Montaj malam Pra Graduan 2010

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Web 2.0 Social Spaces and Techno-pedagogical Skills in Pre-service teacher

Web 2.0 Social Spaces and Techno-pedagogical Skills in Pre-service teacher

            Web 2.0 Application by definition is an Architecture of Participation built on the World Wide Web (Richard Monson-Haefel). Web 2.0 is a term describing changing trends in the use of World Wide Web technology and Web design that aims to enhance creativity, information sharing, and collaboration among users. It led to the development and evolution of Web-based communities and hosted services such as social networking sites, video sharing sites, wikis, blog etc (Wikipedia). Increasingly,Web 2.0 has become a topic that dominates discussions related to advances in the Internet. Some suggest that Web 2.0 is a transformed and more advances in the Internet. Others appear critical, but only incremental of Web 2.0 and argue that there is no such thing progression of the Internet to a new level enabled by growth in capabilities of software and hardware technologies. For them, Web 2.0 is meaningless “buzz” word (Daniel Churchill, 2007). In any case, it appears that Web 2.0 is at least a metaphor that signifies the number of novel technologies possibilities that have emerged on the Internet, mostly since the dot-com bubble deflation in 2001. These novel applications under Web 2.0 constitute advances in number of ways from the traditionally predominant uses of the internet as an information-delivery channel.
            Web 2.0 Application often enables users not only to consume but also to create information and contribute to the sites by publishing content. In this context, Web 2.0 is also referred as to “read-write web” (Gillmor, 2004; Richardson, 2006), while a blog is best described as Web-based publication system that allows an ordinary Internet user to create a Web page   consisting of periodical articles (Wikipedia). In general, no sophisticated technical skills are required to create a blog. The final web page can contain text, graphics, animations and other media and provide links to other sites. The general web community or selected group of individuals can read this Web page and add their comments to the articles. As a part from standard text-based blogs, there are other blogs such as linkblogs ( a collection of links maintained by an individual) and a moblogs (blogging with content posted from mobile devices. A blogger is someone who has a personalblog and provides periodical posts, while the blogsphere is the community of bloggers.
            Wiki is also a Web-based publication system, which differs from blogs in that it supports an ordinary internet user to participate in collective publishing activities to produce internet-based informational resources. The best known collection of informational resources developed with wiki is Wikipedia (Wikipedia). Articles in Wikipedia are written by individuals interested in particular topics. Once article is initiated and written in its first version by someone, others are able to edit it and upgrade its content. The system keeps the history of versions of the article, and there might also be some accompanied discussions about the credibility and accuracy of its content.

The widespread of Web 2.0
            A number of innovative web 2.0 applications that have come to notice through the last couple years have been shown to be possibly some of the most socially engaging phenomena in human history. Information from major new sources suggests that currently millions of people across the world visit Web 2.0 sites. These digital end citizens (Katz, 1997) provide their contribution in forms such as multimedia content, blogs, comments and tags that develop new partnership and discover new knowledge from a pool of collective intelligence existing in these environments.
            For example some major new sources report that the You Tube digital video repository, which emerged just over a year ago, attracts more than 25 millions hits a day (Hardy, 2006). It was declared as the invention of the year for 2006. Ordinary internet users have uploaded over 40 millions unique video clips to this site and regularly comment upon, rank, tag and recommended these resources. You Tube was initially set up by three individuals who used their credit card funds as start-up capital where it was acquired late in 2006 by Google in a deal valued at US$1.6 Billion. Similarly, the social networking site My Space reportedly has over US$90 millions members (BBC News, 2006). News Corp acquired it early in 2006 from its original founders, intermix media, for almost US$600 Millions. Google has committed US$900 Millions to My Space for integrating their search engine in its environment.
            Wikipedia is another Web 2.0 phenomenon, housing over 5 million articles in over 100 languages (Wikipedia, 2006) and it is believe to increase rapidly over years. It has become one of the world’s most visited Websites, with millions of hits and thousands of edit and new articles per day (Giles, 2005). Finally, blogs demand mention. Reportedly, blogs have contributed to the enormous growth of internet sites over the last few years. The Web 2.0 site technocrat tracks to be monitoring around logs, and claims to be monitoring around 60 million (Technoratti, 2006) although there are many more on the internet. As many as 75,000 blogs are created everyday, and bloggers (Reynolds, 2006) calls them an army of irregulars – add over 50,000 updates every hour. Reportedly, 8 millions Americans have created a blog (BBC News, 2005), while it predicted in 2006 that by now (2007) there would be up to 60 million bloggers just in China (Reuters, 2006).

