As I note weekly on my blog, there are a lot of stories that I just don't get a chance to write. And I created Hack Education, in part, so I could think about the how/why/what of that. But it seems -- no big surprise -- that I've not had the chance to write the stories on this blog either.
So here is some of the news from the EdTech industry that I've been thinking-but-not-writing about recently:
Schoology Gets Funding
Schoology is a learning management system that encourages better student communication and collaboration via social networking tools. Features include grading, attendance, quizzes, discussion forums. assignment dropboxes, blogs, and a social network that can extend outside the classroom walls. Schoology is free to schools, with extra services like custom branding and support available at a premium level. The startup announced a couple of weeks ago that they'd secured venture capital funding.
Blackboard Has a Mobile App
When I taught at the UO, Blackboard was the school's LMS of choice. Prior to its adoption, I simply uploaded documents to my own webpage. And I was torn when told that my course content needed to be "protected" via the Blackboard LMS. I don't blame Blackboard for that, so I digress...
I hear a lot of educators grumble about Blackboard (I guess I need to learn more about that). But hey, Blackboard announced yesterday that they were releasing free mobile apps on all major platforms. And that's cool because it eliminates yet another excuse students could give about not knowing there'd be an exam in class on Wednesday.
Secure Search and CIPA: Google Says It's Working on It
Google updated their Enterprise blog earlier this week with news that they're working to address the problems some schools are facing with their new encrypted search. Looks like Google will move the Secure Search to a separate domain so it will no longer interfere with Google Apps.
(I feel slightly vindicated. And slightly mortified that I helped the cause of web filtering.)
We still need to work on addressing some of the problems with CIPA.
And I need to work on the problem of not keeping this blog better updated.