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Saturday, October 04, 2008
In my prior post, I mentioned that I have a book in press for next June or July with the main title of "The World is Open." I am aware that there is an edited book from MIT Press that covers similar topics to my book though is more academic in nature than my book. It is also focused more on open courseware, open educational resources, and open source software which are just 3 of the 10 trends of my book.

I met the editors of this book back in late March 2007 during a conference at Rice University that the Hewlett Foundation had sponsored for the grantees of the strand related to open educational resources. At the time, it seemed the editors were chatting about their book and I was having a beer listening to some of the interesting conversation. I was sitting next to them at the hotel pub and I asked them what they were talking about. They told me about their book project and I told them about my mine. The people sitting next to me were: Toru Iiyoshi who is Senior Scholar and Director of the Knowledge Media Lab at the Carnegie Foundation and M. S. Vijay Kumar who is Senior Associate Dean and Director of the Office of Educational Innovation and Technology at MIT.

What I found out was that they were hard at work on editing a groundbreaking book related to open education while I had been thinking about an edited book myself that extended Thomas Friedman's World is Flat book to education. In fact, I had a proposal in review for such an edited book of people who were heroes, gurus, and revolutionaries of the shared Internet. However, earlier that month in Tampa, Florida I met with a small book publisher who had a recent book out called "The World is Flat?" He convinced me to write the book myself and not do an edited book. So I did. I spent a year in near seclusion without any TV, international travel, beer, friends, etc. and I wrote it up.

It is now fully a year and one-half later. Funny, 18 months later and their book is out and mine is now in review. Still, I think back in March 2007 they were already collecting chapters and I had yet to start writing (that would come 3 months later). And my book may become 2 books--a hardcover one with Jossey Bass/Wiley and a free e-book. The tentative full title is: "The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education." Yes, we have entered a revolution in learning.

The title of their new book is:
Opening Up Education: The Collective Advancement of Education through Open Technology, Open Content, and Open Knowledge."

It is both a free e-book (available as a PDF) as well as available in hardcover.

A few of the contributors to this book include:
1. Richard Baraniuk, Professor and Founder of Connexions at Rice University.
2. Trent Batson, Communications Strategist in MIT's Office of Educational Innovation and Technology and Editor of Campus Technology.
3. John Seely Brown, Chief of Confusion.
4. Tom Carey, Professor of Management Sciences in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Waterloo and Program Director of the MERLOT ELIXR program.
5. James Dalziel Director of the LAMS Foundation and Professor of Learning Technology and Director of the Macquarie E-Learning Centre Of Excellence (MELCOE) at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.
6. Bernadine Chuck Fong, president emerita of Foothill College and a visiting scholar at Stanford University.
7. Gerard Hanley, Executive Director of MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching) and Senior Director for Academic Technology Services for the California State University.
8. Diana Laurillard Chair of Learning with Digital Technologies in the School of Mathematics, Science and Technology from the London Knowledge Lab in the UK,
Marilyn Lombardi.
9. Phil Long, Associate Director, Office of Educational Innovation & Technology
Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education at MIT.
10. Anne Margulies, Executive Director, OpenCourseWare at MIT.
11. Diana Oblinger the President and CEO of EDUCAUSE.
12. Marshall Smith the Program Director for the Education Program at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.
13. Candace Thille, director of the Open Learning Initiative (OLI) at Carnegie Mellon University.
14. David Wiley, Associate Professor from BYU and, Chief Openness Officer (COO) of Flat World Knowledge.

These are just 14 of the authors; there are many more! It is quite an impressive group of people. It is so impressive that this week the Chronicle of Higher Education posted an article (dated October 17th) from John Seely Brown. This article is basically the foreword to the “Opening Up Education" book. Bravo! Note that it is dated for mid October and is already out.

You can read more about this book at the MIT Press Website. MIT Press has a description of the book. In addition, you can download the entire book or sample chapters.

There are at least a dozen (12) ways to explore this book. You can:
1. Download and explore individual chapters.
2. Download the entire book.
3. Read the whole document as iPaper in Scribd. (Note: this book is now listed in "What's hot right now" in Scribd.
4. Read about the copyright licensing at Creative Commons.
5. Read the abstract at Educause.
6. Read the MIT Press log.
7. Print or read an 18 page Executive Summary.
8. Read "Open Education News" from MIT.
9. You can also buy the book from Amazon for $16.47 (down from $24.95 list).
10. Also highly interesting and becoming increasingly common these days, the book editors and John Seely Brown had an online discussion about this book on October 2, 2008, which you can watch.
11. There is another site wherein you can hear the above discussion as well as from some of the authors about their respective chapters. There is even a YouTube video of at least one of these author presentations. I see many more are also posted, including an interesting one from John Seely Brown and another from my friend, David Wiley from BYU.
12. Finally, you can get involved with the authors and anyone else about the book.

Look at all these venues for distributing and marketing your book and its associated ideas. Amazing! And this is just the tip of the iceberg of what is possible. We have entered a new age of being a scholar, author, and participate in higher education. This week Thursday I will be presenting a keynote talk on new ideas for digital scholarship at a regional conference on "Advances in Teaching and Learning" the University of Texas Medical Center in Houston.

Clearly MIT Press has done a great job getting word out about this book and offering options. The book authors and editors undoubtedly played a huge role in this. That is not too surprising since they believe in a more free and open educational world where everyone can learn. They have truly opened up education with their book.

My "The World is Open" (TWIO) book with Jossey Bass/Wiley will likely have a hardcover version and, unlike other books, there will be a companion e-book. Other than a summary chart or two, no content will be duplicated between the two. Each will stand on their own. TWIO will be a tradebook and hopefully easily found at your local bookstores. For those who cannot afford the book such as those in developing countries as well as those who want to share the essence of it with friends, family, and colleagues, I plan to post the companion e-book and myriad resources, references, Weblinks, etc., later to the website. I will start blogging huge sections of it sometime in March I think. Till then, I recommend the "Opening Up Education" book. May the world be forever open to education!
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  posted by Curt Bonk @ 8:49 PM  
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About Me

Name: Curt Bonk
Home: Bloomington, Indiana, United States
About Me: I am a former accountant and CPA and a former educational psychologist. I am now Professor of IST at Indiana University and also adjunct in the School of Informatics. I founded and later sold SurveyShare. As president of CourseShare, LLC, I run around the world training instructors to teach online and give motivational talks about emerging learning technologies. I also write and edit books related to e-learning and blended learning. See bio and vita.

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Click here for information about my recent book, The World is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education.

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