T.H.E. News Update :: February 20, 2008

News & Issues

Homework or Busywork? Attitudes Soften, but Quality Still Questioned

Educators might be striking a happy balance between homework that's assigned to promote learning and homework that's perceived by students and parents as "busywork." As recently as 2002, a vast 74 percent of secondary students described their homework as busywork. Now, however, that's down significantly, with just 30 percent holding that attitude, according to a new survey conducted by Harris Interactive, the "MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: The Homework Experience." But it also showed a "disconnect" between teachers and parents on the quality of assignments....

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Microsoft To Pilot 'Intellectual Property Rights Education' Curriculum

Following on the heels of its newly released survey on illegal downloading among students, Microsoft this week announced that it will launch a new curriculum for middle school and high school students focusing on intellectual property....

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Blackboard Trial Against Desire2Learn in Court

Just a week after higher education software maker Blackboard announced "tremendous" financial results for the year, it is finally facing off in a small-town Texas court against rival Desire2Learn in a patent dispute over e-learning software. Blackboard is seeking $17 million in lost revenue as well as an injunction against the company, which is based in Canada....

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eCopy Launches Document Management Tools for Education

Software developer eCopy this week debuted a new line of document imaging and management solutions targeted toward education. The line includes three suites designed to automate document workflows, reduce paper waste, and integrate with systems common in colleges, universities, and K-12 schools, including popular multifunction printers and network scanners....

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Free Internet Filtering Service Launches

Free DNS service provider OpenDNS has launched its new, free Web filtering solution targeted toward education. The service taps into the expertise of IT professionals to create categories of Web sites that can be blocked by administrators with the click of a button (or two)....

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CPS Renews SchoolNet for Instructional Management

The Chicago Public School system has renewed its contract with Schoolnet, according to information released by the company this week. Schoolnet provides data, assessment, and curriculum management services and technologies through its Schoolnet Instructional Management Solution. The new deal renews Schoolnet's contract as the provider of the district's curriculum and instructional management system for three more years....

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Elluminate Builds Bridge to Moodle

Collaborative technology developer Elluminate has brought its Live! virtual classroom software to the Moodle platform. The company released a piece of software Tuesday called Elluminate Bridge for Moodle, which is designed to integrate Live! into the open-source learning management system....

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Sun To Acquire Virtualization Developer

Sun Microsystems yesterday announced plans to purchase German software developer innotek, the maker of VirtualBox, a set of open source x86 virtualization tools for home and enterprise users. The announcement comes less than a month after the signing of Sun's $1 billion definitive agreement to acquire open source database developer MySQL. Terms of this latest deal have not been disclosed.....

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