Web 2.0 Social Spaces
            Web 2.0 Applications are usually about engaging people in collective activities in a social space where they, for example, converse, exchange resources and ideas or simply have some fun. Examples of web 2.0 social spaces are MySpace and Facebook. It is often suggested than in Web 2.0, individuals benefit from “harnessing the collective inelligence” of communities (O’Reilly, 2005).
            In Web 2.0 Social Spaces, individuals can create, manage, and publish information and resources that they want others to access. This might include blogs, information about favorite’s activities, movies, and bands or images and audio or video clips. Members of such spaces usually identify and connect with other individuals and form sub-communities of interest (Daniel Churchill, 2007). Typically a member has his or her Web page with resources and other content that includes information about friends, with links to their spaces. By visiting a friend’s space, other member can discover “friends of a friend” and expand their network by adding some of these to their spaces.
            Resources sharing and referencing system are another powerful for of Web 2.0 Social Spaces. Examples are YouTube (for sharing video), del. icio. us (for referencing websites), Flickr (for sharing image), Napster (for sharing music), and CiteUlike (for referencing of academic articles). However, these systems are not just about sharing resources and referencing. Usually, such system allows users to add a resource and through this process also to create their own tags or label descriptive of that resources.
            This system also allows individuals to add comments, provide recommendations, and assign a number of stars to the resource indicating its value in some way. These tags and other information surrounding the resource then become useful to others to dig through when searching for resources. Others can locate resources that are tagged with a particular tag, filter out resources that are evaluated with five or fewer stars, or explore resources provided by a particular person. In addition, such websites usually track tags used, including the number of times they were used, and plot this information into a “cloud” of tags which are clickable and linked to resources that use them (Daniel Churchill, 2007). This internet-based information retrieval methodology is referred to by the Web 2.0 community as “folksonomy”.
            In such systems we are also able to access recommendations from the crowd about a resource, explore how the majority values the resource, and by examining tags used by the community to describe that resource, and explore the collective perception of it. It is often said that much information retrieval is amplified by the collective activities of all users of the system, and such environment are spoken of places where individuals can harness the “wisdom of crowds” (Suriowecki, 2005). These systems often allow individuals to subscribe for information, such as when a particular resource that is marked with a particular tag has been added to the collection.

Education and Web 2.0
Although right now it is not clear why Web 2.0 attracts such a higher number of ordinary internet users, fully understanding why people behave as they do is a classical challenge for social sciences. One thing is certain based on the enormous numbers of Web 2.0 Internet users: A large number of students will be coming to our classes with understandings and expectations of technologies aligned with Web 2.0. These understanding and expectations will reflect the world and technology as they know it. In education, we are somehow stuck with a more rigid culture that often results in our being reluctant or slow in adapting (Daniel Churchill, 2007).
            In education, we can learn from Web 2.0 to design a technology-integration strategy that leads to pedagogically more productive engagements meeting the profiles of our students, and being otherwise relevant to the world.  Web 2.0 is often seen as a “paradigm shift” to a new level of human understanding and expectations of the Internet and associated technologies (Daniel Churchill, 2007). An indicator that something is already moving on out there is the emergence of terms such as E-learning”. This shows that the educations nowadays is moving towards and using the most up-to-date technologies to enhance the process of learning.
In education, we can explore the benefits of a social space that supports the sharing of resources for teachers. In Web 2.0 Social Spaces, the system will allow teachers to share, catalog, and reuse digital resources. Surrounding this repository will be a social space. A repository based on Web 2.0 ideas should be in many ways different form and conceptually more advanced than learning object repositories currently promoted (Merlot, 2008). The sharing of resources is not the primary purpose for the existence of a digital repository and social space. Resources are a kind of “carrot on a stick” to bring teachers into a community that is willing to co-exist and contribute (Daniel Churchill, 2007).

The main idea of this system is the social space, where teacher benefit from harnessing the ideas and activities of colleagues. Through discovery of useful pedagogical ideas, sharing of experiences, recommendations, and ranking of resources, and digging through tags and other methods of “community plumbing” within this space, the teacher would contribute and develop their own knowledge and pedagogical expertise, while increasing the base of available resources at their disposal (Merlot, 2008). In this context, the system might serve as a novel and powerful collective intervention strategy, leading to the advancement of teaching and learning.
In education, unless we give serious attention to Web 2.0 development, we could be encountering students who have expectations that are incompatible with our own thinking and the ways we integrate technology into our pedagogical practices. It is also a danger that unless we accommodate Web 2.0 developments in our teaching, we might find ourselves producing students unable to function in the Web 2.0 literate world outside. We need to explore possible implications of Web 2.0 and mobilize resources to research and test applications of these technologies in teaching and learning (Daniel Churchill, 2007).

