Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Voice, text, video, F2F, autodidactism
Sunday, February 26, 2012
"Toys like spy glasses and laser tag sets have been transformed... because of the addition of technology that records daytime and night vision video, the spy glasses ...could actually perform serious surveillance"
...“'We know that kids are going to play with technology, with iPhones and iPads and Android devices,' said Chuck Scothon, senior vice president for marketing for Mattel’s North America division. 'Our job is to not necessarily avoid that, but if you can’t fix it, feature it.'
"... More than a third of children 8 years old and younger use mobile devices like iPads or smartphones, a recent study from Common Sense Media found, and about a quarter of children ages 5 to 8 multitask with their digital devices most or some of the time.
"While toy makers have tried to modernize their products for years, this is the industry’s most aggressive integration of tech.
"... most toy makers had a disappointing 2011.
..."And the main item retailers could not seem to keep in stock last year was a tablet computer for children, the LeapFrog LeapPad Explorer.
"So Mattel’s new Barbie has a lens in her back; children point the doll at an image, and press a button on Barbie’s belt to take a photo. The image then appears on the front of Barbie’s T-shirt. The photos can also be downloaded to a computer.
"'The future of play is trending towards a seamless integration between a physical toy and digital add-ons,' said Laura Phillips, senior vice president for toys and seasonal merchandise at Walmart, in an e-mail. “This innovation is extremely important to keeping kids engaged and keeping toys more relevant.”
"Toys like spy glasses and laser tag sets have been transformed. Now, because of the addition of technology that records daytime and night vision video, the spy glasses made by Jakks Pacific, called Spy Net Multi Vision Goggles, could actually perform serious surveillance. And Hasbro’s Laser Tag of yore, when children ran around and pointed toy guns at one another, has been replaced by children pointing iPhones instead. Players place the iPhone in a gun, and the iPhone display — via an app — shows live video of whatever is ahead overlaid with graphics. When the trigger is pulled, lasers appear."
Thursday, February 23, 2012
|"Constellation of [Twitter] Communication"|
"Are we overcommunicating?Above excerpts from "V.A. Shiva Ayyadurai: Inventor of e-mail honored by Smithsonian" Interview by Emi Kolawole in Washington Post Feb 17, 2012
"I think people are overcommunicating in the sense they have missed out on what is communication," said Ayyadurai. "A lot of time when people are texting, it's not the content — you don't need to text — but people are doing it just to connect with another human being, so a lot of the information is almost irrelevant."
"I think we're in this phase now in humanity where we have all these communication vehicles but we still are, as humans, trying to figure out how do we connect," he continued, "because that ritual mode of communication is removed from us."
Silent cinema (no voice! no text!) "gave an actor..super-expressive power..beyond words..no..analogue in language.”
We'll consider the options and relative impact of voice, image, and text - both live and recorded - in “Whose Voices Don’t Matter?” online Friday, Feb 24 at 2PM ET. Register free tlt.gs/frlv
"Barthes was not given to extravagance, yet he was not exaggerating Garbo’s effect on the audience. "In 1923, ... Béla Balázs described the cinema as marking nothing less than the rebirth of the human in art. In literature, the body was confined to ordered pages of type. Now, in movies, the word became flesh. And Balázs explicitly praised silence as necessary for the highest achievement:
"'The gestures of visual man [i.e., the film actor] are not intended to convey concepts which can be expressed in words, but such inner experiences, such non-rational emotions which would still remain unexpressed when everything that can be told has been told.'
"A daunting remark. Is it true? There’s no doubt that film, by using methods special to itself—editing techniques such as cutting from one face in closeup to another and prolonging climactic moments—gave an actor a super-expressive power. It could turn him into a larger-than-life metaphor, a quintessence of a mental or spiritual state that, as Balázs says, lies beyond words, just as music lies beyond words. The stories of silent drama may often have been elemental, yet, within the broad outlines, the artists among the actors could bring out shadings that had no immediate analogue in language. The ineffable had been re-introduced into art."
- Above excerpts from an essay review "THE CRITICS; A CRITIC AT LARGE; THE ARTISTS; Notes on a lost style of acting." by David Denby, Feb 27, 2012, The New Yorker, p. 76
archives.newyorker.com/default.aspx?startpage=92&iid=59639 [NewYorker account login required to view the article that is reached by the preceding URL.]
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Is text without audio better for teaching/learning? Is voice without text better for T/L? Why/when/how?
|"Fractal...duality,... right and left brain perception..."|
Register Free: tlt.gs/frlv
- Cross-Platform: "Endures across platforms,
- Editable: "Easily editable and thus improved and
- Clarifying: "Forces one (as author) to be explicit and clear in one’s thinking. "
SallyK also says: "I’m interested in knowing what audio provides that is equivalent or superior to those purposes? I’ve dabbled with audio, made my own podcasts at one point, but find it useful in a fairly narrow set of circumstances. I’d be interested in hearing arguments in favor of it."
