Sunday, September 24, 2006

TMI/TMO and TKO: Too much, too many, too fast!

TMI/TMO = Too Much Information/ Too Many Options
That's my description of what we're living with in higher education, especially with respect to ways of improving teaching and learning. Read the excerpt below for an explanation of TKO - a recent campus-based tour that is both indication and demonstration of the accelerating pace at which many undergraduate students explore, try, reject or integrate new tech options into their lives. If you have time - and you don't - visit the Overloaditorium to commiserate with the vast majority of us who cannot keep up. If you have more time - and you don't - read the description of how his younger sisters are surpassing his own tech/geek expertise in the remainder of Betancourt's article excerpted below.

Excerpt written by 26-year-old Washington Post Staff Writer:

TKO -- that's the techie-style acronym for TechKnowOverload -- tour has been working its way through college campuses, including George Washington University last week.

The tour is a joint effort of the Consumer Electronics Association and Mr. Youth, a Massachusetts-based niche marketing firm that specializes in reaching consumers between the ages of 12 and 24. (I guess I am old, after all.)

The campuses are filled with demonstrations and interactive trials of products -- from laptop computers and video games to car stereo equipment. What's clear is that the vendors who join the tour aren't there to sell something. They're there to give college students a chance to play -- which, of course, could lead them to buy.

Even more important is the feedback: These companies want to know if they have a potential winner or a loser. If these students are going to bash their products, they'd rather know it now instead of reading it on a blog or a MySpace page later.

After all, no one -- from the students to the companies -- wants to feel out of the loop when it comes to tech.

I know how they feel. Two of my three younger sisters have zoomed past me, technologically, in a way I would never have imagined. And that makes me feel old.

From: "Counting the Years, One Device at a Time," by David Betancourt, Washington Post, Sunday, September 24, 2006; F07

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