Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Coincidence?

This morning I wrote the following post:

A few days ago I sent a letter to a Venture Capital investor:

Dear investor,


My name is zeevveez and I am an entrepreneur from
Jerusalem, Israel.
On April 25, 2005 I read your interview on the
Internet
where you said that you are looking for a revolutionary
research
tool.
It seems to me that QTSaver is what you're looking
for.

We are developing a few products that might interest
you:

    • A research tool which collects excerpts from multiple Websites, puts them
      into one
      document, and enables the user to arrange them as a complete essay.
    • A tool for surfing the Internet by SMS
    • A tool for surfing the Internet by phone

      For more details you may answer this E-mail.

    • Have a good day

      Zeevveez

Nobody bothered to answer.
I guess when you have too much money to spend you don't need good manners.
Right before pushing the "publish post" button I got the following E-mail:

Dear Zeevveez,

Thank you for your email.
In order to proceed,
we need more information as executive summary or
presentation.

Thank you,

Capital investor.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Free-Web-School Blink List

On one of my recent posts I suggested to build a Website for learning resources so that whoever wants to learn by himself will have the opportunity.
This proposed Website will include only links to learning resources.

Today I understood that such a website already exists
It's called Blinklist

I started publishing there the links I already got and Tagged them with the following Tags:
Free-Web-School, [subject] [Level]

Here are some examples:


Learn English Online - Learn English, Learn Spanish, Learn Italian
and more.

edit delete 0
comments

Saved by 1 users.

Filed under english beginners Free-Web-School

Viewed 0 times since Aug 29, 2005 by zeevveez


English Club ~ Learn English Teach English edit delete 0
comments

Saved by 2 users.

Filed under english learning free worlds premier beginners englishclub Free-Web-School Viewed
0 times since Aug 29, 2005 by zeevveez

If you'll open the Blinklist home page and search for Free-Web-School you'll see
all the links I already gathered.
If you'll search for Free-Web-School
Beginners you'll get all the Beginners' links etc.

You are invited to add any Free-Web-School resource link you find fit for our vision, preferably for Beginners level.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Mandalaz





















Two weeks ago I helped Tal and Ruth build their mandala site .

(Mandalas are geometric designs used as an aid to meditation)

My friend Udi asked Tal what does she think about our new homepage design. She said the shortest way to fix all the faults she sees would be to redesign it and she'll do it willingly.


I don't know whether she'll do it as a compensation for my helping her out, but I have no doubt that my design needs a professional touch.

Thanks Tal!

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Suite101

Today I subscribed to Wondiring Blog and suddenly got the following feed on Rojo:

QTSaver: Free Web School
Zeev's first
step
towards his Education for All program. I'm more familiar with Q&A
sites/services than education sites, but in terms of free web school's, one good
one that comes to mind is Suite101, which
just made all their online courses free (I believe).


I left them the following comment:

Thanks for this great tip.
It wasn't exactly what I hoped for (elementary
school materials for third world illiterates) but still it is a step in the
right direction.

The courses are indeed free (more than 200 courses) .

Two of the links of the courses were broken.

The site is full of
commercial ads.


Anyhow, they have great free courses. for example:
Acting
101: The Successful Audition
Affordable Fitness
African Grey Parrots -
Devoted Friends
An Introduction to Classical Athens
Ancient India B.C. 323
to A.D. 300: Polity, Economy and Society.
Archaeological
Vacations
Aromatherapy for Life
Attracting Backyard
Hummingbirds
Awesome Grades in Math and Science


Who needs HELP files?

Yesterday I got an Email from another user who thinks that QTSaver is a search tool.
It made me think deeper how to explain QTSaver to newbies.

I think the sender didn't read the HELP file which explains what QTSaver is and skipped the logo.








I thought we newbies tend to skip the HELP files and to figure out things all by ourselves; or maybe we open these HELP files only when we admit that we are not as intelligent as we thought; or maybe we open them only when we are in trouble; or maybe we have traumas from opening too complicated HELP files in the past; or maybe we are so used to search engines that when we see a research tool we grasp it as a search tool with new features and not as a totally new way to deal with new problems.

I asked myself:


How should I make QTSaver self-evident without a HELP file?

