The FolkSemantic Widget for OER discovery

I like this. A widget that analyses the content of your web page and suggest related Open Educational Resources (OERs), using FolkSemantic, a collaborative website that allows you to “browse and search over 110,000 OERs”. You can see the widget in the sidebar of this blog under the heading of ‘Related Educational Resources’ –>

So, if I dump a load of text relating to ‘physics’, say, you should see physics-related OERs… Does it work? ūüôā Some random tests on other blog posts, suggests it is a bit hit and miss, but is certainly matching some OERs to the content. I wonder if we could use this approach to find related documents on the JISCPress project?

Physics (Greek:¬†physis ‚Äď ŌÜŌćŌÉőĻŌā meaning “nature“) is a¬†natural science; it is the study of¬†matter[1] and its¬†motion through¬†spacetime and all that derives from these, such as¬†energy and¬†force.[2] More broadly, it is the general analysis of¬†nature, conducted in order to understand how the¬†world and¬†universe behave.[3][4]

Physics is one of the oldest academic disciplines, perhaps the oldest through its inclusion of astronomy.[5] Over the last two millennia, physics had been considered synonymous with philosophy, chemistry, and certain branches of mathematics and biology, but during the Scientific Revolution in the 16th century, it emerged to become a unique modern science in its own right.[6] However, in some subject areas such as in mathematical physics and quantum chemistry, the boundaries of physics remain difficult to distinguish.

Physics is both significant and influential, in part because advances in its understanding have often translated into new technologies, but also because new ideas in physics often resonate with the other sciences, mathematics and philosophy.

For example, advances in the understanding of electromagnetism led directly to the development of new products which have dramatically transformed modern-day society (e.g., television, computers, and domestic appliances); advances in thermodynamics led to the development of motorized transport; and advances in mechanics inspired the development of calculus.

Physics covers a wide range of phenomena, from the smallest¬†sub-atomic particles, to the largest¬†galaxies. Included in this are the very most basic objects from which all other things are composed, and therefore physics is sometimes said to be the “fundamental science”.[7]

Physics aims to describe the various phenomena that occur in nature in terms of simpler phenomena. Thus, physics aims to both connect the things we see around us to root causes, and then to try to connect these causes together in the hope of finding anultimate reason for why nature is as it is.

For example, the ancient Chinese observed that certain rocks (lodestone) were attracted to one another by some invisible force. This effect was later called magnetism, and was first rigorously studied in the 17th century.

A little earlier than the Chinese, the ancient Greeks knew of other objects such as amber, that when rubbed with fur would cause a similar invisible attraction between the two. This was also first studied rigorously in the 17th century, and came to be calledelectricity.

Thus, physics had come to understand two observations of nature in terms of some root cause (electricity and¬†magnetism). However, further work in the 19th century revealed that these two forces were just two different aspects of one force ‚Ästelectromagnetism. This process of “unifying” forces¬†continues today (see section¬†Current research for more information).

Physics uses the scientific method to test the validity of a physical theory, using a methodical approach to compare the implications of the theory in question with the associated conclusions drawn from experiments and observations conducted to test it. Experiments and observations are to be collected and matched with the predictions and hypotheses made by a theory, thus aiding in the determination or the validity/invalidity of the theory.

Theories which are very well supported by data and have never failed any competent empirical test are often called scientific laws, or natural laws. Of course, all theories, including those called scientific laws, can always be replaced by more accurate, generalized statements if a disagreement of theory with observed data is ever found [8]. ((Source: Wikipedia))