Techno-pedagogical skills and Techno-pedagogical Exploration
We define technology exposure as something far more than just having students develop skills in particular technology. Technology exposure includes all of the following: integration methods, lab protocol, developing technology skills, and learning how to gather tutorials and learning materials from the internet. Virtual field trips would be an effective method to assist in exposing pre-service teachers to real-life or real-classroom technology integration. Virtual field trip has the potential to target two major areas of common concern in teacher technology preparation. First, they assist in addressing what the best practices are for preparing students to work in a computer lab.
Many of the pre-service teachers were unaware of the basic classroom issues of working with technology. As a result, the virtual field’s trip raises questions for current and future consideration: How do I teach in a lab? What is the best way to structure a lab? How can I facilitate collaborative inquiry in lab? The virtual field trip also has the potential to have students see both exemplary and questionable practices and critically reflect on various applications of technology in classroom. This leads to the second major benefit of virtual field trips by having pre-service teachers develop critical reflection skills (Alain Breuleux & Pat Baker. 1999). Learning to question what is happening when they see technology being used in the virtual trip classroom environments forces pre-service teacher to engage in active, critical, and collaborative reflection.
The example of publishing student work will provide with multiple opportunities to learn new web techniques from advanced students in the classes. Richard (2003) posited that, “I rarely hold a class these days without having students writes a technology autobiography early in the term. I find, consistently, that some students enter the course with, what I would call, advanced literacy skills related to web development. These skills and their access to advanced software and hardware allow them to manipulate and incorporate images, animations, audio, and video clips and place them artfully onto web pages. Or they may have programming skills that allow them to create interactive surveys through which the class might gather information from online visitors.”
Students usually remain open to valuing their new literacy skills, therefore there is no reason why, together, can’t explore and access these new technologies critically. Richard (2003) posited that ‘I usually require that these technically advanced students not only produce materials, interfaces, or media for the class, but also demonstrate how they created these products for the class and show us where other students (and I!) can go to acquire the skill they posses. As a group, we spend time analyzing the rhetorical effectiveness of their web development. How sustainable it is? Who benefits and who excluded from using this new media?
Students can become experts in the class and enhance their techno-pedagogical skills when they learnt by time about next generation web tools and where to go to learn more through Web-based technology exploration. As Richard (2003) stated on his research, “It is difficult for me to keep up with the film and conversation threads in real time. For most students however, it seems to be much less of an issue. They watch the film (It is best to choose one that students have already seen), make observations, talk about others perceptions and relate personal experiences all at once. In essence they are exploring a media experience that is largely beyond their teacher’s ability”.

Building Techno-pedagogical Skills in Pre-service Teacher

            Learning and teaching with technology is hard, it can be overwhelming, and the field is always changing (Jacobsen, Clifford, and Friesen 2001). Although pre-service teachers do have a degree of knowledge with regard to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT’s), but still they have little know-how or techno-pedagogical ability with which to integrate those technologies into their teaching practices (Karsenti, 2001, 35). It is the reason why higher education institute have an eye on developing techno-pedagogical skills in students and it is needed to provide technology integration experiences including selecting and assessing software, hardware, and peripherals as well as approaches to integrative instructional technology for students completing a Bachelor of Education at the University (Alberta, Canada).
            Preparing teachers to use technology effectively is a major area of concern for teacher education. Effective technology use includes such activities as linking curriculum outcomes with various technologies, establishing a learning context of discovery and process in the use of technology, collaborating with others both face-to-face and virtually to achieve learning outcomes, stimulating real world environments and assessing outcomes. In turn, faculty modeling of effective technology use has often been emphasized as a key means of illustrating such activities in teaching education programs. “If pre-service teacher education’s is to make a difference in how teachers use technology, then teacher educators must model effective technology use” (Milligan and Robinson, 2000).
            While we agree that faculty modeling is necessary, though often absent, component of pre-service teacher preparation, it is only one part of developing techno-pedagogically skilled teachers. We must show pre-service teachers how to learn by outlining what process works for combining technology and pedagogy; they need to be exposed to theory and research on technology in order to develop evidence-based instructional strategies and a conceptual framework for integrating and evaluating technology applications (Corey Hadden, 2005). We have heard the argument that effective technology integration should begin with the curriculum area (such as social studies or science) and move to finding technologies (such as spreadsheets or digital imaging) that are appropriate for the given curriculum. This implies that educators should use technologies to assist in effectively and efficiently achieving curriculum objectives. Hadden (2004) attests that technology is best learned within the contexts of applications- that activities, project and problems that replicate real-life situations are among the most effective approaches for learning technology.
            It outlines an approach that encourages pre-service teachers to develop both techno-pedagogical skills and reflective practitioner skills (Corey Hadden, 2005). This process includes exploring features of various technologies, identifying the appropriateness of using various technologies in teaching and learning, and devising methods to infuse these technologies into their teaching and learning. Lorraine Beaudin (2005) posited that students learnt to be cognizant of the fact that we live in a culture of constant change, a technology may be appropriate today but not tomorrow. This philosophy underpins the programs and encourages students to be reflective in their teaching and learning. As Riel and Baker (2000) state, “the rapid speed of technological development brings new computer mediated tools to the classrooms door each year. Teachers have to make continual decisions about how to best utilize these tools in teaching, learning, and assessment”.

