#Openlearning17 — Ted Nelson

Photo of Computer Lib, Dream Machine

Repost of For the Wholiness of the Human Spirit (2015)

Re-watching Ted Nelson’s eulogy for Doug Engelbart last week reminded me of one of the many (many) reasons Nelson’s thinking about computers and society resonates so powerfully with me. Mourning the loss of one of the most pivotal stars of the new media revolution by indicting his colleagues and making them laugh (nervously), invoking the tropes of classical funeral orations and quotes from Shaw and Shakespeare, and recounting the highlights and tragedies of Engelbart’s career, Nelson’s eulogy is a tour de force in terms of form (technique) and content.  He insists, as passionately as he had in 1974, that computers should support our dreams, indeed that technology is an expression of those dreams.  And dreams, of course, are as much about the emotions as they are about reason and calculation.

 Movies and books, music and even architecture have for all of us been part of important emotional moments. The same is going to happen with the new media. To work at a highly responsive computer display screen, for instance, can be deeply exciting, like flying an airplane through a canyon, or talking to somebody brilliant. This is as it should be…..
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The (medium) Hard Work of Open

Long Trail

My what a couple of weeks it’s been….So much anticipation, trepidation, incredulity, outrage, sorrow….resolve…

No, I’m not talking about #OpenLearning17. The course launch last week provided a wonderfully affirming forum for engaging with the forces of enlightenment.  Laura Gogia’s masterful facilitation of a Twitter Journal Club (#TJC17) on Friday brought folks together around a close reading of Jeffrey Pomerantz’ and Robin Peek’s Fifty Shades of Open, and through Twitter magic and generosity Jeffrey Pomerantz was able to participate in the discussion. Some of us even carried the conversation further by annotating it on Hypothes.is . And because the #TJC17was open and coincided with the annual AAC&U conference in San Francisco, conference participants could join the fun and those of us who were not physically in attendance could share in some of the buzz generated by the big gathering.

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Virginia Faculty Collaborative cMOOC Countdown

Teaching Open Source Practices version 4.0 https://flic.kr/p/8CFPTG
Teaching Open Source Practices version 4.0

I’ve been working with a great group of higher ed folks affiliated with the AAC&U Faculty Collaboratives project for the last several months. The collaboratives are state-level efforts to enlist faculty in the far-reaching and essential challenges of re-imagining role of liberal education at this time of transformation across the higher education landscape.

In January we will be facilitating a cMOOC addressing all aspects of “Open Education,” a category that includes open educational resources (OER), open pedagogical practices, open access, participatory cultures and literacies, networked learning, etc. These topics will structure weekly readings, viewings, etc., as well as the reflections and networked learning that the course participants will offer each other.

For an overview of goals and planned activities, see openlearninghub.net/about. A week-by-week listing of topics, readings, etc., is developing at openlearninghub.net/syllabus

More information about the course and reflections on what we hope to accomplish will be coming in the new year. In the meantime, if you are interested or implicated in liberal learning — especially in Virginia — and would like to take part in a meaningful exploration of the potential for open education to contour the landscape of learning in the twenty-first century, it’s never to early to join the cMOOC here: http://openlearninghub.net/the-stream/