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Monday, April 23, 2012

Goodbye #MOOC Season Hello ~ #CMC11, #POTcert11, #change11, #evomlit

It's a wrap for Mira Costa's Program for Online Teaching Program certificate course, which will return in September as #potcert12. Forget about the POThead jokes: we've already made them all. Change 11, not the infinite MOOC after all, is also coming down to the wire. Dave Cormier exhorts the weary and mooc-worn to catch their second wind and face the final five sessions like a fresh, much shorter version. Vance Stephen's Multiliteracies (evomlit) never turns the lights off. That's why there is no number at the end of the hashtag. I signed up and get the Dailies but never got into either CCK12 or LAK12.
 Good news for CMC11 participants. The beat goes on. Carol Yaeger writes, 
CMC11 is still open for your participation ... the playground for connectivist learning adventures.  There are several recent registered participants and a few who have come in the past few months (please let me know who you are by sending me an email ... thanks).  I do know about Becky from China, Brandy and Sarah in the US and the few who have been posting blogs and Tweets from time to time ... and you know who you are :-) 
Since we will be open for Independent Study ESC students starting 1 May, I will endeavor to add my blog commentary on a weekly basis and send out the NewPosts at least weekly, if not more often.
The folks in China are not able to access Facebook or Google, and their blogs may be slightly different in format.  This means that they are unable to join in the hangouts and You Tube presentations.  We will be looking for additional ways to communicate beyond the NewPosts, Twitter and such.  If anyone has any suggestions, please pass them along.  I think the discussion posts here and the material in the NewPosts should be OK ... Becky, and others in China, please let me know.  Thanks.  (Greetings to the Current Participants ~ CDL Projects)
I responded, opening a discussion on the site:

Google+ Hangout: takes more bandwidth than I have access to. Sure would be nice to have a transcript (text) or report (blog post)
Continuations, China, connecting (because you can't do connectivism let alone exchange ideas about it unless you do): using mostly Fb because it is convenient, I suspect I've missed out on some announcements (i.e. final projects) and discussion here. I found the creativity/trans-multicultural literacy engaging and a natural for me. I am all for keeping on. I start tagging again. Are we using social bookmarking? FYI Diigo, among other features, has a good comment and sharing features, enough to use as a discussion forum.  
China ~ it's a good and perhaps even necessary exercise to think about how we can connect / communicate without (eek!) Facebook or Google. A challenge, but hardly the end of meaningful online communication. Let's start with what is open and where Chinese participants *can* connect. What blogging platforms are available? Can we use theirs? What about Yahoo, email lists, bulletin boards, other social media, bookmarking, photo sharing with comment features? 
Not entirely OT, I offered to help an Italian friend in Australia with a project for low bandwith access project putting basic literacy / skills / K-12 education resources online for a Haitian orphanage. How multi-cultural can you get? 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Technology and culture: a test case

This relates to Lisa's post, It's a Facebook thing and ignorance of the internet. Both make me think of high school debate topics in the late 50s. I was set to write "remind." They are not the same. "Better Dead than Red vs Better Red than Dead" was a popular topic along with whether or not to recognize China. 

Which is stronger: technology's power to shape local culture, or local culture's power to influence the way technology is adopted and used?

If it's the former, as I suspect it is, then technology becomes a homogenizing force, tending in time to erase cultural differences. If it's the latter, then technology plays a subservient role; the uniformity of the tool does not impose uniformity on the tool's use. Culture prevails.

We're going to get some insight into this question over the next decade or so as e-readers - in the form of both devices and apps - spread and become even cheaper. As Caroline Winter of Bloomberg Businessweek reports, in two of the most prosperous Western countries - the U.S. and Germany - the adoption of electronic books has so far taken very different routes. E-books are booming in the U.S. Less than five years after the introduction of Amazon's Kindle, e-book sales already account for about a quarter of all U.S. book sales, and that percentage continues to rise sharply. In Germany, where e-readers are also readily available, e-books still represent just 1 percent of overall book sales.

The difference is largely a cultural one. Germany, the birthplace of Gutenberg...

Read the rest of Technology and culture: a test case
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