CCK08: Week 3 Musings

I was a bit late putting this up this week. I have been putting in some serious time at work designing some ontology’s about the Advanced Learning industry, and marking term papers for my Royal Military College online and onsite courses. I am starting to see everything in ontology’s.:)

I did a critique in the CKK08 Moodle about “free” learning of Stephens Downs’s presentation (Learning Networks: Theory and Practice) for this week.

I read Networks for Newbie’s so when got to George’s 20 minute presentation on Introduction to Networks I found George did not hit me with much I had not picked up. In fact, I would like to comment on George’s medium for presenting the Introduction. He chose to do this as a video/audio blog built by Articulate. I found myself distracted by the medium. What he had to say I could have read much faster if it had been text instead of video/audio. In fact, it looked like George was reading form a script. I commented in general terms to my night class how some learners, myself included, absorb material much faster in the text format than listening/watching someone talk about it. This is especially true for theories that do not lend themselves well to diagrams, graphs etc. Interestingly, people transmit information much more quickly in the oral fashion because they can talk faster than they can type. So what is good for the speaker is not good for the listener. I commented to the class if I could just get some good audio to text translation software, I would talk to my “secretary” and it would write all my reports and emails! 🙂 Perhaps George could spice his presentation up with some bullet overlays?

Someone in the course sent me a link to Introduction to social network methods. What a snoozer! IT was full of Algebra matrices and the author kept saying “as you can see by the matrices….”. Well, h e double toothpicks, it wasn’t obvious to me. I will grant it has been 20 years since I took university algebra. Anyways, not high on my recommend list of reading.

Valdis Krebs presentation on networks was very interesting although I found his analysis of the terrorists and Sept 11 to be a bit dubious as to his conclusions as to their connections to various people. Perhaps he had some insight I am not aware of but isn’t hard to describe a network of dead people unless you have a lot of their correspondence? His Porn Star HIV network was a bit funny. Sure they are real people and the disease needed to be studies to determine who got infected, but seeing the names up there was “funny” the Tuberculosis example was a bit “Scary” I wonder if anyone has done a biological warfare scenario network analysis for anthrax?

Roy Williams emailed me a draft of a paper he did on Networks and Global Micro Structures. I found it ironic his link was to Sage publications for the published version and it would cost me $20 to download it. I only pay for history texts these days. Everything else I want for free unless my company is willing to pay for Information Architecture books for my day job. George Siemens told me about a book called Numerati the other day that I have to check out because it reads like a conspiracy theory. Anyways, back to Roy‘s article. Interesting read about complex adaptive networks. My read on the microstructures is that we did not understand structurally how they worked until we understood that the were actually complex adaptive systems.

I started a thread in the Moodle about whether or not we are in a Revolution in Learning, analogous to the Revolution in Military affairs in the strategic studies field. I don’t think it is a Revolution, and with Catherine Fitzgerald, I will agree. It think the tools side has been an evolution. On the theory side, I think Connectivism allows us to find others (networks) with closer interests to ourselves. I suspect the interaction can be more intense since there is a higher probability of talking to people, and more of them, that you would get “glocally” or in your family/neighbourhood group. Does intensity = a Revolution? Hmm…

Signing off as its 11 PM on a Friday and its time to network with my wife.



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