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Curated content on higher education presented by the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP).
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Learning Analytics and Ethics: A Framework beyond Utilitarianism

Learning Analytics and Ethics: A Framework beyond Utilitarianism | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"Learning analytics stand poised to benefit students in previously impossible ways. Alongside innovation, however, ethical discussions need probing questions, assessments of possible outcomes, and active disagreement about future developments. Ethical modeling will not achieve these, at least not in a substantive way; principled reflection needs to keep up with the speed of innovation as closely as possible. An inner matrix of tensions will achieve ethical reflection aligned with innovation — or at least get us closer to that goal. When schools or companies build new learning analytics systems, or when schools are deciding between competing products, ethical discussions ought to be in the forefront of outcomes-based commitments. The proposed tensions of utopianism (what is the very best outcome?), ambiguity (are the outcomes knowable?), and nihilism (how are unexpected outcomes handled?) can help institutions and companies fulfill the goal of assisting student success."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

The author, James E. Willis, III is an educational assessment specialist at Purdue University.

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Using Predictive Analytics, Adaptive Learning to Transform Higher Education

Using Predictive Analytics, Adaptive Learning to Transform Higher Education | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"Seven universities are working on a year-long planning project to improve student success thanks to $225,000 grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. ...


Each university is working on a number of different strategies, but enough of them have some overlap that they can help each other as they go along. For example, The University of Akron and Portland State University are both working on credentialing knowledge, while The University of Akron and Georgia State are working on adaptive learning, among other things."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Each institution's goal for the grant is briefly described. We think these projects will yield useful lessons learned for others.

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Virginia Curran's curator insight, August 28, 2014 10:00 AM

From www.govtech.com - Today, 7:10 AM


"Seven universities are working on a year-long planning project to improve student success thanks to $225,000 grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. ...


Each university is working on a number of different strategies, but enough of them have some overlap that they can help each other as they go along. For example, The University of Akron and Portland State University are both working on credentialing knowledge, while The University of Akron and Georgia State are working on adaptive learning, among other things."

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'It was not our intent to destroy universities ... . That's not why we did it.'

'It was not our intent to destroy universities ... . That's not why we did it.' | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

Love this.


"It wasn't our intent, I just want to be clear about that now, it was not our intent to destroy universities. That's not why we did it. We want to change universities, and we want them to work for the better.

Thinking in Models: for Design, for Learning…

A large part of this talk is about that change. It's interesting. We go from the first slide about people wanting to be relevant, wanting universities to be relevant, all the way to the last slide about what's going to replace universities, without doing all the thinking that we need to do in between. We need to do this thinking in between.

Let's begin our thinking with where the current trends, we're told, are going. We're told there will be tiered service models at universities. We're told there will be analytics and data-driven management. We're told there will be alternative credentials. To a certain degree, all of these three things are true.

To a certain degree, none of these three things are going to work themselves out in the way that the economist or economists or education reformers predict. When you look at that, basically it's like they have this model or design in their head of how we could rebuild the university system, wipe it all out, start over, and we'll have a new model.




Figure 1 - workflow process employed to assist LMS selection

This model of accountability and cost frameworks and all of that will solve all the problems that the current system has. Models are popular in education too. Here's a model (Figure 1) of a workflow-processed employee to assist LMS selection. You can't really read the small writing there. It goes from enrollment to program administration to learner interactions to content creation to assessment.

It's a fishbone diagram. If you're in economics or business, you're probably familiar with it.Models of how to select educational technology including customized lists of LMS features, a way of picking among those 305 features of a learning management system that you might want to solve the educational problems at your institution."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

You really need to read this. Or at least skim it. This is not your ordinary POV. "I criticize Coursera. I criticize the Stanford MOOCs and all of that, but when Norvig and Thrun launched their artificial intelligence MOOC, in the first week, 150,000 people signed up. Overall, I think it was something like 250,000 people signed up for one course, a really hard course that's really difficult to understand, in artificial intelligence.


Forget the fact that a lot of them dropped out. A lot of them didn't. Tens of thousands finished. This, by itself, indicates that the old model wasn't working. There was such a pent-up demand for upper-level university courses in artificial intelligence that, when one was finally made available, people knocked down the doors trying to get to it."

