Where oh Where is Plug & Play?

Jack Gordon, E-Learning Magazine, Jan 09, 2003
Commentary by Stephen Downes

"A layman reading the sales literature from major suppliers of e-learning courseware, authoring tools, and LMS systems might be excused for assuming the industry already has arrived at plug-and-play... That layman, however, would be wrong." Yup, that's about the size of it. So what has gone wrong? Here's my take. According to the author, "The push for learning standards is often compared to earlier efforts to standardize things like the gauge of railroad tracks and the format for videotapes." So when the standards community delivered, they delivered a train. But they misunderstood the objective. What we want from things like railroads is the ability to get from point A to point B. That's fine, and in theory it should work, but what people really needed was a road. After all, a Volkswagen is a lot cheaper than a locomotive. And you can drive where you want, without having to pay for a ticket every time.
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