I came up with the CDC solution – Collect - Dig - Compose


Collect is instead of Search.
Dig is instead of Refine.
Compose is
instead of Sort.
  • In QTSaver we don't search for matches for our keywords – we collect excerpts that contain them.
  • We don't refine our search – we dig deeper into our subject matter with the help of important words that are suggested to us by a sophisticated algorithm.
  • We don't sort our search results – we arrange them by a brand new system that lets us put each excerpt in its right place so that the result is a complete essay.

    Thank you, all our users, for your feedback.
    You know what you make us, developers, do?
    You make us THINK.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Qtsaver on the operating table

Eddie checked up QTSaver and came up with the following analysis:
QTSaver is composed of two independent systems, Search and processing.
The
search system is different from other known search systems because it retrieves parts
of documents and not whole documents.
The processing system is not just
different - it's unique, because regular retrieval systems give you a results'
page and that’s it, they don't bother to arrange results from multiple resources
on one document, or to erase superfluous info.
Since the processing system is the
more pioneering I recommend checking the market's
demand for processing search result software and then developing more new
features.

- Well done, Eddie, I like your analysis. Can you analyze why QTSaver is so cool?
-That is a question you'll have to ask a psychology expert but as a user I agree that this whole journey of developing QTSaver is fun.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

QTSaver speaks Hebrew

We hired a programmer to translate QTSaver into Hebrew.
Today he finished the first phase of his work and I hurried to test it.
I wrote "global warming" in Hebrew and it worked.

This is a very significant development since at least three potential clients said they can work only in Hebrew.

There are also many off-line projects that we'd like to try in Hebrew, like a new dictionary that will, for example, bring all green vegetables in one query. Today you can not get one answer for such a question.

It will take a few more days until it will be good enough to present this Hebrew version to the world, but anyhow it’s a good day for QTSaver.

There is a Czech proverb that says:

He who knows four languages is four times a human being

Well, QTSaver is not and will never be a human being but I hope that until the end of this year it will know four languages.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Welcome On board, Eddie !

Eddie is a mathematician and a computer scientist. He likes QTSaver and its potential benefit for the heavy sighted learners and that's why he asked to join our development team.

I asked him why it is so hard for novice users to acknowledge the value of QTSaver instantly.

- Well, people like their junk food fast and tasty, not nutritious and deep.
Deep scares them. When they have a choice between fast and slow they choose the
fast even if it doesn't give them the info they need, even if it can not arrange
it.
- Is it hard to feel that you save time?
- It is hard to get
people to give you the chance to prove it. When you say two-three sentences
before showing a clear benefit they will not listen…

I feel so good about getting young people on board – it gives the herald of the revolution of QTSaver a chance to live longer and to penetrate deeper.

Welcome On board, Eddie !

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Let Me Go

Search engines get paid by advertises.
It seems that there is a conspiracy to hold you on their site as long as they can in order to expose you to as many ads as possible.

I wonder what would have happened whether search engines were paid by the public.

What would have happened whether the best brains in this business would have worked on improving search to the point that when you ask a question you get one answer which is the best?

I don't know how they will do it.

Maybe they will take 10 search engines and compare their results.
Maybe they will take an answer from an encyclopedia as a first option and only if this option fails they will start probing the search engine results.
Maybe they will arrange focus groups and learn the answers one by one until they arrive to the desired result.

Anyhow sometimes QTSaver is very surprising in this direction…

Once I asked about film genres. I got only one answer, but it was so perfect that I printed it in order to share it with everybody.

Even when QTSaver gives you no answer it is an answer. It means that QTSaver couldn't find a document with all your keywords. Then you have the option to ZOOM and get documents with less keyword. This feature combined with the counting of keywords that appears before each result enables you to scan the results and decide very quickly if you are on the right track.

That's what happened to me yesterday when I searched for text-to-speech shareware Linux. There was no result for all the keywords but the ZOOM gave me five results with most of my keywords.
only one had the word Linux in it

-and it was a hit!

Monday, August 22, 2005

Brand New Blog

Congratulations to Udi on his brand new Blog.

Udi is one of the first lovers of QTSaver and he's already mentioned on this Blog
He even commented on one of my posts.

Udi writes on his brand new Blog:

My life mission?
I'm 31 years old married +2, and I live in Jerusalem.
I want to dedicate my career life to stop global warming.
I have an idea for a
book that might do something...

Well, let's hope that he'll write this book. I'm going to subscribe to this Blog and support this book the same way Udi supports QTSaver.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Who needs term papers?

