Tuesday May 13, 2014

PeopleTools 8.54 Release Value Proposition Now Available

We have just published the Release Value Proposition for PeopleTools 8.54.  It is available on My Oracle Support.  This release of PeopleTools will be a landmark release for PeopleSoft.  It continues Oracle’s commitment to protect and extend the value of your PeopleSoft implementation.  The release provides additional technology options and enhancements that reduce ongoing operating costs; and offers applications users a dramatically improved experience.

User expectations and requirements have shifted over the past few years. Most often, our customers’ employees have expressed a desire to use applications at work more like the ones they frequently use elsewhere. For example, why shouldn’t performing a task, such as updating employee records, submitting an expense report, approving workflow, work more like the tasks they do online every day. 

Customers have told us that their employees are more familiar with online tasks than ever, and that they often connect to company resources while traveling or from home; in many cases, they want to access these resources from their personal devices, such as tablets, smartphones, and home computers. The desire is for enterprise systems to be as intuitive and available as other online resources, such as commercial websites. In fact, many of our customers have begun to merge their internal systems with their commercial presence so that external partners, affiliates, and students can securely access required resources directly from the company’s website.

PeopleTools 8.54 introduces a number of exciting new features that will assist our applications development teams in building powerful, secure, and robust applications for everyone from self-service users to expert power users. PeopleSoft 9.2 enhancements that use this latest release of PeopleTools will be richer and more intuitive to users than ever before. In addition, this release incorporates a number of extremely compelling features for delivering, managing, and maintaining PeopleSoft applications at a much more manageable total cost of ownership (TCO).

The most visible features of PeopleTools 8.54 relate to the graphical UI. With this release we introduce the PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface. Our intention is to present PeopleSoft application content in a highly usable fashion and to leverage the latest advancements in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. The result is a user experience that is simple and intuitive, yet highly productive.  Customers that upgrade to PeopleTools 8.54 will also be able to create new Fluid pages. 

The role of reporting has shifted tremendously in recent years. In many cases, it is no longer sufficient to prepare a static extract of data from the system and then print it to paper or publish it online. Today’s technology allows our customers to engage their users with visual charts and graphical analytics that represent what is happening or has already happened. Users can visually discover what they are looking for and then take actions using Related Actions right from the reports themselves.

As with other recent releases, the scope for PeopleTools 8.54 builds additional functionality into the product as a result of direct customer input, industry analysis, and internal feature design. New features, bug fixes, and new certifications found in PeopleTools 8.54 combine to offer customers improved application user experience, page interaction, and cost effectiveness.

Monday May 05, 2014

After 2018, Your PC Won't Be The Main Way We Get Online

For as long as the Internet has existed, the vast majority of its traffic has come from people connecting with their laptops and desktops.

That's about to change.

In 2018, global Internet traffic will be almost evenly split: People using desktops and laptops will account for about half of all traffic, while a combination of smartphones, tablets, smart TVs and Internet-connected "things" -- cars, dog collars, cameras and thermostats, for example -- will account for the other half.

That's according to Cisco, which on Tuesday released the latest Visual Networking Index, an annual report on the state of the Internet and its predictions for the future.

PC sales have slowed over the last few years as more people use smartphones and tablets to connect to the Internet. Shipments of desktops and laptops declined 10 percent last year from 2012, according to IDC, the technology market research firm.

Shipments of smartphones, however, are predicted to increase by more than 23 percent this year from 2012, according to IDC.

Last year, PCs accounted for 86.4 percent of all Internet traffic. By 2018, the PC share of Internet traffic will drop to just 50.5 percent, according to Cisco.

Compare that to smartphones and tablets, which last year accounted for a measly 5 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively, of global Internet traffic. In 2018, smartphones will jump to 21 percent of traffic, while tablets will account for 18 percent, according to Cisco.

Traffic from PCs will continue to grow. It just won't grow as quickly as traffic from the billions of other devices that are connected to the Internet.

"There is a transition happening," Shruti Jain, a senior analyst at Cisco, wrote in an email. "With the increase in the number of devices with more computing power and features … we see that there is a real momentum towards increased use of internet time on portable and other non-PC devices in general, away from PCs. "

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/10/pc-future-2018_n_5476502.html?ir=Technology

Thursday May 01, 2014

What Should Technologists Know About Education?

I'm quite flattered to see my "Audrey Test" show up as part of the #TeachtheWeb discussion. I’m also a little mortified – perhaps it’s always weird to see something you wrote several years ago back in circulation.

I wrote the post at a particular time in my thinking and at a particular moment in ed-tech. The post was also a response to a specific request (to devise the ed-tech equivalent of Spolsky’s “The Joel Test”). Without the urging to do so, I’m not sure I ever would have framed it in quite such a pedantic manner. Or at the very least, I’m not sure I’d have framed it as a “test.”