- Emotion: "Hearing a voice with emotional tones is appropriate for an emotional message (I use it in relaxation training) but may be a problem for an intellectual one. This particular message does have some emotional components but the intellectual is also there.
- Categorization: "Voice places a person in a particular gender and SES in more obvious ways than does text. That may be desirable for some purposes (e.g., a class on speaking) and less so for others.
- Multitasking: "If a person is planning on doing two things at once (e.g., driving and listening) then audio is a help, however the research indicates that split attention is of poorer quality than focused attention so if the learning task is complex, better to focus on it alone. Multi-tasking turns out to be a poorer way to learn than focusing.
- Sensory Preferences: "There is a subset of persons who have attentional or sensory issues who may be better served by audio. It could be a supplement to a text document if there are a number in the audience with those issues. There will be others for whom audio is a problem. With text a screen reader can interpret the material."
Thursday, February 16, 2012
"The lecture hall is under attack." But still respected & enhanced at annual Lilly Conferences on College Teaching
"Dissect & Improve Hybrid Workshop &Update on Ender’s Test of Artificial Instruction"
For more about Lilly Conferences, see tlt.gs/LillyDirs2012]
"The anti-lecture movement is fueled, too, by the proliferation of online lectures, which threaten the monopoly on learning long held by bricks-and-mortar campuses.
..."active learning is hard work..."
- excerpts above from "Colleges looking beyond the lecture" By Daniel de Vise, Published: February 15 online and February16 hard copy in The Washington Post
The highly-respected annual Lilly Conferences on College & University Teaching demonstrate quite effectively their longstanding commitment to active learning. Even in these conferences, what is the most prestigious invitation? To be a plenary session speaker! And most Lilly plenary sessions are predominantly large group lectures (audience usually 200 to 700 in one large room).
However, most Lilly plenaries include some interactivities - small group discussion within the audience and active dialogue between audience and presenter. Perhaps equally important and unusual is the expectation that invited speakers stay for the full 3 days of the conference and participate in sessions and informal conversations. So the Lilly plenary "lectures" are extended and enhanced both within the plenary sessions and by encouraging related interactions.
"Everything must change so that nothing will change" unacknowledged impossible goal when tech, economy change fast
Quote in title of this posting is from Cosi Fan Tutti: An Aurelio Zen Mystery, Michael Dibdin, Vintage (June 30, 1998) ISBN-10: 0679779116 ISBN-13: 978-0679779117, p. 133
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Is Your Course a Pizza? Ender's Test: Looking 10 Years Back, 10 days/weeks/months Forward - Video of Steve Gilbert’s Keynote Dec 2, 2011
Steve Gilbert's keynote presentation Dec. 2, 2011 for
CUNY IT Conference, NYC
Accompanying slideset: tlt.gs/CUNYslds1202swg
Accompanying resources: tlt.gs/CUNY1202pub
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
A balanced diet for Valentine's Day 2012 from Steve Gilbert, TLT Group - candy, vegs, music! tlt.gs/valentine12
"World's smallest microphone barely visible...” Lecture capture cannot be prevented! Can it be guided, used well?
|Even in 1932 - that's a spy belt camera!|
When you are teaching or giving a presentation or almost anywhere doing almost anything, keep in mind that old TV refrain "Smile, you're on candid camera" because you might be. So the question is not really about policy permitting/encouraging/requiring "lecture capture" of classroom activities. The question is "In what ways can we take advantage of the new ease with which anything can be recorded and published?"
Monday, February 13, 2012
My latest favorite excuse for APPARENTLY ignoring your msgs: "I've got HDADHD" - to paraphrase Steven Wright
Friday, February 10, 2012
Ender's Test of Artificial Instruction: Is Your Course a Pizza? Who needs teachers?
In the context of growing pressure on faculty and other academic professionals
to adapt, recreate, etc. courses that have been entirely or mostly based on face-to-face interaction
and "traditional" teaching/learning resources into
"courses" that include more online activities or elements or resources.
The short story and book "Ender's Game" immerses us in a painful mix of the real and artificial in future education. "Ender's Test" will guide/measure development of artificial courses - as the Turing Test does for artificial intelligence. Help us identify essential course elements, how they're changing, and shape Ender's Test. [Apologies to Orson Scott Card, Alan Turing & their admirers.]
Invitations - 500 characters and Longer Version
Initial question and challenge
Question: What activities or features would convince a student who is taking a course that there is a human teacher in a meaningful role, even though the student cannot see/touch/smell the teacher? I.e., what are the characteristics of a "teacherless" course essential to convince the students who take it that they have a teacher? Who cares? Why does/doesn't this matter? For whom?
