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by Stephen Downes
March 17, 2010

Decentralized Learning
In this online presentation for APOP (Association for the Educational Application of Computer Technology at the Post-Secondary Level-Montréal) I discuss the concept of decentralized learning. I begin with the physical model, as instantiated in the Connectivism course, then outline the epistemology of knowledge production, then describe the pedagogy of personal learning, and conclude with success factors. A long Q&A in which we discuss numerous issues follows. Presentation by Stephen Downes, APOP (Association for the Educational Application of Computer Technology at the Post-Secondary Level-Montréal), Montreal, Online via the Via Conferencing System, [Link]

Game guru Sid Meier explains gamer psychology
Some really good stuff on the psychology of gaming. Sid Meier, who gave the keynote address at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, has this to say: ""Game play is a psychological experience," Meier said. "It's all in your head. I thought the more realistic you made a game, the more historically accurate, [the more] the player would appreciate it. In reality, I was wrong." The same applies for user input. "One of the biggest skills that game developers can foster is listening to what players are really saying. This means you don't have to take their suggestions literally, but interpret them so that you know what they really want." See also GamaSutra. Related, but on a different note, this saga of a gameplay experience in Far Cry 2 (note the sophisticated logic and interaction). Civ links via Civ Fanatics, the other link via Metafilter. Dean Takahashi, VentureBeat, March 17, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Need Much Much More "D" in Education R & D
The problem, in my mind, is not that learning resources are not being developed, but rather, that so many of the resources that are developed are not being used in learning. For just about any subject you care to name, the internet is overflowing with learning re4sources. Long videos, short videos, academic papers, how-to guides, opinion pages, blog posts, discussions and groups and clubs and everything else under the sun. When people like Tony bates say, "there is still so little of it. What I would like to see are many thousands of short modules," he must mean resources specifically designed to be used in classes. But that's not how the internet rolls. Nothing is designed for a specific purpose. People throw stuff out there, and then it's up to everyone else to make what they will of it. Doug Holton, EdTechDev, March 17, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Three Models of Knowledge Production
I wrote this post today partly in reaction to Harold Jarche's post on personal knowledge management and partially - as I developed a full head of steam - in preparation for the talk I gave this afternoon. The three models are:
- knowledge production as mining
- knowledge production as construction
- knowledge production as growth
While arguably elements of all three models are required for a robust account of knowledge production, my inclination, for various reasons, is to place the most emphasis on the third. Stephen Downes, Half an Hour, March 17, 2010 [Link] [Tags: ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Educause 2010

Case study - in a nice Prezi presentation - of WordPres MU implementation at Bowling Green. The BGSU Blogs site is used not just by students but a wide variety of campus services, such as Blackboard tutorials and one of the featured case studies, the Worlf Viewing Centre for videos. Terence Armentano, EDUCAUSE, March 17, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

Implementing Unified Communications in Higher Education

Presence is the key, say the authors of this presentation on unified communications. The argument is compelling: instead of paying large sums to expand the capacities of our telephone, we should integrate communications with the computer devices we use. This allows not only voice and video, but also conferencing and calendaring. Status indicators - similar to what we see in Skype and other such tools - let callers know when answerers are available and willing to talk. The major challenge, note the author, is at the edges: adapting to the individual configurations of the users, especially those outside the corporate firewall, who may be using a wide range of configurations. Victor Martinez and Danny Smith, EDUCAUSE, March 17, 2010 [Link] [Tags: , , , ] [Comment] [Tweet]

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Copyright 2008 Stephen Downes

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