Saturday, 19 March 2011

Unnamed (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Growing My Network

This weekend I have spent some time identifying objectives and purpose for growing my personal learning network (PLN). I have also laid down my thoughts to outline a form of strategy to meet those objectives. Generally speaking, I am not a great strategist and prefer to let life (including networks) unfold without too much intention. I do think that a PLN is an incredibly valuable asset and I feel privileged and overwhelmed by the support and interest that I have received so far from those in my new and growing network. If you are reading this then you are probably part of that network – so thank you. Here are my thoughts and motivations.

Purpose: To continue to pursue my awakened interest in areas and themes that have been highlighted and developed through undertaking the University Certificate in Professional Development –Web Enhanced Practice course. To participate in an open and social, learning environment. To grow a mutually beneficial network of people: who share these interests or some commonality; who can support each other’s learning and development; who can act as critical friends and who are comfortable in offering feedback; who can model good practice; who can share timely, interesting and emerging information.

Objectives and Strategy

Participate, contribute and create content

•Continue to participate in the Twittersphere and to build on contacts through further engagement. Tweet more using #edtech and other hash tags as become apparent.

•Blogs – Keep a number of blogs for different areas of interests. Keep Blogger, Posterous and Amplify for learning and development and Tumblr for personal and creative projects.

•Through experimenting with Posterous, Tumbler and Amplify, I realize that blog posts and blog popularity benefit from posts being more interactive and visually interesting. Use of photos, audio and developing more confidence in video blogging/pod casting is something that I would like to work on. Welcome and promote conversation on blog posts.

•Contribute by commenting on other people’s blogs in a variety of interest areas.

•YouTube – Create video resources and artifacts to share on YouTube and explore the social networking aspects of YouTube.

•Contribute to and share resources on TES “share your resources” page.

Collaboration and knowledge sharing to grow networks

•Continue to contribute social bookmarks to Diigo. Contribute bookmarks to other groups, join a few more groups and develop contacts within these groups.

•Find a wiki project to take part in or start one myself to experience collaborative writing.

Take part in organised learning to grow learning networks

•Investigate Massive Open Online courses and other open educational resources and opportunities

•Take part in #lrnchat and other live conversations.

•Like to maintain contact with UCPDWEP. I hope that a collaborative UCPDWEP learning network will develop in the future. I would very much like to be involved in this and to offer a supportive contribution to future cohorts.

•Join in Second Life groups, attend conferences/events in SL and get involved in other virtual classroom activities.

Search, aggregate, filter and re-distribute information

•Make full and significant use of RSS reader to aggregate relevant information from a variety of sources.

•Re-distribute relevant information to network via Twitter, blogs and Diigo social bookmarking. Use materials and references to create discussions/ conversations/crowd source opinion through networks, for example using blogs, Facebook, wikis and Twitter.


Friday, 11 March 2011

Networks & Connectivism #ucpdwep

George Siemens artlicle, "A Learning Theory for the Digital Age" December 12, 2004, states that learning is no longer an individualistic activity. Connectivism is an important aspect of teaching and learning in today's digital world.

Amplify’d from
network can simply be defined as connections between entities. Computer
networks, power grids, and social
A network can simply be defined as connections between entities. Computer
networks, power grids, and social
networks all function on the simple
principle that people, groups, systems, nodes, entities can be connected
to create an integrated whole. Alterations within the network have ripple
effects on the whole.
Albert-László Barabási states that “nodes
always compete for connections because links represent survival in an
interconnected world” (2002, p.106).

Principles of connectivism:

  • Learning and knowledge rests in diversity of opinions.

  • Learning is a process of connecting specialized nodes or information

  • Learning may reside in non-human appliances.

  • Capacity to know more is more critical than what is currently known

  • Nurturing and maintaining connections is needed to facilitate continual

  • Ability to see connections between fields, ideas, and concepts is
    a core skill.

  • Currency (accurate, up-to-date knowledge) is the intent of all connectivist
    learning activities.

  • Decision-making is itself a learning process. Choosing what to learn
    and the meaning of incoming information is seen through the lens of
    a shifting reality. While there is a right answer now, it may be wrong
    tomorrow due to alterations in the information climate affecting the

Create a network for learning #ucpdwep

Ideas on how to create a personal learning network using Twitter, blogs and social bookmarking.

Understanding networks #ucpdwep

Talk from Howard Rheingold presenting the historic context of the growth of Internet networks and network theories based on the laws of Sarnoff, Reed and Metcalfe. I was interested in the idea about how networks change focus depending on the stage of their development, for example, content focused networks, networks based around transactions or networks sharing constructed values. Rheingold states here that social capital equals networks of trust.

Sites to build your PLN #ucpdwep

List of active social networking sites for consideration. Would joining and participating in any of these sites help to build and support your personal/professional learning network?

Networks of Enlightenment #ucpdwep

In Eben Mogel's article, "Liberation by Software", he presents an interesting view on the democratic future of our interconnected world. Mogel goes on to highlight the powerful role that the Free Software Movement has to play in promoting and enabling the establishment of democratic media.

Amplify’d from

Now, the vast interconnection of humanity we call the internet promises to divorce the press and power forever, by dissolving the press. Now, every mobile phone, every document scanner, every camera, every laptop, are part of an immense network in which everything we see, we think, we know, can be transmitted to everyone else, everywhere, immediately. Democracy in its deepest sense follows. Ignorance ceases to be the inevitable lot of the vast majority of humanity.

The great promise of the Enlightenment is finally fulfilled: the greatest intellectual, political and moral revolution in the history of humanity.

If that's the way the network behaves. But it can also be completely controlled, filtered, monitored and surveilled, giving power the most overwhelming conceivable advantage over freedom. Which way the network behaves is determined solely by the software that comprises it. Freedom of the press, freedom of information, freedom of thought itself are now "implemented" rather than "declared", "protected" or "guaranteed".

Mao Tse-Tung declared that political power grows out of the barrel of a gun. His successors believe that it grows out of controlling the internet. The young people of liberty destined to overthrow them have already started to grow up; they know power grows out of the freedom of the software that is the net.

Friday, 4 March 2011