Merry Christmas, a Good Hogmanay and a Happy and Peaceful New Year

I’m taking a break over the Christmas and New Year holidays.

I hope you have the opportunity to do the same.

Have a great time and I’ll see you in 2017.

DevFreeBooks – A huge collection of free #NodeJS #JS #AngularJS #Git #Python and other #programming books

A huge collection of free and other books to keep you busy over the holidays.

A collection of free books for developers

Source: DevFreeBooks

How Google’s search algorithm spreads false information with a rightwing bias | @GuardianNews

With great power comes great responsibility (insert your own cliche here). Where one company has a virtual monopoly on searching they have a particular responsibility to ensure that their results do not contribute to the spread of false information.

As the pre-eminent company in the field Google have the greatest responsibility, and the most to lose, if they do not ensure the integrity of their results. The evidence is that they are not living up to their responsibilities.

Google’s search algorithm appears to be systematically promoting information that is either false or slanted with an extreme rightwing bias on subjects as varied as climate change and homosexuality.

Following a recent investigation by the Observer, which found that Google’s search engine prominently suggests neo-Nazi websites and antisemitic writing, the Guardian has uncovered a dozen additional examples of biased search results.

Google’s search algorithm and its autocomplete function prioritize websites

Source: How Google’s search algorithm spreads false information with a rightwing bias | Technology | The Guardian

Assessment by ePortfolio

If you’re considering incorporating ePortfolios into your teaching (and if you’re not you should) there’s a good review by Helen Barret available.


This paper provides the theoretical background for a study of student learning, engagement and collaboration through the development of electronic portfolios. After covering an overview of the limited research on portfolios in education, definitions, multiple purposes of portfolios, and conflicting theoretical paradigms are discussed. Principles of student motivation and engagement are covered, along with philosophical and assessment issues and the importance of reflection in learning. The relationship between storytelling and reflection is elaborated. Finally, the paper describes several technology tools that engage learners in reflecting, including blogging and digital storytelling.

You can read the full report here.

Bridging the UK Digital Skills Gap in the Public Sector | @HolyroodDaily

As the 2016 Summer games got into full swing, it was easy to get caught up in bit of national pride. Watching gold-medal favourites such as Mo Farah and Andy Murray, or surprise newcomers such as gymnast Matt Whitlock and golfer Justin Rose, just about any of us watching had an extra spring in our step. But if we step outside of the world of sports, how does the UK stack up in the digital skills arena?

Unfortunately, not so well. According to a recent Ofcom report examining internet use among E5 countries, the UK is leading the way in terms of mobile broadband connectivity and ordering good or services online. But when it comes to citizens interacting with public authorities online, the UK ranks second to last. In other words: we’re connected, we’ve got the know-how to interact online, but when it comes to public sector digital services the UK isn’t quite measuring up.

Source: Bridging the UK Digital Skills Gap in the Public Sector | Holyrood Magazine

.NET Standard – Introduction – YouTube from @terrajobst

If you’re at all interested in .NET Standard programming this series of videos from Immo Landwerth is worth checking out.

There are accompanying slides here.

UK edtech industry ready for take-off with Jisc’s startups competition | @Jisc

Entries are now being accepted for the startups category of Jisc’s edtech competition, which supports startups and student ideas for education. With the UK’s first Edtech UK Global Summit having taken place in London earlier this month, it certainly seems that the UK edtech sector is tipped for take-off, and Jisc’s startups competition could give edtech startups the boost that they need. Winners will provide real solutions for education sector issues, and stand to bag funding of up to £20,000 and business

Source: UK edtech industry ready for take-off with Jisc’s startups competition | Jisc

No room for sloppiness in online classroom

Classroom at ACS International
Classroom at ACS International (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When your classroom is a global one, filled with well-informed online learners, they don’t cut you much slack. Hundreds of people pore over every element of your course, making well-informed and sometime acerbic comments. Academics who run Massive Open Online Courses MOOCs are finding that they can’t afford any sloppy reasoning, one-sided arguments, or narrow perspectives when teaching to a massive global audience.As academic lead at FutureLearn, a company offering free online courses from UK universities, I’ve seen that this instant feedback can be eye-opening for course designers.On a university campus, students stick around even though the teaching may be dreadful, because they need the degree qualification. In MOOCs they leave as soon as they lose interest.

via No room for sloppiness in online classroom.

Free Ebook: Hybrid Cloud Management with System Center 2012 R2 App Controller – – Site Home – TechNet Blogs

This month, Yung Chou, Mitch Tulloch and I have published a new book on Hybrid Cloud Management with System Center 2012 R2 App Controller, titled Microsoft System Center: Cloud Management with App Controller. As part of a series of specialized guides on System Center, this book focuses on using App Controller to manage virtual machines and services across private and public clouds.

via Free Ebook: Hybrid

English: Diagram showing three main types of c...
English: Diagram showing three main types of cloud computing (public/external, hybrid, private/internal) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cloud Management with System Center 2012 R2 App Controller – – Site Home – TechNet Blogs.

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