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by Stephen Downes
February 6, 2007

Two Kinds of Competency
Competence with and without concepts. A useful distinction? "There are also two kinds of incompetence. One kind arises from a lack of concepts or linguistic structures. The competent clerk who cannot troubleshoot a breakdown... The other kind of incompetence maintains an abundance of concepts without the ability to perform... Alfred North Whitehead referred to these linguistic structures as 'inert ideas'." Hm. Reacting to some of my thoughts, Haskins writes, "The faculty's competency is based entirely on linguistic structures and [it] thus functions as incompetent in the realms of action." Tom Haskins, growing changing learning creating February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]

Polychrons in Our Classrooms
From World Wide Words: "Traditionally, cultures are divided into monochronic (where time is regarded as linear, people do one thing at a time and lateness and interruptions are not tolerated) and polychronic (where time is seen as cyclical, punctuality is unimportant and interruptions are acceptable)." Which means that teachers are monochronic, students are polychronic. So, "what does a polychronic classroom look like? Is it completely digital? With SL, IM, Skype, and Google all open and working?" Pete Reilly, Ed Tech Journeys February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]

Emerging Technologies Presentation
Interesting comment from Alec Couros: "my first instinct was to use a presentation tool (Apple Keynote). I got about 3 slides in when I realized that my brain no longer operates that way." Funny. Anyhow, the result is a presentation wiki on digital literacies and emerging educational technologies. Alec Couros, courosblog February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]

Relearning Learning-Applying the Long Tail to Learning
I couldn't play this (Totem plays utterly nothing and the whole system of dysfunctional media players is one of the most frustrating things about Linux) but I know people will want to see this. "Perhaps, Brown proposes, the formal curriculum of schools will encompass both a minimal core 'that gets at the essence of critical thinking,' paired with 'passion-based learning,' where kids connect to niche communities on the web, deeply exploring certain subjects. Brown envisions education becoming 'an act of re-creation and productive inquiry,' that will form the basis for a new culture of learning." John Seely Brown, MIT World February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]

Time Out
Um... one wonders what to make of this. In EDNA groups recently: "As requested by our members we have now set up a 'Time Out' area..." Yes, this appears to be serious. Now I certainly understand why it has been done - I've seen examples of rude behaviour in the forums. What I wonder is whether this is an artifact of the forums being locked behind a subscription wall. And I wonder whether there's a better approach (and to be honest, having dealt with very toxic presences in forums over the years, I'm not sure there is). Alexander Hayes, Weblog February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]

Just launched, "(c)ollectanea blog will serve as an online discussion platform for the current and future Center for Intellectual Property (at the University of Maryland University College) scholars." Various Authors, collectanea February 6, 2007 [Link] [Comment]


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Copyright 2007 Stephen Downes

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