            All uses of technology have a critical edge to them, and as a teacher, they can choose to integrate those edgy moments into classes. Each activity provides learning opportunities for teacher and students during which can thoughtfully explore current changing practices as well as the more traditional, often restrictive, institutional expectations that we all have to live with (Richard, 2005). Web 2.0 Social Spaces can be used as a medium in techno-pedagogical exploration. It can serves as a novel and powerful collective intervention strategy, leading to advancement of teaching and learning (Beaudin L., 2005).
New working contexts require new practices, hence the redefinition of the competence evaluation process, as well as new assessment methods regarding the learning process itself. In order to boost the qualification of teachers and trainers, and educators in general, it is necessary to estab­lish proper contextual learning situations where educators can develop such competences to both learn and mentor their learners, and also peers. This should include new (self-) assessment possibilities, access to relevant information as well as tools for the creation of new content (Volungeviciene and Rutkauskiene, 2006). While Web 2.0 is used in some advanced cases, on the whole, online collaboration and social networking between teacher and student or between students themselves is not yet sufficiently exploited. (Kasperiúniené J., 2007). There are key areas educators should be empowered with to enable them to perform their revised roles as 21st century educators efficiently and effectively. 21st century skills are centred on the development of mentoring and Web 2.0 competences for teaching and learning (Nikolov, 2007; Grodecka, Wild and Kieslinger, 2008). It will not only place them in the 21st century e-skills sphere; it will equally enable them to mentor learners towards their future in a more autonomous, connected and contextual way, while they themselves also develop their own skills and practice.

How far the involvement of students in Web 2.0 Social Space?


Research question 1
How far the involvement of students in Web 2.0 Social Space?

  1. 1)      Do you have any social spaces account? How many?
  2. 2)      Do you participate actively in each social space that you joined?
  3. 3)      Do you enjoy participating in such spaces like chatroom, post comments etc

Research question 2
  1. What are the effects of usage of Web 2.0?
  2. 1)      How many hours in a day that you spend in such spaces?
  3. 2)      Does it affect your study schedule?
  4. 3)      Do you agree that social spaces helps you associates better among your friends?
  5. 4)      Do you agree that through this social spaces can enhances your techno-pedagogical skills.

Research question 3
Does Web 2.0 Social Spaces enhance the student’s learning experiences?

  1. 1)      Do you agree that Social Spaces could be a medium for you to share your knowledge’s with other friends in terms of sharing resources in pedagogical expertise?
  2. 2)      Have you ever use conference to discuss about academic or doing discussion group? With who?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

background for puppet show

model for puppet show background. the current puppet show conducted last week had a major problem on the background transition. so this is the possible model for the alternative background.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Agrobacterium Tumifacience

Agrobacterium Tumifacience
Compiled by: Hairul Anuar bin Sobikin

Agrobacterium tumefaciens is a ubiquitous soil borne pathogen responsible for Crown Gall disease , affecting many higher species of plant. The pathogen is a problem for agriculture all over the world. DNA transfer from Agrobacterium tumefaciens to eukaryotic cells is the only known example of interkingdom DNA transfer .
A. tumefaciens is most well known for its ability to integrate a small part of the Ti plasmid into the host plant genome, which causes the plant cells to become cancer cells and produce specific compounds called Opines, which the bacterium utilise as a carbon source. This property means that many textbooks class A. Tumefaciens as a genetic parasite, since the bacterium redirects the metabolic activities of the plant to produce compounds specific to the bacterium. It is this process which gives A. Tumefaciens its potential to be used as a tool for plant transformation.
Agrobacterium tumefaciens is a gram negative, motile, rod shaped bacterium which is non sporing, and is closely related to the N-fixing rhizobium bacteria which form root nodules on leguminous plants. The bacterium is surrounded by a small number of peritricious flagella. Virulent bacteria contain one or more large plasmids, one of which carry the genes for tumor induction and is known as the Ti (tumour inducing) plasmid. The Ti plasmid also contains the genes that determine the host range and the symptoms, which the infection will produce. Without this Ti plasmid, the bacterium is described as being non virulent and will not be able to cause disease on the plant
This organism inhabits the soil in many regions of the world. It often congregates around the roots of plants, trees, and shrubs to take advantage of nutrients which may leak from the root system to sustain it. As long as a plant remains healthy, Agrobacterium tumefaciens should not be a problem, as the surface layers of the roots will keep the bacteria out.
The Agrobacterium injects a plasmid (naked circular DNA) into the host (in this case tomato) cells.
The idea that the cell cycle could be regulated by chemicals was inspired by the relationship between Agrobacterium tumefaciens (a bacterium) and its host plants. An infection with this bacterium caused a rapidly growing tumor to develop in just about any tissue of suitable host species. This fact indicated that the cells of higher plants are totipotent (capable of becoming meristematic...changing its developmental fate). This tumor was a lump of undifferentiated (having no particular fate) cells. Once infected, the lump could be cured of its infection by either heat shock or by antibiotics and the tumor would continue to grow in a tumor form.
The Agrobacterium injects a plasmid (naked circular DNA) into the host (in this case tomato) cells. This plasmid is called the Ti (Tumor inducing) plasmid. This piece of prokaryotic DNA has two segments of DNA called the "left border" and the "right border" with genes in between. These "borders" permit recombination of the genes into the host genome. The genes turn on cytokinin synthesis!
This, in turn results in the development of a "crown gall" tumor on the plant. The fact that the plant can be cured of the bacteria later and the tumor continues to thrive, simply demonstrates that the Ti DNA has become a permanent addition to the host genome. The bacteria may be killed, but the genes remain in the cells.

