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REN nyhetsbrev nr. 18, 2004

13. september 2004
1: REN studietur
2: IDC rapporter
3: Nytt REN strateginotat
4: Mobile social network
5: Nytt og nyttig
6: På kalenderen
1: REN studietur (17.) 18. til 20. oktober 2004

Vi har nå det meste av programmet til årets studietur klart og vi kan love et spennende program på årets tur som går til Boston og omegn på USAs østkyst .
Påmelding til Veslemøy Barnes, innen 22. september.  Vi har fremdeles rom ledig på DoubleTree hotel i Boston til en spesialpris av $179 +12.5% hotellskatt pr. natt.  Ved påmelding vennligst gi beskjed om ankomst og avreisedatoer for hotellbestilling via Innovasjon Norge.

Foreløpig program

Søndag 17. okt. Vi er sammen hele dagen for felles opplevelser og uformell læring.

Mandag 18. okt. 08:00 – 09:00 Felles frokost
09:00 - 09:45 Åpning av konferansen og presentasjon av deltakerne
09:45 - 10:00 Pause
10:00 - 10:45 Best practices of e-learning in the Boston area tba
10:45 - 11:00 Pause
11:00 - 11:45 Xhlp – erfaringer fra et norskt elæringsselskap som er etablert i Boston Steve Walsh – General Manager, Xhlp USA
11:45 - 12:00 Pause
12:00 - 12:45 Best practices of e-learning, bedriftspresentasjon tba
12:45 - 13:45 Lunch
13:45 - 14:30 What is the next in Organizational Learning Jeff Clanon, Society of Organizational Learning
14:30 - 14:45 Pause
14:45 - 15:30 Best practice of e-learning, bedriftspresentasjon tba
15:30 - 15:45 Pause
15:45 - 16:30 Spill og simulering i e-læring Clark Quinn, Ottersurf lab.
16:30 - 17:00 Oppsummering av dagen og forberedelser til neste dag
Tirsdag 19. okt. 09:00 - 12:00 Harvard University

Harvard Business School Publishing
Harvard Business School Interactive
Harvard Medical School
Nærmere program på Harvard kommer vi tilbake til
12:00 - 13:00 Lunch
13:00 - 17:00 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MIT Open Courseware Jon Paul Potts, OCW 
Sloan School of Management, MITs executive education program Toby Wool, Director, Learning Technology Initiatives
Presentasjon fra TEAL prosjektet Professor Belcher
Presentasjon fra iLAB prosjektet Professor Lerman
19:00 - Felles middag for deltakere og foredragsholdere 
Onsdag 20. okt. 09:00 - 12:00 IBM
The Workplace, with focus on Collaborative learning.  Mitch Grossberg,
Offering Manager, IBM Lotus Learning Software 
The Future of Learning - IBM's vision James Sharpe, Director of e-learning Technology, IBM Learning Solutions
12:00 - 12:30 Lunch
12:30 - 14:00 Interwise
14:30 - 16:00 Centra Software Amy Finn, Vice President Education andChief Learning Officer

2. Nye IDC rapporter

Vi har lagt ut 2 nye rapporter fra IDC på våre medlemssider.

Future-Proofing Learning Infrastructure: The Five As of the Enterprise Learning Chain

Information workers are constantly learning, yet corporate resources often fail to help those professionals winnow the vast array of information and learning resources available to them.  IDC estimates that fruitless information searches cost the Fortune 500 as much as $85 billion per year in lost productivity. The opportunity cost associated with impracticable training is likely in the 10-figure range itself. Learning infrastructure should link educational resources (such as courses and test prep guides) and access to the proprietary and commercially available information (such as product information or company presentations) professionals need to perform their jobs more effectively. In short, learning infrastructure must be exhibit the five As of the enterprise learning chain:
 Available to the individual in a ubiquities manner
 Appropriate to the business context and the individual stakeholders role
 Accessed by the learner whenever a relevant need is present
 Absorbed by the learner through proper presentation and actionable format
 Applied to the problem to achieve business change

Optimizing the Training Back Office to Focus on Business Performance

A renewed sense of optimism associated with surging profits and revenue growth is beginning to drive investments in workforce development at many organizations. However, fiscal responsibility and recent cost-cutting measures are still fresh in the minds of senior training and development executives. These professionals are also cognizant of the need to invest their staff and resources in initiatives that drive key performance indicators (e.g., time to market, customer retention) for the businesses they support. This IDC benchmarking study suggests that as these professionals attempt to align their personnel and operations with the needs of their enterprises, they have an opportunity to streamline the time and money spent on administrative processes. To this end, IDC believes that these training and development executives should investigate sourcing models that enable access to shared infrastructure and services.

