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What Do the Poor Need? Try Asking Them – ©[nytimes.com] by @davidkirp

FOR decades, policy makers have treated poverty as a sign of helplessness and ineptitude. The worse off the neighborhood — the higher the rate of poverty, crime, and juvenile delinquency — the less influence it would have over its future. Social service agencies conducted “needs assessments” rather than asking residents what would strengthen their community. Government agencies or private entrepreneurs then delivered brick-and-mortar solutions — a new school, medical clinic or housing.

It seldom worked. Take Baltimore, which has been “renewed” again and again. Two decades ago, more than $130 million was poured into the neighborhood where the arrest of Freddie Gray sparked riots last spring. The vision was grand — more than a thousand homes were built or renovated; education and health services were introduced — but the jobs disappeared and the drug trade continued to flourish.

David L. Kirp

Education and inequality.

via What Do the Poor Need? Try Asking Them – The New York Times.

Organizing documents like playing Lego™

In computer sciencetransclusion is the inclusion of part or all of anelectronic document into one or more other documents by reference.

I found out, recently, about what it really meant to implement ‘transclusion’ while tinkering with Tiddlywiki. In addition to using the feature it kept going round in my head that the concept could also be used elsewhere.

Organizing documents like playing Lego™.

MinecraftEdu Takes Hold in Schools • © [slj.com]

Walking through a vast network of medieval streets and houses, it’s easy to get lost. Luckily, I can fly. So I can see that up ahead, a team is building a castle with parapets and a wide moat. Someone next to me is posting signs with historical facts about the city. In outlying areas, people tend farms and raise livestock. Below, another team is creating a vast network of dungeons and prison cells. I’m in Minecraft, of course—the phenomenally popular, open-ended game that places players in a world in which they can live and build things infinitely. via MinecraftEdu Takes Hold in Schools | School Library Journal.

Re-reading is inefficient. Here are 8 tips for studying smarter. • ©[vox.com]

We know from surveys that a majority of students, when they study, they typically re-read assignments and notes. Most students say this is their number one go-to strategy.

We know, however, from a lot of research, that this kind of repetitive recycling of information is not an especially good way to learn or create more permanent memories. Our studies of Washington University students, for instance, show that when they re-read a textbook chapter, they have absolutely no improvement in learning over those who just read it once.

On your first reading of something, you extract a lot of understanding. But when you do the second reading, you read with a sense of ‘I know this, I know this.’ So basically, you’re not processing it deeply, or picking more out of it. Often, the re-reading is cursory — and it’s insidious, because this gives you the illusion that you know the material very well, when in fact there are gaps.”

via Re-reading is inefficient. Here are 8 tips for studying smarter. • ©[vox.com].

The Push-Button School of Tomorrow (1958) • ©[paleofuture.com]

The May 5, 1958 edition of Arthur Radebaugh’s Sunday comic, Closer Than We Think, showed off the high-tech school of tomorrow. With hordes of baby boomers flooding into public schools in the 1950s, it makes sense that this strip would focus on different solutions for overcrowding with that technological optimism we identify as being uniquely post-war American.

The student desk of the future includes a small camera, presumably so that the teacher being projected on a large screen in the front of the class can keep tabs on the little rascals. One thing that fascinates me about computer consoles of the retrofuture is that the QWERTY keyboard is not yet an assumed input device.

via Paleofuture – Paleofuture Blog – The Push-Button School of Tomorrow (1958).

We need open models, not just open data – O’Reilly Radar • ©[radar.oreilly.com]

We need open models, not just open data - O'Reilly Radar

… if you’re not careful, modelling has a nasty way of enshrining prejudice with a veneer of “science” and “math.”Cathy has consistently made another point that’s a corollary of her argument about enshrining prejudice. At O’Reilly, we talk a lot about open data. But it’s not just the data that has to be open: it’s also the models. (There are too many must-read articles on Cathy’s blog to link to; you’ll have to find the rest on your own.)

You can have all the crime data you want, all the real estate data you want, all the student performance data you want, all the medical data you want, but if you don’t know what models are being used to generate results, you don’t have much.

via We need open models, not just open data – O’Reilly Radar.

UK needs an ethics council and digital chief in every department – ©[theguardian.com]

UK needs an ethics council and digital chief in every department – tech experts | Technology | The Guardian

The UK government should establish an expert technology ethics body to help address complex challenges, including health monitoring, autonomous vehicles and legal disputes such as the right to be forgotten, an independent review has recommended.

The ethical body, which would be similar to those in medicine and academia, is just one of a slate of wide-ranging recommendations in the Making Digital Government Work for Everyone review published on Tuesday, which explores how technology and digital services could be better used to help citizens.

Commissioned by Labour and written by an independent panel of more than 20 advisers and volunteers, the review has been in progress since December 2013.

via UK needs an ethics council and digital chief in every department – tech experts | Technology | The Guardian.

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