Challenge: Develop a new test, which I'm tentatively calling "Ender's Test" - a bit of a spoof/allusion to both Ender's Game and Turing Test.
The idea is to develop a test for determining whether an undergraduate course is being "taught" by a human or not.... Like the Turing Test for determining whether a device that is communicating with someone is a human or is an "artificial intelligence."
OBSERVATION AND REFOCUS
Observation: Happily, several discussions in which we attempted to develop a list of the activities, features, and a related test as described above, seemed unavoidably to accomplish this closely-related and unstated goal as well:
Identify activities/features/patterns/capabilities of a human teacher that are likely to engage students more actively and effectively in a course, and that are likely to be perceived as demonstrating why it is important for a human teacher to have a significant role in the course.
Refocus: Let's continue this exploration with a slightly different focus:
What kinds of courses can be improved by increasing the role of technology and simultaneously decreasing the role of teachers?
For which kinds of learners, teachers, purposes, institutions?.....
How could or should we develop methods (rubric?) for identifying courses that can benefit more/less from
increasing the role of technology and media AND SIMULTANEOUSLY
decreasing the role of human teachers and other academic professionals?
Let's begin with an even narrower focus within the above:
"The Caring Test for Artificial Instruction"
["The Lilly Test for Artificial Instruction"]
In what kinds of courses does caring NOT matter much?
In what kinds of courses does caring matter a lot?
In what kinds of courses does caring matter a lot AND those courses can be improved by increasing the role of technology and simultaneously decreasing the role of teachers?
For which kinds of learners, teachers, purposes, institutions?.....
In what kinds of courses does caring matter little enough so that those courses can comfortably be improved by increasing the role of technology and simultaneously decreasing the role of teachers?
[Above, "what kinds of courses" is intended to imply also "for which kinds of learners, teachers, purposes, institutions?....."]
The WGU Test for Artificial Instruction
[With apologies to those who support the more recently responsible and effective work of the Western Governors University - as opposed to the claims that preceded and accompanied its launch]
Categories for Re-Clothing the Emperor(s) (or governors)
Instead of focusing on how technology can be used undetectably in courses to replace teachers, let's explore how we might sort courses in which increasing usage of technology to some extent replaces the role of teachers and other academic professionals (and family members? et al.?) into categories like these:
A. Not good enough for any children
B. Good enough for other people's children
C. Good enough for my children
D. Good enough for, and deserved, by all children
Steven W. Gilbert, President
301/270-8312 skype: stevegilbert
Schedule appts with me: http://tungle.me/SteveGilbert
THE TLT GROUP -- a Non-Profit Organization
The Teaching, Learning, and Technology Group
PO Box 5643, Takoma Park, Maryland 20913 USA
Thursday, February 09, 2012
“difference between a live online.. & self-paced course”: Former “instructor-led with scheduled start & end dates”
If you believe that you already understand the options and expectations for online teaching and learning available in 2012, you simply don't know enough.
|Racing car careening so fast it appears about to crash|
"If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough" - attributed to Mario Andretti by "Quotation #39999 from Michael Moncur's (Cynical) Quotations" on Website "The Quotations Page" at http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/39999.html as of Feb 9, 2012
"If you can remain calm and keep your head about you when everyone else is losing theirs, then around you probably don't understand the situation." [Found 1 version of this quote as of Feb 9, 2012 at http://successnet.org/articles/angier-remaincalm.htm but what's the correct wording and the original source of this quote - probably from the 60s - SWG]
Here is a reasonable but unavoidably incomplete and misleading simplification from the New York Times - note that "Epsilen Online Learning Environment" is somewhat similar to Blackiboard and other "modern(?)" Learning Management Systems
"This guide will help you understand and navigate our online courses and eLearning environment.
- Live Online Courses: “Interactive Course – Facilitated”
- Self-Paced Courses
- What is the difference between a self-paced and instructor-led course?
- Webcasts: “Interactive Webcast-Live”
- What software do I need to learn online?
- Technical Requirements
- Epsilen Online Learning Environment"
Attribution: 1 December 2011 by Ocirne94 http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Speed_Dreams_car_rolling.jpg
Wednesday, February 08, 2012
“intellectual sin of the century: passing judgment on the fate of others in the name of their future as you see it”
|Sin of too many centuries|
Following is the 4th paragraph quoted in full with yellow highlighting added for emphasis:
Whatever Judt’s initial ideological commitments, he later concerned himself with a stark and important question: “how so many smart people could have told themselves such stories with all the terrible consequences that ensued.” The story was that of Communism, which perpetrated “the intellectual sin of the century: passing judgment on the fate of others in the name of their future as you see it, . . . concerning which you claim exclusive and perfect information.” Looking back at the history of left-wing figures from the 1930s like the French socialist Léon Blum, he saw their central failing as the lack of “any appreciation of the possibility of evil as a constraining, much less a dominating, element in public affairs.” This was to become the theme of his 1992 book “Past Imperfect,” which chronicled French intellectuals like Jean-Paul Sartre who publicly supported Stalinism while remaining willfully blind to its horrors.
