RN#2 & Activity: Designing Use Cases as a Model under Foucault’s Archaeology of Knowledge

“In short, Foucault’s discourse is a mirror of the powers it describes. It is there that its strength and its seduction lie, and not at all in its ‘truth index,’ which is only its leitmotiv: these procedures of truth are of no importance, for Foucault’s discourse is no truer than any other. No, its strength and its seduction are in the analysis which unwinds the subtle meanderings of its object, describing it with a tactile and tactical exactness, where seduction feeds analytical force and where language itself gives birth to the operation of new powers. Such also is the operation of myth, right down to the symbolic effectiveness described by Levi-Strauss. Foucault’s is not therefore a discourse of truth but a mythic discourse in the strong sense of the word, and I secretly believe that it has no illusions about the effect of truth it produces. That, by the way, is what is missing in those who follow in Foucault’s footsteps and pass right by this mythic arrangement to end up with the truth, nothing but the truth” (Baudrillard, 29).

Introduction: Why Foucault in Network Analyses? Why not?

I’m not going to pretend that I dig Foucault.  I dig when people overtly use Foucault, if only because I view it as a the keenest method of revealing that the speaker didn’t read Foucault – Foucault’s work itself teaching us that in those moments when we find something unassailable in its truth value and usefulness, those are precisely the moments when such a source of cultural knowledge should be dismantled, dissected, and explicated in terms of its applications of power against others and society.

That is to say, Foucauldian theory may be unassailably useful among certain segments of the intellectual (and rhetorical) left, but the applications of his theory within academic practice are frequently (purely) ideological – a scholarly “flash” which codifies progressive epistemology and values within argument.  Critical interpretations of Foucault’s contribution, after all, tend towards the centering of the leftist ideology, as Daniel Zamora notes: “for [critical theorist and sociologist Geoffrey de] Lagasnerie, what Foucault has accomplished is to demolish the symbolic barriers between the left and neoliberalism” (Zamora, 2014).  Foucault’s work is, at its core, the ideological exploration of dynamics of power and the social restrictions leveraged against the emancipatory impulse of the self.

That is to say, the representation of Foucault within academic discourse is traditional and symbolic: two of the primary targets of opposition present within Foucault’s own work.  Foucauldian argumentation has become in no small part a contradiction – at least in practice.  But you either agree with his conclusions, or you don’t.  Methodologically, however, the epistemological territory is much more contingent and unclear.

Michel Foucault - Photo by Bruce Jackson
Michel Foucault – Photo by Bruce Jackson

Why, then, leverage Foucauldian methods in the study of rhetorical networks?  I would argue they are valuable; that what Foucault does best is to problematize the Dialectic of Reason, to demonstrate and rhetorically explore the irreducible complexity of networks over time (“archaeology”) as the relationships and exchanges of definition, meaning, and conceptualization (“knowledge”), in the face of a transition to neutral subjectivity.  If Foucault’s archaeology does anything, it is to defuse the notion of objective reason as the foundation of scientific or positivist knowledge – providing in its place a demonstrative framework for attempting to interrogate not only the individual and the moment (“history”), but systems (“archaeology of history”).  

In Chapter 3: “The Formation of Objects,” Foucault lays out a sequence of consequences for archaeological study (44-46), as follows:

  1. Due to contexts and complexity, “one cannot speak of anything at any [given] time” (44).
  2. The relations which influence and inform the object are not inherently present within the object itself (45).
  3. These relations are segregated into various sets, a) real or primary relation systems, b) reflexive or secondary relation systems, and c) discursive relation systems (45-46).
  4. As we explore these systems, we recognize that they do not characterize the language we use to define relations, but rather the discourse practice itself (46).

Therefore, Foucault tells us, although “we sought the unity of discourse in the objects themselves, in their distribution, in the interplay of their differences,” it is necessary instead that we “analyze and specify” systems according to “the relation between the surfaces on which they appear, on which they can be delimited” (47).

These systems must, of course, be interrogated.  However, in doing so we must be careful not to presume an ideology external to the system as valid – not our own ideology, not Foucault’s, not our audiences’, and not the cultural expectations – the “surfaces” – upon which these ideologies find purchase.

