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News 07-03-2001

Syllabus2001 Workshop to Consider Course Managers

Unsure about the differences among the many course manager products on the market today? "Comparing Web-based Course Managers," a hands-on workshop offered July 20 and 21 at the Syllabus2001 conference in Santa Clara, California, will help instructors sort out their questions and find some answers. Led by Sharon Gray, Instructional Technologist at Augustana College, the workshop will provide an overview of online course development and delivery, including insights into which features might be useful and why. Through hands-on exploration of various course development products, participants will leave with a rudimentary working knowledge of Web course development and delivery.

For more information about Syllabus2001, including complete descriptions of all conference offerings, and an online registration form, visit

IMS Establishes European Foundation

IMS, a global consortium of more than 300 educational institutions, commercial entities and government agencies recently announced the founding of IMS in Europe--an independent foundation incorporated in the Netherlands that will serve the needs of e- learning organizations throughout Europe. A growing number of e-learning agencies, vendors, providers and universities are joining IMS in Europe to help develop technical specifications and involve the European e-learning community in their global use. Recently many of these organizations convened in Sweden and the UK to participate in an IMS Working Group on technical specifications for Digital Repositories.

All of the specifications developed by IMS are available to the public without charge through the IMS web site

Online Courses for Law School Professors

LexisNexis Web Courses, powered by Blackboard 5, allow law school professors to create and manage online course content using any Web-connected computer. Course materials can be created from existing Word or PowerPoint documents, and new materials can be created using simple cut-and-paste commands. Professors can also create links to LexisNexis legal research content, post announcements, track Web site usage and gather student feedback. The service is free to law schools and faculty. For more information, visit

Ocular Networks to Sponsor Advanced Internet Lab

Ocular Networks recently announced its corporate sponsorship of the Advanced Internet Laboratory (AIL) at George Mason University. The purpose of AIL is to conduct research on high- performance, large-bandwidth Internet core networks. The lab's current focus is on multi-protocol label switching, or MPLS, a sophisticated routing and switching technique.

For more information, visit

Online Master's Program in Bi'ethics

The Center for Bi'ethics and Clinical Leadership at Union College and the Center for Medical Ethics at Albany Medical College (AMC) have created a distance master's program in bi'ethics, one of the first in the country. The program, slated to start August 5, is designed for doctors, administrators, lawyers, nurses, and researchers. The curriculum will draw on many real-life case studies, involving such issues as euthanasia, transplant policy, reproductive technology, cloning and DNA testing. Students in the program will be taught by professionals from the Northeast Bi'ethics Consortium, created in 1999 as a cooperative effort by Union College, Albany Med, Albany Law School, and the philosophy department at the University at Albany. The curriculum will combine online instruction with on-site meetings with instructors for practical experience in clinical ethics. Organizers hope the format will allow more working professionals to enroll in the program without having to take time off from their careers.

For more information, visit

LCD Contents Display on Digital Projector

MARGI Systems, a provider of multimedia products for mobile computing, recently announced the availability of Macintosh support for the Presenter-to-Go Springboard presentation module. Also newly available is the MARGI Mirror application, which allows the contents of a Handspring Visor handheld's LCD to be displayed on a digital projector or VGA monitor. The upgrades are available for download by registered MARGI Presenter-to-Go customers at

Genomic Solutions Supplies Research Instruments

Genomic Solutions , a worldwide supplier of automated solutions for genomic and proteomic research, announced it will provide advanced instrumentation used in the "Molecular Biology of Aging" course at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts. The course, running July 30 through August 18, 2001, is part of the Laboratory's annual Summer Education and Research Program. Genomic Solutions instruments used in the course provide automated hybridization and imaging of DNA microarrays spotted on standard glass slides.

For more information, visit

Palm Awards $2.3 Million in Technology Grants

In its second round of grants from the Palm Education Pioneer (PEP) program, Palm, Inc. recently announced it is awarding $2.3 million in Palm handheld units to elementary and secondary schools, colleges, and universities to enable innovative teaching and learning, and to gain insight into how handheld computers affect teaching and learning. This research is expected to help determine best practices for integrating handhelds into curriculum and teacher training.

For more information, visit

Web Site for Math Students

Waterloo Maple, a provider of advanced software products for mathematics education, research, and industry, recently launched a new Web site, The site offers free resources to students in mathematics, science, and engineering. Content includes tutorials, course-specific examples, and general reference information. Instructors can also take advantage of the site with links to educational PowerTools, Waterloo Maple's suite of free, full-powered add-on packages. These include complete sets of curriculum material for various college and university level courses, including calculus, linear algebra, and engineering mathematics.

WebCT and Datatel Team Up

WebCT and Datatel recently announced an agreement to jointly develop IMS Enterprise standards-compliant interfaces between Datatel's Colleague and WebCT's Campus Edition course management system. The relationship affords an e-learning solution that can be operated and maintained by a single group of administrators. The agreement will provide synchronization of class sections student registration (add, drops), grade exchange, and support for single-sign on for Web-based applications.

Scientists Calculate Fiber Optic

Scientists from Lucent Technologies' Bell Labs have calculated the maximum amount of information that can be transmitted over optical fiber. The Bell Labs team, whose scientific results appear in the British journal Nature, determined that it is theoretically possible to send approximately 100 terabits of information, or roughly 20 billion one-page e-mails, simultaneously per strand of fiber. The Bell Labs scientists used an analogy from quantum physics, together with ideas from information theory to make their calculations. They looked at telecommunication systems that use wavelength division multiplexing--a technique by which lightwaves of different colors are simultaneously transmitted over the same fiber, allowing more information to be sent--and estimated how much information can be conveyed from a transmitter to a receiver.

Agilent Provides Software to Colleges and Universities

Agilent Technologies Inc. recently announced that it is providing free copies of its Advisor Software Edition network test software to qualified educational institutions that offer advanced computer networking courses. The software can be employed as a teaching tool at colleges, universities, and technical schools worldwide to prepare students to face network challenges in the business world. More than 400 institutions have already taken advantage of this offer, including the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of California at Berkeley, Duke University, Stanford University, Purdue University, DeVry University, and Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis (IUPUI).

For more information, visit product.asp (Due to the length of this URL, it may be necessary to copy and paste this hyperlink into your Internet browser's URL address field.)

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