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We begin with a look at the educational tech sector. First, a primer on President Obama’s proposal today of a new law to ban the makers of classroom products like tablets, Internet-connected software, and apps from selling students’ digital information to commercial companies. Then, what could the proposal mean for Silicon Valley’s recent boom in educational tech products? Next, we hear from a DEA official about how Mexico has become America’s number-one source for methamphetamine, and why most of it gets smuggled through California. After that, we turn overseas and get an update on what we know about the gunmen who killed 12 people at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and attacked a kosher supermarket last week. Were they affiliated with al-Qaeda AND ISIS? And finally, in our weekly TV segment, a recap of the Golden Globes and a look ahead to new shows of 2015.

Banner Image: A pile of mobile devices including smart phones, tablets, laptops and ebook readers.

Protecting Student Data 8 MIN, 58 SEC

President Obama called for new legislation today aimed at protecting student data. Digital education products like tablets, Internet-connected software, and apps are becoming more commonplace in classrooms.That’s good news for raising tech-savvy kids, but it could also expose students to commercial data mining. We discuss what the new federal law would do, and the already-existing California law it’s based on.

Stephanie Simon, Politico (@StephanieSimon_)

Barack Obama to seek limits on student data mining

Silicon Valley’s Educational Tech Boom 8 MIN, 12 SEC

It remains to be seen how President Obama’s move to protect student data plays out in Silicon Valley. There’s been a big surge there in companies making software for the education market. In fact, financing for the so-called “ed tech” market increased by more than 50% last year from the year before, reaching nearly $2 billion, according to one database. What’s driving the boom, and what does it mean for the future of education?

Betsy Corcoran, Founder & CEO of EdSurge.com, which provides news and information about everything in education technology (@betsy_)

Meth Crosses the Border 9 MIN

Last April, a 62-year-old American man walked across the border from Mexico back to the United States. He carried four giant wheels of cheese. Border agents stopped him. He told them that he simply wanted good Mexican cheese to make quesadillas. But he was actually attempting to smuggle $13,000 worth of methamphetamine into the U.S. That was just one of a record number of methamphetamine busts at the border last year. How did Mexico become the country’s biggest meth source?

Gary Hill, Assistant Special Agent in Charge in San Diego for the Drug Enforcement Administration

ISIS and al-Qaeda in Paris? 11 MIN, 32 SEC

More information has been coming out about the men responsible for the Paris attacks last week. One of the brothers who killed twelve people at the offices Charlie Hebdo magazine spent time in a French prison for jihadi activities. While he was there, he met the man who killed four hostages at a kosher supermarket. The men claimed to be affiliated with both al-Qaeda and ISIS. Are those international terrorist groups behind the attacks, or was this a homegrown operation?

Andrew Liepman, Senior Policy Analyst at the RAND Corporation
Yaroslav Trofimov, Wall Street Journal (@yarotrof)

Parallel Killings Merge Rival Groups’ Terror Agendas in Paris

The Golden Globes and New TV 7 MIN, 37 SEC

Last night’s Golden Globes ceremony is getting so-so reviews today. Many people say they were more staid, a.k.a. boring, than usual. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who were showered with praise for their previous hosting stints, weren’t on the stage as much this time around. We hash out the highlights and lowlights, and preview what the networks are cooking up this year in our weekly TV segment.

Michael Schneider, Indiewire / Variety (@Franklinavenue)

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