My Learning 2009
DECEMBER 12, 2009
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. Trying to argue for social media was thought-provoking.
2009 – Challenges, Plans, Predictions
JANUARY 8, 2009
The predictable beginning of the year question from the Learning Circuits Blog is here: What are your Challenges, Plans, and Predictions for 2009? Let me get the predictions part out of the way – it’s the easiest and requires the least amount of thought and reflection. I don’t see 2009 being any different from 2008. Or 2007. Or 2006. Or… Yes, over the years, 2.0 came up, Second Life emerged, Games appeared… but when I look back at the kind of engagements my organization (or our competitors, for that matter) has been executing, there hasn’t been much of a difference.
How to live in 2009
JANUARY 14, 2009
A lot has been said about how 2009 is certain to be an Annus Horribilis. Here’s a philosophical collection from The Telegraph – 2009: The New Rules. Here’s the link again – 2009: The New Rules. My tip for how to live in 2009: Just wait for 2010. So there is no dearth of advice on how to survive the year. Alain de Botton, he who wrote the wonderful How Proust Can Change Your Life , brings you crashing down to earth by arguing that a “job will return to just being a job.” As long as it is still yours, adds a wag. No greed, no mankind, counters a bird in my ear.
TED India Interview: Gaurav Mishra
OCTOBER 18, 2009
We were able to put together a great team of volunteers and a great service in a very short time and played an interesting role in the ecosystem of civic initiatives that emerged during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections in India. 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.
From Maslow to Morozov
SEPTEMBER 24, 2009
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
What is the web about? Two perspectives
SEPTEMBER 22, 2009
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
MAY 12, 2009
What makes TED Talks TED Talks perhaps.
MARCH 23, 2009
MARCH 19, 2009
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.
FEBRUARY 24, 2009
Hat tip: Will Thalheimer.
The Credit Crisis Visualized
FEBRUARY 19, 2009
The treatment is so simple it is difficult to not understand. And then you wonder, “were it that simple…”.
History of the Internet
FEBRUARY 17, 2009
Just in case you missed it.
Why Do You Need To Pray?
JANUARY 28, 2009
Picture courtesy www.funtoosh.com , passed on to me by Inkscrawl.
JANUARY 26, 2009
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?
The Ted (India) Talkers
NOVEMBER 2, 2009
Take a few hours off to read what drives these people, and why they will be in Mysore November 4-7, 2009. Aparna Wilder is an “ accidental filmmaker ” and co-founder of Global Rickshaw , where she and her life partner Shivraj Shantakumar (who won MTV India’s Best Music Video Award in 2009) make short movies to promote the messages of non-profit organizations. 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. The way we went after them, they might well be referring to us as the TED Stalkers.
DECEMBER 30, 2009
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
A SoMe Convergence Experiment
DECEMBER 1, 2009
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.
The Value of Social Media for Learning
NOVEMBER 6, 2009
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.
Does long-term thinking need a scientific temper?
OCTOBER 24, 2009
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
OCTOBER 16, 2009
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….
OCTOBER 16, 2009
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.
The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs
OCTOBER 4, 2009
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
SEPTEMBER 30, 2009
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?
SEPTEMBER 29, 2009
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.
The 2 Moves Up: Web Squared
SEPTEMBER 25, 2009
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.
A good heart attack
SEPTEMBER 14, 2009
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.
What Learning Formats do you think will exist in 2020?
JANUARY 8, 2009
This forum is slated for 27 January 2009. I have been invited to take part in a discussion on what kind of learning formats will be prevalent in the year 2020, with particular reference to corporate training. Instead of just doing the crystal ball gazing myself, I thought I’d seek inputs from other learning professionals. So what do you see in the future? Do me a favor and put in your views in the comments sections of this post. promise to attribute your ideas to you and also put up a consolidated post at a later date. Reach out for that comments button now.
E-learning Development as a Wicked Problem
APRIL 22, 2009
In the Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology , Katrin Becker argues for Wicked ID: Conceptual Framework for Considering Instructional Design as a Wicked Problem. It seems fair to extend this argument to custom e-learning development as well. There is no definitive formulation for a Wicked Problem. Just pick any random brief from a client and you will understand the wisdom of this, the first premise of Wicked Problems. And oh yes, when the program fails, be prepared to be told that you as an expert did not understand the problem and address it effectively. Each problem is unique. Truly so.
Twitter in Plain English
APRIL 9, 2009
"Because life happens between blog posts and e-mails." Courtesy: Commoncraft. videos twitter
The New Buzzword
MARCH 25, 2009
David Pierce out at The 2.0 World asserts that it is the best online word processor he has ever seen so I signed up for Adobe Buzzword. write this post using this new online word processor - making observations as I notice them. The interface is very different from good old Microsoft Word or its online lookalike, Google Docs. don't know whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, but it certainly will take some getting used to. The alt-text when you place your mouse over the tool bar icons is very distracting as well - may be one can turn it off, may be one should be able to.
Twittering for Sadness
MARCH 22, 2009
In his relentless pursuit of sadness, Inkscrawl unearthed the Blogger’s Guide to Unhappiness. To have fun at my expense, he then suggested that I do a similar one for Twittering. Initially, I refused to fall for it. Then I reckoned, what the @, it’s the weekend after all. So here’s my list of nine (the Blogger’s Guide had eight, I had to be one up), 140 characters at a time. Twitter at least once every three minutes, if possible every minute. If you can't clog the feeds of your followers, then why twitter at all? Twitter about every single detail about everyone in your family.
MARCH 20, 2009
eLearning Learning has deemed it fit to feature this blog in their resource list. eLearning Learning is a community that tries to collect and organize the best information on the web that will help you learn and stay current on eLearning. Now to keep those posts going on a regular basis. navel-gazing elearning
Social Learning Survey Results
MARCH 18, 2009
I remember taking part in this survey from Elliott Masie. Now the results are out. My suspicion is that the target audience may be a bit skewed – aren’t the people who took this survey online more likely than not to be pro-social-learning? wish Masie had shared the sample size (1069 is not a bad number, don’t you agree?) demographics as well. Anyway, let’s park suspicions aside and look at the findings. Only a little more than 50 percent of the respondents used any social media technology (the corporate collaboration portal came out tops at 58 percent). Too many naysayers, if you ask me.
MARCH 14, 2009
(with apologies to Rudyard Kipling and a belated birthday wish to the World Wide Web ). If you can keep your head when all those web sites. Keep spewing their data at you, If you can trust yourself to judge the truth, Trawling through one million Google results too; If you can wait and not be tired of slow downloads, Or being hung on, being 404ed, Or being spammed, don't give way to viruses, And yet get what you want, surf as you please. If you can e-mail – and not spam your friends; If you can forward – but not forward everything to everyone; If you can meet Reply with Reply. Man, my son!