3. Nytt REN strateginotat
Styringsgruppen i REN har ført i pennen et nytt strategidokument for perioden 2004 til 2006. Strategiarbeidet er diskutert på medlemsmøter og det er kommet input gjennom en spørreundersøkelse som ble holdt rett før sommeren. Visjonen til kunnskapsnettverket REN er å bringe verdi til nettverkets medlemmer. Medlemsskap i REN skal hjelpe til å ta de rette beslutninger innen nettverkets kjerneområde IKT støttet læring og kunnskapsforvaltning. Strategien kan lastes ned fra våre lukkede medlemssider.

4: mobile social network

Last newsletter, I mentioned the area of social learning ( and  Interestingly, that article only touches on a direction I think will be increasingly of interest, that of the mobile social network.  I’m big on mobile learning for a variety of reasons.
I first wrote about mobile learning as a favor to Marcia Conner.  I hadn’t been doing mobile learning, so it was a conceptual piece (  I subsequently hooked up with a client who had some experience, and wrote a white paper for them ( We’ve been touting mobile learning now for the past nine months, in a variety of conferences.  Only just recently, however, we’ve begun to see some action, companies that are looking into mobile applications to information needs. 
And I think it’s past time. There are great advantages to mobile learning, but you have to think a little laterally.  mLearning isn’t just eLearning lite.  It can be, but it can be so much more.  It can be context-appropriate help, situated performance support, ubiquitous information access, as Harvey Singh and Chris Von Koschembahr separately point out (,, and both of whom I’ve worked with at the mobile learning booth Judy Brown’s run at VNU’s Training conferences.
And I’m not the only person thinking that mobile learning is ready for prime-time (  There are two European mobile learning initiatives (; and, various resource pages (e,g.,, apparently has an RSS feed, as per my first newsletter), and more.  There’s even been a conference specifically on mlearning (!
There’re already some examples about, too.  Elliot Soloway has been on top of this for a while, and has a suite of applications ready for K12 learning (  Jeremy Roschelle has similarly been exploring (  There’s less talk about corporate work, as it’s still in its infancy.  However, as the aforementioned mobile learning booths (which have been well-attended) have demonstrated, there’s interest.  We’ve even a track at Training Fall (, including a full workshop.  I expect to see many more pilots in the next 6 months.
The social aspect of mobile learning is still embryonic.  We’re just getting mobile devices, and we’re just getting social use of mobile devices ( , and we’re just getting mobile games, and we’re just getting mobile learning. Putting them together may be a bit much, but I suspect there’s latent power.  I’ve been thinking about it recently, as I’ve been working with Jim Schuyler at Red7 (he’s also the Chief Technical Officer for the Dalai Lama Foundation) on an environment for distributed learning games, including mobile devices.  We’ve got mobile games, and mobile learning, and distributed games, and we’ve had social learning games; can social mobile learning games be far behind?  I’d welcome your thoughts!
What’s required to use mobile devices?  The dedicated portable computing devices (laptops, PDA’s, have reasonable screen real-estate, and usually some reasonable text-entry capability.  Mobile phones are the real test.  They’re increasingly ubiquitous (everyone has one).  The small screen factor is one issue.  On the other hand, you’ve got a rich audio channel.  You may have a less-flexible interface, too, with only number keys and a jog dial (or a stylus).  You can get some form of text entry, usually, but it may be awkward (though I’ve been quite impressed with the newer phone pad text entry mechanisms that use knowledge of words to minimize the key presses needed).  And speech recognition is pretty close to ready.
It used to be that you needed particular applications, and they can do some neat things like report back to an LMS.  And with custom programming you can get things like lots of interactivity and multimedia through environments like Brew (Qualcomm’s development tool for phones CDMA & GSM, Palm, and CE machines; and of course Java.  I’m still waiting for Flash to be available more broadly, which has become the interactive tool of choice.
On the other hand, with Wireless Application Protocol (, you can use your XML (eXtensible Markup Language) and/or WML (Wireless Markup Language) to provide content, as long as you have an appropriate style sheet.  Single-sourcing of content is getting to be a hot topic, too (e.g., and XML’s ability to separate content from delivery is very useful.
I’ve been finding, however, that it helps to have an underlying content model, developed from some upfront research on who’s using the information and how, to streamline information production.  In one case, writing a manual for a device is now writing once and populating the device and a context-sensitive help system, in another a set of procedures can be used to populate both a technical support website and a mobile performance support tool. DocBook ( has been increasingly useful in my work with teams developing content models.  For instance, DocBook naturally supports different resolutions of the same image to support different devices.
I’m big on content models, and getting more so.  Syntactically structured and semantically tagged data provides the capability for smart systems to tailor information to meet the individual’s needs (; channeling Wayne Hodgins: the right information to the right person at the right time, at the right place, in the right way, on the right device…
I think personalization is an interesting topic, but it’s too late to segue into it now.  I will, however, update a topic from last time: as a addendum on blogging, Stephen Downes has recently written an article on the educational uses that’s reasonably comprehensive, if somewhat long (

