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The University of Michigan, Indiana University, MIT, Stanford, and the uPortal consortium are joining forces to integrate and synchronize their considerable educational software into a pre-integrated collection of open source tools. This will yield three big wins for sustainable economics and innovation in higher education: 1) A framework that builds on the recently ratified JSR 168 portlet standard and the OKI open service interface definitions to create a services-based, enterprise portal for tool delivery, 2) a re-factored set of educational software tools that blends the best of features from the participants’ disparate software (e.g., course management systems, assessment tools, workflow, etc.), and 3) a synchronization of the institutional clocks of these schools in developing, adopting and using a common set of open source software. The products of this project will include an Enterprise Services-based Portal, a complete Course Management System with sophisticated assessment tools, a Research Support Collaboration System, a Workflow Engine, and a Tool Portability Profile as a clear standard for writing future tools that can extend this core set of educational applications.
The modular, pre-integrated tools will greatly reduce the implementation costs of one or more of these tools at any institution. The Sakai Project Core universities are committing over $2 million per year to launch and support this two year project. The core universities are also committed to implementing these tools at their own institutions starting in Fall 2004 through the duration of the project. The commitment of resources and adoption is purposefully set on an aggressive timeline to swiftly integrate and synchronize the educational software at the core institutions. This effort will demonstrate the compelling economics of “software code mobility” for higher education, and it will provide a clear roadmap for others to become part of an open source community.
Short intro to Open Access (via Open Access News: “The current system of scholarly communication is in need of major changes. Journal price increases have been so dramatic and devastating that faculty who typically don’t know or care about library expenditures are now front and center in the battle to change the dominant paradigm.
To celebrate its 3rd anniversary on the 13th of October 2003, the OpenOffice.org project is spinning off something new – the OpenOffice.org in Schools project.

One of the goals that needs to be achieved first, for this project is to get as many activists as possible. This is to fuel the fact that we want as many schools as possible knowing about OpenOffice.org.

Building a list of local schools, and then contacting them is really the aim, and we understand that public schools get a sweet deal from Microsoft, whereas the private schools don’t. So maybe the target would be private schools in your area, but we don’t plan on limiting – who knows, OpenOffice.org may offer a cleaner outlook to the school administrators.
Kuro5hin discusses a proposal for a collaborative learning system. Many comments discuss topics we already have done. A nice opportunity to recruit new members for Open-Education.org?

kuro5hin.org/story/2003/9/27/143215/356
I will be donating 550 CDs of the program openoffice 1.1 (final) to the public libraries of Scotland. This is not for installation on library computers but as lending CD’s. This will allow any member of the public in Scotland to borrow the CD , copy, install and distribute the software to anyone.

I was wandering if there is anyone else out there who would like to donate copies of thier opensource software to libraries, School libraries, university libraries etc.
BBC Opens Archives”…everyone would in future be able to download BBC radio and TV programmes from the internet.
The service, the BBC Creative Archive, would be free and available to everyone, as long as they were not intending to use the material for commercial purposes…”
A Vision of the Internet Commons: “The dream behind the Web is of a common information space in which we communicate by sharing information. Its universality is essential: the fact that a hypertext link can point to anything, be it personal, local or global, be it draft or highly polished. There was a second part of the dream, too, dependent on the Web being so generally used that it became a realistic mirror (or in fact the primary embodiment) of the ways in which we work and play and socialize.
I’ve mentioned this before…the Open Access (formerly FOS) movement has been walking paths that OE will have to walk in the future…and it’s a resource that I think we need to utilize. These guides are a good example. They focus on converting to open access…or launching an open access journal.
James Love, director of The Consumer Project on Technology, wrote an open letter to the Director General of WIPO, asking for a WIPO-sponsored convocation to discuss open and collaborative development projects such as the World Wide Web and the Human Genome Project.

7 July 2003

Director General
Dr. Kamil Idris, Director General
World Intellectual Property Organization
Geneva, Switzerland