicles both face heavy traffic jams. This is due to several factors. One is a lack of efficient public transportation system. Another is a system that limits the number of private cars moving into the city. Fast growing developing cities such as Bogota and Brisbane are facing challenges with traffic jams and providing affordable public transportation for a growing population. The Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system is a new form of public transport that delivers fast, reliable and cost effective services. It is simpler and cheaper to build than metro rails and light rail systems. The system is well designed to dedicate street lanes for BRT buses only. These buses work like the railway as it provides local and express transportation services for pedestrians and also cuts down traffic and the use of private cars.

The BRT system was first introduced in Curitiba, Brazil and has been transforming the way cities view mass transportation in the 21st century. The BRT system saves citizens travel time, enhances productivity at work due to less travel time and allows individuals to spend more time with their families. The system is usually not subsidized by the government because it is not expensive to maintain. This allows money to be invested in other areas.

Congrats Kaymbu Team!

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Tue, 02/10/2015 - 5:52pm.

Fast Company recently published a ranking of "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Education" and Kaymbu was #10! Check-out Kaymbu founder, Kin Lo's seminar below and today's review of Kaymbu in NewLearningTimes.com (which the Kaymbu team shared on Twitter!)!

Also, what do you think of this list? Is anyone missing? Should anyone NOT have been included?

#TinyBookTuesday

Submitted by Alexandra Lederman on Tue, 02/10/2015 - 5:13pm.

Happy #TinyBookTuesday! Here is The Curiosities of London and Westminster Described, in Four Volumes, Embellished with Elegant Copper Plates, Volume III. This tiny book contains descriptions of: St. Paul's Cathedral, Black Friars Bridge, St. Bartholomew's Hospital, The Temple, Temple Bar, The British Museum, Northumberland House, Charing Cross, and Lincoln's Inn. It was published in London and printed for E. Newberry, at the corner of St. Paul's Churchyard in 1784!

ECOSOC Youth Forum

Submitted by George Nantwi on Tue, 02/10/2015 - 8:16am.

I attended the 4th annual ECOSOC Youth Forum last week at the UN. I also attended the this forum several years. This year’s forum was two-day event. As I expected, the bulk of the forum focused on the role of young people in the post 2015 agenda. This year marks the end of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a set of ambitious goals by UN member states that was adopted at the set of this century. The goals were to be accomplished by the end of 2015. The UN is slowly moving the conversation away from the MDGs to sustainable development goals (SDGs) as part of a broader post 2015 agenda.

The first session I attended focused on Africa’s youth in shaping good governance and economic opportunities. The panel, moderated by Sierra Leone native Chernor Bah (I spoke to him briefly during check-in), and consisted entirely of young people (ages 15-35 as defined by the UN) from Africa. A genuine and sometimes heated discussion about young girls in Africa during this session perfectly set the stage for the next session, which focused exclusively on gender equality. The lively Femi Oke, a reporter for Al Jazeera, moderated this panel. One of my good friends from college who works for the Angolan mission to the UN invited me to a special session on programs for youth in the Francophone countries. This was probably the best session I attended all day as the speakers laid out a concise and actionable plan for youth in those countries.

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