Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Learning Objects, Metadata, Blogs And RSS: The Future Of Online Education According To Stephen Downes

Researcher, educational technologists, instructional designer, writer, reporter, information architect, trends watcher, lecturer, public speaker, software developer, system analyst, distance trainer, philosophy professor, critical thinker, activist, change agent, futurist.

If you don't know Stephen Downes it is about time you do.


I went out to interview him online and to have a good conversation around software tools, operating systems, search engines, RSS, learning objects, metadata, elearning and the future classroom.



Stephen Downes is a senior research officer with the National Research Council of Canada in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. Affiliated with the Council's Institute for Information Technology, Stephen Downes works with the E-Learning Research Group.

His key professional focus includes research and development in e-learning, working and helping organizations improve their competitive position in the marketplace, and increase awareness and information sharing through articles, reports and written analysis as well as through participation and attendance to local and international conferences and seminars.

In 1998 Stephen wrote The Future of Online Learning, an essay which was to receive a lot of attention and respect from the elearning community.

During the last seven years Stephen Downes authored a great number of papers, presentations and related writings. I have myself taken permission to republish on this site some of these great materpieces and I particularly recommend Nine Rules For Good Technology an essay that is part of a non-commercial book entitled "The Learning Marketplace: Meaning, Metadata and Content Syndication in the Learning Object Economy" (Jan 2004).

"Stephen Downes and the news information he publishes on a regular basis has become a key educational reference, a unique news source and an influential powerful advisor in focusing my attention on critical issues relating to education/learning, quality research conducted by others, new technologies and his all too valuable reflections about education and the ways in which we can all contribute to its improvement in the near future.

His pioneering editorial/technical work with RSS and topic/news aggregation is one of the best living examples of how ingenious and intellectually rich people can make a difference without any major financial backing.

Stephen Downes shows in practical terms with his work how effective and useful these new media technologies can be for education.

Please, keep the man in place and give him greater resources, assistants and time to do more.

He is an invaluable asset for all of us, around the world."
Jay Cross and Stephen Downes back-to-back

Here is my interview with him:

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posted by Robin Good on Sunday, December 12 2004, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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