There has been a steady trickle of institutions and organizations committing to open access to some subset of their data, with the UK government [announcing opendata](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/28/opendata-for-uk-government-pushing-semantic-web-development-for-government-transparency/) last year. Now the [World Bank](http://web.worldbank.org/) has become perhaps the first major international organization to require [open access](http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/000406484_20120403130112) to its research outputs under a [CC](http://creativecommons.org/) licensing scheme. Continue reading World Bank goes Open Access
I and many others have been writing about [online learning](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/tag/elearning/) for some time, asking what mix is most effective and what needs to happen to help students succeed with this medium. Meanwhile, there has been increasing pressure to increase enrollments and bring more and more [students into HE](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/06/24/more-on-the-he-bubble-and-degree-value-inflation/), in order to grow the knowledge economy, as predicted by Friedman in the [Lexus and the Olive Tree](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lexus_and_the_Olive_Tree). Enrollment is up, waaaay up, but now the debate is being shifted to completion, i.e., getting them out the door with a sheepskin (real or digital). Some startling figures follow for an objective debate. Continue reading Effectiveness of fully on-line courses for HE
As I [wrote](http://bit.ly/wBfY6U) back in January, the publishing companies were starting to gear up their lobbying efforts to fight any threat to their hegemony over access to research results. Well, Eighty-one publishers expressed their *strong* opposition to legislation that would free up research results of federally funded research. Continue reading Bill for Access to Federally Funded Research Opposed By For-profit Journals
[Internet2 Net+](http://www.internet2.edu/netplus/) is a group of emerging services that foster collective development and utilization of service offerings, some of the commercial, to campuses in the U.S.. Specific offerings currently offered include:
* Cloud Services: Internet2 works with third-party vendors to provide customized cloud services using the infrastructure facilities of the Internet2 Network and the federated authentication and authorization services available through InCommon.
* Box: The Internet2 NET+ Box service provides users with the ability to access, store and share content securely anywhere, anytime, on any device, a la drop box, but with enhancements.
* eText: As textbooks continue shifting to digital, Internet2, McGraw-Hill and Courseload today announced implementation of an eText Pilot Trial Pack to students and faculty at five universities for the Spring 2012 semester. The five institutions, also Internet2 members, include: University of California, Berkeley; Cornell University; University of Minnesota; University of Virginia; and the University of Wisconsin. The pilot, which is based on Indiana University’s [eText model](http://etexts.iu.edu), provides a timely and simple way for universities to quickly assess a new model for digital course materials. While an increasing number of eTexts are already available at retail prices, eTexts can cost less when institutions negotiate attractive volume price deals to dramatically reduce costs to students while efficiently paying authors and publishers fairly for each use of their digital work.
* HP cloud: boilerplate contracts for accessing cloud compute services from HP negotiated at block rates through Internet2.
I have long been a critic of the [academic publishing industry](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/25/british-libraries-are-prepared-to-forgo-elsevier-and-wiley-big-deal-subs-if-terms-not-right/) and the increasing costs for getting, mainly, publicly funded research out to peer-review and the wider scholarly community. And to be sure, there is more malaise in the total system than just the publishers. There is also the push to “publish or die” and the growing pressure to “publish and engage with the digital world.” But a recent call by a very accomplished academic at Cambridge has lit a fire in the heather, and there is a line of villagers armed with pitchforks heading up to the Elsevier castle. Continue reading Call to boycott Elsevier gaining steam
I wrote about some [British Universities](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/25/british-libraries-are-prepared-to-forgo-elsevier-and-wiley-big-deal-subs-if-terms-not-right/) taking a stand against two of the big deals from academic publishers and how their proposed hikes in rates were breaking the system. Now the group has developed and released [a tool](http://www.rluk.ac.uk/content/press-release-rluk-develops-journal-subscription-analysis-tool) that will evaluate the cost / benefit ratio of the deals offered vs. a return to title-by-title access to these documents. Continue reading British University Libraries tooling up for publishing evaluation
I [first wrote](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/20/mit-cracker-arrested-trying-to-download-millions-of-jstor-articles/) about Aaron Schwartz when it went public about what he was alleged to have done, and [again](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/22/sympathy-protests-for-aaron-swartz-against-jstor/) with protests against his arrest and Aaron’s own writings about his cause. Now more information is coming out and it seems that there is more strong support forming for the cause. The [Chronicle](http://chronicle.com/article/Rogue-Downloaders-Arrest/128439/) has a very good article on the subject, with quotes from different sides. What seems apparent is that all of the sides, save JSTOR and the administration, but including the faculty at MIT, as regarding the inclusion of the US Secret Service as rather heavy handed, especially when this is a clearly a case of activism and information that is all out of copyright. Continue reading Aaron Schwartz rough handedness from Feds at behest of MIT raising alarm bells
So I have been [arguing for some time](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/06/05/oer/) that the business models that online publishing in academia are pursuing are failing to match the new digital world, to leverage digital technologies and scale up their user base. Apple has demonstrated that there is a *great deal of mulah* to be made in music by embracing digital tech and allowing people to download lots of music cheaply. But the academic publishers, as I have argued consistently on this blog, just won’t budge. Now there are some others starting to ask how much is access really worth. But they are not taking into account the digital nature of the service. Continue reading Questions being asked publicly on how much eresource access should cost
A man sued Stanford over damages he received from Stanford when they pursued grants based on the [wave theory of light](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wave_theory_of_light#Wave_theory). It was thrown out of court. O well, that’s alright then. Continue reading Man sues Stanford over damages caused by Wave Theory of Light
Aaron Swartz was [indicted](http://seanmehan.globat.com/blog/2011/07/20/mit-cracker-arrested-trying-to-download-millions-of-jstor-articles/) for grabbing a few million articles off of JSTOR. Now a British man has just pushed up a torrent of nearly 19,000 out of copyright articles to press the issue. Continue reading Sympathy protests for Aaron Swartz against JSTOR