[LINK] the net, higher ed, and change

Tom Koltai tomk at unwired.com.au
Sat Jun 13 13:14:41 EST 2009

> -----Original Message-----
> From: link-bounces at mailman1.anu.edu.au 
> [mailto:link-bounces at mailman1.anu.edu.au] On Behalf Of 
> Bernard Robertson-Dunn
> Sent: Thursday, 11 June 2009 3:06 PM
> To: link
> Subject: Re: [LINK] the net, higher ed, and change
> I find the modern approach to university education most foreign.
> Oh, and I was given enough money by the local education 
> authority to pay 
> for fees, accommodation and food. Holiday jobs helped pay for the 
> extras. No debt, no job to support myself: all my time was 
> available for 
> education.
> When I look at today's courses and education method, 
> especially in ICT, 
> I can't say much progress has been made. I think that the 
> government has 
> managed to save money, but I suspect it has come at a cost.
> Equating education with the availability of lectures seems to 
> be missing 
> some of the essentials of education.
> I think I'm turning into a curmudgeon. It seems to be something I'm 
> being taught by modern education. Or just that I'm getting old.

Heartily concur.
My education was paid for the state and a bursary that I had somehow
managed to qualify for.
No Hex.  Although I did tend bar to supplement pocket money.
On the same topic - but digressing slightly,

Many of you have observed that I have been assiduously collecting stats
for some time on the P2P networks.
The collection part is starting to show fruit.

We are starting to reach some pretty amazing conclusions and I quote
myself from a recent article I blogged:

"For example users downloading educational material like Microsoft
Office Excel - Hungry Minds - Excel Programming (2002).pdf by a factor
of .4 requests per hour more than the number one listed hit song in

This is not a one off by any means. Up there in the top (Australian)
downloads this week are exciting titles like:

"Chromatography Encyclopaedia Of Separation Science Elsevier Full. PDF"

Value is often driven by scarcity.
If music costs a lot $19.95 - it is less likely to be purchased.
If DVD's cost a  lot $29.95 they are less likely to be purchased.

Assumption = P2P IFS of Music has forced a drop in the price to 99 cents
per track.

I don't know if this is a trend, but just as P2P appeared to aid the
music industry and movie industry in increasing music sales and cinema
attendances (for different reasons)

It would now appear to be aiding the inquiring minds segment of the P2P
file-sharing online population. 

But who are the downloader's of such a fascinating piece of prose
(Chromatography Encyclopaedia)?
(Available on Amazon as part of a 10 volume set for just $4,545.00 for
the electronic copy only $1,748.00 for the paper version)

I don't see Chromatography as having much relevance to 15 year olds.
Nor would the Elsevier database payed for restriction be much of a
problem for university students with their student id library logon

So I conclude, the Australians that are downloading this file (yes we
restrict our stats to the list of Australian [not exclusively APNIC]
advertised IP numbers [updated hourly]- yes I do know how to do that)

1.	Universities do not subscribe to Elsevier Publications because
they are tight-fisted.
2.	There are a bunch of housewives interested in obtaining whiter
than white results.
3.	There is a growing group of budding drug manufacturers in

I'm hoping it's not 3.
My unikey (yes - still active - would suggest it was 1.)


Above article is here --> The Hedonic Value of P2P to our Economy


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