5: Nytt og nyttig

Fra pengesluk til overskudd. Og trenden fortsetter
For første gang kan 50 e-læringsselskaper vise til sorte tall. Overskuddet
er på 32 millioner kroner. Bransjen omsatte for 411 millioner kroner i 2003.
Det viser en fersk undersøkelse fra Infosector.

Bruker e-læring med måte
Med 1.300 ansatte i kundefront, er det vanskelig å holde tritt med utviklingen. Derfor har Telenor bygd opp en læringsportal.

Statoil Detaljhandel er i disse dager i gang med å rulle ut en ny ansattportal.
Det gir en bedre og tryggere hverdag for ansatte og mer kroner i kassen for selskapet.

Roundtable Forum in Tokyo: “Classroom E-learning Infrastructure; How to Better Promote”
August 30, 2004
A roundtable forum on school classroom e-learning systems was held in Ariake Bay-Area of Tokyo discussing on how the school officials could improve in-house security and propose more local area network (LAN) constructions and e-learning systems.  The forum was initiated by Japan Association for Promotion o Educational Technology (JAPET
At the start of the discussion, Mr. Kenro Nakagawa, Counselor for K12-educations at Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXXT), gave a plenary speech, and commented on a long-standing issue of the differences in IT (information technology) infrastructures at each school.  In order to close the gaps between the schools with regard to the levels of IT infrastructures, Mr. Nakagawa suggested that more school officials actively appeal on this problem against the local prefectures.
According to Mr. Nakagawa, Japanese public K12 schools established classroom LAN systems accounted for only 37 percent throughout the country at present.  And the study revealed that generally, the more urbanized areas, the less penetrated are school LAN systems.  The prefecture with the highest penetration of school LANs was Gifu Prefecture with a rate of 84 percent, followed by Toyama Prefecture with 76 percent.  By contrast, Tokyo Metro was ranked in the last place in the country regarding school LAN penetration with only 8.9 percent, followed by Nara Prefecture with 11 percent, and Osaka with 13 percent.
On the other hand, the schoolteachers who are able to instruct the students with a help of computer systems comprise only 60 percent as the nation’s average.  The highest was in Okinawa with 92 percent, and 87 percent is achieved in Niigata.  By contrast, Tokyo marked 49 percent, and was the poorest place in Japan having the fewest computer-capable teachers.
In Japan, the public K12 schools’ IT-related budgets are generally allocated from the local taxes.  As for fiscal 2004, the local prefectures in total allotted a sum of JPY205 billion (ca. $2 billion) altogether.  However, the local prefectures also decided how to use this money.  In fact, the money has not bee necessarily used for IT infrastructure.  In this regard, Mr. Nakagawa pointed out, “Comparing between the prefectures, schools are rather becoming different from one to one in the levels of in-school IT infrastructures quite increasingly.  To redirect this trend, each prefecture and its authorities imperatively need to recognize this problem above all.  But unfortunately, many of them don’t at present.  We, the national government, will try to help this out as much as we can.  But we would also ask the school officials to please let your voices heard!”
The roundtable discussion then started, coordinated by Professor Tatsuya Horita from University of Shizuoka.  Participants were: Mr. Takashi Naruse, Chief Instructor at Education Institute of Miyagi Prefecture; Mr. Mikinori Tsuchida, teacher at Sapporo Utsukushigaoka Elementary School, and Professor-Emeritus Jun Takahashi from University of Toyama.
Prof. Horita first remarked, “Today, the school IT network systems are like the water tubes. This means we can’t go back to old days when people were lifting buckets of water from a single artesian well at a village center.  School networks are also the bases of the education which must be able to be protected by themselves, and thus are very important how to design.  But if the users don’t understand this nature, they will rather become reluctant to think about IT networks.  This can just aggravate our country’s educations.”
Mr. Naruse pointed out four items that IT systems cannot be maintained only by faculty members who have no clue in IT, that faculty members will start using more IT systems if school administration staff actively use, that the classes can become more proactive when IT systems are used, and that the more frequently use of IT, the more productively students learn.
