Saturday, March 22, 2008

Constantly Developing New Ideas

A line from the book A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink has me wondering.

"The forces of Abundance, Asia, and Automation turn goods and services into commodities so quickly that the only way to survive is by constantly developing new innovations, inventing new categories, and (in Paola Antonelli's lovely phrase) giving the world something it didn't know it was missing."
This is pretty much where I am at- always on the edge... "thinking" of virtually every aspect of my life whether it's in or out of the classroom. However, life long learning has its unforeseen consequences of never really reaching a final destination, to constantly strive for something more and never really anchoring the boat.

I do believe it's about balance, but inevitably there really is no such thing (At least I haven't found it yet). There are times when I walk away from the laptop, unplug or power down but my mind is still in full gear.

The hook is in deep and it's not coming out.

Don't get me wrong, I understand that it's not about the final destination but rather to enjoy the journey along the way, and I am...really. I think I am just overwhelmed and realizing it truly is a "life long" journey. There is a lengthy road ahead where we will "all" have to solve problems that don't yet exist using technologies that have yet to be invented. We are also charged with solving the problems of the generations before us, whether they be environmental, economic, or racial.

A bit of a rant I know, but the distant memories of my childhood seem to be flooding my fore thinking where time once seemed endless. My days were spent in the depths of the seclusive creek building forts, turning over slippery rocks to see what lies beneath, and exploring well beyond the boundaries of my yard with my trusty canine companion, Tasha. There still is a part of me that longs for a moment of those remembered days...ordinary days without having to "constantly be thinking about developing new ideas, inventing new categories, or trying to give the world something it didn't know it was missing."

Conceptually, I understand that we are all in this together and each of us has to share the load if we are ever going to make real change, substantial change that will benefit our children. I will keep on keeping on but it sure would be nice to hit the pause button just for a moment; or maybe even the rewind button.

I wonder, how do you find a balance during the extraordinary times we are living in?

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Trying to Piece it all Together

I have been really struggling as of late to find something ingenious and interesting to write about. I have been incredibly moved by so much that I have experienced over the last month or so but I simply cannot piece them all together into one succinct thought. So I won't.

Rather a collection of random experiences:

Skype Presentation with Ron Carter
I was privileged and honored to have accompanied Mr. Ron Carter in his Web 2.0 presentation to an audience of business executives for non-profit organizations. I was asked to simply tell "My Story," of how I have come to use the tools of the Read/Write Web and the impact that it has made on my students' lives.

It was an incredible opportunity to merge the conversations between the business world and the educational world and to be able to get a sense of the different perspectives. Thanks so much Ron your passion and fire is sorely needed.

Broome Community College Presentation
What does Stanford, Berkley, Yale, M.I.T, and Broome Community College have in common? Sure they are all places of higher learning, but they are also found in the top 20 colleges in iTunesU, and Broome Community College happens to be the only community college.

I have been invited to teach a 3 hour class about "blogging" to a group of business students at BCC and I sure do look forward to this.

Podcasts
~ our first two podcasts have been posted on our class blackboard site. OK, so there is no RSS feed but hey, give us some time.

Class Blog ~ has reached a new level where we are beginning to utilize our time more effectively as a reflective and connective tool rather than a digital journal. Progress is being made.

Been Having Phun with this one with my own kids at home.

I have managed to populate my Google Reader account just about to the point where it could be a full time job just reading through all the posts.

Most Influential Post For Me This Month:
Steve Hargadon's Web 2.0 is the Future of Education

Most Read Wiki as of Late:
JakesOnline

Most Read Blog This Month:
Brian Crosby ~ check out his latest at Promethean Planet

New Tool I've Been Playing Around With:
Have fallen in love with Jott. Ok, maybe love is a bit extreme but this has become my sounding board for random snipets of ideas that I get throughout the day that I don't want to forget, and they all get sent to my gmail. For instance, I was driving home from work listening to David Warlick's podcast and recorded this message.

Most Interesting Find
Lecture Tips from Patrick Winston
Adobe Cards

Interesting Video
10 Minutes to Announce Two Ideas
Dip Politics

Book I am Currently Reading
A Whole New Mind

Ideas I am Considering
Creating a video of A Day in the Life due to the inspiration of Jeff Utecht, Dean Shareski, and Chris Lehman.

Have students design a set of classroom slides, like this, that I can post to class blackboard site to support instruction.



There really is so much going on these days and it has been a struggle to manage and organize my digital life against the realities of family and work. Anyone make any connections with that?