Clyde Street

Learning, Teaching, Performing


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Essence then Form?

2751494190_535dc366c4_oJust before Christmas I received several alerts to Erica Smith’s paper, The Digital Native Debate in Higher Education: A Comparative Analysis of Recent Literature, in the Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology.

Over the holiday period I have had an opportunity to read the paper.

Erica analyzes “key themes and issues emerging from contemporary research on the Net generation as digital natives”. She identifies eight characteristics of digital native behaviour present in the literature:

  • Possessing new ways of knowing and being.
  • Driving a digital revolution transforming society.
  • Innately or inherently tech-savvy.
  • Multi-taskers, team-oriented, and collaborative.
  • Native speakers of the language of technologies.
  • Embracing gaming, interaction, and simulation.
  • Demanding immediate gratification.
  • Reflecting and responding to the knowledge economy.

She draws upon a range of research that questions the homogeneity of digital native behaviour. She notes, for example, Sue Bennett, Karl Maton and Lisa Kervin‘s posit that  there is “as much variation within the digital native generation as between the generations”.  Erica identifies “an opportunity for new research that informs theory and practice by investigating whether and how undergraduate learners see value in emerging technologies within their own diverse learning contexts”.

My own take on the debate is that we have much to lose if we impute behaviour solely to chronological age. I have seen an enormous range of dispositions to digital behaviour across and within generations. I think it is imperative that we understand personal learning journeys and their contexts.

A TedX San Diego talk by Ken Blanchard about collaboration helped me clarify my thoughts about dispositions. His consideration of essence equates with  my use of dispositions (8 minutes 25 seconds into the video).

In his discussion about effective collaboration, Ken proposes that essence (heart-to-heart, values-to-values) conversations must precede form (how you are going to do it) conversations.

I am starting to think about the Sport Coaching Pedagogy unit I am teaching at the University of Canberra in February 2013. It has a significant digital demand on the participants (myself included) and I am hopeful that I can support participants’ different experiences of learning and technology within the unit by recognising the heterogeneity of their generation. I am particularly keen to learn how each of them has innovated in and adopted digital behaviour. In doing so I hope to learn about their learning and the values that have guided them.

This is Ken’s talk with three insights into collaboration:

Photo Credit

Innovation – 3 (Hyoin Min, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

 


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Augmented Reality Links

A Diigo alert today took me back to Jodi Harrison’s post from September. In it Jodi links to an Online Universities post about augmented reality.

Of the twenty links shared in the Online Universities’ post, I was particularly interested in:

The School in the Park Project (San Diego) that “shifts the location of “school” from a traditional classroom setting in an inner-city school, to the resources and educational opportunities available at museums in Balboa Park”. The School in the Park Project works with Qualcomm, the developers of the Vuforia augmented reality platform.

Gwynneth Jones’ QR scavenger hunt post that contains a host of ideas to facilitate discovery. I like the potential of QR Voice.

Google’s Project Glass (with this recent video) and through a tangental link Throwable Ball Camera.

Comments on the two posts led me to:

FreshAir and Layar and the discussion of geolocation-based Augmented Reality and vision-based Augmented Reality.


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Clyde Street 2012

dscf7272I wrote 260 posts on Clyde Street this year. This has been my fifth year with WordPress.

I see this blog as a way of capturing and sharing items linked to learning, teaching, coaching and performing. It is a public portfolio of my interests and one that I access wherever I am in the world.

I was surprised to learn that Clyde Street had 70,000 visitors this year with the Olympic and Paralympic months being the busiest time of the year.

The pages that attracted most interest in 2012 were:

List

dscf6128The topics for my posts during the year were:

January (Olympics, Connecting and Sharing, Reading, Bruce Coe, Wikis, Communicating, QR Codes, Coaching, Megatrends.)

February (Open Learning, Women’s Football, Cycle Tourism, Performance, Rugby, Decision-Making, Mobility, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Olympics, E-portfolios, Reading, Wikiversity, Canoe Slalom.)

March (Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Analysis of Performance, Wikipedia, Coaching, Presentation, Autism, Communication.)

April (Performance, Simulation, Autism, Open Learning, Crime and Sport, Olympics, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Coaching.)

