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7 September 2011

Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

Paper on #uciad accepted at #sdow2011. Challenging use of #ontology and #reasoning for #activitydata. #iswc2011 #jiscad

RT @hedtek: #jiscad workshop subgroup now thinking about ‘standard’ kinds of activity data events flagged with things like when, what, who, where ...

SEP 06, 2011 10:12A.M.

SEP 05, 2011 04:57P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

#jiscad @serodavid great session and got me thinking many thanks #altc11 learning analytics and learning algorithmics very interesting

RT @hedtek: #jiscad #altc2011 gratifying trend in recommender systems to put activity data back in hands of students (inc at U Leicester and U Leeds)

SEP 05, 2011 07:01P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 04:57P.M.

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

#jiscad @serodavid: the ‘how’ of a data event could be overlooked but would add great value

#jiscad workshop subgroup now thinking about ‘standard’ kinds of activity data events flagged with things like when, what, who, where ...

SEP 05, 2011 04:18P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 04:07P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

#jiscad @serodavid wrapping things up and revealing the data event stub his group invented in their session [based on who, what, when etc]

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

#jiscad #altc2011 gratifying trend in recommender systems to put activity data back in hands of students (inc at U Leicester and U Leeds)

SEP 05, 2011 04:16P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 03:44P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

#jiscad ... to eg aid transfer of activity data by learners (if they so desire) to help them when they change institutions

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

@StevenHeywood yes, often problematic: closed proprietary systems etc. Been discussion in our #jiscad #altc11 workshop

SEP 05, 2011 04:08P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 03:32P.M.

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 5: There is no number 5 or beyond

RT @hedtek: top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 2: anonymise as needed (UK DPA etc demands this)

SEP 05, 2011 03:30P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 03:29P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 4: for learning algorithmics find the differentators, at some level of statistical significance

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

RT @hedtek: top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 1: get the data, not so easy from some registry systems / library systems

SEP 05, 2011 03:30P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 03:29P.M. JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

RT @hedtek: top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 3: Store/retrieve the data, may need to reduce recommender computation time, often think noSQL databases

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 3: Store/retrieve the data, may need to reduce recommender computation time, often think noSQL databases

SEP 05, 2011 03:29P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 03:28P.M.

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

while (str && (c = *str++)) { ((hash << 5) + hash) ^ c; }

top tech challenges for #jiscad no. 2: anonymise as needed (UK DPA etc demands this)

/* hash = hash * 33 ^ c */ return hash; }

hash =

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

RT @StevenHeywood: Moved from being a policing system to becoming an empowerment system #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 03:27P.M.

AGPROJECTS

SEP 05, 2011 02:41P.M.

AGtivity Nuggets SEP 05, 2011 03:00P.M. Some little tid bits of useful information that we came across worked out during the development of this project. Most of them about handling timestamps between UNIX, GNUplot and Excel.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

Bookmarked: Leeds Met: STARTrak NG project #jiscad: http://t.co/UYRyaD7

UNIX Time Converting between UNIX time and something readable using the UNIX date command:

SEP 05, 2011 02:41P.M. date --date=@123456789 date --date="4 Jan 1982" +"%s" Excel Time This is a floating point number were the integer part gives the date and the decimal part the time. It uses a different epoch than UNIX time. To convert from UNIX time to Excel time:

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

Moved from being a policing system to becoming an empowerment system #jiscad

Te = Tu/86400.0 + 25569 GNUplot Time

SEP 05, 2011 02:41P.M. GNUplot has a different epoch from UNIX also. Though it will read UNIX timestamps if the time format is specified as: set xdata time set timefmt x "%s" However if you want to specify specific points on a graph with time axes to position annotation say you will need to use GNUplot time: Tg = Tu -946684800 String Hashing When comparing a set of strings it is far more efficient to convert the strings to an integer and then just compare these. We using the following hashing function found on Stackoverflow.com (C): unsigned int hash_string(char *str) {

unsigned int hash = 0;

int c;

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

Providing the student with benchmark data — their performance against cohort #jiscad

Star-TRAK: the students themselves are important stakeholders for the use of their activity data #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 02:34P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 02:21P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

I agree with Rob. #jiscad

Now @hedtek — challenges of activity data: do your systems let you access your data? #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 02:33P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

SEP 05, 2011 02:21P.M.