Mr. Tsuchida commented on another crucial point.  “A typical elementary school in Japan likely has 1,000 students and 100 units of personal computers in total.  So, one PC is shared by 10 different students quite irregularly, and also by teachers. They use different types of applications at different skills.  Who teaches them properly?  Who are to organize the files spontaneously created in stupid locations?  This all messes it around.  And finally, no one takes care.”
JAPET will continue this roundtable in other locations in Japan, and will hold the next form in the city of Sendai, 300 kilo meters northeast of Tokyo on September 13.
eLC to Study How to Assess Study Effect through e-Learning
August 23, 2004
Japan e-Learning Consortium (eLC has established a study group in order to develop effective methodologies how to evaluate the effects of the study through e-learning platforms, titled “Committee for e-Learning Study Assessment.”
eLC so far has been advocating to the corporate users to adopt the e-Learning platforms to train their employees, and appealed on general capacities and what would be able to be done with e-learning systems.  However, the consortium has recently found that the Japanese corporations’ moves to adopt e-learning systems became sluggish, and has been falling behind those moves in the United States.
One major reason for the slow growth is the fact that many do not find e-learning-based studies easy to assess about the learning results, since there is no single obvious means to evaluate post-study effects.  To promote more e-learning systems, this question should be answered as early as possible.
The committee currently sets two main goals: to provide contents and solutions that match the customer needs by establishing solid indices and methodologies to evaluate study effects; and to clarify those methodologies clearly enough for the customers to get more attracted to e-learning solutions.
During the rest of this year, the committee will collect data about various methodologies that many corporations are currently using to evaluate employees’ study reports, and compare them with existing methodologies in the United States.  Over the next several years, the committee will implement experiments of the methodologies found through the research activities this year.
CORPORATE INTERVIEW with SHUBIKI:  SCORM2004 Should Enrich E-learning
Accepting the world’s first award of SCORM2004 standard compliance, President and CEO of Shubiki Corporation (, featured in an interview with a Japanese media.  Then, Mr. Shubiki talked over the characteristics of the 2004 version of SCROM and what they should mean to the future e-Learning industry.
Shubiki’s “LMS” (Learning Management System) has been awarded a compliance certificate under SCORM2004 standard by Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) for the first time in the world, and has become the first officially registered e-Learning product by ADL as the SCORM2004-based solution.  Mr. Shubiki said, “Yes, we made it.  Our LMS solution, ‘BISCUE LMS2’ has passed the ADL’s SCORM2004 certificate test for the first time in world.”
What is ‘SCORM2004?’
Shubiki:  “SCORM stands for ‘Sharable Content Object Reference Model.’   This is a worldwide standard for the e-learning systems and solutions designed and advocated by ADL section of the United States Department of Defense (Pentagon).  ADL first rolled out SCORM back in 2000 with version 1.0.  But this V.1.0 was a mere prototype, and was not really aimed at implementing in the industry.  So, the ADL soon upgraded it to v1.1, which was virtually the first one to be implemented in the market officially.  Then, this was further upgraded to v.1.2 which added a function to package contents.  Its latest version was released in January this year.  This version further includes sequencing and navigation sections, and together with improvements in incumbent versions, we collectively call as SCORM2004.  According to ADL, SCORM standard has become tentatively complete.”
What are the differences between v.1.2 and ver.2004
Shubiki:   “2004 version of SCORM includes the items that specify how to design effective learning with a use of instructional design (ID).  Due to this, ID-utilized solutions have got a clear environment to be developed further and further.  Therefore, the solution like LMS handles now enormous amount of data as opposed to the systems of older versions.  Of course, we have carried out much more programming and database constructions to create LMS than we would do to make conventional solutions.”