May (Olympics, Open Learning, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Billy Cart Derby, Writing, Enterprise Computing, Space, E-portfolios, Coaching, Performance, Critical Care Nursing, Cycling Research, Educational Technology.)

June (Olympics, Writing, Transit of Venus, Euro 2012, Augmented Reality, Robin Poke, Procurate, Tennis, Charles Reep, Sport and Technology, Penalty Shoot Outs.)

July (Olympics, Euro 2012, Learning Design, Fandom, Cross Country Skiing, Pathbrite, Greg Blood Guest Post, Blogging, Goal-Line Technology, AFL, Tennis, Performance, 9.79, SOOC, Writing, Learning, Australian Art.)

August (Coaching, Olympics, Writing, Strategic Losing, Performing, Super 15 Rugby, Open Education, Chaos, Learning, Paralympics, Place and Space.)

September (Paralympics, Open Access, Coaching, R U OK, Environments.)

October (Grand Final Weekend, SOOC, Flipping and Connecting, Challenge Conference, Vocaroo, St George’s Park, Data, Conservators, Integrity, Honours’ Presentations.)

November (Australian Sport Technology Conference, Attention, OAPS101, South Africa 1995, Coaching, Performing, Notational Analysis, Einstein’s Office, Narrative, Winning Edge.)

December (QR Codes, Game Changing, Ecological Perspectives on Sport, Aggregating and Curating, Searching, Connecting, Drupal, Coaching, Goal-Line Technology, Data Analysis, John Stevenson, SOOC, Open Learning, Cowbird, Sport and Technology.)

I am looking forward to blogging in 2013. Thank you to everyone who found my blog this year.

 

Photo Credits

Year of Reading in Mongarlowe

Rain in Mongarlowe

 


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QR Code Update: December 2012

I have written a number of posts about Quick Response (QR) Codes in the last two years. One of the posts has been one of the most popular posts on Clyde Street.

I have a QR Code for Clyde Street on the front page of the blog.

grabRecently, I have been interested in Vocaroo’s use of a QR Code to link audio recordings. Earlier this year I used Daqri QR Codes to share augmented information with students.

Perhaps it is my fascination with orienteering that has led me to think QR Codes have real potential to enrich personal learning journeys. I just like the idea that resources can be shared in a minimally intrusive way.  (There was a lot of publicity about this example from a building roof top.)

This morning, I was delighted that a Diigo Teacher-Librarian alert took me to Andrew Wilson’s recent paper, QR codes in the library: Are they worth the effort? Analysis of a QR code pilot project.

Andrew notes in the Abstract:

The literature is filled with potential uses for Quick Response (QR) codes in the library setting, but few library QR code projects have publicized usage statistics. A pilot project carried out in the Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library of the Harvard College Library sought to determine whether library patrons actually understand and use QR codes.

ucniss-qrAndrew reports that:

There is no way to describe the usage statistics as anything but extremely disappointing. None of the three on-line resources were viewed via QR codes more than five times each over the course of the entire semester, and the actual utility of those page views was minimal, at best. Of the three sites, only the “Finding Concert Reviews in Periodicals” appears to have been accessed for use, as the other two research guides had only single page-views, and no recorded time on the sites themselves. Legacy and current usage statistics indicate that the sites are being used, with anywhere from 31 to 53 site visits over each of the past two academic semesters, but once the data is examined at the platform level, mobile usage was negligible in comparison to conventional on-line access.