I showed QTSaver to more than 100 people, friends mostly.
I wrote down their names in a Microsoft Access file and followed every comment they had; and they had a lot of comments which made QTSaver better and better.

Then I opened a field of YES/NO to sum it all up and found out that 50% didn't bother to comment, and almost no one really needed QTSaver for essential heavy duty works. The most enthusiastic customers were students who had a tight schedule to submit a term paper.

In October the students will come back to the universities. Some of them will test my QTSaver. But until then I need students who have to write term papers. QTSaver might save them half the time of writing.

So if you are such a student or if you know one who needs to overcome a tight schedule – please let me know.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Plagiarism

Michael Arnzen wrote about The Work-for-Hire Plagiarist:


There's been a spate of job listings coming in from student plagiarists looking
to hire professionals to write their papers for them...


It seems that there is a potential market here for QTSaver which delivers similar results without beeing a plagiarist. I thought this is an angle that would interest Michael Arnzen, so I wrote him the following comment:

I invented a new research tool, QTSaver, which extracts info from multiple sites
into one document, which then can be sorted so that in a very short time a
student can write an article without using a word of his own. A teacher who
checked out QTSaver commented: How are teachers to ensure, in the future, that
the essays their students are supposed to write aren't "QT-produced"? My opinion
is that hiring a person to do your papers and then publishing them in your name
is immoral, but I have no moral problem with using a software to collect the
info you need: not only you'll have to understand what you collect - also you'll
have to learn a new software.

Free Web School

I think Education for All is a good vision. Governments are doing their best to fulfill it and so do the Unesco and even Bill Gates. Still the rates of illiteracy in the world are unbearable.

One asks himself if and how can he do something about this.

My partner Oni suggested proposing to retirees that have plenty of spare time to answer the information needs of third world illiterates – but this will take a lot of organizational effort and time.

The question is what a private citizen like me can do right now to promote such a vision?

I think I can invite readers to send me links to learning resources. Then I'll build a Website and publish all those links so that whoever wants to learn by himself will have the opportunity. I'll call it the Free Web School.

In order to be sure that nobody preceded me with this idea I looked up the keywords Free Web School in QTSaver but found no relevant results.

If you know about such a Website please let me know…

Friday, August 19, 2005

P U B L I C I T Y

I got a message from http://www.blogarama.com/


Your site has been added to our directory


I didn't ask them but they added it- very kind ...

I looked for QTSaver on their site and found it under the TOOLS category.

Many users think QTSaver is a search engine, but not Blogarama, you can't fool them.

They lost me when they asked to use an HTML code to link to them…
It looks so unfriendly to people like me who don't know HTML.
Can't they make a button that connects to them automatically?
Can't you be a citizen of the blogosphere without all these technical nuisances?

Any how, Blogarama is my 125 visitor and it looks as if each day QTSaver is getting more


P U B L I C I T Y

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Schemes, Scams, Frauds

I was surfing leisurely with my QTSaver on the waves of knowledge and stopped by the island-site of my favorite philosopher

Alfred North Whitehead

Suddenly a message poped-up telling me that I'm the 1 million visitor in this site and hence cruiseFlorida gives me a cruise worse 1804 EU.

Usually I ignore such pop-ups but this time I was so curious to know who is this bold guy that put such a pop-up on a philosophers' site. I coudn't believe that this site had a million visitors - maybe 100 ...

So I filled out the form and called the free toll phone number to confirm the details. A guy with Jamaican accent spelled me his name - Hylton and said he'll send the documents to my address with Fedex.

Then I saved the site in my desktop file and sent an e-mail about this story to a friend. He thought it looks like a scam.

- It's too good to be true. He wrote.

so I started to check. I decided to begin by reading again the document of the deal - so I tried to open it from my desktop file -it didn't open. I felt weird.

I looked up the cruiseFlorida in Google and found a forum called

Crimes of Persuasion Schemes, Scams, Frauds

Dirkie Drost says there :


It seems that I am always lucky on internet, a few months ago I won a holiday
for free; Today, you will not belief it, I won a Cruise.YES! A cruise of $ 2100
for 4 persons. I only have to call +1-800-404-5734 in the US, or +1-321-397-1888
outside the US, the only thing I have to do is to give the conformation number.
See their site :
I did not respond,
I am not stupid.


