The Attack on Our Higher Education System—and Why We Should Welcome It

TED Blog • 31 January 2014

Growing up. Writer/researcher George Siemens predicts as the massively online educational movement evolves, it's heading into the corporate workplace and going global. Read on for more on what's up next for MOOCs.

Siemens was one of the instructors in what is widely regarded as the first MOOC. He is not credited with the origin of the term and acronym. Others must answer for that. Here his predictions line up with some of the MOOC big dogs like Sebastian Thrun. Click through to some of the supplementary material referenced at the end of the article. There's much of interest there including this good conversation between Thrun and Salman Khan. (Michalko)

Breakpoint—Bigger Is Not Better

Farnam Street Blog • 3 February 2014

Grow fast—then take a break. Check out this review of Jeff Stibel's book, Breakpoint: Why the Web Will Implode, Search Will Be Obsolete, and Everything Else You Need to Know About Technology Is in Your Brain. Stibel points out that the "fittest species are typically the smallest": think insects, whose evolutionary adaptability has ensured their survival. "[T]he unit of measure for progress isn't size, it's time." Drawing from the lessons of nature, Stibel offers a set of rules for network sustainability.

The patterns identified here show up all over. Institutions, corporations, products, etc. all go through the grow, overshoot, strive for equilibrium pattern. I've got one word for you—homeostasis. (Michalko)

What Machines Can't Do

The New York Times • 3 February 2014

The human touch. In the face of increased automation and improved artificial intelligence, columnist David Brooks looks at which human capabilities will increase in value. Read on for Brooks' take on enthusiasm, strategic discipline and decentralized management skills as future resumé differentiators.

This is typical of a lot of Brooks' recent observational columns. Here he tries to identify the parts of human-ness that will matter in the near future. It's an example of one of the skills he identifies—essentialism. (Michalko)

Why It's So Hard to Measure Online Readership

The Atlantic • 8 February 2014

Attention span. Atlantic senior editor Derek Thompson observes the market definition of "reader" now encompasses a wide range of activities, from dedicated perusing to "Tsetse-fly-brained" Facebook browsing. Read on for an overview of some of the new ways digital companies are sizing up readership, including "uniques," "attention minutes" and "shares."

None are good and that's the struggle. At OCLC Research we think about this because we'd like what we do to have the widest possible audience and impact. A lot of what we do presents things to be read. How do you know if people can find it let alone if they've read it? On the discovery side we've recently been experimenting with heat and click maps on our website generated via Crazy Egg. (Michalko)

Our Love Affair with the Tablet Is Over

Re/Code • 6 February 2014

Got an app for that? Trends in the mobile media market affect every organization with a web presence and VC Zal Bilimoria suggests that tablet sales have peaked as smartphones continue to expand in size and power: "The vast majority of the hundreds of millions of people who use tech every day are just fine with having two primary computing devices: One for your pocket and one for your desk." Bilimoria says the next generation of 5-inch phones are morphing into "phablets," eliminating the need for a third device.

Or go right to "He describes the yearning I had to live in a two-device world. He may be right that it's going to be an evolved smart phone. I thought it was going to be the Surface. I wanted it to be the Surface. It's not the current Surface. (Michalko)

Who Says Libraries Are Going Extinct?

Pacific Standard • 6 February 2014

Branching out. Check out this overview of what some libraries are lending to their communities. Fishing poles and cake pans are only the beginning of what could be offered to today's "sharing" culture.

You know this. I include it for the links to the Pew surveys and because it belatedly brought to my attention the nice post by Jessamyn West "How not to write about libraries—some guidelines for reporters" and introduced me to Pacific Standard which is now in my feed. (Michalko)

Above the Fold Quiz

According to an item in this week's News and Views section, what institutions are the newest OCLC Research Library Partners?

Get the answer.



The Wikipedia Library Project—what is it, and how can you be involved?
Exclusively for OCLC Research Library Partners
25 February 2014
Online via WebEx

OCLC Research Library Partnership San Francisco Bay Area Reception
Exclusively for OCLC Research Library Partners
26 February 2014
San Francisco, California (USA)

"Inside the Digital Public Library of America" Presentation by Dan Cohen
07 March 2014
Dublin, Ohio
and online via WebEx

Regional Print Management: Right-scaling Solutions Symposium
27 March 2014 - 28 March 2014
Dublin, Ohio

OCLC Research Library Partnership Meeting
Exclusively for OCLC Research Library Partners
10-12 June 2014
Amsterdam, Netherlands


More events »