December 5, 2012 |
The European Union slapped seven companies with nearly $2 billion in fines Wednesday over alleged schemes to fix prices for expensive tubes used in computer monitors and televisions, its heftiest fine ever against what it called “textbook cartels.” EU antitrust watchdogs said electronics companies such as Philips, LG Electronics and Panasonic colluded at meetings across Europe and Asia to control the market for cathode ray tubes, hashing out...
October 25, 2012 |
The eye-opening, unusually engaging documentary "The Revisionaries" looks at the Texas State Board of Education's attempts to revise teaching and textbooks standards to align with conservative dogma. For anyone not on the extreme right of things, this well-told tale might feel like a kind of American horror story. At the heart of the battle, which occurred from 2009 to '10, is Don McLeroy, a Bryan dentist and unabashedly chipper "young-Earth" creationist who spent 12 years on the SBOE (two years as chairman)
August 7, 2012 |
Amazon.com Inc. has launched a new textbook rental program, this time with old-fashioned print books. The program sends the print copies to students, for a fee, with the stipulation that they be returned in reasonably good condition within 130 days unless other arrangements are made. The e-commerce giant has a digital textbook rental service that began last year. Amazon said the fees it's charging to rent the print books represent savings of up to 70% compared with retail purchase prices.
February 4, 2012 |
Something sounded familiar last week when I heard U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski make a huge pitch for infusing digital technology into America's classrooms. Every schoolchild should have a laptop, they said. Because in the near future, textbooks will be a thing of the past. Where had I heard that before? So I did a bit of research, and found it. The quote I recalled was, "Books will soon be obsolete in the schools.... Our school system will be completely changed in 10 years.
January 19, 2012 |
Apple Inc. has already transformed the music, mobile phone and personal computing industries, and now the tech giant says its next chapter will be about reinventing textbooks. In New York on Thursday, at the company's first product launch event since the death of Steve Jobs in October, Apple announced a trio of new or updated products - the iBooks 2, iBooks Author and iTunes U applications - that it said would uproot the traditional learning experience. With the new iBooks 2 app, students can download interactive textbooks to their iPads, usually for $14.99 or less, eliminating the need for a bulging backpack laden with out-of-date, hundred-dollar textbooks.
January 9, 2012
It's time for college textbooks to catch up with the 21st century. Online, open-access textbooks that rely heavily on information in the public domain would not only cost students a fraction as much, but they also could be readily updated and easily customized to individual professors' courses. That's a big deal considering that many of the most commonly used traditional textbooks cost more than $150. Buying used books isn't the option it used to be because professors often demand the latest version even when the changes are minimal.
December 15, 2011
The U.S. toll: 4,484 Re " Obama marks end of Iraq war ," Dec. 13 As the U.S. removes its final combat troops from Iraq, let us not forget the toll caused by a war of choice with no connection to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. As of Dec. 14, 4,484 U.S. military personnel have been killed in Iraq since the war started in 2003. On 9/11, almost 3,000 people were killed. George W. Bush's decision to invade Iraq resulted in the deaths of more Americans than Osama bin Laden's attack.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 12, 2011 |
Sadly, today's college students have been handed a much worse deal than their parents' generation enjoyed in California. They're being forced to pay loads more for arguably less. Even if their parents are helping, many students are burdening themselves with loans that they could still be paying off when their own kids leave for college. For generations, California prided itself on offering very affordable, quality higher education for any youngsters with the energy, discipline and ambition to seek a college diploma.
October 25, 2011
Last week we wrote about California's decision to require teachers and textbooks to include positive messages about gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in their lessons. We opposed that law — not because we think schools shouldn't teach about the contributions of people of all sexual orientations (they should!), but because we're concerned about the continuing politicization of California's classrooms. Is it really necessary to point out that politicians aren't the best arbiters of what should be taught to schoolchildren?