Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Revolution NOT Evolution

We must stop!  The evolution of yesterday’s processes is not getting us where we want to be.  There must be a REVOLUTION!  I blog today because I continue to see teams of people struggling with mammoth problems only because they continue to debate, research, and over-analyze every little detail in the hopes of magically discovering the golden solution before actually doing and implementing ANYTHING!

We continue to look at solving problems by way of the enterprise application.  I see teams continually spending countless hours reviewing and debating every last detail of the latest software offerings only to find that when all has been exhausted and a decision is made…the problem no longer exists, or a solution is not required, or the money to fund is gone.

Its not about specific tools…

Lets say you are a large company with an initiative to bring education through technology to the world’s schools and educators.  The debate is not “should we influence the masses to use Moodle, or Microsoft, or .NET, or SAP”, or whatever.  The world and technology is changing to rapidly for us to continue debating the details around the technologies.  By the time you decide on one and “roll it out” to your audience (using old world ways of implementations)…it no longer exists or there is something better.  The debate is actually about the concepts, and realities of our technology driven culture.  And teaching our educators to embrace the new concepts/uses of technology and how learners yearn to interact with content and create content of their own via the new technologies.  Blogs, wikis, RSS, and aggregation are the buzz words today, but tomorrow they may be called something else.  But remember, their names are not as important as the fundamental concepts behind what they are and why they have gained such a strong hold on our networked culture.

Rip, Mix, and Feed

The fact that Trigonometry 101 professor “Dr. Angle” can blog the lesson for the day, podcast his thoughts on the lesson, and enter a virtual world to engage with learners about the lesson should blow your mind.  This is not your father’s school.  We went to school back in the day to gain access to the smart people and their knowledge.  And formal learning was the only thing we knew how to do.   Now all of the smartest people in the world are accessible at the click of a button.  Not to mention that learners can debate, and interact with other learners and creating completely new content…Rip, Mix, and Feed…then repeat.

Rip, Mix, and Feed is the ultimate in Wabi Sabi (Zen acceptance and contemplation of the imperfection, constant flux, and impermanence of all things).  Within such a dynamic environment one cannot rely upon the old methods of project management, instructional design, course management, learning management, content management, knowledge management.  The world has turned upside down…and is flat

The Revolution is already happening

The education revolution begins in education when homeschooling becomes accepted as a viable solution to the failing public school system.  The ONLY down-side I’ve ever heard the naysayers mention about homeschool is that “your kids don’t become socialized”.  15 years ago homeschoolers needed to find socialization via proximity to other homeschoolers.  Today’s kids are conversing regularly with other kids from ALL nations.  You can’t tell me these kids are not being socialized.  So now the true value in the public school system will be revealed as a free baby-sitting service for those families that need it. More parents believe that even the best-endowed schools are in an Old Economy death grip in which kids are learning passively when they should be learning actively, especially if they want an edge in the global knowledge economy.”

The corporate learing revolution begins when IT departments support the demand for better web2.0-style apps, blogs, wikis, RSS, aggregators, gaming environments, etc.  When workers begin finding what they need to be successful through personal, collaborative, learning environemnts they will no longer find the need for an old fashioned, LMS driven, catalogue of click-next eCourse offerings.  The Millenials entering the work force will not stand for the status quo of today’s corporate university offerings.

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