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Complete this sentence: Restaurants are to food trucks as colleges are to __________

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Are to what? 

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Ex-Googler Creates Slick Kit to Turn Your Kid’s iPad Into a Teacher

Ex-Googler Creates Slick Kit to Turn Your Kid’s iPad Into a Teacher | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"Many parents lament the amount of time their children spend glued to iPads, but instead of reaching for the parental controls, ex-Google engineer Pramod Sharma figured out how to harness its addictive powers as an educational tool. The result, called Osmo, uses the iPad’s cameras and display to turn any kitchen table into an interactive learning lab. ... Osmo uses letter tiles, colored blocks, random dinosaur action figures, and even a kid’s stick figure drawings as video game controllers when placed in the camera’s field of view. Osmo’s sophisticated vision systems recognizes the objects and uses them to trigger animations and effects on screen. Now, with over a million dollars in pre-orders, Osmo is on its way to market just in time for the Christmas season and Sharma is sharing background on the design process."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

So, just how are we planning for higher education? What will "higher ed" look like when these kids turn 18 in, what, 2028? 

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Students, Customers, or Clients? What Are They?

Students, Customers, or Clients? What Are They? | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"The client-consultant model for me is the right way to think about student in higher education. "

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Customers or clients? Drawing upon his own recent experiences as a consultant (with clients) in the design of flipped classroom learning environments, Robert Talbert argues for clients.

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Beyond Institutions - Personal Learning in a Networked World

Beyond Institutions - Personal Learning in a Networked World | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"In this presentation I look at the needs and demands of people seeking learning with the models and designs offered by traditional institutions, and in the spirit of reclaiming learning describe a new network-based sysyetm of education with the learner managing his or her education."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Downes' work is important. In some respects he and his colleagues are looking at the same kinds of things researchers in "learning environments" are, or should be, but physical space doesn't figure much in their work. Hmm.

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The Man Who Could Not Imagine the Future

The Man Who Could Not Imagine the Future | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
And four other neuroscience patients who changed how we think about the brain, and ourselves.
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

That man could not be a planner— "[O]ur ability to imagine the future is tied to our ability to use our memories to reexperience the past."

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Three university academics debate the future of higher education in light of massive open online courses.

Three university academics debate the future of higher education in light of massive open online courses. | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

The Wall Street Journal: Do you foresee a day when MOOCs will replace classroom learning?


SCUP–49 Plenary Speaker, Clay Shirky: No, I don't.


The places that do high-touch education well, the Oberlins and Reeds of the world, will be just fine. The places that are just using classrooms to deliver content in a low-touch way will suffer some displacement. But far and away the most important effect of online education will be to bring in people who aren't part of the current educational system at all, from people with degrees and jobs using them for retraining (which we already see a lot of) to people who could never have afforded an M.S. in computer science now [being] able to get one from Georgia Tech for less than $7,000.

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Not the greatest question, actually. But some good responses.

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10 New Breakthrough Technologies 2014 | MIT Technology Review

10 New Breakthrough Technologies 2014 | MIT Technology Review | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Many implications for college and university planning. It tales integrated planning to handle these rapid and widespread changes.

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Teaching and Learning About Teaching and Learning

Teaching and Learning About Teaching and Learning | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

Teaching and learning excellence did not exist, because no one measured it.


Thankfully, the epoch of unconscious teaching and learning has passed, and Teaching and Learning is now established as a bona fide hyperarticulated discipline with its own floor space, Web presence, and vigilantly guarded photocopier. We at the CTL spread excellence by steering faculty away from their focus on content (who, after all, needs to know the dates of the Civil War?) toward a more universal design model, in which knowledge-delivery systems are systematically delivered.

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

As the author concludes, "The possibilities are truly endless."

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Corporate cash alters university curricula

Corporate cash alters university curricula | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
More companies are entering partnerships with colleges to help design curricula, as state universities seek new revenue and industry tries to close a yawning skills gap.
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

"The University of Maryland has had to tighten its belt, cutting seven varsity sports teams and forcing faculty and staff to take furlough days. But in a corner of the campus, construction workers are building a dormitory specifically designed for a new academic program.