Klaas commented:


That's fast Dirkie! Obvious scam www.cruiseflorida.com
is gone. Maybe they got scared? Site
deactivated (also vanished in google cache) even before your message would come
up in the search engines. Keep an eye on them.


I tried to read again the E-mail I sent but I couldn't find it - it vanished .
I tried to read again the E-mail I got - it ceased to exist.
I looked it up by every method I knew: by date, by reciever's e- mail, by keywords...It disappeared, just like that...

It wasn't only a scam - it was also magic...

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

It takes a whole global village to raise good software

There's a proverb which says that
It takes a whole village to raise a child.

I believe users from the whole global village will eventually raise QTSaver.
I only started it – the users will finish the job.

Users tell me QTSaver is slow, compared to search engines.
I try to protect QTSaver by answering them that it’s a research tool, not a search engine;
that if they open 7-8 links in a search engine it takes even more time…
but the user is always right...

They tell me that the help file doesn't look good
–I fold my sleeves and make them a splendid Power Point Presentation.

It's quite reassuring to know that you're not alone in this journey
– there's a whole global village waiting to support you…

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Falling in love with a whore

I read an article about future learning. At the end of the page there was a picture of the author with his telephone number. I called him up.

-I was very impressed by your vision.
-that's very kind of you. how can I help?
-Well, you say that in the future pupils will learn without a
teacher. They will learn the subject and follow the links until they will know
it fully.
- right!
-I invented a software that makes your vision come true, and it is
already on the Web.
-that's very interesting. Can you send it to me? I will
evaluate it and return to you in a week.
-I'm sending it to you right away. thanks for everything.

Weeks passed by and after two months I called him up again on the phone.
-remember me? I sent you two months ago a software called QTSAVER.
-I'm in a traffic jam. You'll have to shout.
- (I shout) remember me? I... sent you... two months ago... a software...
- What?
- Called QTSAVER.
-Yes of course. Very nice program.
- that's all? (I shout)
- It needs a marketing plan. I can make it for you.
-That will be very kind of you (I shout).
-it will cost you $10,000.
-Oh (I shout), I thought I'm helping you with your vision.
-I can't hear you. You'll have to shout.
I hung up.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Web Search Logic

Thinking about the needles in the haystack metaphor I found out the following formula:

One-to-one
Example: There is a certain monkey in a certain zoo.

One-to-many
Example: any monkey in any zoo.

Many-to-one
Example: any animal in a certain zoo.

Many-to-many
Example: any animal in any zoo.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

skate sneakers

I heard that in Japan kids use skates that are built- in their shoes. I wanted to know how these shoes look like.

So I typed in Google skates shoes and got shoes that are called "skates shoes" but they were shoes without skates. http://www.zappos.com/n/es/d/35159/page/1.html

In QTSaver I had the same problem and even the Leads didn't save me.

I thought maybe I chose the wrong words and consulted SurfWax which is a search engine with a built- in thesaurus. I got:

Broader: footwear footgear
Narrower: anklet baby shoe blucher bluchers
bowling shoe brogan brogue clodhopper work
shoe calceus chopine chopines
platform platforms congress boot congress shoe
congress gaiter flipper
flippers
fin fins gaiter ghillie gillie gym shoe
sneaker tennis shoe Loafer
mocassin
moccasin moccasins oxford pump pumps
running shoe sandal walking
shoe wedgie
wedgies wing tip .


Broader: sports equipment

Narrower: ice- skate roller- skate skateboard


These were too many alternatives…

So I called a friend who knows English and he told me that these shoes are called SKATE SNEAKERS.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

welcome design

Import your Blog into a database

I imported my Blog into a Microsoft Access database, in order to retrieve the records I need. I searched for all the records in my Blog containing the word QTSaver and got this:

  • This blog is dedicated to my new research tool, QTSaver, which extracts info from multiple sites into one document, which then can be sorted so that in a very short time you can write an article without using a word of your own.
  • I started with the first name on the list "Organizing with styles" and entered the keywords Organizing styles Microsoft Word into QTSaver.
  • Looking for a similar patent to Qtsaver patent is an unknown needle in an unknown haystack and I'll know it for sure only when we get the patent (Now it's pending).
  • Each morning when people take their dog to a walk - I take QTSaver to a learning adventure.
  • This was a nice morning walk with my QTSaver…now I'll have my breakfast.
  • QTSaver is not a search engine, but if you want to prepare a paper about the situation in parents' home in Herzliya in the shortest possible time and without a word of your own - you'd better use QTSaver.
  • - Who really needs QTSaver?
  • - Where in the world would QTSaver help the most? - In Africa. QTSaver can help to reduce illiteracy in Africa. So I entered the following keywords in QTSaver.
  • I'd like to give each QTSaver user the opportunity to add Web Searching Tips, to tag them, to search them. Eventually this may become a huge collection of Web Searching Tips.
  • Tip: if you want information about QTSaver leads feature, search for "QTSaver leads feature" not "QTSaver".
  • I think QTSaver can be great for blind and visually impaired users, since it retrieves less text and the text is more to the point than in other alternatives.
  • Anyhow, I decided first of all to check what is already known on the Web about all this and I entered the keywords: Education for All into QTSaver. (I asked for a whole phrase). I expected to get an empty results page but it was full of useful information.
  • From the LEADS (a list of special words QTSaver supplies for further research) I learned that Education for All is called briefly by its acronym: EFA.
  • I typed in QTSaver the words Resources English beginners free and asked that they appear on one paragraph. I got only one answer:A week ago I sent a letter to a center for research on aging offering them to use QTSAVER. I claimed that it might specially fit the elderly because it gives many answers on one page and saves the confusion of getting too many results in too many links.

Friday, August 12, 2005

The weather in Los Angeles

The logic of search is not common sense.
I wanted to know what the weather in Los Angeles is. So I entered the words weather Los Angeles into Google and got 9,780,000 results. First results were two days ago but I wanted to know what the weather will be in the next days, when my friend lands there.
so I added to my keywords the word forecast and went to Google News
First results were three days ago.
I was stuck.
Then I thought this is a known needle in an unknown haystack . Weather forecast is so common that I'm sure hundreds of sites about Los Angeles have it. So I entered only the words Los Angeles and the first result was a hit.

Web Searching Tips

I'd like to give each QTSaver user the opportunity to add Web Searching Tips, to tag them, to search them. Eventually this may become a huge collection of Web Searching Tips.

It will look like this:

Name: Link to command tips
Tip: http://searchenginewatch.com/facts/article.php/2156021
Tag: zeevveez, command, link, advanced,

Name: Be Specific
Tip: if you want information about QTSaver leads feature, search for "QTSaver leads feature" not "QTSaver".
Tag: zeevveez, Specific, general, beginners,

Name: phrase search
Tip: Tell the search engine to give you pages where the terms appear in exactly the order you specify.
Tag: zeevveez, phrase, beginners

Name: Web Directory
Tip: If you're more interested in broad, general information, the first place to go is to a Web Directory.
Tag: zeevveez, directory, beginners,

Name: Link for finding people on the web
Tip: http://www.monash.com/people.html
Tag: zeevveez, people, beginners, advanced, link,

Name: Avoid stop-words
Tip: stop words are unimportant words too short and too common. However, if you look for a whole phrase you can find even the phrase "to be or not to be" which is coposed only from stop-words.
Tag: zeevveez, stop-words, beginners

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Education for All is looking for a new name

This morning I looked for a new name for our Education for All enterprise.

Education for All or EFA is already used by UNESCO.

Oni's vision is a correct name since it is my partner Oni's vision
– but nobody will understand it without an explanation and good names have to stand alone.

So I thought about literacity – the city of literacy. It sounded right but I checked it out on QT and found that it was already in use for the international promotion of Austin poets and writers , by the George W. Bush Literacity Fund. There is a computer-based instructional material called LiteraCity Etc.

Then I thought about calling it Knowledge village – it sounded catchy to me, but checking it out in QT revealed that Dubai Knowledge Village

(KV) is a vibrant, connected learning community that will develop the
region’s talent pool and accelerate its move to the knowledge economy.


Than I thought about Literacy Ladder but it also was occupied:

The media literacy ladder is a visual organizer to help teens identify, analyze, and evaluate media messages.

Then I thought about Liana as an African plant that climbs high but it was also occupied since
Liana is also the name of a C/C++-like object-oriented programming language.

So I decided to wait for your suggestions…

Web surfing as a listening activity

I think QTSaver can be great for blind and visually Impaired users, since it retrieves less text and the text is more to the point than in other alternatives.

