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The Ted (India) Talkers

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Responding to a call from Kiruba Shankar , a bunch of us got together and embarked on a project of interviewing all the TED India fellows. Working by ourselves, we researched the fellows, prepared our questions for them, hunted out their coordinates, chased them with calls, hounded them with reminders, poked them on Facebook, and then used some more tricks from our armories. The way we went after them, they might well be referring to us as the TED Stalkers. No, we did not manage to get all TED India fellows to respond, heck, we didn’t even get close.

Education versus Training

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Some stray thoughts, in no particular order, gathered over time, on the differences between education and training, from the lens of custom content creation for diverse companies across the world. Education (even vocational education) is far transfer; training is near transfer. Hence the obsession of training with application ( “I don’t care what they learn; I’m only interested in how they do their jobs better” ), with reducing time to competence (the Holy Grail of training), with rapid development (they need everybody to be more competent now ). Most education would be transferable.

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The danger of a simple story

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She doesn't move from where she stands for the entire duration of her talk. She doesn't use any fancy props to engage the audience. She doesn't deviate so much as a second from her theme. Yet she holds you riveted for almost twenty minutes with a simple, alluring, persuasive, beautiful speech on the risks of stereotyping people, races, nations, communities. It will be time well spent

Humor in eLearning

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This is a news snippet from The Time of India on Wednesday, 10 January 2007. You can let your imagination run riot wondering what can happen to movies if further such moves are contemplated by the authorities. Might as well tell moviemakers to only make documentaries. And in course of time, all fiction. One such is the use of humor. But surely humor can be clean and unoffensive?

New Brandon Hall Group report forecasts major shift in 2016 online learning trends

Companies are increasingly dissatisfied with online learning tools, prompting many to reinvest in technology that supports a modern training approach. Download the report from Brandon Hall Group to see how new investments are bringing real business results.

Sixth Sense

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TED India Interview: Deepti Doshi

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It was Gaurav Mishra first, then Prayas Abhinav. Now it’s the turn of TED India fellow Deepti Doshi of Escuela Nueva to answer a few questions as part of the TED India Fellows project. One statement she made in a media interview earlier this month sums up Deepti: I get inspired by the optimism of the poor. Share her optimism - read on. Tell us a bit about the Escuela Nueva model. Ah so many!

From Maslow to Morozov

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Towards the end of his TED talk on how the web aids dictatorships, Evgeny Morozov briefly touched upon the hierarchy of cyber-needs. Here is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Note the similarities. Maslow’s base need includes sex; Morozov suggests pornography. Are e-mail and IM safety needs for today’s netizens? perhaps. culture psychology

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Social Networking in Education

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The National School Boards Association in the U.S. has released a research report on the use of online social networking by students, titled Creating and Connecting (caution: it’s a pdf file). While some of the findings are not surprising, some others are. Here’s a quick take on some of the findings. Just e-mail and web surfing? Further, students report that one of the most common topics of conversation on the social networking scene is education. It may not mean a new avenue for learning something new – it is just a new medium to get problems shared and solved. Explore social networking sites.

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TED India Interview: Gaurav Mishra

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As part of Kiruba Shankar’s TED India Fellows project , I am part of a team of 15 bloggers who interview five TED India fellows each to get to know them better. First up is Gaurav Mishra. Teaching Social Media at Georgetown as a Yahoo! fellow and co-founding Vote Report India complete his wheel of activities. Here’s Gaurav in the driver’s seat. Tell us a little bit about Vote Report India.

Platitudes in meetings

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For most managers, the predominant activity at work is playing “meeting, meeting.” And the more time you spend in meetings, the more you are bound to get by way of platitudes. Statements that are truisms, statements that brook no argument. Statements you knew all along; statements that don’t help in shaping any thought or defining any action. Tempting as it is to denigrate platitudes as a waste of time, it may be worth pausing for a moment to examine whether such statements deserve their place under the sun. Platitudes are the punctuation marks in the essay that is the meeting.

