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Claude Almansi

College-Made Device Helps Visually Impaired Students See and Take Notes - Wired Campus ... - 0 views

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    "August 1, 2011, 5:51 pm By Rachel Wiseman College students with very poor vision have had to struggle to see a blackboard and take notes-basic tasks that can hold some back. Now a team of four students from Arizona State University has designed a system, called Note-Taker, that couples a tablet PC and a video camera, and could be a major advance over the small eyeglass-mounted telescopes that many students have had to rely on. It recently won second place in Microsoft's Imagine Cup technology competition. (...) The result was Note-Taker, which connects a tablet PC (a laptop with a screen you can write on) to a high-resolution video camera. Screen commands get the camera to pan and zoom. The video footage, along with audio, can be played in real time on the tablet and are also saved for later reference. Alongside the video is a space for typed or handwritten notes, which students can jot down using a stylus. That should be helpful in math and science courses, says Mr. Hayden, where students need to copy down graphs, charts, and symbols not readily available on a keyboard. (...) But no tool can replace institutional support, says Chris S. Danielsen, director of public relations for the [NFB]. "The university is always going to have to make sure that whatever technology it uses is accessible to blind and low-vision students," he says. (Arizona State U. has gotten in hot water in the past in just this area.) (...) This entry was posted in Gadgets."
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    In "(Arizona State U. has gotten in hot water in the past in just this area.)" the words "in the past" are linked to http://chronicle.com/article/Blind-Students-Demand-Access/125695/ , about a Spanish work book inaccessible to blind students, with a reference to the lawsuit against Arizona State U over the adoption of the Kindle. So classifying this post in "Gadgets" is particularly paradoxical: in fact one reason why Arizona State U. was sued over the adoption of the Kindle was that Amazon presented its text-to-speech as a gadget.
Claude Almansi

My Online Summer: Grading - ProfHacker - The Chronicle of Higher Education - 0 views

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    June 17, 2011, 11:00 am By Jason B. Jones "[My Online Summer is a weekly series chronicling my first effort at teaching a class entirely online in our campus's LMS. Read previous installments here.] Most of the early adjustments to teaching online ranged from disconcerting to irritating to anxious. But this week, I wanted to mention one thing that has been infinitely better in an all-online course: grading. It has been much easier for me to grade the work of online students than those from a conventional class."
Claude Almansi

Plan Would Force U. of Wisconsin to Return $39-Million in U.S. Broadband Grants - Wired... - 0 views

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    "June 8, 2011, 7:01 pm By Marc Parry A budget approved by a legislative committee last week would force the University of Wisconsin to return $39-million in federal grants awarded to expand high-speed Internet access across the state, state education officials said. The plan would also require all University of Wisconsin institutions to withdraw from WiscNet, a nonprofit network cooperative that services the public universities, most of the technical and private colleges in Wisconsin, about 75 percent of the state's elementary and high schools, and 95 percent of its public libraries, according to David F. Giroux, a spokesman for the university system. (...) Another provision in the plan would bar any University of Wisconsin campus from participating in advanced networks connecting research institutions worldwide, according to Mr. Evers's memo. For example, the Madison campus would have to withdraw from Internet2, a high-speed networking consortium, said Mr. Giroux."
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    That's what Lessig had in mind when he said: "Think about the question of broadband policy. (…) The US has been a dismal failure in this respect. As we watch the US going from number 1 in broadband penetration, now to, depending on the scale, number 18, 19, or 28. And that change is because of policies that effectively block competition for broadband providers. Their answer, these broadband providers brought to our government, and got our government to impose actually benefited them and destroyed the incentives for them to compete in a way that would drive broadband penetration. (…)" From Lessig's Keynote Address at g8 7:48 - 8:42 - http://www.universalsubtitles.org/en/videos/C6wmjKWrZwlP/
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