The data belongs to the student not the uni. — they can control who has access to their data #jiscad

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

Focus of the STAR Trak: NG project has shifted from: pastoral to student (audience) and from retention to success (purpose) #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 02:33P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

@jacksonj04 That’s what they think too. Nice e.g. of a traffic light system to warn students that their engagement may be too low. #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 02:20P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 02:21P.M.

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

now listening to Rob Moores talking about the Leeds Met STAR Trak: NG project. #jiscad

RT @iamcreative: interesting discussion re: how much activity data is enough data ... conclusion: depends on use case but need to be careful #jiscad

SEP 05, 2011 02:19P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 02:16P.M. JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

It’s that old chestnut at #jiscad again: fear we keep forgetting the activity data belongs to the user AT LEAST as much as it belongs to us.

AGPROJECTS

Education Analytics – review of “Improving processes by using activity data”

SEP 05, 2011 02:19P.M.

SEP 05, 2011 01:34P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

This is an ALT-C (Association for Learning and Teaching) 2011 PreConference Workshop on Improving processes by using activity data based from the results of the JISC Activity data results. From the description on their website the aims of the workshop are to:

@pstainthorp Yes. #jiscad

• “Enable you to identify the potential benefits of making use of the activity data that is already being collected at your institution (or could easily be collected);” • Some very clear gains from Hudderfield (intelligent) library usage, Purdue student retention (traffic light indicator per student).

SEP 05, 2011 02:17P.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

• “Understand the legal issues such as data protection and privacy that govern what you are allowed to do with the data;” • Ties in with need for Business Case. Issue of DPA raised and legal issues for cross-linking.

“...by putting the student in control of their data, will it encourage good performance?” - Star-Trak NG project @ Leeds Met. #jiscad

Key Reasons for use were given: as student recruitment and retention; reference impact values; improved resource management And the challenges were given that mainly regarded creating new data access methods, development of specialist databases if needed, and then finding correlations – after of course solving the legal issues.

SEP 05, 2011 02:17P.M. #jiscad and #altc11 some tweets at crittervre

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

AGPROJECTS

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

AGtivity Architecture Diagram

RT @psychemedia: Free O’Reilly big data ebook http://t.co/MUgPbBU #ddj [#jiscad]

SEP 04, 2011 03:19P.M. A picture of the architecture that we ended up using in the implementation of AGtivity is shown below:

SEP 01, 2011 03:17P.M.

SALT - SURFACING THE ACADEMIC LONG TAIL

third SEP 01, 2011 09:56A.M. In an effort to find the magic number the SALT team opened its testing labs again this week. Another 6 University of Manchester post graduate students spent the afternoon interrogating the Copac and John Rylands library catalogues to evaluate the recommendations thrown back by the SALT API.

This architecture diagram was asked to be sketched, scanned and forwarded; but also placed here for further dissemination.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH With searches ranging from ’The Archaeology of Islam in Sub Saharan Africa’ to ‘Volunteering and Society: Principles and Practice’ no aspect of the Arts and Humanities was left unturned, or at least it felt that way. We tried to find students with diverse interests within Arts and Humanities to test the recommendations from as many angles as possible. Using the same format as the previous groups (documented in our earlier blog post ‘What do users think of the SALT recommender?’), the library users were asked to complete an evaluation of the recommendations they were given. Previously the users tested SALT when the threshold was set at 3(that is 3 people borrowed the book which therefore made it eligible to be thrown back as a recommendation), however we felt that the results could be improved. Previously, although 77.5% found at least one recommendation useful, too many recommendations were rated as ’not that useful’,(see the charts in ‘What do users think of the SALT recommender?’).

