Science and Education News

ppRectors are arguing about Unified National Exam for bachelors

Rectors of Russian institutes split over necessity of possible launch of Unified National Exam (UNE) for bachelors during few next years. This idea was offered by the Heads of the Ministry of Education and Science of the RF in February.

Vladimir Filippov, Rector of the Peoples' Friendship University of Russia, told at the press conference: “When Andrey A. Fursenko told about UNE for bachelors I thought that this principle was the right one. The principle “I teach and I grade myself” is no good. One should study and others – evaluate. We have the experience in high school. It was tested in the system of the Ministry of Public Health – before the students pass therapy and surgery exam, a representative of the Ministry of Public Health comes to the institute and brings computer test of one hundred points system. A student answers the questions and put a mark to himself. There should be at least 70 points of 100, it is less then the student will not be allowed to pass the exam. 15-20 students did not pass the exam of this system per year and left to Africa or Siberia without diploma of higher education. So why do we have another approach to teachers or engineers?”

Moreover according to Mr. Filippov there is another way – to pass exams for professional sustainability in the centers of each speciality. But it is a hard long and expensive way so he thinks UNE for bachelors can be the most practice instrument for evaluation of graduates’ knowledge.

Before that Victor Sadovnichy, Rector of the Moscow State University told that he was against this offer. He highlighted: “I will oppose as it is still an idea. Let’s discuss what are the results of UNE and why it is necessary. It is not a final exam, the final exam does exist (for bachelors) with exam commission and graduation work”.

According to Mr. Sadovnichy possibly analogue of UNE after bachelor’s program is necessary only for those wishing to start master’s program. He told: “It is an entrance exam but for the master’s program. We need UNE for this. We don’t need it for any other purpose. A student has a bachelor’s degree and works. For what purpose does he need UNE? It is for those who want to start master’s program. It shall be discussed thoroughly, and I suppose we need to think it over once more. Anyway I will discuss it”.

 Andrey Fursenko, Minister of Education and Science of the RF announced in february that analogue of UNE for bachelors will be tested in the nearest two or three years. According to Mr. Fursenko “it shall be a serious written exam to be graded by experts not belonging to the institute where a bachelor studied”.

The Minister supposes that “this independent expertise shall be realized with the involvement of employers and shall be separated from those who were teaching these students”.

r_1524Scientific Forum and Olympic Games “Lomonosov-2012” started in Moscow

Youth Scientific Forum and Olympic Games “Lomonosov-2012” started in the Moscow State University. Many people consider this forum as one of the most powerful youth movements in the world.

 19th International Scientific Conference is the most important event of the Forum. More than 15 thousands students, young scientists and postgraduate students from 30 countries take part in the Conference. The aim is to share experiences and develop the unique scientific and educational space. The Forum is dedicated to the year of Russian history and the year of CIS informatization. The themes will reflect in the discussions. 32 sections and many sub-sections will be organized, and the main subjects of contemporary fundamental and applied sciencs will included into each one.

Flexible-ePaperWhy is flexible screen for digital books by LG so great but so unuseful?

While Rosnano was presenting bookreader with flexible screen gleefully and could not determine the launch date, it was left behind by LG. The Koreans were the first who managed “e-inks” to fold and not to break. Several manufacturers (names are still kept in secret) will issue bookreaders with their flexible paper only in a month.

Flexible screen does not mean that the gadgets can be circinated – their cases will be quite hard to protect the processor and other insides. But LG approached realization of an idea of e-newspaper for flies killing.

New model has even more important consumer advantages – if a tall man drops a books the screen will not break. It is really cool because fragileness of the e-books was always their weak spot. To change the screen is not much cheaper than to buy a new gadget. This fact kept from market trick “pay once and never pay for expensive paper book”. (Never - is a delightful prospect but it isn’t a good idea to buy a new gadget each year.)

iiiApple’s capitalization exceeded 600 billions USD.

Apple’s shares price rose to 644 USD for a period, so total capitalization of the company exceeded 600 billions USD. The only company during the whole history managed to bridge this figure – capitalization of Microsoft as for December 30, 1999 made 619 billions USD. Now it dropped to 260 billions USD.

This year Apple’s shares price rose in total for 59%; and analytics suppose that the market underestimates the company yet despite its high incomes and net profit gained due to the success of mobile gadgets with iOS. Topeka Capital Markets analytic forecasts further growth of apple’s share price. It states object price of 800 USD and in future supposes the growth up to 1001 USD. With such a shares price the company’s capitalization will reach trillion USD.

Piper Jaffray analytic rises object price also but not so much – just up to 718 USD. Its previous estimation made 670 USD. It also supposes that underestimated the perspectives of growth of the company on the market of smartphones and tablets.

Some analytics suppose that leap of the course was caused by announcement about payment of dividends and purchase of a part of shares but according to the authors of Asymco weblog growth of course began long before the announcement.

iiYandex.Money is the most popular e-money system among Russians

TNS Company was analyzing relation of Russians to the e-money systems for online payments during February and March. According to the results Yandex.Money is the most popular e-money system in Russia.

15% of cities’ inhabitants paid for purchases or services by Yandex.Money at least once during last year. QIWI.Purse and WebMoney take10%, PayPal- 6% and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. – 2%.

