Month: February 2021

How We Can Use Technology to Transform the Classroom

first_imgWith each fundamental shift in America’s economy, our public education system has also transformed to meet the needs of both student and industry. When we were a primarily agrarian nation, schools focused on the liberal arts and operated on a schedule that coincided with the cycle of planting and harvest. Following the Industrial Revolution, schools adopted a more regimented model focused on rote and routine, and added a more specialized curriculum designed to meet the insatiable labor needs of our mills and factories.Today we are well into the Information Age, where we need students knowledgeable in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in order to satisfy employment demands for a wide range of industries. Yet our students are being instructed on a 20th Century standard and, as a result, are graduating without the STEM skills needed for today’s jobs and unable to excel in a digital environment. That’s unfortunate, because never before have we had so many innovative tools and methodologies that can make learning easier.Rather than confine our students within the staid walls of academia that the Harvard Business Review says are disconnected from how the world works today, it’s time to knock those walls down and engage students by bringing the promise of technology to bear in our schools. It’s time to flip the classroom and change dynamics that engender educational ennui in our children before they disengage.The concept of a flipped classroom was first explored by Harvard’s Eric Mazur in the 1990s as a response to his experience teaching an introductory physics course, but it has come a long way since.The notion of using the flipped classroom to help guide students to greater understanding by connecting them to true subject matter expert resources is the approach behind the Khan Academy, whose founder, Sal Khan, started by recording simple but engaging math lessons for a young cousin, and posting the videos on YouTube. The videos not only helped his cousin, but soon tens of thousands of people were viewing and gaining the benefit. The popularity (and efficacy) of Khan’s approach was not lost on the education-minded Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which has funded the Academy and its ongoing innovations.As Khan demonstrated, the flipped classroom is especially important in STEM education, where teachers can leverage technology to deliver coursework to many more students, use real-time analytics tools to help recognize when and how to intervene with students who need it, and encourage others by guiding them toward resources that they can engage outside the classroom. This approach gives students the ability to use in-class time to apply their newfound information and to complete assignments. Addressing STEM education in this way helps to keep students engaged, developing vital skills in those who might otherwise lose interest and find themselves unprepared when they move on to college.Taking the flipped classroom farther by more fully leveraging learning technologies could make a big difference in addressing some of our schools’ biggest challenges, such as establishing a solid STEM foundation at the elementary level that can later feed our high schools and colleges. This need is especially acute in poor and minority communities, where attracting the best and brightest teachers and having sufficient resources to nurture all students is at crisis levels.Transforming public education would be a major undertaking, but the means are well within our grasp, and many other innovative programs at all levels of education are employing technology in new and exciting ways. In California, KIPP charter schools are flipping K-4 classrooms with dramatic results, using the approach to raise kindergarten reading comprehension scores from 36 to 96 percent. Even the Department of Defense is getting in the game with a mobile application that helps young children gain a stronger appreciation for science by guiding them to resources and answers, and debunking common misconceptions that stymie interest and progress in STEM.These methods more closely resemble today’s business environment, where technology is used to bring virtual resources to bear, fostering a collaborative, highly mobile workforce that draws on an abundance of available information to learn, make decisions and create value. Workers are no longer tethered to a cubicle; with mobile devices and analytical tools, they can be productive from just about anywhere. The careers of tomorrow (such as data scientist, identified by the Harvard Business Review as the “sexiest job of the 21st Century”) demand it.The good news is that, just as businesses are transforming their processes by investing in technologies such as cloud computing and big data analytics to lower operating costs, increase quality, make better decisions, and boost productivity, schools can do the same. Cloud computing can serve as the basis for a fully integrated educational platform that gives students, teachers, parents, and administrators an easier way to participate, administrate, evaluate and educate.That was the conclusion of the Education Data Systems working group of the non-partisan Digital Promise initiative, which recommended the adoption of “data-enhanced teaching and learning environments through the creation of data collection, access, and interpretation tools and systems that connect and foster virtual teaching and learning communities.”Public schools are already spending nearly $10 billion per year on their IT systems; it makes sense to invest that money in ways that can increase teaching efficacy while lowering operating costs. Even in a challenging economy, businesses are investing in transformative technologies and innovative business models because they must in order to remain competitive. If America is to remain the leading force of innovation, it must apply that same logic to public education.This post orginally appeared on Forbes.com on November 27, 2012.last_img read more