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TED India Interview: Prayas Abhinav

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As part of the TED India Fellows project , I interviewed TED India fellow Gaurav Mishra last time round. Now it’s the turn of Prayas Abhinav. The home page of his web site describes him simply as Artist and writer living in Bangalore , India. Clichéd as it may sound, the term multi-faceted personality sits quite comfortably on Prayas. guess there hasn't been any move. Why open spaces?

Whitepaper: When The LMS Isn’t Enough

In this whitepaper, you will discover the main reasons why the LMS alone is no longer meeting the needs of the modern learner. More importantly, you will learn what you can do to enhance its value.

What is the web about? Two perspectives

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On the one hand, Jonathan Zittrain argues that the web is composed of disinterested acts of kindness, curiosity and trust. On the other, Evgeny Morozov suggests that the net helps oppressive regimes stifle dissent. Six of one, half a dozen of the other, perhaps? videos short takes

The TED Commandments

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What makes TED Talks TED Talks perhaps.

Changing Behavior

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A couple of rather testing interactions with some colleag ues and business associates led me to ask a few friends: How do we teach people to not talk more than necessar y in a client meeting? How do we train people to listen with a n open mind? As we debated the difficulty, almost futility, of answering th ese questions in a manner that satisfied us, we pulled back from the specifics.

Siftables

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Hat tip: Will Thalheimer.

The Credit Crisis Visualized

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The treatment is so simple it is difficult to not understand. And then you wonder, “were it that simple…”.

Storyboarding for eLearning

Storyboarding is a very important step for creating eLearning courses. But don’t you feel it’s a waste of time to start creating the courses from scratch and copy-paste text and other objects from the storyboard to the eLearning tool for course development.

History of the Internet

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Just in case you missed it.

Why Do You Need To Pray?

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Picture courtesy www.funtoosh.com , passed on to me by Inkscrawl.

Slumdog Millionaire

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Not being much of a cinema guy, I was quite surprised that I watched Slumdog Millionaire. And I really liked it. remember reading the book ( Q & A by Indian diplomat Vikas Swarup) on a long train journey some three years ago. It had an unusual if opportunistic setting, because it piggybacked on the most popular television show of that time. So what made the movie for me?

Better, not different

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(Response to the Learning Circuits Blog’s big question for April 2008: What would you like to do better as a Learning Professional? ) I love the LCB question this month, I really do. The focus is on doing better, not on doing something different. have this thing about people who go on and on about doing things differently, about “thinking out of the box,” about changing things.

Evaluating Training - Capturing the Benefits Aspects of ROI

Training evaluation is necessary and, in many ways, critical to the success of a business. But because short term priorities always seem to take precedence, it is typically something we plan to do better in the next course, or maybe next month, or even next year. After all, we’ve managed pretty well up to now, so surely another year can’t hurt!

Scope. Responsibility. Learning Professionals

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What is the Scope of our Responsibility as Learning Professionals , asks the Learning Circuits Blog this month. As a learning professional (in thought, if not in certification and qualification), what do I feel responsible for? Simply put, it is to make the learner own up to the responsibility of mastering the subject, voluntarily. After that, the tools of web 2.0 will give him ways to get there.

Watch that cellphone.

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Instructional Design – If, When and How Much?

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That’s the Learning Circuits Blog’s February 2008 Big Question. The full question is: For a given project, how do you determine if, when and how much an instructional designer and instructional design is needed? Response 2.0 Web 2.0 has given us a smorgasbord of tools – a considered combination of these tools could be used to create an online learning environment (an e-learning 2.0 solution).

Bobby Fischer (1943 – 2008)

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Perhaps the very definition of “eccentric genius”; reputedly had a higher IQ than a certain Albert Einstein; was one half of the most dynamic chess championship (against Boris Spassky) in history; became world chess champion in 1972 (the first American and only so far to do so); died in Iceland after years in the wilderness 17 January 2008.

