All posts by Travis Kaya

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Coalition Looks to Rally Student Support for Open-Access Publishing

Improving access to scholarly journals is not a typical student rallying cry, but a growing organization thinks it should be.

The Right to Research Coalition, which says it represents student groups comprising 5.5 million members in the United States and several other countries, unveiled a Web site and blog in October to educate and connect students about open-access publishing, and increase pressure on publishers and scholars to make their work freely available online.

Unlike rising textbook co…

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Researchers Create 3-D Models With Flickr Photos

An international team of researchers has developed a new way to turn photographs from the media-sharing sites like Flickr into intricate 3-D computer models using only a home computer.

The new technique—developed by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and ETH Zurich—streamlines a complex process that previously required clusters of dozens of computers. Researchers say they believe the new technology could spark a host of 3-D-modeling projects that are crowdsourced…

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Photo-Comparison Site Stirs Interest, and Ire, at Boston U.

Fans of The Social Network know the kind of buzz a Web site that lets students rank classmates based on their photos can cause. The film dramatically shows how, before he created Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg built a picture-comparison Web site that famously received hundreds of visitors within a few hours. Nearly a decade later, a Zuckerberg-inspired Web site at Boston University is generating some major traffic—and controversy—of its own.

Since it went live on December 3, RateBU.com, which lets an…

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Harvard U. Library Restructuring Seeks to Unify High-Tech Services

A major administrative restructuring at the Harvard University Library announced this week could mean greater coordination of technology services across the university’s vast and somewhat fragmented collection.

Based on recommendations from a library task force published last year, the reorganization will replace the present decentralized leadership structure at the university’s 70 campus libraries with a single governing body. The new Library Board—which will be installed next year—will inc…

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Trine U. School Requires E-Textbooks for Entire Curriculum

Adoption of digital textbooks has moved at a snail’s pace on most college campuses. But at Trine University’s School of Professional Studies, that shift is being jump-started with a new collegewide mandate to adopt e-textbooks in all courses by January.

The School of Professional Studies—which has 500 adult students enrolled in 10 degree programs online and at branch campuses across Indiana—hopes the e-textbook push will help students save money, boost sustainability, and enhance classroom a…

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Internet2 Renews Bandwidth Donation to GENI Project

The networking consortium Internet2 announced today that it will continue to allow the Global Environment for Network Innovations, or GENI, a National Science Foundation-backed effort to reinvent the Internet, to use bandwidth on its national backbone through 2012.

Internet2, a not-for-profit consortium of 200 universities, 70 corporations, and 50 government agencies, will continue to provide high-speed connections to its national network at eight different backbone locations across the country….

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British Business School Offers M.B.A. Courses on Facebook

Facebook has changed the way students, faculty members, and administrators communicate outside the classroom. Now, with the introduction of the London School of Business & Finance’s Global MBA Facebook app, Facebook is becoming the classroom.

The Global MBA app—introduced in October—lets users sample typical business-school courses like corporate finance and organizational behavior through the social-networking site.  The free course material includes interactive message boards, a note-taki…

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Professor’s iPhone App Gets Users Off the Beaten Path

A straight line may be the shortest distance between two points—but it can also be the dullest.

A professor’s new mobile app called Serendipitor is helping smartphone users discover the road less traveled with the help of location-based technology. Rather than finding the shortest route between two points, the Google Maps-enable iPhone application generates a circuitous trip plan that actually encourages users to get lost along the way. The app also includes suggestions for activities—like sit…

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UNC Professor Quits After Instant Messages Reveal Affair With Student

The head of an online news program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill resigned on Tuesday, days after admitting that he exchanged sexually explicit messages with an undergraduate student, according to college officials.

Monty Cook, who was hired in March as the executive producer at the Reese Felts Digital News Project, submitted a resignation letter as administrators at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication prepared to recommend that the university fire him. Mr. Cook …

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Enrollment in Online Courses Increases at the Highest Rate Ever

Despite predictions that the growth of online education would begin to level off, colleges reported the highest-ever annual increase in online enrollment—more than 21 percent—last year, according to a report on an annual survey of 2,600 higher-education institutions from the Sloan Consortium and the Babson Survey Research Group.

In fall 2009, colleges—including public, nonprofit private, and for-profit private institutions—reported that one million more students were enrolled in at least one…