Hoping to attend Activity Data at ALT-C tomorrow http://t.co/HibkmW4 #jiscad SEP 04, 2011 09:23A.M.

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

RT @StoryingShef: Numerical data can tell stories, but can stories be data? by @kanter via @JeffHurt http://ow.ly/6iyZi [#jiscad]

This time, we set the threshold at 15 in the John Rylands library catalogue and 8 in Copac. Like the LIDP team at Huddersfield, (http://library.hud.ac.uk/blogs/projects/lidp/2011/08/30/focus-groupanalysis/), we have a lot of data to work with now, and we’d like to spend some more time interrogating the results to find out whether clear patterns emerge. Although, our initial analysis has also raised some further questions, it’s also revealed some interesting and encouraging results. Here are the highlights of what we found out.

SEP 01, 2011 03:27P.M.

The Results On initial inspection the JRUL with its threshold of 15 improved on previous results;

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

Do any of the recommendations look useful:

92.3 % of the searches returned at least one item the user thought was useful, however when the user was asked if they would borrow at least one item only 56.2% answered that they would.

Admittedly further tests would need to be done on both thresholds as the number of searches conducted (25) do not give enough results to draw concrete conclusions from but it does seem as if the results are vastly improved on increase of the threshold. No concerns about privacy The issue of privacy was raised again. Many of the postgraduate students are studying niche areas and seemed to understand how this could affect them should the recommendations be attributed back to them. However, as much as they were concerned about their research being followed, they were also keen to use the tool themselves and so their concerns were outweighed by the perceived benefits. As a group they agreed that a borrowing rate of 5 would offer them enough protection whilst still returning interesting results. The group had no concerns about the way in which the data was being used and indeed trusted the libraries to collect this data and use it in such a productive way.

When asked, a lot of the users stated that they knew the book and so wouldn’t need to borrow it again, or that although the book was useful, their area of research was so niche that it wasn’t specifically useful to them but they would deem it as ‘useful’ to others in their field. One of the key factors which came up in the discussions with users was the year that the book had been published. The majority of researchers are in need of up to date material, many preferring the use of journals rather than monographs, and this was taken into account when deciding whether a book is worth borrowing. Many users wouldn’t borrow anything more than 10 years old;

‘It’s not as if it is being used for commercial gain, then what is the issue?’ 30/08/11 University of Manchester, Postgraduate, Arts and Humanities, SALT testing group.

‘Three of the recommendations are ‘out of date’ 1957, 1961, 1964 as such I would immediately discount them from my search’ 30/08/11 University of Manchester, Postgraduate, Arts and Humanities, SALT testing group.

Unanimous support for the recommender The most encouraging outcome from the group was the uniform support for the book recommender. Every person in the group agreed that the principle of the book recommender was a good one, and they gave their resolute approval that their data was collected and used in a positive way.

So the book could be a key text, and ‘useful’ but it wouldn’t necessarily be borrowed. Quite often, one user explained, rather than reading a key text she would search for journal articles about the key text, to get up to date discussion and analysis about it. This has an impact on our hypothesis which is to discover the long tail. Quite often the long tail that is discovered includes older texts, which some users discount.

All of them would use the book recommender if it was available. Indeed one researcher asked, ‘can we have it now?’

Copac, with a threshold of 8 was also tested. Results here were encouraging;

Janine Rigby and Lisa Charnock 31/08/11

Do any of the recommendations look useful;

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Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

SALT - SURFACING THE ACADEMIC LONG TAIL

One of the key factors which came up in the discussions with users was the year that the book had been published. The majority of researchers are in need of up to date material, many preferring the use of journals rather than monographs, and this was taken into account when deciding whether a book is worth borrowing. Many users wouldn’t borrow anything more than 10 years old;

janinerigby AUG 31, 2011 08:18P.M. In an effort to find the magic number the SALT team opened its testing labs again this week. Another 6 University of Manchester post graduate students spent the afternoon interrogating the Copac and John Rylands library catalogues to evaluate the recommendations thrown back by the SALT API.

