Robot Professionals [...]

We believe these are but a few early indicators of a fundamental shift in professional service. Within professional organizations (firms, schools, hospitals), we are seeing a move away from tailored, unique solutions for each client or patient towards the standardization of service. Increasingly, doctors are using checklists, lawyers rely on precedents, and consultant...

 

Community Technology Centers’ Network [...]

From the Wikipedia entry for Antonia Stone: Antonia "Toni" Stone (1930-2002) created the United States' first community technology centers. In 1980, Toni Stone set up Playing to Win (PTW). Playing to Win, a nonprofit organization dedicated to countering inequities in computer access. PTW looked to serve inmates and ex-offenders by teaching them computer skills and off...

 

Choral Explanations [...]

Mike Caulfield explains: >This new breed of Q&A sites is replacing more traditional wiki as a source of information, through a modality we’ll call “choral explanations” (a term based on Ward Cunningham’s claim that federated wiki is a “chorus of voices”) > >These newer sites do not work like older Q&A sites. Older sites (e.g. Yahoo answers...

 

Weaponized Transparency and the Blockchain [...]

> We need to look right now at some of the problems inherent to the notion of a “permanent, censorship-resistant” Internet. Even in the Internet we have right now, which is designed to be mutable, the distribution of abusive material online disproportionately affects women, particularly Black women, and other marginalized demographic groups, sometimes to the po...

 

Platforms in Education [...]

Investor Tom Vander Ark recently wrote on op-ed on LinkedIn, arguing that "platforms" were poised to transform education. It's actually an old argument, one reprised from 4 years ago when there was a lot of hype (and investment) in the very topic, most notably perhaps a sizable investment in Edmodo (a company that Vander Ark's VC firm has funded). Here's how Vander Ar...

 

Papert on Learning Theory [...]

From Seymour Papert's The Children's Machine: >Behaviorists are fond of using the designation "learning theory" for the foundations of their thinking, but what they are talking about is not "learning" in the sense of something a learner does but "instruction," in the sense of something the instructor does to the learner....

 

Computer History and Computer Culture [...]

From Seymour Papert's The Children's Machine: >The point I am making is not simply that this was a mathematical culture (which it was), but that it was the particular kind of mathematical culture in which precise calculation plays the dominant role and the technical and analytic have more weight than the intuitive and the experiential. > >Thus, many factors c...

 

Constructionism versus Instructionism [...]

From Seymour Papert's The Children's Machine: >The word instructionism is intended to mean something rather different from pedagogy, or the art of teaching. It is to be read on a more ideological or programmatic level as expressing the belief that the route to better learning must be the improvement of instruction if School is less than perfect, why then, you know...

 

Papert on Teaching Computer Skills [...]

From Seymour Papert's The Children's Machine: >In the case of computer knowledge, [Paolo Freire's] banking approach is often defended by the argument that it will stand the students in good stead when they grow up and look for jobs that will require computer skills. Nothing could be more ridiculous. If "computer skills" is interpreted in a narrow sense of technical...

 

School versus Computers’ Subversiveness [...]

From Seymour Papert's book The Children's Machine: >...little by little the subversive features of the computer were eroded away: Instead of cutting across and so challenging the very idea of subject boundaries, the computer now defined a new subject; instead of changing the emphasis from impersonal curriculum to excited live exploration by students, the computer w...