If Foucauldian argumentation has idiomatically “jumped the shark,” Foucualdian subject-power analysis (although rarely applied against post-structuralist arguments themselves) is still highly applicable in our pursuit of network comprehension.  In the logic that it survives its own interrogation (perhaps unlike Foucault’s ideological argumentation), it is perhaps the strongest and most cross-applicable facet of Foucault’s methodological explorations in The Archaeology of Knowledge.

Before applying this method, though, it is worth noting that Foucault’s book-length texts, such as Archaeology, are perhaps not the most perfect specimens for investigating these concerns.  Archaeology is, at least, a textual evidence of a mind at play, and may perhaps even be described as a work of apologetics for the founding of a post-Nietzschean  genealogy which avoids the linearity of assumed historical truth (Foucault would argue, in his “Nietzsche, Genealogy, and History,” that “a genealogy of values, morality, asceticism, and knowledge will never confuse itself with a quest for their ‘origins,’ will never neglect as inaccessible the vicissitudes of history” (80).)

As a text, Archaeology is perhaps too complete, too encompassing of its own epistemology.  “To know a thing, do not look directly at the thing” seems to be a key element of its argument.  Or, “to know a thing’s end, do not look at the end of a thing.”  Why, then, would we look at Foucault’s Archaeology of Knowledge to know what it means to practice Foucault’s archaeology of Knowledge?  Foucault would label this as the resolution of “contradictions” through the presumed security of a “coherent” discourse; in applying archaeology, “contradictions are netiher appearances to be overcome, nor secret principles to be uncovered.  They are objects to be described for themselves, without any attempt being made to discover from what point of view they can be dissipated” (151).

These contradictions may best be cataloged and comprehended through the application of Use Cases, which I will aim to do in each reading response this semester.

Actors, Systems, and Contradictions: “Doing” Empiricism and Experience-based Epistemology within Foucault’s Archaeology

Perhaps the best way to apply Foucault to the current approaches to network theory and network analysis is through the deployment of “Use Cases” in order to study Foucault’s subject-power relations throughout the long-term analysis of the networks relating to one’s object of study.

Use cases are perhaps the ultimate Habermasian gedankenexperiment for post-structuralist archaeological explorations of networks, the visualized (or actualized) application of subject-power relationships within restricted definitions of instances of both being and not being (e.g. the moment when “Plato, at Syracuse, did not become Mohammed.”)  How does Foucault’s Archaeology apply to use cases?  How does it not?  What contradictions are present in trying to locate “use value” in post-structuralist explorations of power under specific systems?

In order to examine an object specific to my own studies, over the coming weeks I hope to apply Foucault’s process of Object Formation within Archaeology in order to construct a series of interrogations to leverage against the platform of Blackboard Learn (BBL) as Object and product of socially discursive formations (31-39) in order to identify “enunciative periods” of the platform as a developing social, cultural, and economic process (148).  Interrogating how students, instructors, and administrators have leveraged the platform over time may seem to be contra-indicated by Foucault’s opposition to a linearity of progress, except inasmuch as I reject the notion that BBL is moving towards a more perfect iteration of the object.

Arguing for Use Case Study: Emancipatory Responsiveness and the Fabricated Falsity of Actor-Network Theory (ANT)

What are the use cases and why?  UCs must be designed with consideration to the ways that a specific actor achieves a specific goal by using and transiting a system which has been overtly and purpsefully designed (for more on use cases and their role in systems design, see Armour and Miller (2000), Advanced Use Case Modeling: Software Systems)Under Foucault, the UC is a particularly useful tool for studying networks such as Blackboard for several reasons:

  1. It synthesizes networks through the process of pathing, exploring how users (actors) navigate through a goal-oriented process, providing viable use data.  BBL is inherently goal-oriented, and each iteration of use tends towards linear single uses.
  2. It is already attuned to the concerns of User Interfaces, with a foundation in software and systems design; clearly, this is well-reflected in BBL’s own structure and design.
  3. It is linguistic and discursive.  Designed to consider precursor events and behaviors, stakeholders, and the role of technology within the sequence of actor choices, it can be analyzed through discourse analysis.
  4. Philosophically, use cases have ideological benefits in the face of post-structuralist criticisms of user-oriented systems: they are able to examine what Marcuse would label the “alienation” of systems, contextualize Habermas’ anti-postmodernity, or re-situate Walter Benjamin’s implications of the significance of non-neutral authorship in the modern network – which is in direct opposition to Foucault’s notion of “significant change” as a metric of authorship as stable and inherently less useful.

