Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Flat Earth and EDEN 2007

Originally uploaded by Remara Photography 2.0
The Earth does go round the sun, Galileo was right, but a lot of the evidence in Galileo's time showed the Earth to be flat and there were a lot of sceptics, who we now laugh at. However, I'm sure there were a lot of strange ideas going round in the renaissance that were wrong and now are more-or-less forgotten. A certain element of scepticism is wise, even if the sceptics are wrong at times.
I've been looking at the EDEN 2007 programme and on day 2 the theme of the key-notes seems to be new trends (i.e. web 2.0) and institutional/national policy. Sometimes it seems as if the policy makers and the actors in a new area are refusing to look at one another. The policy-makers are reluctant to listen. Is this a bad thing? Looking backwards we can see which trends have become accepted practice, but we tend to forget the trends that disappeared without trace. As I wrote above, a certain element of scepticism is wise, even if the sceptics are wrong at times.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Digital literacy and folkbildning conference

Today I was at a conference looking at digital literacy and folkbildning in Stockholm. One of the problems is defining digital literacy, and thereby defining the groups who need to be helped and therefore which methods are likely to be helpful. For example one group are those who have never used a computer/internet at all, another group those who can use a computer but see no reason to do so. A third group are perhaps computer literate but lack the skills required (traditional literacy skills?) to be an active and democratic user of the new digital world. And so on, the list is long!

The problem is becoming more acute because more and more of the functions of society are moving online and not being digitally literate is becoming a real disadvantage. More and more of the discourse inside society is also moving online. Developing professional skills, as a teacher for example, requires digital literacy.

Another discussion is that as the development of internet progresses more and more rapidly the whole field becomes more complicated with more to learn and the catch-up process becomes longer and more difficult. New groups become disadvantaged - if you can't use the tools defined loosely as web 2.0 are you partially digitally illiterate, even if you are an expert in other areas of the digital world?

On the other hand one of the hurdles to overcome is failure to understand why digital literacy is so important and society moving online can also be a motivating factor to go out and become digitally literate. Another part of the development mentioned above is that active use of internet is being made easier (web 2.0 again), and activity makes learning easier.

The discussion continues....

PS The picture is part of an artwork by Andrew Pepper - "Artwork or Network". see also "One Million Points of Light" by the same artist.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Salaries - discussions on policy

African Daisy
Originally uploaded by Seoulwoman.
These discussions begin today, or rather, continue from 2006. We are a working group consisting of union and employer representatives.
It is interesting to see how much more efficient we are this time compared with when we started this work a year ago. There is more trust and understanding between these two groups.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday work development

fly the flickr skies
Originally uploaded by gadjoboy.
This speaker was excellent and for those who hadn't thought much about web 2.0 I am sure it was a really interesting (inspiring?) presentation. For those of us who are already in in this world it was entertaining and interesting but I am not sure we learnt so much that was new. However, even that is knowledge well worth having. We seem to know as much as most others!!
Something that interests me personally is web 2.0 and art. Hence the picture....

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Reflections - Using a Web 2.0 Credo...

reflections of grasmere
Originally uploaded by adrians_art.
At a meeting today we got a bit off-theme and started to talk about the importance of having the "organisation" with you if you wanted to change the way the organisation worked. This in the context of schools, the digital media, and laptops for all.

Back from the meeting I read a blog which summed up our conversation and provided something of an answer too. It gave a credo for a school wanting to work in a web 2.0 context.

The original reference came from Will Richardson's blog for the 25 April.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Clipmarks - another form of social bookmarking

This is an example of how "clipmarks" saves to a blog.

It's the birthday of the poet Jenny Joseph, (books by this author) born in Birmingham, England (1932). She was an aspiring poet throughout her 20s, supporting herself with odd jobs. Then in 1960, when she was 28 years old, she published a poem called "Warning," which began with the line, "When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple."

Somehow, as the poem became more and more popular, Jenny Joseph's name as the author was lost. Other people claimed to have written the poem, or it was attributed to "Anonymous." Jenny Joseph eventually published an authorized, illustrated version of the poem in 1997, which sold thousands of copies. Her name is still not as well known as that one poem, but today she is considered one of the foremost contemporary British poets.

When she was asked if she would start wearing purple anytime soon, Jenny Joseph replied, "I can't stand purple. It doesn't suit me."

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