What are we re-defining? From my vantage point, learning fuels the economy and social networks are empowering us to connect in ways that support new paradigms and possibilities. I’ve compiled a few snippets that reveal what myself and my sources may be mulling. The basic idea is that there are “other worlds” where networked learners can solve global issues and form back-up plans while earning alternate currencies.
The DYNDY project encourages us to re-consider how we deal with and create money in our present world where financial, banking, and economic crises result from faulty top-down decision-making processes that serve the few and not the many.
“We are in a situation whereby the incapacity to re-define how we deal with money could resolve in an a severe damage to society as we commonly refer to it: contrary to what happens with information systems, there are no backups with money systems.”
It was around this time two years ago that I had begun wondering about a collaborative learning game that might involve role-playing and task completion. I suggested that the game shouldn’t preach, correct, or in any way disrespect the player’s intelligence, but rather amplify it through teaching the art of content analysis as a form of “participatory entertainment”. I was learning content analysis at the time with Open Intelligence, but lacked the tools that would accelerate the process. I was longing for something that didn’t exist and was wishing for a form of education that could provide the kind of collective intelligence I saw attainable when collaborative groups began practicing content analysis and synthesis together.
A report from 2009, from KnowledgeWorks called 2020 Forecast: Creating the Future of Learning caught my attention. It identifies six major drivers of change that might unleash a wild world of learning quite unlike any system of schooling we’ve ever experienced. What I’m finding is that it’s increasingly a story-driven game that places students at the center of their learning experience, much like an MMORPG. In any case, the singularity is one narrative I imagine will drastically alter what it means to be a student interfacing with a world undergoing ecological and economic shifts.
In the section called Altered Bodies we’re reminded that neuroscientists have begun to design neuro-enhancements that might soon provide “customized learning experiences” that push the boundaries of ethics and cognitive rights. Learners are forecast to have “more and more options for modifying their minds and bodies in support of peak performance even as they navigate increasing levels of bio-distress.” I’m reminded of what H.G. Wells would say is urgently needed to prevent our own extinction, “the evolution of a new more powerful type of man.”
Sean Grainger (@graingered) tells me “the world we all share is one big story written by history.” I agree with him, our collective story is summed up by each one of our individual stories. He says, “Teachers are in the story-writing business” and that our fundamental purpose is to be what we want education to be.
I’ve had the pleasure to occasionally exchange tweets with Sean, and in many ways he’s influenced me to think of myself as a teacher. Maybe not the certified-type who commands a classroom, but the sort who plays a necessary role in the future of education. My contacts have dealt me enough insight to understand what kind of lessons the next generation will need in order to lead society through the transition ahead. I’d like to play my part.