This realization of course provided the smart researcher with a useful tool for transforming plant cells with foreign DNA. Anytime a scientist wants to insert an engineered gene into a plant cell, the gene simply has to be put between the borders of the Ti plasmid (probably along with an antibiotic resistance gene for selection purposes) and let the Agrobacterium inject the gene into the cells for incorporation in the genome. Of course we are interested in making a transgenic whole plant, so we cut out the cytokinin synthesis gene and replace it with the gene of our research interest. Since the cytokinin over-production genes are absent, the cells can develop into whole transgenic plants (thanks to totipotency of plant cells!). This process is briefly outlined below.

The relative amounts of cytokinins and auxins can regulate the differentiation that can occur from transformed cells. So when it is time to regenerate whole plants from engineered cells, the relative ratio of these two hormones regulates what develops. Here you can see an array of cytokinin concentrations and auxin concentrations on callus growth. The no hormone control is in the lower left corner.

Infection by Agrobacterium Tumefaciens
When a plant is injured, however, it allows the bacteria to enter, setting up an opportunity for the bacteria to colonize and cause crown gall disease. The bacteria themselves are actually not responsible; rather, the tumor is caused by a plasmid produced by the bacteria. This plasmid is known as a tumor inducing (Ti) plasmid, referencing the fact that it carries DNA which will cause tumors to develop. When bacteria are stripped of the Ti plasmid, they are still functional.
For plants infected with Agrobacterium tumefaciens, there may not be much to be done. The plants can be pruned to remove the growth, and measures such as soil sterilization can also help. In some cases, it may be necessary to fully remove plants and their roots and to sterilize the soil to start from scratch. Since it can take several years to bring production up to previous levels, this measure is often avoided, if possible, to cut down on losses caused by infection.
Crown Gall Disease
Crown Gall disease is a common plant pathogen, affecting over 600 types of plants. The disease mostly affects monocotyledonous species, such as woody and herbaceous plants and can be identified by the appearance of tumors or galls of varying size and shape on the lower stem and main roots of the plant. Crown Gall disease can affect many commercially important and valuable crops such as Grapes, Rice and Sugar Beet.
Crown Galls first appear as small, white, soft protrusions, initially found at the base of the plant stem. As the tumors enlarge, the surface takes on a mottled dark brown appearance due to the death and decay of the peripheral cells. The tumor usually appears either as a swelling of the plant tissue, or as a separate mass of tissue close to the plant surface, joined only by a narrow neck of tissue. Tumors can either be soft and spongy and may crumble on touch, or can be hard and appear knobby or knotty. Some tumors can reach up to 30cm in diameter; though 5-10cm is more common. The tumors may rot away in the autumn, only to re-appear again the following spring.
When infected with the bacterium, plants may also become stunted, produce small chlorotic leaves, and are more susceptible to extreme environmental conditions such as winter cold and wind.

Plant disease
Plant disease is currently a major problem facing the developed world. Currently as much as 30% of the yearly total production of food crops is lost due to plant disease. At the current time, there is enough food produced to feed the population, but only just. If the predicted population increase over the next 2-3 decades take place, it will be necessary to increase food production to meet demand. As such a large proportion of crops are lost to plant pathogens each year, there is currently much interest in developing strategies to increase plants natural resistance to pathogenic attack. A. tumefaciens can remain dormant in the soil over winter, and can live saprophytically for many years.
The diagram below gives some of the applications for plant transformation technology.

Usefulness as a gene delivery system
Agrobacterium tumefaciens is seen as such a useful gene delivery system because it is able to carry any gene of interest within the T-complex, and insert the gene into the target plants DNA with a high degree of success. The reason for this is because unlike other mobile genetic elements such as transposons and retroviruses, the T-DNA strand does not encode functions required for movement and integration of the DNA. Therefore the T-DNA strand can be replaced by a gene of interest which will be inserted automatically into the host plant nucleus with a high degree of success and with little human intervention. This process is usually much more efficient than traditional methods of genetic modification. Follow the link below to the Purdue Agricultural Biotechnology Website, to see an animated demonstration of how A. tumefaciens can be used to genetically modify plants.
A. tumefaciens mediated transformation is relatively efficient for many species, and a low copy number of intact, unmonified transgenes are frequently integrated successfully into the plant genome. However, transformation of many crop species has, in the past, been relatively ineficient, although recent advances in transformation technology is set to change that.
There are however a few species of dicotyledonous plants and most species of monocotyledonous which are recalcitrant to transformation by A. tumefaciens. Ke et al. (2001) investigated whether synthesis at a high level of a T-strand DNA intermediate could improve the transformation efficiency of plants. It was found that a mutation in the gene regulator virG & VirGN54D when combined to produce a strain producing high level of T-strand DNA did indeed have a positive effect on the efficiency of transformation.
Despite the many recent developments in the world of plant genetic manipulation, A. tumefaciens still remains a major method of choice for transforming plant cells, despite the development of sophisticated alternative gene transfer methods. Work is still ongoing to try and improve our understanding of the gene transfer mechanism. A number of economically important cereals have now been transformed using A. tumefaciens (Newell, 2000), working alongside other, more traditional gene transfer methods.

Applications of the Technology

Rice CropAgrobacterium tumefaciens may prove to be the breakthrough needed in order to successfully insert foreign DNA into plant genomes for genetic modification. Bacterial vectors such as Eschericia colihave already been used successfully as vectors in microbiology (Kikkert et al., 1999) ; this same technology can now be applied to the field of botany. Several different plant species have already been successfully transformed, including Lettuce (Curtis, 1995), Rice (Hiei, 1997) and Tomato (Tzfira et al., 2002). This proves that direct gene transfer methods are no longer the only avenue of approach for transforming important crop plants (Newell, 2000). One of the main reasons for favouring transformation by A. tumefaciens is that it allows delivery of a well defined piece of DNA into the plant genome, although the success rate is not 100% (Gheysen et al., 1998). There are however some valid arguments against the validity of A. tumefaciens mediated transformation.

Since the identification of Agrobacterium tumefaciens as the causative agent of Crown Gall disease, the interaction of this species with the host plant has been of great fascination to many botanists. However, it was nut until recently when it was apparant just how useful A. tumefaciens could be as a gene delivery system. During the last 15 years, improvements in biotechnology have come a long way since the realisation that plants can be genetically modified to give desirable phoentypic variations. Now that we are able to make transgenic plants, the main questions facing plant scientists are how to regulate gene expression, how can transformation be made more efficient and consistent, and perhaps most importantly, what are the environmental implications of this technology.
One of the main drawbacks of A. tumefaciens is its inability to effectively transform many monocotyledons, although current research by Ke et al. (2001) suggest that genetically engineered "supervirulent" strains may be effective in transforming many different plant species.
Important problems facing plant transformation which still remain to be solved include regulation of the DNA integration, and achieving the holy grail of plant transformation technology, that is targeted gene disruption and gene replacement by homologous recombination. Recent reports of efficient targeting in Arabidopsis thaliana suggest that this breakthrough is closer than we might think (Gelvin, 1998).
It seems probable that Agrobacterium mediated transfer techniques will soon be extended to other recalcitrant species of commercially important plants as soon as the methodologies are optimized.

DNA technology

During the mid 1970s, as the development of new ways of studying DNA led to radically new research approaches, a revolution in the field of biology began. These techniques have had a major impact, and not just in genetic studies. DNA technologies affect a wide range of areas from cell biology and evolution to ethical and societal issues.
In the recombinant DNA technology, researchers splice together DNA from different organisms in the laboratory. The primary goal of this technology is to enable scientist to obtain many copies of any specific DNA segment. The purpose is to study it biochemically. Using recombinant DNA technology, scientist introduces foreign DNA into the cell of microorganisms. Under the right conditions, when a cell divides, this DNA is replicated and transmitted to the daughter cell. In this way, a particular DNA sequence is amplified, or cloned. It is cloned to provide millions of identical copies that are isolated in pure form. Today these methods have been supplemented by extremely valuable technique for the cloning of DNA in vitro.  

Safety and ethical questions raised by DNA technology
Early concern about potential dangers associates with recombinant DNA technology focused on the possibility that hazardous new pathogens might be created. Today, most public concern about possible hazards centers not on recombinant microbes but on genetically modified organisms used as food. In common language, a GM organism is one that has acquired by artificial means one or more genes from the same or another species. Salmon for example, have been genetically modified by addition of a more active growth hormone gene. However the majority of the GM organism that contribute to our food supply are not animals, but crop plants.
Some countries have been cautious of the GM revolution. The safety of GM food and possible environmental consequences of growing GM plants being the major concerns. In 1999, for instance, the European Union suspended the introduction of new GM food pending new legislation. Early in 2000, 130 countries agreed on a “Biosafety Protocol” that requires exporters to identify GM organisms present in bulk food shipments. The protocol also required the exporters to allows importing countries to decide whether the products pose environmental or health risks.
Today Governments and regulatory agencies throughout the world are grappling with how to facilitate the use of biotechnology in agriculture, industry and medicine while ensuring that new products and procedures are safe.
In this paper, we are interested to point out the pro and contra regarding to the Genetic Modified Organism especially in the agriculture, industry and medicine products.  

this article is submitted to Dr Norrizah for Plant Physiology assignment.
Hairul anuar bin sobikin 2006825903

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Smart Fish Feeder


The smart fish feeder is an automatic fish feeder. It will feed the pet every 12 hour automatically. This innovation is the solution for the pet lovers who can happily travelling without worried about their pet to starving.

The component

The main components used for the innovation of the smart fish feeder are a conventional alarm clock and a motor (obtained from the Racing car). A little modification is done to the alarm clock to ensure the motor can be functioning whenever the alarm ringing. Most of the clock component are remain and not changed.

Novelty of this project

Throughout this innovation, student will able to explore the gear concept, electromagnetic concept and electronic circuit concept. In order to modify the circuit in the alarm clock, students have to explore and really understand the component inside the clock before modified it. This step will provide the student an experiential learning and stimulates their creativity. They will understand more on the gear, electromagnetic and circuit lesson if they experience the real and safe exploration. This small scale experience will give major impact on their understanding on the huge scale of the gear in their car, electromagnetic power in power plant, and electrical circuit in their house.

They have to be critically thinks on how to do the modification on the present clock circuit. The thinking strategy in this innovation is based on how to add something on the clock to make it more worthy without disturbing the present conditions. The other thinking strategy applied in this project is on how to combine two elements (toy car and alarm clock) to be one interesting and beneficial “Smart Fish Feeder”

The students also need to instill the scientific noble values to complete their project. Working with the circuit need the students to be patient and focus with their works. The best way to explain the challenge in modified the circuit can be describes by the 1000 trial done by Thomas Edison before successfully invent a light bulb.

The theories related in this project are:
The gear theory
The electromagnetic theory
The electrical circuit

this article is submitted for ED227 SCE553- using Toy In Science Teaching
Hairul anuar bin sobikin 2006825903

other picture related to our group presentation:

related sites :

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Lions for lambs

this assignment is submitted for EDU646-current issues in education (movie critique)

Prepared by Hairul Anuar Bin Sobikin
Submitted to Pn Sharifah Muzlia Binti Syed Mustafa
Feb 2010



Lions for lambs is written by Matthew Michael Carnahan , directed by prolific Robert Redford and starring by charismatic actors Tom Cruise and Meryl Streep. Robert Redford also plays as Professor Stephen Malley, a Vietnam veterans, radical activist and a well known academician. Tom Cruise act as Senator Jasper Irving, an ambitious congressman who is trying to sell a new plan of action for the war on terror to a reporter Janine Roth starred by Meryl Streep. Andrew Garfield act as Todd Hayes, a potentially gifted college student who is no longer goal-directed as he once was. Micheal Pena and Derek Luke play as Ernest and Arian, both are Prof Malley’s former promising student who stranded in Snowy Mountain in Afghanistan.

This 92 minutes film is divided into three segments in the different geographical setting but in the same time frame and all are linked together. The first segment is an interview between Janine Roth and Senator Jasper Irving in the White House. The second segment is a dialogue between Professor Stephen Malley with his potentially gifted student, Todd Hayes in the college. The third segment take place in Afghanistan where Ernest and Arian stranded during an army operation and fighting for their life. All of these segments are in the same time setting, interconnected and each segment tried to tell different point of view in the same theme “if you don’t stand for something, you will fall for nothing”.
The senator and the reporter.

Senator Jasper Irving is selling his plan to stop the war in Afghanistan to a veteran reporter Janine Roth. He spoon fed the reporter with the exclusive scoop and let Roth to play her role in spreading the truth. The role of Senator Jasper Irving is simply like George W. Bush who gives the same tired answer over and over and he always labels anyone who disagrees with him as unpatriotic or as terrorist. The decision planned by the senator is based only by his optimist strategy “from the air cond room”. The interviews conducted by Janine Roth reveal the truth and hidden political agenda in the US policies. The “war of terror” is only the mask for the hidden “war for the oil” in Afghanistan. There were many “unpublished” truths behind the war propagated by the US. He rose up the role of media to stop the war together with his new promising strategy. For him, media plays the most important role to terminate the war same as the ways media sell and ignite the war at the beginning. He rose up the dishonorable media reporting the issues. The hidden value from this character is: “the senator is always right, and always doing what they felt was needed to be done”.