Seven Simple Secrets to Off-the-Shelf Course Success

Off-the-shelf elearning is applicable for a wide audience, but it won’t address your organization’s unique situations or distinctive content. So are these courses all that helpful? For sure! Read on for 7 secrets to make off-the-self learning your own.

What did I learn about learning in 2007?

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That’s the question the Learning Circuits Blog wants answered this month. Hmm… what did I learn this year? Or what is the most significant thing I learned this year? Well, call me a late learner, call it the blinding flash of the obvious, but I realized (rather than learned) that most of corporate training as we know it is not training. Sounds obvious?

About Time

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At last count, there were seven P’s of marketing. It started with four; the fifth that was added was Pace. Google search on rapid e-learning threw up almost six million results; a similar one for micro learning returned close to 32 million. recent topic of interest in the learning discipline again is agile learning , where one of the objectives, predictably enough, is “ faster design solutions. ”. There was a media story yesterday on how the Medical Council of India is planning to introduce a medical degree for rural students – a degree that can be obtained in 3.5

My Learning 2009

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The inevitable year-end question from the Learning Circuits Blog comes up: What did you learn about learning in 2009? Compared to the gloom of 2008 , 2009 certainly seemed to be a better blogging year for me – at least I posted more often. Here’s a chronological list of the posts that were based on learning experiences or were significant learning experiences themselves. In Learning Formats 2020 , I tried crowd-sourcing for the first time. The process was fascinating, and the results, more than satisfactory. Reflecting on running the training function was interesting as an exercise.

A SoMe Convergence Experiment

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Mandar Talvekar, he of Inkscrawl fame, seems to be trying an interesting experiment, Tweet Trove. Every week, he publishes a selective digest of the links posted on Twitter in the last week. Effectively what he does is re-look at his impulsive links of the week, and filter through them to find the most meaningful pieces and aggregate them. This approach also adds a bit of permanence to the links he considers key; else they tend to get lost in the never-ending stream. Another advantage of this process is that it ensures you go through the links you put up in the week – reinforcement, in a sense.

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Move Beyond Learning to Applying: A Modern Management Development Program

A better way to develop front-line managers !It’s well documented that people leave managers – not companies. Download this guide to learn how to shift the perspective from event to journey and how to take learners through Proficiency Journeys to get results.

The Value of Social Media for Learning

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The Learning Circuits Board asks the question: How do you communicate the value of social media as a learning tool in an organization? Some random musings on an idle Friday afternoon, more to stir the pot than to answer the question. I don’t think we have reached the stage where we can communicate the value. We haven’t even seen the value yet, haven’t even generated the value yet. Heck, we don’t even know if it really has value. Come to think of it, are we, the learning design fraternity, really the people to talk about it? Are we experts in the medium or in the message? Don’t over-love SoMe.

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Does long-term thinking need a scientific temper?

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It’s a blog musing of an academic, it is but supported with anecdotal evidence, but it certainly is an intriguing thought. Computer Science Professor David A. Patterson from the University of California , Berkeley wonders whether organizations will get better long-term focus if they get scientists and engineers on board. No prizes for guessing the blogger’s educational background, and while this does tend to dilute the power of the argument quite significantly, the premise does sounds like a good topic for some serious research and analysis.

The subject of Twitter

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It may certainly sound like pushing a fad a tad too far, but the introduction of twitter-ability as a skill being built through a compulsory subject at an Australian university sounds like an interesting experiment. Ignore the Twitter reference for a minute, effectively what this means is training people to send a message within defined restrictions, in this case, 140 characters. Not unlike writing a headline or reporting a piece of news for television in say one minute. So long as they don’t teach a new language of unwieldy abbreviations, inelegant misspellings and abstruse neologisms….

