[Paleopsych] The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog
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Wed Jul 6 21:19:28 UTC 2005
The Chronicle: Wired Campus Blog
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Education-technology news from around the Web, brought to you by The
Chronicle of Higher Education
The Economics of Cheating
Administrators at the University of Virginia are investigating claims
that almost 35 graduate students used an online answer key to
cheat on homework assignments. A first-year student in the economics
program reportedly found answers to problems in an introductory course
on the Web and proceeded to share the answers with most of his or her
peers in the class.
Almost everyone in the course could be implicated in the cheating
scandal. "I think about all the students were involved in some
questionable behavior," said Steven A. Stern, the course's professor.
Measuring 'Internet Intelligence'
College students might be old pros when it comes to downloading music
or swapping instant messages, but that doesn't necessarily make them
wise to the ways of the Internet. So a team of colleges, along
with the Educational Testing Service, is developing a test that gauges
students' "Internet intelligence."
The Information and Communication Technology Literacy Assessment, as
the exam is called, could become popular with professors who bemoan
their students' poor Web-research skills. The test measures students'
ability to find information online, verify it, and credit it properly.
Justice Department Raids Piracy Dens
Four people suspected of working in digital-piracy rings were arrested
Wednesday in an ambitious sting operation that spanned 11
countries. The sting, dubbed "Operation Site Down" by the U.S.
Department of Justice, included raids of 20 "warez" groups --
underground communities that post pirated software and movies online.
Officials did not say whether any of the four people arrested were
college students, but an earlier bust conducted by the Justice
Department did lead to the arrest of a student at the University
of Maryland at College Park. (Los Angeles Times)
Forget those tedious piano lessons that your mother made you suffer
through as a child. Researchers at the University of Southern
California have developed a computerized system that allows the user
to play music using a steering wheel and gas and brake pedals.
Essentially, the researchers say, the user "drives" his or her way
through the music with the system, known as the Expression Synthesis
Project. The device permits people to experience playing music without
having to first master an instrument, the researchers say. The system
is programmed to guide the user through Brahms's Hungarian Dance No. 5
in G minor. (The Chronicle, subscription required)
Supporting Piracy or Making a Point?
Will BitTorrent, the network popular with movie swappers, be the next
peer-to-peer service to face legal problems? Or is post-Grokster
hysteria beginning to set in? Legal experts are debating those
questions after discovering a manifesto advocating digital piracy
on the Web site of Bram Cohen, the software's creator.
Mr. Cohen says he wrote the short polemic in 1999, two years before he
started designing BitTorrent. And since releasing the software, he has
repeatedly argued that it is meant for legal file swapping, not
piracy. But some lawyers say that the memo could damage Mr.
Cohen's credibility when he claims that BitTorrent, unlike Grokster
and Morpheus, does not endorse copyright infringement. (Wired News)
For more on the implications of the Supreme Court's decision in MGM v.
Grokster, see an article from The Chronicle by Andrea L. Foster.
Ready for the Digital Revolution
By the year 2020 almost every piece of research published in the
United Kingdom will be available online. And only one in 10
newly-published articles will appear in print, according to a study
commissioned by the British Library.
That's a "seismic shift" for the publishing industry, says Lynne
Brindley, the library's chief executive. The library will prepare, she
says, by spending the next three years bolstering its technology for
storing and organizing digital material. (BBC News)
The Supreme Court's Grokster decision has put most peer-to-peer
networks on shaky legal ground, but it could be just what the doctor
ordered for a file-swapping service called Mashboxx. The network is
attempting to establish itself as a legal peer-to-peer option by
persuading record companies to let people download songs and play them
a few times before buying the tunes. (PC Pro)
Mashboxx's founder, Wayne Rosso, is a familiar face to observers
of the file-sharing wars: He was once president of Grokster. But Mr.
Rosso has transformed himself from a thorn in the music industry's
side into something of an ally -- much like Shawn Fanning, the founder
of Napster, whose SnoCap software helps record companies track their
songs on Mashboxx. (The Washington Post)
Physicists Are People Too
Quantum Diaries, a Web site featuring blogs by researchers,
highlights the minutiae of those who study the minutiae. (The
Chronicle, subscription required)
RIAA Fires Off More Antipiracy Lawsuits
Lawyers for the Recording Industry Association of America might be
flush with victory after the Supreme Court's Grokster decision on
Monday, but they still have plenty of work to do: Today the RIAA
announced a new batch of lawsuits against people suspected of online
piracy of copyrighted songs.
A total of 784 people were identified in this month's suits, including
a number of Grokster users. But recording studios did not say whether
any of the defendants were suspected of sharing songs on campus
Song-Swapping by Subscription
How do you make a music-downloading subscription service more
appealing to college students? Try adding a dash of iTunes to the
Ruckus, a company that offers free music and movie downloads to
students at subscribing colleges, has introduced a tool that lets
students create public playlists of the tunes they've downloaded using
the service. At some universities, students have taken to browsing
each others' iTunes folders as a social activity, and Ruckus hopes
that it can get its subscribers to do the same. But unlike iTunes,
Ruckus will let students download songs from their classmates'
computers, instead of having to gather them from the service's
For more on the social side of file swapping, see an article from
The Chronicle by Scott Carlson.
Students Still Swapping Software
One in three college students considers illegal file sharing to be
unequivocally wrong, according to a new survey commissioned by the
Business Software Alliance. For software manufacturers, that's hardly
a heartening statistic, but it is an improvement over the 2003 survey,
which found that only 23 percent of students felt that way.
The new survey, conducted by the research firm Ipsos, paints a cloudy
picture of the software industry's antipiracy efforts: More than 60
percent of students said they rarely or never paid for commercial
software. And while 44 percent of students said their campuses had
official policies on downloading (up from 28 percent in the 2003
survey), there was no consensus on whether campus antipiracy tactics
Critics of the alliance say the study just shows that the software
industry is fighting an unpopular battle. Stephen Downes, of
OLDaily, has argued that the 2003 survey showed "massive support
in the student population for file sharing and attitudes ranging from
indifference to support among the professors."
The Perils of Podcasting
Will Apple iTunes' new podcasting venture run afoul of copyright
law? It's conceivable, some experts say, depending on how the Supreme
Court's Grokster decision is interpreted.
The podcasting service, which made its debut on Tuesday, allows
iTunes users to publish their own podcasts -- homemade radio programs
that people can download automatically to their iPods or other
portable MP3 players. Apple has said that it plans to monitor
submitted podcasts for violations of copyright. But if some infringing
material does sneak onto iTunes, the company could find itself in
uncharted territory, some analysts say. (Wired News)
* The Economics of Cheating
* Measuring 'Internet Intelligence'
* Justice Department Raids Piracy Dens
* Beep Beep
* Supporting Piracy or Making a Point?
* Ready for the Digital Revolution
* Peer-to-Peer, Legally
* Physicists Are People Too
* RIAA Fires Off More Antipiracy Lawsuits
* Song-Swapping by Subscription
* July 1, 2005
* June 30, 2005
* June 29, 2005
* June 28, 2005
* June 27, 2005
* June 24, 2005
* June 23, 2005
* June 22, 2005
* June 21, 2005
* June 20, 2005
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