 Notwithstanding these results I like Andrew’s evaluation of the potential of QR Codes.  He observes:
Despite their ubiquity in the public space, a significant portion of the population appear not to know exactly what they are, or even what the term “QR Code” means. Further, while polls of Harvard’s student population, particularly undergraduates, indicate a high percentage of smartphone usage, there is still a disconnect between the smartphone hardware/software and how they apply to QR Codes.
7913818456_7a4588999a_bAndrew concludes:
Much of the argument in favor of QR Codes in the library (or virtually any other setting) comes down to a simple cost/benefit analysis. And in this case, as long as a few simple rules are followed, the cost of employing QR Codes is so low that any benefit derived from them outweighs the minimal effort involved. There is a reason that QR Codes have become so ubiquitous in print advertising, points-of-sale, and other venues: they are so easy to use, and cost so little in terms of resources, time, and money,that despite low acceptance by the public, it is a technology simply too easy to ignore.
I think QR technology is important and I am delighted that Andrew’s paper provides some usage data in the context of a detailed literature review.
Many years ago when I lived in Devon in the United Kingdom I wanted to explore the delights of letterboxing on Dartmoor. I see QR codes as contemporary letterboxes and ideally suited to treasure hunts. Augmented reality opportunities make these codes very powerful.
Photo Credit
Observation Posts and Datums 1 (Polhigey, CC BY_NC_SA 2.0)


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Planets Aligning

Earlier this year, I wrote about Lycerius’s dilemma.

Lycerius has been playing Civ II for ten years. In June 2012 the game had advanced to 3991 A.D.. There are three remaining super nations “each competing for the scant resources left on the planet after dozens of nuclear wars have rendered vast swaths of the world uninhabitable wastelands”.

Lycerius’s goal for the next few years “is to try and end the war and thus use the engineers to clear swamps and fallout so that farming may resume. I want to rebuild the world. But I’m not sure how. If any of you old Civ II players have any advice, I’m listening.”

I recalled the dilemma this morning as I started to work my way through a number of emails and alerts that had some interesting connections.

Prezi alerted me to The Rational Person’s Guide to the Mayan Apocalypse in which Jaquelynne Avery shares some news about 21 December 2012.

Maya 1

Here are some of the links I received this morning. I am hoping they are harbingers of an age of transformation (to the Age of Aquarius) rather than a predestined meeting with Nibiru.

Darrell Cobner shared with me Nathan Harden’s essay on The End of the University as We Know It. In the essay, Nathan makes a number of observations about students’ experience of higher education. He suggests that:

students themselves are in for a golden age, characterized by near-universal access to the highest quality teaching and scholarship at a minimal cost. The changes ahead will ultimately bring about the most beneficial, most efficient and most equitable access to education that the world has ever seen.

He adds:

Technology will also bring future students an array of new choices about how to build and customize their educations. Power is shifting away from selective university admissions officers into the hands of educational consumers, who will soon have their choice of attending virtually any university in the world online. This will dramatically increase competition among universities. Prestigious institutions, especially those few extremely well-endowed ones with money to buffer and finance change, will be in a position to dominate this virtual, global educational marketplace. The bottom feeders—the for-profit colleges and low-level public and non-profit colleges—will disappear or turn into the equivalent of vocational training institutes. Universities of all ranks below the very top will engage each other in an all-out war of survival. In this war, big-budget universities carrying large transactional costs stand to lose the most. Smaller, more nimble institutions with sound leadership will do best.

220px-V838_Mon_HSTI wondered, in passing, if Nathan had met Lycerius in Civ II in a 21st century encounter.

The University of Western Sydney is investing $35 million over three years (including providing 11,000 iPads) “in a bid to keep its content and teaching relevant to students”. In her report on this initiative in The Conversation, Charis Palmer notes:

All new students who enrol to study at UWS in 2013 will receive an iPad, and some 1500 academic staff will also receive a tablet device for use in teaching. Existing students will receive a subsidy of $50 to go towards textbook purchases. The investment is part of a broader initiative that will include more flexible study options and interactive learning.

One of the arguments for attendance at a University is the social experience of being there. Stephen Downes has an interesting discussion of this argument today in response to a post by Justin Ritchie. Stephen comments:

if the social aspects of universities are so all-fired important, what happens to the large majority of the world’s population that never attends university? Do they just become socially stunted? Inept? Or is it possible that these social dimensions may be addressed in ways other than university pubs and social clubs?

One alternative might be to engage in a community of readers that discuss and share ideas. A post by Michael Lovett alerted me to the growth of readership in Next Generation libraries.

