Showing 2556 posts tagged tech

Over the years, I’ve noticed that when I do have a specific reason to ask everyone to set aside their devices (“lids down,” in the parlance of my department), it’s as if someone has let fresh air into the room. The conversation brightens, and more recently, there is a sense of relief from many of the students. Multi-tasking is cognitively exhausting — when we do it by choice, being asked to stop can come as a welcome change. So this year, I moved from recommending setting aside laptops and phones to requiring it, adding this to the class rules: “Stay focused. (No devices in class, unless the assignment requires it).” Here’s why I finally switched from “allowed unless by request” to “banned unless required.”

Why Clay Shirky Banned Laptops, Tablets and Phones from His Classroom | Mediashift | PBS

Still, the results surprised us. We had expected enormous differences in human and machine grading. In more than 79 percent of assignments, the agreement between scores assigned by the instructor and those assigned by the automated system matched up.

Are We Ready for Robots to Grade? - NEXT: The Quest for Student Success - The Chronicle of Higher Education

There are less than a couple hundred people who are involved in the most significant attacks, and [they’re] almost all Russian-speaking," he says. "There’s a tremendous amount of organizational and hierarchical structure with a robust economy of scale that delivers both data mining, carding [credit card sale dumps] and other services which exists as quasi-untouchables in a way almost unheard of since Al Capone and his gangs in the 1920s.

What’s really driving cyberattacks against retailers - The Washington Post

Google is teaming up with a dozen college campuses across the U.S. to provide access to free Chromebook notebooks to any student who wants one, in a system that lets them temporarily check out the laptops for late-night cram sessions or just finding the best animal GIFs on Imgur.

Chromebook Lending Library Offers Students At 12 U.S. Colleges A Free Laptop To Borrow | TechCrunch

The Global Privacy Enforcement Network (Gpen) looked at 1,211 apps and found 85% were not clearly explaining what data was being collected, and for what reason. Almost one in three apps were requesting an excessive amount of personal information, the report said.

BBC News - Most apps are ‘failing on privacy’, claims report

The Internet may have started out as a Defense Department project, but it has since become one of the world’s greatest forces for political, economic, and social change. That dual history should make it unsurprising that cyberspace will play a central role in the future of global conflict, but it should also make us a bit sad. War, even one fought with zeros and ones, will still remain a bitter waste of resources.

The War Of Zeros And Ones | Popular Science

Imagine this future scenario: Self-driving cars form an orderly procession down a highway, traveling at precisely the right following distance and speed. All the on-board computers cooperate and all the vehicles travel reach their destinations safely. But what if one person jailbreaks her car, and tells her AI driver to go just a little faster than the other cars? As the aggressive car moves up on the other vehicles, their safety mechanisms kick in and they change lanes to get out of the way. It might make the overall efficiency of the transportation lower, but this one person would get ahead.

When Cars Are as Hackable as Cell Phones - The Atlantic

Seeing how students think about teachers, and how that perception is affecting what they learn, is an unusual development in public education. Today, schools assess the effectiveness of teachers primarily through standardized test scores and observations by administrators, but both measures have been criticized as too narrow, unable to shed light on the complex interplay between teachers and students on a day-to-day basis.

Panorama is trying to assess how well teachers are doing by conducting scientifically valid student questionnaires that collect data about a variety of factors that might affect a teacher’s performance. Credit Gretchen Ertl for The New York Times “Education is just starting to figure out what measurement actually means,” said Aaron Feuer, Panorama’s co-founder and chief executive. “Five years ago we thought test scores were the answer to everything. We’re offering a way to focus on the right metrics.”

Grading Teachers, With Data From Class - NYTimes.com

Human society has always glided along on a cushion of what Saint Augustine called “charitable lies”—untruths deployed to avoid conflict, ward off hurt feelings, maintain boundaries, or simply keep conversation moving—even as other, more selfish deceptions corrode relationships, rob us of the ability to make informed decisions, and eat away at the reserves of trust that keep society afloat. What’s tricky about deceit is that, contrary to blanket prohibitions against lying, our actual moral stances toward it are often murky and context-dependent. In recent years, it has become common to hear that technology is making us more dishonest—that the Internet, with its anonymous trolls, polished social media profiles, and viral hoaxes, is a mass accelerant of selfish deceit. The Cornell University psychologist Jeffrey Hancock argues that technology has, at the very least, changed our repertoire of lies. Our arsenal of dishonest excuses, for instance, has adapted and expanded to buffer us against the infinite social expectations of a 24/7 connected world. (“Your email got caught in my spam folder!” “On my way!”) But while it’s true, according to Hancock, that the Internet affords us more tools to help manage how people perceive us, he also says that people are often more truthful in digital media than they are in other modes of communication. His research has found that we are more honest over email than over the phone, and less prone to lie on digital résumés than on paper ones. The Internet, after all, has a long memory; what it offers to would-be deceivers in the way of increased opportunity is apparently offset, over the long run, by the increased odds of getting caught.

How Should We Program Computers to Deceive? - Pacific Standard: The Science of Society

Students are always more entrepreneurial and understand needs better than bureaucracies can,” said Harry R. Lewis, the director of undergraduate studies for Harvard’s computer science department, “since bureaucracies tend to have messages they want to spin, and priorities they have to set, and students just want stuff that is useful. I know this well, since students were talking to me about moving the Harvard face books online seven years before Zuckerberg just went and did it without asking permission.

Student-Built Apps Teach Colleges a Thing or Two - NYTimes.com