Access2OER:OER exchange cartoon

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The original OERWIKI seems to be offline (December 2012). The Access2OER discussion pages are preserved here for reference! The final report in pdf is available here: Access2OER_Report,

The report:
Introduction to the report
Part 1 - Issues
What is access?
Issues and classification
Part 2 - Solutions
Solutions criteria
Stories and solutions
Case studies
Part 3 - Proposals
Conclusion and next steps
Additional sections:
Stories 1
Stories 2
Stories 3
Case studies v1
Access initiatives v1
OER Training proposal
Open Educational Resource Centres
OER exchange infrastructure
OER exchange infrastructure diagrams
Additional materials
Access2OER:Additional Considerations
Wiki only
Some technical notes
Discussion Log and Quotes:
Discussion Week 1
Comments on SuperOER
Overview of week 1 activities
Discussion Week 2
Discussion related to solutions put forward
Snippets from the general discussion
Overview of week 2 activities
Discussion Week 3
general discussion
OER training discussion
resource centre discussion
oer exchange discussion
stories discussion
All discussion on one page.
Additional pages
For authors:




1 OER exchange: A cartoon story

1.1 The 'downlink'

Access2OER exchange cartoon 1.jpg

Here's a the first scenario: Content providers have content on their website, that also get's mirrored into a global OER/OCW mirror. From the OER/OCW mirror, the content is pushed to a national mirror (say with the national research and educational network operator, NREN), and then to a local mirror (say in a school). The user uses the content in the school. To the user, this might be "transparent": The user thinks that they are accessing (e.g. MIT OCW) content, just through their browser, just like any web content, but for some reason the OCW content is just faster than the rest of the web.

1.2 The 'uplink'

Access2OER exchange cartoon 2.jpg

So what happens when the user becomes a remixer, and wants to share content? They would normally just put it onto their school server, perhaps for other teachers to use. In our scenario, there's now a channel back from the school, to the national server, and to the global mirror. This means that other users now get access to the content. We have drawn an 'international user', but equally well this could have been a user in the same school, or in the same country.

1.3 No link

Access2OER exchange cartoon 3.jpg

The above all assumes some connectivity. Let's now assume there is no connectivity, and/or no national server (server is greyed out).

1.4 Offline content

Access2OER exchange cartoon 4.jpg

In this scenario, the content is taken off the global server in one location where there is connectivity. This might be in the nearest city, or while a teacher is on an OER course abroad. Content can be taken off by transferring a content bundle to a memory stick, or perhaps be fetched automatically using an imaginary "SuperMiro" application. The teacher then returns to the local school, where the content can be put onto the local server.

One could imagine a scenario where this happens very seamlessly using the "SuperMiro" application. The teacher clicks a few buttons while they have connectivity and SuperMiro downloads the required content packages. When back at the school, SuperMiro talks to the school server, and automatically transfers the content. Perhaps the content that SuperMiro transfers was requested by other teachers before the teacher left, and had been preselected with SuperMiro before the teacher left.

As before, to the user, this might be "transparent": The user thinks that they are accessing (e.g. MIT OCW) content, just through their browser, just like any web content, but for some reason the OCW content works, while other web content doesn't work.

1.5 Sharing offline content

Access2OER exchange cartoon 5.jpg

To complete the scenario, the teacher can also pick up local content from the school server, and share this content with the global server once the teacher is back at a place where there is good internet.

1.6 Peer to peer sharing of offline content

Access2OER exchange cartoon 6.jpg

Fully peer to peer sharing of content, without central infrastructure.

One could imagine a content directory in "SuperMiro" that lists all content, and next to each piece has "peer to peer" sharing information next to each item:

  • "content downloaded already and availalble on your SuperMiro"
  • "content available on your current network and can be downloaded (estimated time ...)"
  • "content not available on your current network"