Many of the students who live there will be enrolled in a cybersecurity concentration funded in part by Northrop Grumman Corp. The defense contractor is helping to..."

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karenmr's comment, April 10, 2014 1:24 PM
Full article is blocked by WSJ.
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Editorial: College of the Future

Editorial: College of the Future | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

In the current issue of Change magazine, the editor issues a call for crowdsourcing a future novel about higher education set in 2044. We bet that SCUPers could bring some dense and thoughtful insights to the scenario she is developing.


Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

In this editorial, I'm going to depart from my habit of pulling together the articles in an issue to muse about the setting for a science-fiction novel. So let's do some crowdsourcing here: To make the setting as dense and realistic as possible, I'd like you to provide suggestions for additional features of the landscape. 


The novel is set in 2044. Clio, my hero (she's way too plucky to be called a heroine) is 25 years old-that is, in late adolescence-and she's decided, after an intensive two-year internship in Nicaragua, to move on to the next stage of her life.


So here are the kind of advanced learning and credentialing opportunities that are open to her, so that she can maximize her chances of a prosperous and satisfying adulthood.


The residential colleges and universities that still remain (many closed in the aftermath of the Really Great Recession of 2022) look much the same as they did at the beginning of the century. They provide the scions of the Onepercenters with a safe haven for consolidating the social bonds of their global network. They also offer a few Managers and Workers of exceptional ability (identified by their Coaches-see below) the opportunity to enter the Onepercenter clubhouse by acquiring the requisite social capital-a strategy that both maintains the myth of equal opportunity and infuses the Onepercenter community with a certain hybrid vigor.

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'Relegating beauty to the study of art and leaving it out of science is no longer tenable'

'Relegating beauty to the study of art and leaving it out of science is no longer tenable' | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
Elegant equations evoke the same activity in mathematicians' brains as gorgeous art or music
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

STEAM, not STEM.

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Making Space for Creativity on Campus, free book download

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

The story of the evolution, use, and assessment of the Creativity Centre at the University of Brighton is a valuable resource for campus communities exploring the potential of spaces that nurture creative learning, creative learners. In this posting, the Learning Spaces Collaboratory concisely summarizes some of the key points in the 136-page document, specifically for academic leaders, managers, and administrators.

The Collaboratory has a forthcoming webinar on September 16, "Transforming, Sandboxing, Repurposing Learning Spaces for Nurturing Creative Learning, Creative Learners: Lessons Learned from the LSC Experience."
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New Perry Chapman Research Report: 'Developing Research Methods for Analyzing Learning Spaces That Can Inform Institutional Missions of Learning and Engagement'

New Perry Chapman Research Report: 'Developing Research Methods for Analyzing Learning Spaces That Can Inform Institutional Missions of Learning and Engagement' | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

Members of the Society for College and University Planning can access digital versions of this new research report on the report's main information page, http://www.scup.org/SM-2014PerryChapman. Nonmembers may view a complimentary ten-page excerpt there, or purchase the book there as well.


This new report, second in the series, addresses the larger context of the university campus and students’ perceptions and experiences of their learning at the tertiary level more generally. Rather than starting from environmental psychology or behaviorist models, it explores the value of applying contemporary approaches from the social sciences to learning space design, an approach increasingly being developed. This, however, is not just a matter of applying a different research method; it also concerns the underlying problem of how we conceptualize relationships between material space and its occupation both generally and specifically in relationship to learning. In fact, over the last few years, theorists across many disciplines that deal with material space—such as geography, anthropology, and science and technology studies—have been critically examining precisely this issue of rethinking how to conceptualize the interrelationships between space, people, artifacts, and activities.

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

About the 2013–2014 Perry Chapman Prize Research Team


  • DR. JOS BOYS is currently an academic developer at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. Previously, she was a teaching fellow and director of student enhancement in the Faculty of Arts, Design and Social Sciences (FADSS) at Northumbria University.
  • DR. CLARE MELHUISH is an anthropologist of architecture and the built environment based in London. She has employed ethnographic research methods to explore processes of architectural design work and the impacts and social experience of built form in various different settings. She is currently research associate in the Urban Lab, University College London
  • ANGELINA WILSON is currently undertaking a Ph.D. at Northumbria University, United Kingdom. Her research examines how students from different disciplines work together in a mixed-disciplinary environment and the effect this has on both individual and group learning.
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Exploring Vocation: Reframing Undergraduate Education as a Quest for Purpose

