Deeds of Gaijin Occupiers

My grandmother has recently started telling everyone she owns a house in Japan (gaijin cannot own land?). In the 1950s, my grandfather was stationed in Japan. He went over by himself, acquired a house, and sent for his wife and six kids to come. The most common story my grandmother tells is this trip over there. It has several humorous elements to portray the personalities of all the kids. They stayed there for almost 3 years (typical of a deployment) and came back to the continental US. Since, the military base where they live was closed. Someone found the deed to the house and showed or gave it to her. This is what sparked the owning a house story.

abandonment: in law, voluntary, intentional, and absolute relinquishment of rights or property without conveying them to any other person. abandonment

Typically one maintains one’s rights to property by occupying or having others occupy even once in a while. Paying taxes helps as well. By just abandoning the house about 50 years ago, I am pretty sure whatever rights the deed conveys are lost.

My favorite of the stories about Japan is one about an earthquake opening a crack in the ground. The military found a number of previously unknown tunnels underneath the base. Presumably these were dug during World War II with the intent of covert troop movement during a US invasion. Its probably fortunate the US was not forced to invade Japan proper.

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Deeds of Gaijin Occupiers

My grandmother has recently started telling everyone she owns a house in Japan (gaijin cannot own land?). In the 1950s, my grandfather was stationed in Japan. He went over by himself, acquired a house, and sent for his wife and six kids to come. The most common story my grandmother tells is this trip over there. It has several humorous elements to portray the personalities of all the kids. They stayed there for almost 3 years (typical of a deployment) and came back to the continental US. Since, the military base where they live was closed. Someone found the deed to the house and showed or gave it to her. This is what sparked the owning a house story.

abandonment: in law, voluntary, intentional, and absolute relinquishment of rights or property without conveying them to any other person. abandonment

Typically one maintains one’s rights to property by occupying or having others occupy even once in a while. Paying taxes helps as well. By just abandoning the house about 50 years ago, I am pretty sure whatever rights the deed conveys are lost.

My favorite of the stories about Japan is one about an earthquake opening a crack in the ground. The military found a number of previously unknown tunnels underneath the base. Presumably these were dug during World War II with the intent of covert troop movement during a US invasion. Its probably fortunate the US was not forced to invade Japan proper.

The Shot Heard Round the Vista World

What is the worst possible outcome of an event from an admin’s perspective? You lose everything.

Next worst is lose a large portion of the data. Losing days worth of data, as Utah did, is huge. This is the biggest news since the merger of Blackboard and WebCT, I think. To Utah’s credit, they have done their best to let people know their SAN and not a Blackboard code error was the culprit.

Still, its a bad boat to be sitting in right now.

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Social Marketing

Normally, I consider John Dvorak a crotchety old-timer who doesn’t get human-computer interaction due to his myopic self-centered view. (His use isn’t usually my use, so he gripes seem inapplicable.) Finally, he got one right… almost. In his most recent blog post… er… opinion article, he described people using social networks as “marketing” themselves. Actually, the phrasing is identity management. People use these online tools to appear better than who they really are. Well… Duh. I’ve always thought I should use technology, especially social networking tools, to control what others think about me.

Back in the old days, as a Webmaster, I discovered the friend of a friend of a friend had a LiveJournal (one of the first social network sites, predating even Friendster) blog where she posted a bit of her art work from her classes. I’m not a freelancer, so I gave her some of the freelance web design leads which she turned into experience to help her get a real graphic design job. Rands might just be understanding getting a job is a potential use of Twitter. Given employers Google their job candidates, why not? I am sure there are many reasons for why one should strive to maintain a positive image for those taking the initiative to check.

The technology is new, but the purpose is as old as natural selection. We all wish to succeed. Stone tools allowed my distant ancestors to accomplish monotonous tasks faster than others and attract more advantageous mates. Maybe social networks are the modern stone tools?

VLE vs PLE

PLEs reflect the needs of a student information gatherer. VLEs (aka LMSs) reflect the classroom and institution online. (PLEs vs VLEs) Blackboard Vista is a VLE. Its competitors are all VLEs. Vista is the worst VLE of them all as its designed to host multiple institutions in one site. The GeorgiaVIEW project takes the VLE approach to the extreme by getting a number of institutions to collaboratively host together (though the technology doesn’t scale out to 170,000 active users).

The questions I have though is: Are VLEs worse than PLEs? Would students learn more through PLEs?

Back when I had direct instructor contact, instructors wished to combine multiple classroom meeting times into one WebCT CE or Vista online section. The universal reason being so all the students studying the same topics could discuss these topics. This was before social networks… unless you want to count the now defunct sixdegrees.com? The idea being that student interaction is where they would learn.

Bill Huitt describes the classroom model as old world, without foundation, and eventually will collapse to the dismay of educational administrators everywhere. The student-teacher relationship is the key to the learning.

links for 2007-11-26

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