(For what it’s worth, I have added a section to this site -- the Hack Education Ed-Tech Guide -- where I’ve expanded on this question of “what should we know about ed-tech” but also included what educators need to know about tech. And I plan (some day) to add a section about what learners should know as well about both industries. I'm happy to include resources. Here's the Github repo. You should know what to do right?)

I do stick by the overarching and original argument that motivated “The Audrey Test” – one that several folks have pointed out on this thread: that there’s a dearth of knowledge about and experience in education among many in ed-tech, particularly among the latest surge of ed-tech entrepreneurs and among those who are suddenly interested in boosting technology education.

The word “education” here is shorthand for a number of things, of course: how people learn (what we know about cognitive development, what we know about social interactions that welcome or dissuade people along the way, how learning theories have and have not shaped classroom practices, etc); how individual schools function (in terms of procurement, pedagogy, policy, etc); how we came to have this particular institution and its particular disciplines (what’s changed, what hasn’t, and why).

Frankly there’s actually no need for a “test.” I can tell within the first few minutes of talking to folks what they know, what they want to know, what they want from their work in education, what they think about “the public sphere,” what they think about kids, what they think about me. (That doesn’t mean I write them off, dismiss them, “fail” them. It’s really not that simple. Except when it is.)

Nevertheless I’d still like to point people to edu resources to help us all think through our endeavors as we work towards building the future of learning. (That’s what I hope I do with my blog, I guess.) And it’s worth noting too, as I think @toolness mentions, that those who could and should benefit from these resources does indeed include those already in education, not simply those in the business of education.

If all this looks too much like a reading assignment, well, there you go. I am partial to reading. Very partial to reading.

For what it’s worth, I actually don’t have, as I think @epilepticrabbit suggests, “a background in education” – not formally at least. I mean, I taught for a long time. But my academic background is in literature, folklore, media studies, and women’s studies. What I learned about “education” as a practice comes through thinking about pedagogy and literacy and freedom. What I have learned about “ed-tech” comes from experience (as a student and as a teacher); what I have learned about “ed-tech” comes from my own purposeful and extra-academic immersion in the field. It does come from reading some books. So there ya go.

And it’s true: when I point people at resources to help them think through their approach to technology and education, it’s probably going to be colored by some of the framework of my academic training. I care about language, culture, equity, justice. I read blogs. I read books.

But I worry that, when we don’t think about education technology through that rich framework – the history and theory and practice that has come before us – that we’re gonna fuck up at a really important moment in history. It isn’t simply that we’ll recreate the mistakes of ed-tech past or that we’ll burst free (INNOVATION!) of ed-tech past via our imaginative ignorance (that’s not quite @carlacasilli’s point, I recognize). It’s never easy to shake off the ideology of education or of technology. They’re so deeply embedded in politics and power. When we “disrupt” institutions, power doesn’t simply dissipate, it moves to new nodes. One of those powerful new nodes is the tech sector. Let’s recognize that, eh?

See, I look around technology today (tech and ed-tech) and I see an incredible reverberation of the work of the behaviorist BF Skinner, for example. Now if you turn to programs in “academia” that teach "educational theory," you’ll find that Skinner, while taught, isn’t lauded. He hasn’t been for decades. He was resoundingly dismissed in other disciplinary circles too via Noam Chomsky. And yet, all around me, I see Skinnerism – click-for-immediate-feedback. People as pigeons. Zynga. Farmville. Gamification. But without the language and the theory and the history to say, “hey we recognized in the mid 1960s that this was a wretched path, one with all sorts of anti-democratic repercussions,” we’re not just making the same mistakes again, we’re actually engaging in reactionary practices – politically, pedagogically.

It matters what we know about the history of education. It matters what we know about the history of technology. We don’t all have to know every detail. Good grief. Me, I learn something new every day. I’m a student of the field. But to suggest that such an undertaking is a waste of time or only for academics (eyeroll. academics) and that instead we should in education technology “fail fast and pivot” means we’re adopting the language of business and moreover the ideology of the technology industry (and all its imperialist history – right? we know that history? the history of computing and war?). And it’s becoming a resoundingly anti-intellectual ideology.

And if we’re so obsessed with failure as a goal, we need to recognize too that while we work things out – because we’re too busy to learn about the past – we’re in the meantime screwing with a lot of (often marginalized) kids as we “play.”

So what should technologists know about education? And when should we call technologists (those inside and outside of educational instituions) on their powerful and troubling ideology of "I know nothing!"?

Source: http://hackeducation.com/2014/06/07/what-should-technologists-know-about-education/

About

Mohit Satraj Phogat
Author: Mohit Phogat

This site focuses on Oracle's offerings to higher education in the Indian region. It intends to cover news, reviews, guides, how-to articles, descriptive videos, and podcasts on the trends which should be helpful to customers, prospects and developer community alike.

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