Specifically, what’s new about 2004?
Shubiki:  “On v.1.2, there are sections of ‘Overview,’ ‘Content Aggregation Model’ (CAM), and ‘Run-Time Environment’ (RTE).  In addition to these three, version 2004 has ‘Sequencing and Navigation’ (SN).  This SN specifies the methodologies to instruct learners and to lead instructors.
So, what is the ‘methodology to instruct learners?’
Shubiki:  “First of all, the Instructional Design (ID) is a philosophy to enhance the productivity of the learning habit by looking at the learner’s progress.  To achieve this, there are some methodologies, such as to give a pre-evaluation test to the learner before actually starting the course, with which the system will internally assess and use as a guidance to decide which level to start with.  And, after completing the material, the system may give several tasks to the learner, and the learner needs to perform the task at satisfactory level in order to go ahead to the next sections.  But depending on the test results, the learner may be forced back to previous sections to brush up all he missed.  This everything has to be properly governed by the computer. This computational algorithm has to be compliant to what are specified in the SN section.  It defines how to prioritize materials, what user interface has to be provided, and such and such.”
What about the ‘Content Aggregation Model (CAM)’ and ‘Run-time Environment (RTE)?
Shubiki:  “CAM references to how to integrate the learning resources and their contents.  In short, this refers to indexing, framing, and organizing the materials.  RTE, on the other hand, refers to the computer side settings of the variables.  Let’s say, it deals with how LMS gives and takes the various data and contents.”
What kind of data are taken and given?
Shubiki:  “The data include information on learning resources, learning subjects, goals, or level of goals.  They also deal with test results, private information, competency assessment results, and so on.  For instructor’s, it is important to know how this learner has improved after studying how much of learning resource.  LMS is supposed to answer such instructor’s questions.”
That sounds LMS needs to store a gigantic volume of data about a learner…
Shubiki:  “That’s right.  Version 2004 has increased the data storage capacity requirements by approximately 100 times more than was used on v.1.2.  Back on version 1.2, such storage capacity was rather optional.  Anyhow, we spent enormous time and energy to program all associated moduls of LMS in order to meet this requirement.  However, by this arduous jobs, the 2004-version LMS can answer the learners ‘what to do to achieve want level,’ while v. 1.2 only provided exams and scores only.”
Do you think v.12 was in sufficient for the corporate trainings?
Shubki:  “Yes, I do. They were not doing the jobs enough.  Therefore, if a company seriously wants to train an employee to an expected level, we individually created a company-specific program.  But this eventually blocked out other external materials to be included in the system, and was costly.  But with v.2004, such individual requests can also be generically handled in highly satisfactory manner.  SCORM2004 makes all kinds of materials and learning resources able to be handled in the same way by different systems.  This is a cheaper solution for the users.”
-News Source: Mainichi Online News (


6: På kalenderen

Taking the e out of e-learning – making e-learning work with conventional training
21 September, 2004
Novotel London West, Hammersmith, London, UK
Taking the e out of e-learning – making e-learning work with conventional training

World Class e-Learning content.
½ dagsseminar på Hotell Opera i Oslo, 6. Oktober 2004. Benytt anledningen til å se BBC, Auralog og Skillsofts nyeste e-læringspresentasjoner.

Online Learning Conference & Expo, San Francisco, California, October 11-13, 2004. 

European ASTD Conference in Copenhagen 6. til 8. oktober.
ePortfolio: Transforming individual and organizational learning.  Konferanse La Rochelle, Franrike 28. og 29. oktober 2004. De er også interesert i mulige foredragsholdere. Konferansensens språk er engelsk.

For mere informasjon ta kontakt med:
Veslemøy Barnes
Research and Educational Network (REN)
Innovation Norway
20 California Street 6th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94111-4833
Tel: +1 415 986 0770
Fax: +1 415 986 7875