In order to know more about this subject I took QT for a ride and got an article by Carmen Mardiros who says that a fairly large percent of Internet surfers are visually impaired.

  • May be color blind
  • May be completely blind or partially sighted
  • May suffer from disabilities preventing them from reading or comprehending text
    properly (for example dyslexia)
  • May not be able to read small text

Over the past few years, some browsers have been developed especially for people
with disabilities. These include products with optical character recognition,
screen magnifier, screen readers, voice recognition, speech synthesisers, etc.


Then I got this:

For tens of millions of people with disabilities, speech-recognition technology
is more than a new toy or even a productivity tool-it's a way to profoundly
change their lives…Dyslexics, for example, can have computers read to them so
they don't have to ask others for help.

And this:

The whole point about the web is that it is about fast and easy access to
information. However, this is not necessarily the case for visually impaired
users. As many of you know, the web can actually be more time consuming,
cumbersome, and frustrating than other, more traditional interfaces, such as the
telephone.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Eucalyptus

The independent phase of Education for All symbolized by an eucalyptus
( painted by Dvorit Ben Shaul )
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dvorit/

Education for all part 2

The most elementary action we can take towards the realization of the Education for All Project is to build a Web site for basic resources. Volunteers will be asked to send to this web site basic learning Resources or links to basic learning Resources. Users will be able to use these materials on line with their browser or to download them for offline learning. This will cover the independent phase of the Project.

In the Second phase the learner will be able to ask questions and get answers from the volunteers by e-mail.

In the third phase 50 users will be able to learn in a virtual class by chat, for example through the built in chat feature in SkyPe.

The next phase will be a private lesson through SkyPe or MSN Messenger.
I think this seems to be a pretty practical and workable solution

-what do you think?

Saturday, August 06, 2005

plan to use SkyPe for instruction

  • Yesterday night I started a chat on SkyPe with my friend Danny - it is more polite than calling.
    He wrote that he is busy on the phone.
    Meanwhile I got a call on SkyPe from my son's teacher. She bought a new computer and she knows nothing about operating it. My son asked me to help her. She asked me how to fix the time on the computer clock. I told her that I'm not an expert but I happen to be on a chat with my friend Danny who is an expert.

    So Danny wrote to me on the SkyPe chat form that the Israeli time is fixed by the government and not by the Internet clock and in order to fix this problem you have to double click on the computer clock and a dialog box is opened with a check box for the Internet clock... I read the instructions to the teacher and after five minutes she succeeded in implementing them.

    If and when the EDUCATION FOR ALL PROGRAM will start we plan to use SkyPe for instruction.
  • The teacher will tell the pupil to write in English names of animals, for example;
  • The pupil will write it in the SkyPe chat;
  • The teacher will correct misspellings on the SkyPe chat;
  • The pupil will read what he wrote;
  • The teacher will correct his pronunciation.

    Pretty cool, ha? And for free...

Education for All background

This morning I woke up with an idea to change the name of our Reducing Illiteracy Project. The current name Education for All is not exact since the program is only for those who need it – not for all. I thought maybe Reducing Illiteracy by Free Distant Learning will be a more suitable name.

Anyhow, I decided first of all to check what is already known on the Web about all this and I entered the keywords: Education for All into QTSaver. (I asked for a whole phrase). I expected to get an empty results page but it was full of useful information about things that were done in the world in this area.

From the LEADS (a list of special words QTSaver supplies for further research) I learned that Education for All is called briefly by its acronym: EFA.

Education for All movement took off at the World Conference on Education for All in 1990 in Jomtien, Tailand. Representatives from 155 countries and 150 organizations pledged to provide education for all by the year 2000, but The World Education Forum 2000 on 26-28 April 2000, Dakar, Senegal, committed governments to achieving quality basic Education For All by 2015.


April 6 - 13, 2003 - (UNESCO): Global EFA Week is celebrated each year on or around the anniversary of the World Education Forum. It is intended to remind the goal of EFA by 2015.

2002 Monitoring Report: some 83 countries are on track to achieve EFA by the deadline of 2015 set at the World Education Forum in Dakar (Senegal) in 2000. more than 70 other countries will not make it.

Peter Smith, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education called for more resources EFA on July 21, 2005.