Since the relaunch of Dayton Metro Library, readers are spending 22-percent more time on site, viewing 22-percent more pages. At the Public Library of Cincinnati And Hamilton County (Ohio), which relaunched on Monday, sample excerpts are up 93 percent. The North Carolina Digital Library (Chapel Hill Public Library, Greensboro Public Library, Hickory Public Library) has seen significant increases in page views (15 percent), time on site (18 percent), visits (10 percent), and sample excerpts (35 percent).

Meanwhile in the Scholarly Kitchen, Phil Davis was writing about How Much of the Literature Goes Uncited?

How much of the literature goes uncited? It seems like a simple-enough question that requires a straightfoward answer. In reality, this is one of the hardest question to answer, and the most appropriate response is “it depends.” A citation is a directional link made from one paper to another. In order to count that event, that link must be observed. And while counting a citation confirms that an event took place, not observing a citation does not confirm that it didn’t.

Given my own online reading habits, I think that discoverability in a semantic web is becoming much more important that citation. I tend to follow Related Article links in Google Scholar as a personal learning tool. I start with 2012 papers and move backwards to saturate my literature search.

I find this approach empowering. By coincidence an email from John Kessel sent me off to the Harvard Business Review and Nilofer Merchant’s suggestion about power:

If you currently equate your power with your bossness, your ability to have all the answers, and getting credit for everything you do, then you are set up to thrive in the past. Thriving in the Social Era requires different skills: collaborating rather than commanding, framing and guiding rather than telling, and sharing power rather than hoarding it.

I finished my early morning reading with the story of a toddler in Townsville in North Queensland who has incubated a nest of Eastern Brown snakes (one of the world’s most deadly species of snake) in his bedroom closet. Kyle is just three years old.

The story from the ABC news site indicates that Kyle managed to do this by himself. His negotiation of the threats posed by venomous snakes seemed a perfect allegory for the start of the Age of Aquarius.

I am definitely on the side of transformation in 2013 … and thinking about how I would support Kyle’s learning journey and his co-learners who will live in the 22nd century.

Photo Credit

V838 Mon (Wikipedia)


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Game Changing

4849524717_39bb115d29_bA post by Terry Condon sent me off thinking.

Terry wrote about meeting Hans Muller-Wohlfahrt. Two paragraphs in particular caught my attention:

Many people move into their chosen field and ‘specialize’ in an area in order to become an expert. Hans’ is no different, most of the time he works with athletes.  However it seemed to me that Hans had acquired a bigger picture of healing. He had not subordinated to one industry paradigm of how things ‘should’ be done and limited his learning to one isolated body of research. Instead he actively took from various methods and disciplines what he felt was valuable and developed his own idea of healing.

the level of success you will have is directly correlated to the amount of criticism you are prepared to accept. In order to create the kind of results that will make you a leader, you need to first be prepared to become ‘the villain’ in many people’s eyes in the understanding that at the same time or eventually you will also become the ‘hero’ for many others.

Reflecting on Terry’s post helped me realise how fortunate I am. This year I have met and spent time with many game changers. All of them have energy and passion. All of them have big pictures of where they plan to be.

I like to read about game changers too. In addition to Terry’s post this week I found an interview with Alberto Cairo. In the interview, Alberto talks about changes in higher education:

What I saw happening in newspapers is awfully similar to what I am seeing in higher education: Drowsy institutions with inflexible procedures and obscure lore that are resistant to change just because they feel solidly rooted, stable, and essential. Why would you experiment when your current situation is so comfortable and your model has taken you a long way, up to the present? Because if you don’t seriously —let me stress the word seriously here— try to understand what all new developments, technologies, tools, are capable of, when one of them becomes the next big thing, you may suffer. It is not about burning your ships here; you need to keep using them in routine operations, after all. Instead, it is about taking a few of them and sending them to the open ocean to see if they find something useful. Most of them will be lost, but it may happen that one will stumble upon a treasure island.

I like the open ocean imagery. Yesterday, Stephen Downes was discussing opening doors.

