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Creative Commons 2.5

May 29, 2004

Weblog Design: Writing Process

What is an effective writing process for a community weblog authors? Of course, there isn't one kind of writing process nor is there one purpose for writing. I sense that there are a number of strategic concerns an author needs to consider that have a direct impact on the design of a weblog. The source of design in a weblog, for me, refers more to the purpose, nature and character of the writing itself - or what we often refer to as the "content." But the content is interconnected with the tools used to create it...

May 24, 2004

Language: "New" Approaches to Learning

If we are to understand learning, I believe one important strategy is to think about how we learned the things we value the most. Of course, there are some challenges with this. Values can be illusive and are context driven. The phrase "thinking about" can also provide a challenge - is this mere recollection of some important past events, or is this thinking a means to improve our lives. And if it is a means to improve our lives, then what improvements are we talking about, why are we talking about them, and how do we make them happen. Thinking is obviously necessary, but not in itself enough. Lisa Galarneau has written an insightful entry called "New" Approaches to Learning, and what I think is most important about the title of this entry are the quotation marks around the word "New"...

May 22, 2004

Lifestyle: The Foundation for a Better Life

Here is something very refreshing indeed:

"GOOD NEWS: Good things are happening in the news. Discover positive news reports from all over the world on individuals making a difference in their market-segments. All news articles relate to one or more values and all illustrate individuals who are passing on good values with their example."


May 20, 2004

Movies: Film Reflecting Life - Looking for Angelina

Two friends of mine, Sergio Navarretta and Alessandra Piccione, are in the midst of creating a movie called "Looking for Angelina." Sergio (Director) and Alessandra (Producer) own and operate Platinum Image. I find their ideas about film in general and their approach to film-making to be extremely interesting. Their work is now becoming better known as evidenced in the recent coverage of their new film "Looking for Angelina" in the National Post (May 6, 2004). The approach they take to film production is notable and offers insight into the learning process...

May 18, 2004

Language: Edward Hall - The Silent Language

In The Silent Language Edward Hall explores the cross-cultural context of communication and learning. The silent language refers to how people from different cultures communicate to each other without the use of words and states that "there is an entire universe of behavior that is unexplored, unexamined, and very much taken for granted." Underlying this exploration is the need to understand communication and learning in different cultural contexts in order to more fully appreciate the diversity of how the world can be perceived. Throughout his book, Hall focused on a number of important ideas related to learning...

May 14, 2004

Language: Literacy & Online Gaming

There is an interesting exchange taking place at TerraNova. There is much to explore here and I was especially interested in the ideas about literacy in relation to "ingame play as the construction of a new kind of "nonlinear, multi-authored narrative." Ideas about literacy, especially as they relate to something called "the basics" in the education sector, have been the centre of a great deal of [circular] controversy here in Canada, so it is refreshing to see literacy being explored in new contexts. The author of the entry, Constance Steinkuehler, has captured the essential piece here...

May 12, 2004

Gaming: Self-esteem, Games and Macromedia Flash

I came across Self-esteem Games via an ABC News feed. I thought the title was referring to playing games (in the negative sense) with self-esteem, but what I found were online games designed to increase self-esteem. These games have been designed in Macromedia's Flash Player and make the claim...

Teaching: What is relevant?

Lisa Galarneau's weblog relevancy is focused on the issue of how to make the world a more relevant place: "To be relevant means that you are adapting to the needs and wants of the people you interact with. It means listening, customizing, personalizing, anticipating , understanding, sympathizing, adapting, responding, cooperating, conversing, collaborating, empathizing, tolerating, respecting..." Providing relevant experiences is a key issue for designers, educators and trainers alike, and in a more generalized sense we are all seeking greater relevance in our lives...

May 11, 2004

Healthcare: Banning Health Supplements

Health supplements (optimizers, dietary, etc.) are currently swimming in a wash of international controversy. At the core of the battle are the various health regulators' desire to gain control over the health supplement market vs. the individual's right and responsibility to make decisions about their own health. One of the battle grounds for the controversy are, not surprisingly, weblogs. It's interesting to explore the relationship between the two...

May 10, 2004

Peace: John Papworth - Social Empowerment

Zenji Natusch and I recently came across each other in the Group Jazz Forum. After reading the title of his weblog "The Slight of the Poonbilled Bornhack" and the tag line “If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it.” [Albert Einstein] I then found his writing to be quite compelling. In his entry Was thinking just before about what I wrote in the last posting a variety of important issues emerge - the dynamics of power and authority, Peace Through Social Empowerment John Papworth, the value of master-apprentice relationships, and network learning environments. There's much to reflect upon here...

May 08, 2004

Networks: Mobile Learning - What's Moving?

The idea of mobile learning, or m-Learning, frequently leads us into thinking about how the emerging forms of mobile technology will impact communication patterns in education. We might just as easily attach the idea of mobility to another are such as marketing (m-Marketing). New forms of technology frequently invite us to inquire into our exisiting situations and circumstances in the light of new and different ways of communicating. The results of these creative inquiries have ranged from minor variations on exisiting practices through to new visions and prophecies of transformation. One line of thinking partly inspired by the idea of m-Learning is the decline of traditional physical locations for learning, an idea that is misleading and potentially unhelpful...

May 03, 2004

Instructional Technology: School Improvement and the Seduction of Technology

The personality of education has, for quite a while now, etched out a tug-of-war existence between the demand for a return to the "basics" and the simultaneous demand for a push toward the future. In an article called Education for Tech? we once again return to an argument that is exclusively based on the future promise of technology. Certainly, Internet technology offers potential to provide opportunities to change the design and underlying structure of education, but it also seems quite reasonable to assume that the changes required are not limited to the adoption of new technologies...

May 01, 2004

Marketing: Marketing as Opportunism

Brenda is surviving the troubled waters of a difficult estate settlement for her deceased husband with resilience. In a recent discussion with her it seemed as though she was swimming in the shark infested waters of human greed, materialism and want - not only with family members but with people called "marketers" as well. These "marketers," it seemed, regularly scan the obituaries as a means to "prospect" new clients. They do so not by having a conversation with Brenda, for they don't have a relationship with her but now desire one based on "sales," but by mailing investment information to her. So it seems that her loss is another person's opportunity for gain. Arriving in her mail are "sales packages" from major banks and investment firms outlining the benefits of their "products" and "services" and promoting the "integrity" of their "brand." There is an important message for marketers here...