Other related projects:
UN Millennium Project
Paris Declaration on enhancing aid effectiveness
UK Commission for Africa

Analyzing the links showed that the key players are: UNESCO and the World-Bank and there is EFA activity in India.
http://www.uis.unesco.org/ev.php?URL_ID=5262&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201
http://www.unesco.org/education/efa/ed_for_all/index.shtml
http://portal.unesco.org/education/en/ev.php-URL_ID=15200&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html
http://www.unesco.org/education/efa/index.shtml
http://www1.worldbank.org/education/efa.asp
http://www.educationforallinindia.com/

Friday, August 05, 2005

Education for all part 1

In order to implement our vision we thought the best starting point would be teaching English.

For that we need free English resources for beginners.

I estimated this will take me at least a day of searching but it took me only five minutes.
I typed in QTSaver the words Resources English beginners free and asked that they appear on one paragraph. I got only one answer:

Online Course for Beginners This is a free online learning course for English
beginners. The course collects the best beginner resources available at this
site and guides the beginning student from the very basics to more advanced
subjects. Ideal for learners who want to improve their English on their own
following a course on the Internet. Grammar for Beginners The entire collection
of grammar exercises, quizzes, charts and explanations desigened especially for
beginners collected on one easy to use page.

The site is on http://esl.about.com/cs/beginner/ and here is an excerpt from it:
Dialogues for BeginnersFor use in your classes, or for learning basic vocabulary
for specific situations, these dialogues provide a base on which to build.
· Introductions
· Telling the Time
· Giving Personal Information
· In a Shop
· In an Airport
· Asking for Directions
· In a Motel / Hotel
· In a Restaurant

A challenge- finding info about senior citizens getting too many results on the web

A week ago I sent a letter to a center for research on aging offering them to use QTSAVER. I claimed that it might specially fit the elderly because it gives many answers on one page and saves the confusion of getting too many results in too many links. Yesterday I got a positive answer from that center.

It made me rethink about senior citizens getting too many results on the web. I remembered that I already found articles about this problem, but I couldn't find where I put them.

So I tried to look it up on the Web once again.

I wrote

  • Too many results elderly
  • Too many results senior
  • Too many results old people
  • Search engines elderly
  • Search engines senior
  • Search engines old people
  • Search engines phobia
  • Search engine technophobia


-After two hours I gave up.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

About translating a verse from the bible

In order to translate a verse from the bible into another language the best is to find the verse (in Hebrew, in my case) and then enter as key words the location of the verse.

For example: I thought that the concept of God is so ubiquitous that it will be very difficult to search for somebody who doesn't know it. This is probably an example of a known needle in an unknown haystack . Then I remembered vaguely that in the Bible there is a verse about this… something like people said to me where your God is? So I entered the keywords "where your God is" (in Hebrew) and got the verse I needed on Psalms 42:3. Then I entered the location Psalms 42:3 and got it in English:

My tears have been my food day and night, while they continually say to me,
Where [is] thy God?

At dinner I spoke about all this and one of my guests, a young girl, told me that she played in Brecht's Mahogany in Hebrew and there was a dialog where the good guy said something about God and the bad guy asked: God who?

I reckon if I'll go to an autistic and ask "who is God?" I might get the answer "Who is Who", but as far as searching the Web is the question I think this is a good example of a difficult search, no matter which search engine you choose.

the dominance of English on the internet

The literal translation of the Hebrew to "the Ministry of Environment" is
THE OFFICE OF THE QUALITY OF THE SURROUNDINGS
wuth these kewwords the search is doomed to fail...

So whenever I need to know something the first thing is to find out how it is written in proper English. Even in order to know if my heading is written properly I put a search for the whole phrase in the internet, found my fault, and changed the heading from "the dominance of English in the Web" to the current heading.

English is the dominant language on the Web and the sooner we realize it the better.

On the other hand English looses its dominance and in the future it seems that Chinese will prevail - so, a real preparation for the future must include learning Chinese.

a short method to extract bibliography

My friend Udi went to the Hebrew university in Jerusalem to hang my ad near the entrance door to the National Library:

Term paper
A software (in English) that
helps making term papers
Details: (My_name, My_phone_number)
Using
the software is free
The software is in development and we will be happy to
get your feedback.


In the next day I got a call from a student who needs urgently to finish a work he started about Orientalism and Islam. I gave him the address and the password of Q.T. on the phone but he said he would rather come to me to learn how to actually manipulate the software.