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Stateful Cloud Native Applications with ScaleIO Elastic Block Storage

first_imgContainer technology and Docker, in particular, enables application development agility through their developer-centric tooling. As I discussed in my previous blog, the fundamental problem containers set out to address is to enable seamless portability of applications across machines.The layered copy-on-write implementation of Container images enables faster application builds, efficient storage of images in repository and faster boot-up times for containers. However, the top-most writeable layer is a non-starter for data persistence. Due to the ephemeral nature of the containers, cloud native remained exclusive to stateless applications during their initial years. But, not anymore!What was missing?The local data volumes helped developers get past the data persistence problem but, when containers are deployed in large scale or in production, the local data volumes posed several challenges to the applications and operations teams:Data inaccessibility: Container orchestrator (CO) platforms like Kubernetes schedule application services based upon the resources available within a cluster. However, by placing the application data on the storage devices available within the local server, container schedulers cannot flexibly schedule or reschedule services, as pointed out in the figure below.Limited scalability: The local data volume can scale in terms of both performance and capacity only to what is available in the local node.High availability for enterprise applications: Enterprise application require 6-9’s of data availability. However, local data volumes are prone to data loss should either the direct attached storage (DAS) devices or the entire server fail abruptly.Infrastructure inefficiency and management complexity: Keeping silos of data spread across random servers in the cluster lead to inefficient utilization of storage and complex enterprise data life cycle management.Storage strategy for stateful containers: A better deployment pattern for persistent layer would be to abstract storage devices available across multiple server nodes and create a virtual pool of storage, from which container schedulers can draw storage, as shown below.Dell EMC ScaleIO software defined storage helps you just achieve that while delivering very high performance, enterprise-class features and the ability to run infrastructure as a code.ScaleIO is hardware-agnostic and can take advantage of any type of media available in the industry-standard x86 hardware.The enterprise features such as data services, multi-tenancy, high resiliency and security enable deploying enterprise applications in cloud native architecture.As a software-based storage that can be deployed and operated through its API, ScaleIO integrates seamlessly into the cloud native ecosystem.Got questions? Leave a comment or join our upcoming webcast on 11/09 at 9 AM Pacific to discuss. To try ScaleIO yourself, visit www.dellemc.com/getscaleio to start your evaluation today!last_img read more

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Businessman seeks to avoid prison in Giuliani-tinged case

first_imgNEW YORK (AP) — A Florida businessman who hired Rudy Giuliani to lend credibility to a fraud-busting company that was a fraud itself is seeking to avoid a prison sentence at his upcoming sentencing. A lawyer for David Correia said in a submission to a judge Monday that his client is needed at home to take care of his wife and children. Correia has signed a plea deal that suggests he serve about three years in prison, but his attorney says no prison is necessary. And Correia maintains in a letter to the judge that he’s so changed his ways that even his wife recognized it and ended their separation.last_img read more

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Feds: Woman charged in ex-con’s plot against college women

first_imgNEW YORK (AP) — A New York woman has been charged with conspiring with an ex-convict to extort and force into labor or prostitution some women he met after living in his daughter’s on-campus housing at Sarah Lawrence College. Isabella Pollok was freed Friday on $100,000 bail after an indictment was unsealed in Manhattan federal court. Her lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment. She was charged with conspiring with Lawrence Ray. The 61-year-old man has been held without bail since his arrest last year. He has pleaded not guilty. Authorities say he committed his crimes after moving in with his daughter, Pollok and other women in 2010 at Sarah Lawrence.last_img read more

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The Latest: Wet snow turns to sleet in northern New England

first_imgIn its second day in the Northeast, a snow storm left nearly 15 inches of snow piled up in parts of New Hampshire. The snow changed over to sleet in areas of Maine and New Hampshire, adding to the misery of removal. Snow is expected to continue in Vermont and Maine until Wednesday morning. Skiers rejoiced as heavy snow fell in the region’s mountains. Off the Maine coast, the storm whipped up waves that approached 30 feet, and a 73-mph gust was recorded at an offshore buoy.last_img

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