The question, then, is how we “archaeologically” investigate Objects of Study within networks – especially considering the reality that networks are so multiplicative and challenging to unfold – in order to provide empirical data points under postmodern restrictions?  It seems the use case may resolve this concern.

Over the coming weeks, I will attempt to design research-centric use cases which might be used to study and delineate how Foucault’s “Archaeology” might be studied empirically.

ACTIVITY: Archaeologizing through Use Case Diagramming (10 minutes)

Use Case Diagram (from WhatIs.com)
Use Case Diagram (from WhatIs.com)
  1. Read a basic introduction to use case diagrams at WhatIs.com (link).
  2. Choose a specific goal typical to (or implied by) the use, implementation, or design of your own Object of Study.
  3. Considering your own Objects of Study, consider how you might diagram and delineate the boundaries, actors, roles, and relationships present within a specific use case.
  4. Sketch a brief UC diagram for a specific instance, and bring in the sketch to our next course meeting.

References

Baudrillard, J., & Lotringer, S. (1987). Forget Foucault. New York, NY: Semiotext(e).

Foucault, M. (1979). Authorship: What is an Author? Screen, 20(1), 13-34.

Foucault, M. (2010). The Archaeology of Knowledge (A. M. Sherridan Smith, Trans.). New York: Random House.

Zamora, D. (2014, December 13). Peut-on critiquer Foucault? Retrieved January 24, 2016, from http://www.revue-ballast.fr/peut-on-critiquer-foucault/

Further Reading

Fox, S. (2000). Communities Of Practice, Foucault And Actor‐Network Theory. Journal of management studies, 37(6), 853-868.

Habermas, J., & Ben-Habib, S.. (1981). Modernity versus Postmodernity. New German Critique, (22), 3–14. http://doi.org/10.2307/487859

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Reading Connections – Understanding WiFi and Mobile Hubs as Networks

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Arthur C. Clarke, “Hazards of Prophecy: The Failure of Imagination” (1973).


Introduction

I think the most interesting facet of attempting to understand (or rather demonstrating that I understand) WiFi and Broadband mobile networks is the fundamental, nearly-fractal complexity of exploring the “networks” at the core of connectivity.  A close second, then would be the fact that I was able to locate precisely zero sources that managed to synthesize an understanding of networks at multiple levels of complexity (e.g.: network-level, device-level, data-level, global- or regional-level).

Give me a systems engineer, and I’ll be able to keep up in a conversation about network management and maintenance.  Give me a grandmother with her first laptop and a Time Warner account, and I’ll be able to set up her LAN network.  Give me a challenge of putting the two of them in the same room together and facilitating conversation, and I think I’d go insane before we even agreed on terms.

This is the WiFi antenna from my own model of smartphone, the Motorola Moto X (1st Generation). Functionally equivalent to a household mast antenna from two decades ago in terms of antenna gain, and with approximately twenty times the throughput, this device weighs under a quarter of an ounce, and is less than two inches across. (Source: iFixit.com)

My original notes for explaining this concept here were over seven pages long.  As implied in the epigraph above, WiFi may as well be functionally equivalent to magic for the traditional or typical consumer of digital media.  At the very least, the sum of its apparent parts is certainly far beyond the capability of the whole.

In the end, I settled for discussing simply the device-level, local- or immediate-proximity networks that would be most familiar to the lay reader.  It would certainly behoove the reader to be aware of concerns having to do with frequency, channels, and wavelength, electromagnetic and physical interference sources, baud rate, UL certification, communications protocols,  packet security, firewalls, loss differentiation, or encryption.  To do so, however, would merely move us one layer lower in an infinitely-regressing series of networks that would simply require further illumination, bring about further complexity, and require precise, nuanced technical understanding of everything from quantum theory to advanced cryptography.

Even in reduction after reduction, it would – to put it another way – be indistinguishable from magic.


Understanding Broadband as a First-Order Network

The simplest understanding of wireless networks, then, is the first-order network of things communicating with other things through the process of wireless connectivity.  Subnetworks within this network would include, perhaps, workgroups or subnets in Local Area Networks (LANs), Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs), and Personal Area Networks (PANs).  Devices themselves may be structurally and hierarchically interpreted as networks of parts which similarly communicate and connect in order to receive, interpret, respond to, and disseminate information (data).  Above the (W)LAN or PAN level, there are Wide Area Networks (WAN), or connections of PANs, LANs, and WLANs (up to and including the entirety of the Internet itself.)