We met on the following day and he told me that the hard part of the work is verifying the sources. You have to go to the National Library and check the books. I suggested writing the name of the book in Amazon and then looking inside the book and copying what's written on the second page- behind the cover. Later we saw that not every book has a picture and the ability to look behind the cover page
- so I tried to look for the words Orientalism Islam bibliography in QTSaver, and in a short while got the following hit:
http://www.imamreza.net/eng/imamreza.php?id=3275
with more than 30 names of resources that the student needed.
But this can be done with any search engine – he claimed.

So I did another search for the words Orientalism Islam definition which gave him several definitions from several sources on one page. This time he was just dizzy… His mouth stayed wide open and he said: in a short while nobody will be able to enter your building because it will be blocked by students who will need QTSaver.


Oni's vision - Education for All

Here is my rough translation from the Hebrew to Oni's vision (Oni is my partner in developing QTsaver):

Behind the idea of Education for All there is a claim that the welfare of each
world citizen influences the welfare of the others' . Helping the others without
jeopardizing ones' own existential interests may help him and may
contribute to basic human dignity.



Expected problems
1. High costs
2. Language problems
3. Accessibility to Internet
4. Problems of internal government policies in different countries
5. Building methods of distant learning, in which pupils have difficulties to be in contact with an invisible teacher. There are families who don't want their kids to get education because they are needed in the fields.
6. Acknowledging the learning achievements and promising practical use to the education in the future.
The solution
Today we are in a situation in which we can give immediate answers to most of the above problems:

The system's framework
We shall prepare educational programs on a centralized computer (from kindergarten to high school) in the best possible level. The programs will be in any subject that can be learned from a distance, so that they can be relearned in each stage without dependence on the teacher. Such programs will have a fixed cost and there will be no more costs except for maintenance and help. These programs will be translated into many languages and after this stage there will be no further costs on languages.

Satellite programs
1. Around the basic programs there will be a system of help for all those subjects that need help, such as complementary lessons, tests and exercises.
2. Another logistic system will be responsible to help needy people or to assist in existing learning systems.
3. Personal teaching systems will be built in the most important subjects:

  • English
  • Math
  • Computer
  • Human health


To these subjects there will be added any other subjects which have prospects to succeed.

Working method
All basic programs will be accessible online and offline in many languages.
Each teacher will have a working plan on the computer so that he will know when he is teaching or whom he is meeting and in which language.
The teacher will be connected to the Internet, behind him there will be a blackboard seen by the pupil or pupils on the other end of the Internet. The pupils will be able to write in this stage in one of 20 different languages and the teacher will get the texts in any language he will want it. Both the teacher and the pupils will have free access to Internet phone (Skype) so that they will be able to exercise and to discuss the subjects. Each teacher will have an option to refer the pupil to existing resources on the Internet so that the pupil will be able to proceed even without the teacher.


Optimal exploitation
In order to exploit the system fully there will be an option to recruit teachers that will build the basic programs and lecture on air to many pupils at once. From time to time lessons will be broadcasted by celebrities in order to make the system more popular.

Tasks

  • Management and technical development
  • Building methods for distant learning
  • Recruiting volunteers and sponsors
  • Supervision
  • Assessing results
  • Ambassadors in different countries to get collaboration
  • Recruiting educational institutions to acknowledge the achievements of this system.


Outlook
In our opinion the contribution of this system to the world welfare will be recognized by many Institutions such as the United Nations, the World Bank, rich countries - and they will be willing to backup this system.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

cabalist woman

My friend Aran asked me to find him three cabalist women for a documentary film. He started planning this film a few years ago but now there was an opportunity to get a budget for a 50 minutes film.

So I typed the words cabalist woman in QTSaver and after reading a few articles I stumbled on the name of a woman who is both a cabalist, a dancer, a drummer and a Rabbi.

I typed the name of the woman in order to make another query. This time I got details about her political activity and her address and e-mail.

This whole process took us about half an hour and then we wrote her a letter asking her to participate in our film and to find us a Christian woman and a Muslim woman who will be willing to participate too. Aran went home and I went to rest.

After an hour I woke up and looked at my inbox...

there was a positive answer from the cabalist woman, and yes - she knows a Christian woman and a Muslim woman who will be willing to participate too.