Exploring Vocation: Reframing Undergraduate Education as a Quest for Purpose | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"In sum, reflection on vocation taking place in a community of shared interest and support shifted the framing of higher education for both students and faculty. The three elements of the PTEV programs—vocational narrative as basic structure, the grounding of this narrative in learning communities, and the cultivation of reflective practices—invited students to experience their college education not as passive consumers but as protagonists in a serious enterprise with life-long consequences. These programs demonstrated that it is possible to recover the formative power of liberal education, even at a time when fixation upon its merely instrumental value threatens to overwhelm the deeper and more public ends of higher education."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

For 10 years the Lilly Endowment resourced a Program on the Theological Exploration of Vocation (PTEV) that appears to have strengthened liberal education on their campuses: 


"[T]his project challenged a group of 88 colleges and universities affiliated with a variety of Christian denominations, from Orthodox and Roman Catholic to Evangelical Protestant and Quaker, to think anew about what they were trying to achieve for their students (for a list of the campuses that participated, as well as articles discussing the PTEV, see the Lilly Endowment website at www.resourcingChristianity.org). The theme of life purpose, or 'vocation' in the language the project drew from the religious language of calling."

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Does the 'Phenomenon of Enclosure' Threaten the Commons?

Does the 'Phenomenon of Enclosure' Threaten the Commons? | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"The history of online learning is the history of a plethora of patents. (Watters, 2014) This is a patent for setting up a regional network in the south western United States. That's Nevada. That's Arizona. That's New Mexico. That's Utah. That's Colorado or Wyoming, one of the square ones. Calling it a patent thicket is more than a slight understatement. And it's not just patents, of course, it's copyright, trademarks, even trade secrets. 

Here's one that came out a few weeks ago - I've actually got the screen capture - trademark for pi. (Poulsen, 2014) Yes, pi, the pi that you're all familiar with, 3.141 whatever. A colleague memorized it to 100 digits. I've memorized it to, what, one. 

This is not simply an isolated instance. It's the norm. It's a phenomenon that took place in the industrial revolution. It's a phenomenon taking place in the information revolution. It's a phenomenon of enclosure. You would think we learned from the last time, but we didn't. And it threatens the commons, the common heritage, common knowledge, common culture that we all thought that we own."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

A must-read, IOHO. This is only one of many issues examined in this first of three talks which run as a series. Downes is examining "not the problem MOOCs solve at the moment but the problem MOOCs were designed to solve." Since Downes was instrumental in developing the concept of a MOOC, his insights are both clear and from a POV unfamiliar to many higher education leaders.

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A Liaison for a Classroom Building? Curating a Learning ecosystem.

A Liaison for a Classroom Building? Curating a Learning ecosystem. | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"I could see a librarian dedicated to collecting, chronicling, and shaping the life of this building– curating, expressing, packaging, and facilitating everything that’s happening. Creating multiple entry points of conversation and bringing people together to celebrate their interests and ambitions. In short, the building becomes more than a bunch of classrooms; it becomes a participatory learning ecosystem."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Very systemic and integrative thinking.

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'We should count ourselves lucky that Amazon (and Google and Apple and Microsoft etc.) don’t seem to be prioritizing higher ed'

"There is little evidence that companies, particularly tech companies, have done much of anything positive to advance learning. How much money has been diverted to buying hardware or software that could have been spent directly on educators and students?"

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

"They understand that most of the people living in emerging economies will need to leapfrog past the traditional campus based system."

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The Most Transformative Invention Since the iPad | Oculus Rift

The Most Transformative Invention Since the iPad | Oculus Rift | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
I had been prepared to be skeptical of the much-anticipated virtual reality goggles—WIRED has been proclaiming the revolutionary arrival of VR for two decades, and it had come to seem as laughable as Knight-Ridder’s video. Then I tried the Rift on. It was like the moment when I first held the iPad.
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Planners, what happens when every student has a pair of these, in five years?


[A]n amazing transition happened as my eyes resolved a new field of vision. I blinked, and while my brain remembered (for a moment) that I was sitting in my office, my eyes told me I was somewhere completely different. And then, in an instant, my brain joined my eyes, and I was there. It was seamless, and it was crazy.

