Hypothesis Integration

I’m currently in Edinburgh at the semi-annual Shuttleworth Foundation Gathering. One of the other Fellows, Dan Whaley, is working on a killer open source annotation and highlighting tool called Hypothesis. You should absolutely check it out.

I’ve enabled Hypothesis on my blog now (via the companion WordPress plugin!). If you want to make comments on specific words or phrases in my posts (instead of making a comment on the entire post), just highlight a word or phrase and then click on the pen icon that pops up. I’ll be keen to see what – if anything – you do with this new capability. Please annotate posts on their permalink pages rather than annotating them on the front page.

If you want to see all the comments people have made around the site, check out An RSS feed for the stream is on the roadmap, and I’ll incorporate that into the site as soon as it’s available.

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Lumen Learning Update – Saving Students $700,000 Fall 2013

This month is the one year anniversary of Lumen Learning, the “RedHat for OER” I founded with Kim Thanos in October, 2012. It’s been an incredible first year, and we’ve learned a million lessons along the way – and we continue to learn more about what it takes to support OER adoption at scale every day.

We’ve pulled together a summary of what’s happening with our post-secondary work for fall semester 2013 in a press release posted on the Lumen site, which begins:

Twenty institutions have partnered with Lumen to offer open content options for high demand, high enrollment courses that serve more than 6,000 students in total. Because these students are no longer required to purchase commercial textbooks or course materials, cost savings are estimated at approximately $700,000.

(This is our post-secondary impact for fall 2013, and doesn’t include winter term 2013 or our secondary work with the Utah open textbooks which is now statewide in math and science.)

The release also provides some details regarding the impact on student learning outcomes of the OER adoptions we’re supporting, information about a math pilot we’re running in winter semester 2014, and a description of our newly redesigned services and support model which we’ve branded “Candela.”

Thank you to everyone who is supporting our efforts to increase the quality and lower the cost of education – our institutional partners; the small but passionate Lumen team; the many of you who say and write positive things about our work; the Shuttleworth Foundation who have provided direct financial support for our work; and the broader community of OER funders and organizations who make our work possible, including the Hewlett Foundation, NGLC, the Gates Foundation, the Saylor Foundation, OpenStax, CK-12, Boundless, CMU OLI, and dozens of other individuals and orgs.

It feels like we’re really making a difference in people’s lives – we’ve saved students around $1M this year, and I firmly believe we can do 5x – 7x that next year.

Happy anniversary, Lumen!


The Post Flickr World – TroveBox

One of the many benefits of my Shuttleworth Fellowship is getting to hang out with other Shuttleworth Fellows twice a year at a meeting called The Gathering. They are an insanely bright, motivated, talented group of people. Take, for example, Marcin Jakubowski who is building the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS), “an open technological platform that allows for the easy fabrication of the 50 different Industrial Machines that it takes to build a small civilization with modern comforts.” I’m still a little in awe of the scope of work he has taken on…

Another of the fellows, Jaisen Mathai, is working on an open source photo management platform called TroveBox. This really terrific looking photo management platform can use almost anything for its backend storage – including Amazon S3 and Dropbox. Given the way that the Googles and Yahoo!s of the world are behaving lately, I was extremely excited to see a high quality, open source front end set of photo management tools that lets me store photos where ever I want. I connected my account to S3 and imported all my photos in about 15 minutes (note: their automated Flickr importer requires a Pro subscription). Of course I could have imported my Flickr photos by hand for free, but I was more than happy to pay to get my 2000+ photos plus all their metadata moved in 15 minutes.

This is my first move in a more deliberate process influenced by Jim Groom and other’s continued thinking and writing about taking back control of our digital personal identities with A Domain of One’s Own and Syndication-Oriented Architectures. I love the idea of an open source front end I can run myself if need be, and multiple options for backend storage that are VERY easy to switch between.

Check out the platform by poking around my account here: