Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Blending Work and Home

The new technologies I am using are making it harder and harder to separate my work life from my home life. Facebook now has both "spaces" in it-intermixed. Twitter also does, as does my email. My iPhone has apps on it that I use in both worlds and even some that blend both (like Foursquare, Files Lite, etc.). I text my kids with the same device I get texts for work. I don't dare let me sons borrow my iPhone for the access it has to other work related services. Certainly the communications/connections my mobile devices give me has REALLY changed my life. It is a remarkable period.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Singularity Movie is Near


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Moore's Law and Faculty Certification for Online Teaching

I've recently been "thrown into the fire" so to speak by being asked to teach faculty at my campus how to teach effectively online. A new policy that REQUIRES faculty be approved to do this got approved (the faculty were sleeping at the switch on this one if you ask me) and it appears no one knows what that REALLY means. So they asked me. A technologist, with a degree in Geography. Imagine the scene, if you can, as I try and explain to the deans how it has nothing to do with technology (the don't have any idea what Moore's Law is doing.) Fun fun.

Perhaps I should remind them that a recent New York Times article, cited Dr. Karen Swan pointing out that "two recent large scale studies have shown that online learning is more engaging and that students learn more online. One study, commissioned by the U.S. Department of Education, did a meta-analysis of 51 reports on online instruction comparing student outcomes in online, blended and/or face-to-face environments. It found that students who took all or part of their classes online performed better, and that the effectiveness of online and blended instruction was broad across variations in students, types of programs and content areas."

Why do faculty, who already teach at my college, need additional certification to teach in a space proven to be more engaging for students? Beats me.

Friday, January 8, 2010

New Media, Moore's Law and My Office Space

For almost six months now I've been gathering material for my New Media course. I can, with as much certainty as I can come up with about anything these day, say that I don't have enough disk space or office space (or brain space). Like never before in my career, prep-ing for this course feels nearly impossible. I've done all the normal things - emailed listservs for tips, tweeted about it, did the serious scholarship literature review, did the more useful Google/Bing searching, watched hundreds of YouTube, UStream, Hulu, videos. Read more blogs, wikis and web page "articles" than any one person should. Now I'm left with a hard drive full of annotated, highlighted and organized PDFs that I can't ever find the one I'm thinking about, printouts scattered all over my office in piles that have become mostly meaningless, outline notes for my course that look more like a massive oak tree in winter with its bifurcating limbs going every which direction, stacks of DVDs, CD, and mp3 files that I'm trying to decide on, hundreds of URL's all nicely tagged in Del.icio.us that seem to do nothing but divert me from what I REALLY need to do - FOCUS, four different "desk copies" of books that various parts of I'd love to use, etc., etc. Screw the digital revolution.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Technology's Attack on "Dirty Jobs"

Mike Rowe's Ted TV talk found here is worth watching. He forces us to reflect on how technology, media and modern society is waging a war on, what he argues, is an important part of our culture - dirty jobs. IMHO he's got it right and this is well worth a watch. It is another way that technology is breaking our culture - and creating a new one that we don't know recognize. I like the many ideas he suggests we should consider. Things like humility in the face of our ignorance, reflection on our lives and what gives them value, and finally, what place do we want technology to have in our lives and what is the Faustian bargain in accepting it.