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Crossing Thresholds and Learning in Libraries

"Threshold concepts aren’t new. Originally proposed by Jan Meyer and Ray Land, they have been adopted by faculty in many disciplines. Essentially, they challenge us to identify places where students typically get stuck as they wrestle with a way of knowing that they find unsettling and troublesome. These concepts, when grasped, so profoundly change the way students think that they are transformative and irreversible. Meyers and Land also believe them to be integrative, yet uniquely tied to a particular discipline."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Note that word, "integrative."

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Three Pieces of the Puzzle: Instructional Content and Online Higher Education | Acrobatiq

Three Pieces of the Puzzle: Instructional Content and Online Higher Education | Acrobatiq | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
However, talk of online education's current "transformative", "revolutionary" and (worst of all) "disruptive" impact on traditional higher education ignores the
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

The problems with instructional content stem from how courses are created. In most non-profit colleges and universities, the responsibility for the design and development of instructional content continues to fall to under-resourced and typically ill-prepared individual faculty members. The service departments set up in most institutions to support online learning have not substantially changed this fundamental division of labor. Instructional design professionals in these departments – despite their skills – are forced into secondary roles, often pushed toward providing technical training (“How to Set Up Quizzes in Blackboard”), rather than actually working with course instructors to design instruction. The funds available for course development are severely limited to what can be reasonably generated by way of tuition revenue (minus direct expenses) over a few semesters. And incentive systems of traditional colleges and universities make it illogical for faculty to spend excessive time developing instructional content, even if they had the wide range of skills necessary for this kind of work. There are exceptions to this state of affairs, but too few.

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MOOCs - A Tsunami of Promises

MOOCs - A Tsunami of Promises | SCUP Links | Scoop.it
The prediction was that MOOCs will completely change the game in higher education. Enthusiasm was general - and groupthink so tempting - that many universities across the world adopted them as a pa...
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

Interesting point:


The solution to deliver good quality higher learning to all enlightened the imagination of many. The narrative was fantastic: the door to what Time called “High-End Learning on the Cheap” was discovered and new startups and venture capitalists were there to fight to open it for the benefit of the poor around the world. Thomas Friedman argued in 2012 that “nothing has more potential to lift more people out of poverty” than Silicon Valley solutions and MOOCs will “unlock a billion more brains to solve the world’s biggest problems“.


There is no doubt that rising inequality is a huge problem for the world. This is why is important to remember here that Silicon Valley makes San Francisco one of the most unequal cities in the US. The fact is that the Silicon Valley solution is not working at home, and American politicians make public calls to find answers. A set of important questions should be raised about any set of solutions coming from the same place where education for all or homelessness stay unaddressed and are on the rise (The Guardian reports that in Palo Alto, in California’s Silicon Valley “92% of homeless people lack shelter of any kind“).

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The Technology Disruptions of Today

The Technology Disruptions of Today | SCUP Links | Scoop.it

"Tech columnist David Pogue addresses how disruptive technology is changing our lives at the CoSN conference. ...


Moving on to students, Pogue reinforced what most educators already know: Communication has to be made in real time through social media and texting. Many students don't use the traditional forms of communications that adults do, such as email and landline phones."

Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)'s insight:

A series of informative tweets: "He touched on student data privacy as well. When the requested data is anonymous and in aggregate form, students don't mind providing it to receive a service, such as traffic patterns on a map. But they draw the line when someone gathers data attached to their name."

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Hope's curator insight, July 8, 2014 9:46 PM

Hope Williams Insight:

Roscorla, Tanya. "The Technology Disruptions of Today." 21 March 2014.Web

http://www.centerdigitaled.com/news/Technology-Disruptions.html

This article Tanya is explaining that in the past couple years technology has out done itself. Technology is becoming life. Now you can be able to use cars without even driving them yourself, can set your house alarm from your car, and translate your words on your screen. Technology is not a bad thing- it can be bad with the wrong people, but technology itself is very important. It's changing the world day by day and people need to get use to it because technology is just going to continue to improve as the years go by. She also sends messages through twitter to send her thoughts on what she thinks about technology.