Figure 1: Rudimentary diagram of mobile device connecting to Internet data services and other user devices through telecom network. Carrier services are also connected to the PSTN through the Mobile Switching Center.
Figure 1: Rudimentary diagram of mobile device connecting to Internet data services and other user devices through telecom network. Carrier services are also connected to the PSTN through the Mobile Switching Center.

The mobile broadband environment exists primarily to do four things: 1) connect mobile devices with each other (e.g. cellular telecom), 2) connect mobile devices to “landline” telecom exchange networks (PSTN, or Public Switched Telephone Network), 3) connect mobile devices to the Internet or other public networks, and 4) to connect mobile devices to proximal networks and attached devices (e.g. PANs and WLANs).  For instances 1, 2, and 3, see Figure 1 (left).  For instances 3 and 4, see Figure 2 below right.  The primary challenge in communicating these networks to the lay user is threefold – typical users experience difficulty processing the necessary speed, area, and complexity of such networks, which makes it difficult to parse the reality that a simple voice call over a mobile network may include as many as two dozen “handshakes” between network nodes, including servers, centers, stations, extenders, and other devices.

Figure 2: Rudimentary diagram of mobile device serving as a central node in a Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN).
Figure 2: Rudimentary diagram of mobile device serving as a central “hotspot” node in a Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) while also connecting with additional devices and networks through Bluetooth, NFC/IR, and RF signals.  Present beyond the Data Carrier/ISP is the Internet itself.

Although Local Area and Personal Networks are significantly less complicated in terms of scale, they are not significantly less complex in terms of the variety of technologies and protocols necessary to process and facilitate data transfer and maintain the total network ecology.  The typical mobile “smartphone” device may have upwards of four or five different wireless communications methods and protocols, including Infrared (IR) transmission and Near Field Communication (NFC) to communicate with line-of-sight devices, WiFi to communicate with WLAN networks, Bluetooth Ultra-High-Frequency signals (BT, UHF) to maintain connection to accessories and local devices, and finally Radio Frequency carrier signals (RF) to connect with the mobile network itself.

Rudimentary diagram of devices interacting in a Local Area Network (LAN).
Figure 3: Rudimentary diagram of devices interacting in a Hybrid Wireless Local Area Network (LAN/WLAN).

Due to this complexity, and the general cultural expectation of smartphones to serve as devices that “just work” as functional nodes, it may be best to instead explore the nature of networks as functional collectives through the LAN/WLAN specifically (See Figure 3.)

Most users will view WLANs as, quite simply, the way to get the Internet onto their personal devices (e.g., laptops, smart televisions, smartphones, WiFi-enabled dishwashers, or even home security systems.)  This interpretation of the network is functional for the vast majority of users; however, such users often do not consider the network as a whole ecology, including subnetworks – such as (at just the first-order network level) the RF connection between a laptop and a wireless mouse, the mediated WiFi communication between a smartphone and a wireless printer, or the facilitated handshake between a device and a central modem/router through a device such as a wireless network repeater or range extender.  They are also not likely to think about less overt elements of the network, such as protocols which allow for burst transmission in order to maintain connectivity during periods of interference, channel switching in order to minimize latency, appointment of Internet Protocol addresses (IP) to devices using the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), et cetera.  And yet, without these functions, the WLAN network is effectively disconnected – not only from the outside world, but from itself.


ACTIVITY – Devices as Nodes, Connections as Edges, Networks as… Networks

In the face of such complexity of protocols, forms, devices, and connections, it may be best to consider WiFi/Mobile devices as nodes within a networked topology, and consider connections as edges of topological map of a digital territory, rather than as a bi-directional relationship between individual devices.

Indeed, though we do not often think of such limitations overtly, spacial proximity and other physical restrictions are often as important to the topology of a network as is any connection protocol.

As an exercise in understanding the complexity, scale, and speed of such networks and your device’s place within a hybrid wireless/wired topology, please consider completing one (or all!) of the following activity steps:

1) Through your command prompt or systems terminal, run a netstat analysis of your device’s connections over WLAN, LAN, and WAN (for Windows CMD prompt, enter “netstat f”; for MacOS terminal, enter “$ netstat ap tcp”.)