The problems on the media today are presented by the role of Janine Roth in reporting the exclusive scoop she gets from the Senator. In this film, it reveals on how the media are being hypocrite and contradict themselves by going along with what the government says without questioning and then criticizing them. This movie also tells the truth about the news goal now is to get rating and money and not to tell the truth. Roth is trapped between his principal to tell the truth or to remain her status quo in the ANX Channel. She had financial problem, to take care his mother and possibly become unemployable in her middle-aged if leave her current job. In the other words, she is trapped by the demands of her status quo or should she have to sacrifice and take on considerable risk to stray; “to do what she fell is correct”.
The professor and the student

Professor Stephen Malley is a Vietnam Veteran and had been actively involved as a political radical activist. Now, he is a respected academician in well known college. In this 60 minutes meeting, Prof Malley is mentoring his potentially student, Todd Hayes who seems to have given up and no longer goal-directed as he once was. He tries to motivate the intelligent liberal minded but apathetic student. Prof Malleys explain almost 50 years of political and social change in America to ponder during the hour spends. He sees the Hayes’s potential and trying to open him up like a can of sardines using the great questions: “What I’m going to do with life while I’m here on earth and what I can do to make changes”.

Todd Hayes, a typical students disillusioned with politics and the government , distrusts politiciann and does not care at all about the war or current events. This character portrayed most of the college student especially in Malaysia. However, deep down the heart, he does care. Prof Malley effort to get him back into the right track seems to be successful. Hayes realized that he need to stand up and exercise his democratic right and to contribute something to the societies.
Struggling for life in Afghanistan.

The two students from an impoverished neighborhood make the risky choice between going to an elite graduate school, taking on more debt and pursuing a high paying career to pay it down or enlisting in the military to fight in the Middle East so that upon their return, their experience will allow their voices to be heard. The government also will pay for their graduate education. Then they can pursue a career that will allow them to make different.

The young educated Ernest and Arian, both are Prof Malley’s former students who get inspired by their inspirational professor to answer the great question “what I can do to make change in the world?”. Although Prof Malley did not agree with their decision, he can do nothing to stop both young soldiers.
The new strategy implemented by Senator gives major impact to the life of the two young soldiers. Through the conversation during trapped in the mountain was show that “if we do not do anything to stop the violence in the world, hardworking intelligent people won’t be around”

ABC Comments

Academic issues

The professor is concern with his student. It shows the professionalism of the academician and he aware for his responsibility to motivate their students to plays their role in the society. The professor also opens with his student. He use psychological way to solve the problem and this is a great way to solve the student’s problems. The professor also being transparent on the marks he given to the students. All of these acts remind us about the power of discussion to solve any problems.

Bright,brave and brilliant.

Senator, professor, student, the reporter and the soldier, most of them got the bright, brave and brilliant trait in their personalities. These three traits seems to be the important and main reason for them in conducting their role. The senator is bright formulating the strategy to end the war, brave in trying the new strategy, and choose the brilliant step to spoon feed the veteran reputable reporter.The reporter is bright in seeing the opportunity of the exclusive scoop, brave to standing in her principal, and brilliant because she can control the interview to get the needed answer, not only the given answer. The soldier is extremely brave, bright in making decision, and both are brilliant Prof Malley’s student.
Charismatic Senator
The senator is seem to be an opportunistic and prolific senator. The ideas and the vision is clear and he committed with his decision. Through the real scenario, the senator act really represents the Republican government especially during George W. Bush era. The issues raised by the senator are also a reality and presented through the film in the great way.

iscipline and time management

This movie shows the discipline of all the actor in all setting to stick on their time : just one hour to complete the scene. The professor provide one hour to mentoring his student before other students appointment, the senator rush after one hour interview to get fund for his political campaign, and the military base only got limited time to save the two young soldier. This movie shows the value of one hour that can change anything: even the life of others.

ucation issues

In this movie, it really shows the role of the professor who is really taken care of their students. Education in Malaysia should have the Prof Malley’s sense of caring. Prof Malley also open in discussing his opinion and receiving his students point of views. I realize that by discussing, most of the problem in education nowadays can be solved.


Both young soldier, Ernest and Arian is from the same neighborhood, study in the same college, and being in the same platoon, and the true friendship essence is when both stay together for their last breath in the battle field. There is no black and white racist issues, because friendship know no colour.

Redford expertly shows the audiences how difficult, but important , doing the right thing is and reminds the audience that by deciding to do nothing , we are actually making the decision to let the other side call all the shoot.