Wednesday brought an Elluminate show with Neeru Khosla, leader of ck-12. ck-12 has done some amazing work the past three years in building open k-12 textbooks.
Amazingly coincidentally (maybe not), Steve Hargadon the next night interviewed Graham Glass, founder of edu2.0.
Both of these principles spoke of their vision of the future of online, tech-enhanced learning. Giving hope is what they have done so far, in such a small amount of time. Both efforts are under three years old, yet have very large and significant user bases. That would be amazing if they were simple web apps, but each is much more than that. Each is a robust, rich platform with a deep community and process built up around it.
Graham gives an example of what has changed to make this possible. One, cloud computing, lets him do remarkable things with little cash and time outlay for server assets. A second, Ruby-on-rails, lets him develop software at a fraction of the effort, time, and cost. The figure he uses is
BlackboardMoodle, the competing, locally installed, learning management platform, took 1.5 million lines of code.
- edu2.0, with additional community features, and published api's for add-ons, took only 40,000 lines of code.