Archive for the 'Humor' Category

Technology is Magic. Stop Thinking in 19th & 20th Century Metaphors Already! #edcmooc

Our relative view of the magic

Arthur C. Clarke’s third law states that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Don’t you think someone born 300 years ago would think this is magic?

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 10.18.32 PM

How about someone alive 30 years ago (including myself). Wouldn’t I think this is magic?

Screen shot 2013-02-05 at 10.18.01 PM

For nerdy little me… it’s this dream come true:

Screen shot 2013-02-09 at 7.09.08 PM

When I watched the films from this week’s resources: A Day Made of Glass & Productivity Vision of the Future, Clarke’s law repeated in my mind. Glass becomes a tool that people use to access information, view entertainment & learn. The other thing that struck me was how incredibly antiseptic & affluent both views of the future were.

As we are fixed in our time and reality, technology that is unfamiliar may seem like magic to us, but because we live in times where things are changing rapidly and imagining the future and it’s technology is a normal part of our culture. Thinking about my relative understanding of technology as magic got me to think about my own education and understanding of how things have developed even in my lifetime. I decided to create a timeline of my own education and compare it to the development of technology in that time. It’s in rainbow colors because I was a child of the 80′s.

My Digital Timeline

Click to view in full size

So just by looking at this timeline that spans over forty years, claims made that technology pundits that technology is developing and advancing at a more rapid speed. The ways and tools that we can use to learn and whom we can learn with has expanded even in my lifetime.

Will Technology Replace Teachers?

Many science fiction depictions of both utopia & dystopia paint a view of the future in which humans have been replaced by technology. Similarly, I’ve seen this question come out of several discussions in the #edcmooc class: Will technology make the teacher obsolete? As is evidenced in numerous forum posts, tweets from students in this class. The act of making order out of the chaos of a learning experience with so many people and so many learning tools has required guidance, the human kind. If not from a facilitator, from the other students. We still need teachers and guides. Every learner is different and how the learn best is unique. Can we assume that technology will devise a mechanism, automaton or script functions like a combination Yoda & “Electric Grandmother.”

I think what’s more likely, is that learners are learning how to adapt to use the tools and technology for learning to their best advantage. We learn to use tools online that help us filter and use content. Here are a few tools, some of which were new to me before I took this course. But here’s the thing… no tool is perfect. Again, it’s all about diving in and finding out what works for you.

Twitter Feed → Tweetchat, TweetDeck, Paper.li

Content Curation (Bookmarks) → Scoop.it, Storify, PearlTrees – pearl trees provides a visual map of what you’re curating or sites your saving online.

Blogs → Quadblogging (to connect and reach your audience) edutopia article on

Stop Using the Classroom Metaphor to Describe the Online Learning Experience!

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I know that metaphors are powerful in explaining and introducing the strange and foreign to the natives. But is it just me or am I the only one who’s tired of hearing this metaphor used to describe online learning. Perhaps my irritation and other’s indicate the obsolete nature of the metaphor. This bothers me just as much as my last boss insisting on using the logo below to indicate a phone contact for an audience of 20 somethings:

rotary_phone_0515-0909-2116-0157_smu

Here’s why we’re not in a classroom anymore:

  1. You might be sitting at a desk but not looking out a window wishing that the teacher would stop droning on and on
  2. You don’t have to have your attention fixed only on the teacher. In fact the other students can provide just as much information and knowledge as the teacher
  3. You’re not learning from a text book that has gum stuck to the cover or doodles from the previous owner anymore; texts and media are available online

I could go on…. but most importantly, when you’re learning online you expect to be able to share, re-mix, create content. Like these kids:

Does this make me a geek or a nerd?

Just curious… look who watches over me in my cubicle.

Generational Wha…? Paul Anka Find his Teen Spirit

Some one help me get up off the floor… Interesting take on Nirvana’s hit.

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TsS811o21-k]

UK Mac

Heheheh… here are some of my favorite Comedians (Mitchell and Web from That Mitchell and Web Look and Peep Show) in a Mac Ad UK style. I was going to save this for Friday but, oh well. You can watch the whole series here.

