Education Technology as 'The New Normal'

Audrey Watters, May 25, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

A few things in this post from Audrey Watters are worth noting. First, from Ursula Franklin, a wide concept of technology. “Technology involves organizations, procedures, symbols, new words, equations, and, most of all, a mindset.” Second, the analysis (once again) of the "new normal" in education technology. "What might be subverted? What might be lost? (That is, who will lose?)" And finally, what this new normal looks like: "Silicon Valley’s ways also include individualism, neoliberalism, libertarianism, imperialism, the exclusion of people of color and white women from its workforce," she writes, "Silicon Valley’s ways and Silicon Valley’s technologies are readily subverting the values of democracy and justice." Maybe - but then what? What do we do about it. We can't simply 'resist technology' - we need to be smarter than that. What's the alternative vision? What should new educational technology look like? I've tried to articulate a vision - and I wish Watters would do the same.
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