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An overview of the Connexions Project and why you should consider being part of the solution by creating quality educational materials available free to the public.

Sharing knowledge

“Connexions is all about sharing knowledge.” Richard Baraniuk – Filmed presentation ,Feb 2006 at TED Ideas Worth Sharing conference Appropriate words from one of the founders of the Connexions Project at Rice University located in Houston, Texas, USA. As an electrical and computer engineering professor at Rice University, Dr. Richard Baraniuk understood that he would never get rich publishing a textbook in his area of expertise. He was more concerned at being able to share his knowledge in what can be described as a quick change field. Most of us understand how quickly the electrical (electronics) and computer field changes almost overnight.

From the Connexions web site: “Connexions is a web-based document creation and management system for education and research materials. There are two parts to Connexions: a Content Commons that contains these materials and the software tools necessary to create, manage, and access these materials.

From its inception, Connexions was designed to allow the collaborative development and free availability of material. Instructors and authors can modify this material for any educational purpose. Connexions offers Free/Open Source software tools to help students, instructors, and authors manage these information assets for sharing and advancing knowledge to benefit the global educational community.”

I like to refer to Connexions as an Internet web site with the software tools to allow the creation and use of a repository of instructional and research materials .

The creators of ideas, art, literature, music, etc. usually have an immediate “copyright” to their creative genius. The copyright laws are designed to protect the creator (or author) of the materials from having others make money from their creations as well as to protect their works from copycats (call a derivative work). The laws are centered in the protection of the creative work by allowing its originator to control their creation.

Some authors (or creators) are willing to share their creative works with certain limitations. This can be accomplished through the use of one of the Creative Commons Attribution Licenses which have an international recognition. The most liberal of these licenses allows others to freely use your creative works. The license conveys the ability for others to copy, adapt, distribute and transmit the work as long as they attribute (give you the original author credit for) the work in the manner specified by you, the author or licensor.

All contributed content to the Connexions repository is made using this most liberal of license arrangements. Connexions uses the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) License . The concept is to allow the greatest latitude in letting others use and improve on your works, that is your knowledge, your creative ideas. This philosophy of open sharing was re-confirmed at the Connexions Consortium’s 1 st Annual Meeting on February 1, 2010. To help emphasize the ability to remix or reuse existing content, the term “ Frictionless Reuse ” was coined by the President of the Connexions Consortium Board of Directors, Brad Wheeler Dr. Bradley C. Wheller – Biography at: (External Link) . Thus, users of the Connexions repository may become authors and freely use or improve (change) existing materials without worrying about copyright infringement .

Why you should contribute your materials to the connexions repository

Many reasons, but some of the best are:

  • Your desire to share your knowledge and ideas with the larger community of the world. Not everything in this world is driven by a profit or monetary incentive. Many desire to be simple positive contributors to society. Contributing your educational materials to Connexions allows other to build on your efforts.
  • You can work collaboratively with other authors in your field of expertise. This is a great opportunity to work with others in developing quality educational materials.
  • The Connexions Project has an ongoing commitment from many Open Educational Resource (OER) players to make Connexions a permanent part of the Internet landscape . Connexions is supported by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation , the Maxfield Foundation, and the Connexions Consortium , of which Rice University is a major contributor, and other sponsors . Simply put – Connexions should be here tomorrow and the day after.
  • The materials in the Connexions repository have “Google Karma”. To quote myself, “Connexions has connections”. Many Internet search engines, not just Google, have already recognized the importance and quality of the Connexions repository. This helps the general Internet population to find your quality educational materials .
  • Open-source learning is the wave of the future . If you are not convinced, see the approximately 18 minute recorded conference presentation by Dr. Richard Baraniuk at: (External Link)

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
While the American heart association suggests that meditation might be used in conjunction with more traditional treatments as a way to manage hypertension
Beverly Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Understanding the vision of connexions. OpenStax CNX. Feb 24, 2010 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11187/1.1
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