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Nonsense Learning

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Earlier this year, Inkscrawl and I discovered how doodling helped learning and then, in the time-honored andragogical tradition of application, we put that theory into practice and thus came up with this piece titled Learning by Doodling. Hardly had the dust settled down on that than I discover, through another good friend, that nonsense sharpens the intellect. Yes, you read that right. suppose sense does a lot of things, but nonsense, it appears, is not total nonsense. So how do you use this breakthrough technique in your solutions? The simplest way to use this is to just mix up your screens.

5 Unknown Ways You're Wasting Your Training Budget

In the US alone, companies spend over $70 billion on corporate training and about $1000 on individual employees according to Bersin by Deloitte. When it comes to training budgets, leaders struggle to pinpoint what impact (if any) their training programs are having. So what's the result? Companies end up wasting millions of dollars each year on ineffective training practices.

The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs

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Buy the book if you have $14.93. Or view details on the author’s promo web page. Or take a look at a slide show on Businessweek (just a tad tedious to click 16 times methinks). Too lazy for all that? Here a quick listing of Steve's Sixteen. Plan in Analog Focus on Benefits Sell Dreams, Not Products Create Twitter-Friendly Headlines Introduce the Antagonist Draw a Road Map Create Visual Slides Obey the 10-Minute Rule Make Numbers Meaningful Use Zippy Words Share the Stage Use Props Plan a Water Cooler Moment Practice. A Lot. Dress Appropriately One More Thing… Have Fun!

Market Research 3.0

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Is your Facebook update you? Is what you search for online what you want in real life? Does your online behavior reflect your personality? Yes, if Kevin Randall at Fast Company is to be believed, as he ushers in Market Research 3.0 surely they could have come up with a more original term?), which includes, among others, a chilling, post-modern sounding concept, Sentiment Analysis. suppose the human mind is going to remain the perennial Holy Grail, but does “listening to conversations” and chatter on the Web provide a better insight than focus groups and surveys?

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The Walk

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Not that I am an atheist, but the concept of exerting oneself physically as a means of prayer has held little attraction for me. Not so for my sister’s husband, D, who had prayed that he would go round the shrine 108 (a hugely significant number in the Hindu religion) times. promised to drive him to the temple, considering it was a holiday yesterday. As we reached the temple at Chilkur , just off Hyderabad, I also decided to join him in the (approximately) 10 km walk – it could be a good workout for the body if not for the soul. So off we went. For the first dozen rounds or so, I kept count.

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The 2 Moves Up: Web Squared

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Any ‘new’ concept around the Web tends to evoke some degree of suspicion. Is it an old concept packaged as the next big thing? Is it somebody thinking that any new idea born in a garage can change the world? It is perhaps with the same sense of justified skepticism that people would react to the suggested transformation of Web 2.0 into Web Squared. Except that one of the people proposing it is Tim O’Reilly – he who coined the term Web 2.0. Along with John Battelle, O’Reilly has produced this report – Web Squared: Web 2.0 Five Years On (caution: opens a pdf file). changed life.

Workbook: Gamification and Your Enterprise Learning Strategy

This workbook is a response to your need to understand how to strategically incorporate gamification into your learning strategy, in order to drive real business results. It’s designed to be printed, written in and used as a guide.

A good heart attack

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A heart attack is always bad. Or is it? When can a heart attack be good, giving you some much-needed rest and lots of time to catch up on your reading? When you are young enough and surgery can fix it quite effectively. And old enough so the surgery doesn’t reduce your lifetime by much. When your work is on steady state, so you don’t miss out on interesting projects. And mundane work doesn’t wait for you to get back. When you are two years into your current position at your workplace, so there are no promotion chances jeopardized by a bit of leave.

RSS and Wiki in Plain English

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Shorn of all the hype and the techno-babble that tend to surround it, this, in simple terms, is what RSS is. Click To Play And this is what a wiki is. Click To Play Credits to Common Craft – who intriguingly describe themselves as social design consultants. And then there is the now-classic The Machine is Us/ing Us. Makes you wonder, even for (or may be especially for?) film examples