After reviewing your active connections within and without your local network, consider the following questions:

  • Sample Netstat analysis - Windows Command Prompt
    Figure 4: Sample Netstat analysis – Windows Command Prompt

    Did you expect this many connections routed through your device at once? More? Fewer?

  • Can you identify specific connections and the processes they are driving (e.g. internet radio, Netflix, cloud storage, software update services, etc.)?
  • What percentage of your connections are internal?  External?

2) Visit http://www.monitis.com/traceroute/  and track your mobile/wireless devices’ IP node connections in “pinging” a WAN network node (e.g., your favorite website).

Figure 4: Sample traceroute - baidu.com from Norfolk, VA.
Figure 5: Sample traceroute – baidu.com from Norfolk, VA.  This search traveled 11,380 kilometers at approximately 51,000,000 m/s – averaging 1/6th the speed of light over transmission.

Using IP Geolocation, the service will trace and locate connections for each of your server hops in connecting to another website.  For instance, it required 223ms for my laptop to connect to the Chinese search engine, Baidu.com, which has its primary server in Beijing.  In order to reach that server, my connection was routed through 24 separate nodes.  For your own search, consider the following questions:

  • Were you surprised to learn where servers were located for your favorite web content?
  • Consider the latency between your device and final connection node.  Approximately how far (and how quickly) have you “traveled” for access to this node?

3) Login to your wireless router for your home network and poke around.

Most routers default to a browser-accessible IP address at 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.0.1 – if not, you can locate your local host IP by entering “ipconfig – all” in your Windows CMD prompt, or “ifconfig” in your MacOS terminal.  Enter your localhost IP to access your router controls.  Consider locating your active connections tab (location will vary according to router manufacturer, model, and firmware) and seeing who and what is connected to your network.

Figure 6: Sample connected devices on WiFi network. Notice that device IDs often indicate device location, type, or owner depending upon settings, type, and configuration.
Figure 6: Sample connected devices on WiFi network. Notice that device IDs often indicate device location, type, or owner depending upon settings, type, and configuration.
  • Can you identify what devices (and how many) are currently (or recently) connected to your network?  What connections stand out?  Does anything you see here surprise you?  (e.g. “Dan’s iPhone” was last connected to my network on Friday, January 15th. However, due to a formatting bug, Dan’s “license” on my network will never expire; rather, it is set to expire in December of 1901, a date which will never occur within the system.)
  • Have you ever worked inside your own network configuration before?  What features surprise you?  What features were you unaware were available in your own network?

 

4) Finally, consider what these activities reveal about the breadth, complexity, and scale of data networks.

We’ve already investigated how many connections must be parsed outside the local network to connect to external resources.  Consider this in coordination with the internal network data from this activity.  Think about the following:

  • How many processes (approximately) must take place in order for your phone, for example, to receive something like a Facebook update push notification over broadband, or for your laptop to receive an email over WiFi?
  • Given the fragmented, multi-faceted sub-networks through which data must travel to reach your device (and vice versa), what sorts of data hierarchy, protocols, and technology must be in place in the physical world to facilitate this communication?  Consider looking into energy or financial costs for maintaining a for-profit data center, for instance.
  • Given the complexity of these networks, consider the following (philosophical) questions:  Where is the Internet? Does your device access it, or does it exist within it?  If the WiFi/Broadband network is broadcasting actively even when you are not connected to it, does the Internet exist in your home even if you are not “attached” to the network?

References

Brain, M., Wilson, T. V., & Johnson, B. (2001). How WiFi Works. Retrieved January 18, 2016, from http://computer.howstuffworks.com/wireless-network1.htm

Coustan, D., Strickland, J., & Perritano, J. (2001). How Smartphones Work. Retrieved January 18, 2016, from http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/smartphone.htm

Marling, C. (n.d.). Mobile Broadband Beginners Guide: What is mobile broadband and how does it work? Retrieved January 18, 2016, from https://www.broadbandgenie.co.uk/mobilebroadband/help/mobile-broadband-beginners-guide

Online Visual Traceroute. (n.d.). Retrieved January 18, 2016, from http://www.monitis.com/traceroute/