‘Three of the recommendations are ‘out of date’ 1957, 1961, 1964 as such I would immediately discount them from my search’ 30/08/11 University of Manchester, Postgraduate, Arts and Humanities, SALT testing group.

With searches ranging from ’The Archaeology of Islam in Sub Saharan Africa’ to ‘Volunteering and Society: Principles and Practice’ no aspect of the Arts and Humanities was left unturned, or at least it felt that way. We tried to find students with diverse interests within Arts and Humanities to test the recommendations from as many angles as possible. Using the same format as the previous groups (documented in our earlier blog post ‘What do users think of the SALT recommender?’), the library users were asked to complete an evaluation of the recommendations they were given. Previously the users tested SALT when the threshold was set at 3(that is 3 people borrowed the book which therefore made it eligible to be thrown back as a recommendation), however we felt that the results could be improved. Previously, although 77.5% found at least one recommendation useful, too many recommendations were rated as ’not that useful’,(see the charts in ‘What do users think of the SALT recommender?’).

So the book could be a key text, and ‘useful’ but it wouldn’t necessarily be borrowed. Quite often, one user explained, rather than reading a key text she would search for journal articles about the key text, to get up to date discussion and analysis about it. This has an impact on our hypothesis which is to discover the long tail. Quite often the long tail that is discovered includes older texts, which some users discount. Copac, with a threshold of 8 was also tested. Results here were encouraging;

Admittedly further tests would need to be done on both thresholds as the number of searches conducted (25) do not give enough results to draw concrete conclusions from but it does seem as if the results are vastly improved on increase of the threshold.

This time, we set the threshold at 15 in the John Rylands library catalogue and 8 in Copac. Like the LIDP team at Huddersfield, (http://library.hud.ac.uk/blogs/projects/lidp/2011/08/30/focus-groupanalysis/), we have a lot of data to work with now, and we’d like to spend some more time interrogating the results to find out whether clear patterns emerge. Although, our initial analysis has also raised some further questions, it’s also revealed some interesting and encouraging results. Here are the highlights of what we found out.

No concerns about privacy The issue of privacy was raised again. Many of the postgraduate students are studying niche areas and seemed to understand how this could affect them should the recommendations be attributed back to them. However, as much as they were concerned about their research being followed, they were also keen to use the tool themselves and so their concerns were outweighed by the perceived benefits. As a group they agreed that a borrowing rate of 5 would offer them enough protection whilst still returning interesting results. The group had no concerns about the way in which the data was being used and indeed trusted the libraries to collect this data and use it in such a productive way.

The Results On initial inspection the JRUL with its threshold of 15 improved on previous results; Do any of the recommendations look useful:

‘It’s not as if it is being used for commercial gain, then what is the issue?’ 30/08/11 University of Manchester, Postgraduate, Arts and Humanities, SALT testing group.

92.3 % of the searches returned at least one item the user thought was useful, however when the user was asked if they would borrow at least one item only 56.2% answered that they would.

Unanimous support for the recommender The most encouraging outcome from the group was the uniform support for the book recommender. Every person in the group agreed that the principle of the book recommender was a good one, and they gave their resolute approval that their data was collected and used in a positive way.

When asked, a lot of the users stated that they knew the book and so wouldn’t need to borrow it again, or that although the book was useful, their area of research was so niche that it wasn’t specifically useful to them but they would deem it as ‘useful’ to others in their field.

9


Today’s Tabbloid PERSONAL NEWS FOR helen@sero.co.uk

7 September 2011

All of them would use the book recommender if it was available. Indeed one researcher asked, ‘can we have it now?’ 31/08/11 Janine Rigby and Lisa Charnock

JISCAD - TWITTER SEARCH

First draft of the #lidp toolkit is reading for comment from the team - hoping to get this out next week #jiscad AUG 31, 2011 11:47A.M.

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