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZsuNSdEVqo]

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sol2zeR_h60]

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LuHGThfbQog]

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_clY2-Y_eFg]

Friday Funny – What’s Happening

I suppose it’s funny only if you remember this show from the 70′s.

Remember that episode when Re-run taped a tape recorder to his chest before they went to the concert? I actually think there’s a meme about that conversation somewhere.

Original Intro

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kpj6ihSwPXw]

Spoof of the Intro

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOhb2C1EvnI]

Nostaglia Pop Culture Playlist from the 70′s

Every now and then you need a taste from the past. Here’s a look into the music and television shows that I remember from my childhood.

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=32A86294B3C9114B

pfamily.jpg

Image Therapy Musings: Tekkonkinkreet and our ability to laugh

I drove by the Movie theater on 21st and saw that they were playing Tekkonkinkreet. I posted something on this earlier this month, and I have to say, I think this was probably one of my favorite movies out this Summer. The images were just visually stunning. There was a good deal of violence, so I wouldn’t recommend it as a kid flick for very young children. The play on light vs. dark was actually a little refreshing. It’s nice to be reminded that you can’t have one without the other and that light and darkness as concepts, moods, states of mind depend on each other. You cannot always live in one vs. the other.

The backgrounds, colors and details reminded me of the packaging from items from the Chinese Grocery store we used to frequent when I was a very young child. I think it was one of the few or only Asian grocery stores in town at the time… I think I just dated myself. I always felt really comfortable in there despite the fact that it seemed dark and confusing.

[Youtube=http://youtube.com/watch?v=IWOCf1wNlk0]

I was able to see the Simpsons movie as well. Despite the fact that I did feel like I was in the theater watching an extended episode or a string of episodes on a DVD, I did enjoy it. Who can pass up on the superb humor of the Simpson’s writing cadre? It was a nice way to end the work week: with laughter. I know it’s easy for us as a species to get all hung up on our ability to build magnificent cities, engineer impossible buildings or create works of art, but I think the ability to laugh and appreciate the comedic truly sets us apart from any other creature in the planet.

Why are we geared to laugh? Does it provide the same kind of physical release or satisfy an appetite like eating or sex? I’ve always felt that laughter is like exercising the heart. If you loose your ability to do this there’s a life or spirit in a person that may loose it’s radiance and ability to cope with all the darkness in this world. Look at all the cultures and social groups in our past (and even present) which really seemed to have a hard time with lightening up.  Can you imagine what life was for the Calvinists.  It’s kind of hard to find humor in things when you live under the guidance of the notion that you’re either doomed or you’re not (though most people are doomed*) or that human beings by nature are depraved and fallen creatures. You know if I was born a 16 or 17th century Calvinist I’d emmigrate from Switzerland  to Holland right away… either that or work hard and look forward to death because it would probably be a cake-walk compared to the hell on earth that they built. They’re always painted and drawn in art as if their tidies are in bunches.

*If that were the case and people were all doomed… I’d break out the pack of Gitanes and open a bottle of Pernod and say… “What the hey.”

Some related things:

Friday Funny – IT Crowd and the Mighty Boosh

These shows came out a bit ago, but I’ve been in the mood for office humor because I work at home. If you haven’t seen this yet… I got this show as an X-mas present last year (we have an all region DVD). It was one of my most treasured scores that year :). Rumor has it that Richard Ayoade (Moss) is actually slated to be in the US version of the show. I used to work in IT (sort of)… so it’s kinda funny.

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_u5uiw1IhI]

An IT Crowd site: http://www.theitcrowd.co.uk/

If you’ve already seen the “IT Crowd”…. here’s the Mighty Boosh, my favorite UK comedy troupe, in one of my favorite episodes “Nanageddon.”

Links posted on my other blog:

http://natknits.wordpress.com/2007/07/20/nanatoo-the-knitting-demon/

Friday Funny – The Wind

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mTLO2F_ERY]

Friday Funny – Human Tetris

You may have seen this already, but when I saw it I nearly died laughing. Though it’s not up to “Japanese Silent Library” par. Only Japanese guys can really get away with wearing Jerry Lewis chunky glasses:

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bK63uSTTNs]


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