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What We’re Reading: Jan. 21 – Jan. 27

A new model for online education, FB Timeline, using music in video, and YouTube

What if you offered your course online for free, announced in just one email, and 160,000 people enrolled? That happened last year for Professor Sebastian Thrun of Stanford. And the online class was such a success that students in the physical class slowly began switching to the online version as the semester progressed. So is Stanford doing more? Well, Professor Thrun decided to leave and launch his own online university instead. It’s an interesting look at what might be in store for online education.

Ready or not, here comes Timeline. If you haven’t activated Facebook’s new format yet, you won’t have a choice soon.

Mongolia is on its way to becoming the next Brunei or Qatar due to its mineral wealth, strategic location next to China, and its low population. The Economist has a great article on a country that’s booming.

Though we love a great deal, this week we learn more of the standards in which many of our bargains are produced. The New York Times draws attention to the Foxconn Technology factory in China. A few weeks earlier, Bloomberg shined a light on cotton production in Burkina Faso.

If winter static-shock has instilled a sense of fear into your daily actions, then dryer sheets are your new best friend. Keep one in your pocket to prevent painful shocks from opening doors and greeting friends. In fact, dryer sheets have many uses.

Using music in videos is tricky because without the rights to a song, you’re breaking the law, plain and simple. Here are some tips on finding free and legal music for your video podcasts.

What do the M’s in M & M’s stand for? Yahoo has a quick video explaining the origin of some brand names.

The mere act of petting a dog can cause a chain of events. Instantly, neurotransmitters in our heads do a happy dance — it’s involuntary. We feel good. USA Today discusses how dogs (and pets in general) spread happiness.

A new report estimates that the average American worker drops nearly $1,100 annually on coffee. That’s not much less than what the average worker spends to commute to the job. Time looks at what people spend on everyday goods like gas, coffee, pets, beer, etc.

Finally, Google put out a new video and accompanying website on its YouTube video platform. Every ten days, a century of video is uploaded to YouTube. Yikes!

Dave

Senior Information Specialist

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