“Fingerprint Clearance Card" required for students taking in-person practicum required WITHIN online program
|Navy Investigator...shows children how to dust for fingerprints|
"Q: For what purpose are fingerprints used?
A: Fingerprints will be used to obtain both a state and federal criminal records check.
"Q: Where can I find out what would preclude me from obtaining a clearance card?
A: Precluding offenses for a level one fingerprint clearance card can be found in A.R.S. 41-1758.07, subsection B and C, link below. Precluding offenses for the regular fingerprint clearance card can be found in A.R.S. 41-1758.03, links as follows. A.R.S. 41-1758.03 A.R.S. 41-1758.07"
"Fingerprint Clearance FAQs | College of Education | Grand Canyon University
Under College of Education/Program Essentials/Online Learning: "GCU offers a variety bachelor's and master's degree programs in education, as well as continuing education courses for teachers."
Tuesday, February 07, 2012
Reassurance or Reality? Hard choice when tech & economy change fast;also see “Necessity...mother of self-deception”
That is when we most hope for impossible reassurance: for an explanation of how we can continue to succeed, as we have for so long, without changing what we do.
|Flotilla of rubber duckies...Accumulating sign?|
Example: A "Reassuring" Consultation in the 1980s
In the early 1980s, a small group of textbook publishers invited me to bring a couple of lawyers who understood trends in technology, publishing, and intellectual property law for a discussion in New York City. We met our hosts for lunch in a nice restaurant. A casual and pleasant conversation began while we were eating, and continued as dessert and coffee were served - well beyond the usual duration of introductory pleasantries required by business courtesy.
I was confused when it was almost time to leave and we were still being asked superficial questions with no obvious focus. Our hosts seemed satisfied to request and receive no more than our most superficial observations about recent devleopments in information technology and the possible implications for intellectual property. We were not asked to speculate about the possible impact of recent changes on the textbook publishing industry. [Note: this meeting occurred shortly before the Internet had enabled a highly active used-textbook market in higher education.]
We solved the puzzle during our train-ride home. Our hosts could not ask their most urgent questions. Perhaps they could not acknowledge even to themselves what they wanted from us most. Reassurance.
Friday, February 03, 2012
Got data? for interview today Feb 3 “Changing Course: Reinventing Colleges, Avoiding Closure” tlt.gs/ABrownChngCrs
- Are more colleges closing or opening?
- Total # of colleges and universities in the United States went from XXXX to YYYY
- Total # of colleges and universities in the US that closed, merged, or changed name (“reinvented itself”)?
- Total # of colleges, univs in the US that were launched?
- Are there more private colleges for-profit and online? And fewer non-profit on-campus?
- Are there more/fewer applications for undergraduate enrollment? More/fewer applications per available opening?
- What is happening to the student faculty ratio? Overall? By institutional category? Online vs. on-campus?
- What is happening to the student full-time tenure track faculty ratio? student full-time non-tenure track faculty ratio? student part-time faculty ratio? Overall? By institutional category? Online vs. on-campus?
- Payment per course per student collected from the student or from someone on behalf of the student
- Operating cost per course
- Faculty salary per course
Wednesday, February 01, 2012
Alice Brown answers TLTGroup’s Fundamental Questions re college, university, div or dept threatened with closing
1. What do you most want to gain?
Please join us for the 2PM ET BOOK DISCUSSION tlt.gs/ABrownChngCrs re Changing Course: Reinventing Colleges, Avoiding Closure, Alice W. Brown Jossey-Bass 2011
Register Free: tlt.gs/frlv
Alice Brown, Past Pres. Appalachian College Assoc, will be interviewed by Steve Gilbert.
More about how you can record YOUR answers to our Fundamental Questions and about Alice Brown's answers:
Can "BlackBerry..Avoid Hall of Fallen Giants"? Comeback, decline, or oblivion? Like college on brink of closing?
|Blackberry 850 - First one?|
1. "Triumphant comeback" - major changes but continue original mission
3. "Oblivion" - concede to competitors that can more quickly and efficiently meet old constituency's needs better - in new ways
Changing Course: Reinventing Colleges, Avoiding Closure, Alice W. Brown Jossey-Bass 2011 Register Free: tlt.gs/frlv
Brown, Past Pres. Appalachian College Assoc, will be interviewed by Steve Gilbert.
Excerpts quoted in the title of this post, above, and below are all from
"The BlackBerry, Trying to Avoid the Hall of Fallen Giants," by Sam Grobart & Ian Austen, January 28, 2012, New York Times