Why Use Networks? | IGCSE ICT. (n.d.). Retrieved January 18, 2016, from http://www.igcseict.info/theory/4/why/index.html

 

Proposal: Object of Study – Blackboard Learn

Blackboard Learn +

“It may not be correct to say that Blackboard’s push beyond learning management system market took its focus completely away from its core LMS platform, but whatever degree of focus remained on Blackboard’s LMS, it wasn’t the right kind. […] Personally, I’ve never met someone who gushed about the Blackboard user experience, which was handicapped by feature creep, while, over the course of your four years at college, the speed, agility and core user experience stayed the same. And not in a good way. As a result, Blackboard’s competitors grew in size right alongside it, most notably Moodle, even though no one has yet even come close to supplanting it. But you ask any software-related (education) startup which company it wants to “take down” or disrupt, and 9 out of 10 will say Blackboard. Sure, that comes with being a leader, but it also comes when your products suck” (Empson, 2012).


My proposed object of study for this semester is, to speak plainly, the functional structure of Blackboard Learn (BBL) as a rhetorically-charged, poorly-designed teaching and learning platform for composition and other English Studies coursework.  I had originally argued for looking at LMSs in general, but his would most likely be too vague and broad for the time period of the course.

BBL is an interesting OoS in terms of Network Theory because of its multi-faceted, multi-user, aggregating (aggravating?) structure for information creation, sharing, presentation, and access.  The other reason BBL makes for an interesting OoS is because it is widespread, highly-utilized… and yet near-universally viewed to be a terrible, corporatized solution in search of a problem.  Even a cursory internet search yields many less than promising reviews, forum discussions, and articles—from both instructors and students—with titles such as “Blackboard: Learn, Hate, Hack,” “Why is Blackboard So Bad?”,  and “Ugly Software (like Blackboard) Gives Education a Bad Name” (and my personal favorite, “Blackboard is the Metallica of e-Learning.”)

Text reads: "Yo dawg, I heard you have finals, so I shutdown [sic] Blackboard."
A student-created complaint about Blackboard “meme-ified” in the “Xzibit Yo Dawg” template.

Students universally loathe it.  Teachers mostly hate it.  Administrators are typically resigned to it.  Even the people who originally created and deployed it have publicly admitted that it is deeply flawed platform. More positive teacher reviews of the platform rarely land higher on the scale of praise than “not as bad as everybody says, if you use it correctly and in a severely limited fashion.”  So why is it so widespread?  I believe Network Theory may contribute to an understanding of the corporate, economic, legal, and political exigencies which drive BBL’s adoption at institutions and startup competitors’ inability to compete with Blackboard Inc. and the Blackboard line of products and services.

Text Reads: "Disables your browser's proofreading capabilities" and "Doesn't let you edit your posts."
A student-created complaint about Blackboard “meme-ified” in the template of “Scumbag Steve.”

Especially for the composition student and instructor, BBL provides a lot of pedagogical and learning challenges; having been a space not really created specifically to facilitate iterative, process-based writing practices, it has nonetheless been adopted system-wide through something of an administrative shotgun-blast approach to classroom support.  However, especially when thinking about the platform as functioning within an educational network, this administrative deployment becomes especially interesting as a projection of the neo-liberal academic approaches of the 21st century.

That is to say, for members of the field of English Studies the existence and deployment of this platform is not simply a pedagogical concern.  It is not simply a usability concern, an intellectual property concern, a technical communications concern, or even a professionalization concern.  At its core, the very existence of BBL within the modern academy is a cultural, rhetorical manifestation of specific ideologies—ideologies which are typically communicated to students without the input or consideration of instructors.

These ideologies can be identified, considered, understood, and then connected to practices, platforms, and communities through the use of Network Theory.  The ways in which rhetorical claims propagate through the software itself and the software’s role in the institutions of higher learning (and the ways in which the platform accentuates to students the disempowerment and decentralization of both student and instructor) are especially fascinating specifically because Blackboard has become such a quotidian (and yet unspoken) facet of today’s higher education landscape.


References

Empson, R. (2012, October 18). Blackboard: With Both Co-founders Now Gone, It’s The End Of An Era For The Education Software Giant. Retrieved from http://techcrunch.com/2012/10/18/with-both-co-founders-now-gone-its-the-end-of-an-era-for-education-software-giant-blackboard/