I have been following Anil Dash’s discussions about the web. A couple of days ago he posted about rebuilding the web. In the post he talks about taking responsibility and accepting blame:

The biggest reason the social web drifted from many of the core values of that early era was the insularity and arrogance of many of us who created the tools of the time. I was certainly guilty of this, and many of my peers were as well. We took it as a self-evident and obvious goal that people would even want to participate in this medium, instead of doing the hard work necessary to make it a welcoming and rewarding place for the rest of the world. We favored obscure internecine battles about technical minutia over the hard, humbling work of engaging a billion people in connecting online, and setting the stage for the billions to come. To surpass the current generation of dominant social networks and apps, which have unsurprisingly become arrogant and inflexible during their own era of success, we’ll have to return to being as hungry and as humble as we were when the web was young. Because last time, we were both naive and self-absorbed enough that we deserved to fail.

I think that failure is a very important experience for game changers. It happens a lot when decision makers are unable to manage risk and prefer to avoid it.

I think game changers require great resilience. All the game changers I have met this year are self-evidently different. All of them have managed to overcome resistance to their vision. They all exhibit the characteristics of Sarah Horrigan’s learning technologists:

  • Curious
  • Playful
  • Connected
  • Proactive
  • Passionate
  • Learner

I think game changers are excellent communicators too. One of them, Charles Rosen, died last week. Earlier this year he wrote:

We do not learn language by reading a dictionary, and we do not think or speak in terms of dictionary definitions. Meaning is always more fluid. Nevertheless, we are hemmed in, even trapped, by common usage. Senses we wish to evade entrap us. The greatest escape route is not only humor, but poetry, or art in general. Art does not, of course, liberate us completely from meaning, but it gives a certain measure of freedom, provides elbow room.

I like the idea that the art of game changing creates elbow room and there are fluid ways to share vision.

Photo Credit

Horizons gyroscopiques II


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Aggregate and Record

CSDI am starting to make better use of my Twitter aggregator, Paper.Li.

In the last week I have been taken to some posts that I would have missed in the daily flow of tweets and exchanges.

For example, I found a danah boyd post that led me to this tweet:

Tweetdb

which took me to Anil’s post and the 158 comments it stimulated. Anil starts the post with these observations:

The tech industry and its press have treated the rise of billion-scale social networks and ubiquitous smartphone apps as an unadulterated win for regular people, a triumph of usability and empowerment. They seldom talk about what we’ve lost along the way in this transition, and I find that younger folks may not even know how the web used to be. So here’s a few glimpses of a web that’s mostly faded away …

One of the comments (by Ryan Sholin) was:

Of all these things, I miss Technorati the most, but I also miss the culture of blogging that powered it. Now we (well, Anil and Jason and Gruber and obviously many prominent others excluded) barely use our blogs, content to share half-passively, doing things like posting a comment and leaving the box checked to post it to Facebook as a method of exposing our thoughts on a link to a wider audience.

2934563494_2dd9b2f3a1_bPerhaps moving six cubic metres of stone aggregate recently during house renovations has overly sensitised me to the medium but I was interested to note that aggregate has interstices (small openings or spaces between objects, especially adjacent objects or objects set closely together). Paper.Li is taken me to some of those spaces and is helping me connect macro themes with granular detail.

It seems to me that if we do talk about aggregation, we need to discuss record keeping and curation too. Paper.Li helped me with that today too.  At the end of last month, the Recordkeeping Roundtable, in partnership with the Australian Society of Archivists, held a two day workshop in Sydney; ‘Reinventing Archival Methods’. Radio National’s Future Tense program reported on the workshop.

Over two days participants in the workshop explored “how we can fundamentally reassess our methods and determine what can be done to create a stable archival record of the 21st century”. There is an excellent resource (compiled by Cassie Findlay) that came out of the workshop.

I was struck by Cassie’s introduction:

In 1986 David Bearman first argued that our core methods of appraisal, description, preservation and access were fundamentally unable to cope with the volumes of information that archivists were required to process. He called on the profession to completely reinvent its core methods.  While much has been done in the intervening 25 years, as a profession our methods are still ill-equipped to deal with the volume, fragility and complexity of contemporary archival records.

I recall that Claude Debussy suggested that music is the “space between notes”. Paper.Li is helping me with some of the spaces in my information interests.

On this journey I have thought about what we have lost and gained in the transformation of the web. It has been great having danah, Anil, Ryan and Cassie as guides.

Photo Credit

Pebbles