The polled people are from the cities of more than 800 thousands inhabitants from 18 to 45 years old. 12.3 millions of people (88% of the polled) know about e-money, 3.9 millions (27%) – paid with e-money at least once during the last 6 months.

iGartner: tablets world market will double this years

Garner Analytical Agency published a forecast for tablet computers world market. According to the analytics’ opinion volume of the sold tablets will make 118.9 millions units that is two as many as it was in 2011 (60 millions units).

Apple will stay the market leader; according to Gartner its tablets will take 61.4%. Leading position of Apple can’t be shaken either by Microsoft or international sales of Kindle Fire.

 Share of Android OS on the tablets world market will make 31.9%. Gardner supposes that the third place will be taken by Windows 8 OS to be issued this year (it will take 4.1% of the tablets world market share). According to analytics the current situation will not change during the nearest 5 years, by share of Windows 8 will be growing gradually and it will make 11.8% in 2016.

iGoogle Art Project includes 151 museums

 Google Art Project launched last year providing virtual excursion through the largest museums of the world, added 134 new museums from 40 countries to 17. Users can study 32 thousands exhibits of high resolution.

 According to the Telegraph newspaper Amit Sood, Head of Google Art Project told: “Art Project is becoming global thank to our new partners all over the world. Now we consider not only an Indian student wishing to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, but also an American student wishing to visit National Gallery of Modern Art in Deli”.

 From today onwards Russia will be presented by the State Russian Museum and the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts except for the Hermitage and the Tretyakov Gallery.

Besides among new Google’s partners there are the Musée d'Orsay in Paris, the Musée Condé in the Château de Chantilly, the Palace of Fontainebleau, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Imperial War Museum in London, the Museum of Modern Art in São Paulo, Brazil, the Kröller-Müller Museum in the Netherlands, Munch Museum in Oslo, the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico, Museum of Islam in Quatar, the Hungarian National Gallery and the National Museum of Indonesia.

In USA the project will cover the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in San-Francisco, the Art Museum of Philadelphia, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, the Rubin Museum of Art in New York and the White House.

According to the Los Angeles Times the level of involvement in the project is individual for each museum: in some cases Google films full virtual tour inside it, in the others just digital copies of the selected masterpieces are provided. Thus for example, in California virtual tour is available for the J. Paul Getty Museum only which decided to show 3 thousands exhibits at once.

Initially it was possible to find panoramic films of the halls of 17 largest museums of the world with digital copies of the exposed exhibits. Each museum chose one masterpiece to be presented in “gigapixel” ultrahigh resolution – thus the Tretyakov Gallery presented “The appearance of Christ before the People” by Aleksander Ivanov.


pictureWikipedia refused Google maps

 Maps of OpenStreetMap project will be used in Wikipedia mobile applications for Android and iOS instead of Google Maps.

 According to CNET News supposedly the refusal can be explained by Google’s plan to collect payment from the resources using API Maps. Payment shall be executed in case if number of Maps loadings exceeds 25 thousands per day. The payment is 4-10 USD per each thousand of loadings above quota.

 Earlier Apple and social net Foursquare (in application iPhoto for iOS) refused Google Maps in favor of OpenStreetMap.

 OpenStreetMap or OSM is a non-commercial cartographic project. It is financed as Wikipedia is by means of voluntary donations. A map can be redacted by any registered user. Maps are distributed with Creative Commons license.

google_160Google web-storage will offer 5 Gb of free disk space

 Supposedly the new service will be called Google 

Drive. According to the published picture that server will offer 5 Gb of free disk space to the subscribers and not 1 Gb as it was announced before. Eventually the accounts of big volume will be provided on a fee paid basis.

  It is said that the users could work with the web-storage through a browser and clients software from PCs, tablets and smartphones. Amendments made on one device shall be automatically synchronized with the others.

 Supposedly Google Drive will let to exchange links for content. In future integration with Google Apps web-applications will be possible.

zasedRussia grew up for 32 positions in the world rating of e-government development

 In the rating of e-governments completed by the UN, Russia grew up for 32 positions – from 59 up to 27 place. March 15, at the Board of Presidium of the Government of the Russian Federation, Igor Schegolev, Head of Ministry of Connection and Mass Communications of Russia, reported to Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister, about the results of the UN research.

Minister told the Prime Minister that the ratings of the UN which is “a trends and criteria setter in the sphere of creation of e-governments”, are completed since 2003 and Russia was in the sixth ten traditionally. But this year there was a rise – we grew up for 32 positions – from 59th up to 27th.

Igor Schegolev marked that Russia is a leader of Eastern Europe and is leading with gap in BRICS. Head of Ministry of Connection and Mass Communications of Russia, highlighted: “There is a separate sub-group in the rating of big countries with population of more than 100 millions as it is evident that cost and efforts are larger. In this group we are on the third place after USA and Japan”. According to the minister it is a good figure, and this rating was completed in accordance with the data of the beginning of 2011. Igor Schegolev is sure that “taking into consideration our efforts made since then (this year we are going to have a new stage – distribution of e-government from regions to city councils) we can suppose that in the next rating that will be completed in two years we would be in the top 20. It is one of our aims and it was the aim in the strategy of 2015 and 2020”.

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