Thursday 29 November 2007

Sugata Mitra versus Andrew Keen at OEB

Andrew Keen

the next big thing will be curation.
He mentions Mahalo
The only way to take the digital technology is to take the serious content back AND to pay for content and knowledge providers/supervisors.

not give away ones labour for free => open source movement = free labour = free hippie = liberatarians
succesfully merging human intelligence with exiting digital new tools
Technology can free us, but only if we focus on humans.

Sugata Mitra
What my work is about is not technology but about children, humans, as a self-organizing mechanism (like economics...) The collected effect of all stock brookers who think about economics, makes the economy.
Nature is self-organising. Sometimes it is a disaster (storm...) but it happens. So the future is unclear. There is no mathematics of how self-organising works. Take the 'oersoep' that eventually gave birth to humans. So, self-organisation has always been there. So far it has created a terrible world with self-distructive characteristics sometimes.
Google says it is a brain. So I agree with Andrew that we are unclear about the outcomes of google's growth, I disagree because it might happen that Google will become human and more.
I do not care that all this free tools are available and they might take away money, especially off American based companies because people can communicate and learn for free all over the world.
So we can not predict the outcomes of self-organising systems and so we cannot predict human outcomes and internet and so on.
If the net has to have a curator, so do we as humans.
Humans need a curator for SO much: food, peace, ozon layer ...
all of this assumes that humans will be the top of the food chain and that we have to stay as we are, without evolving.
I think we must evolve and let self-organisation take its course.

skype: also an american company. There is no such thing as free, there has to be a way for moneytizing.
Media should not be about writing social wrongs. Web2.0 will not change the world, politics will.
second life: the founder's background is an evangelical christian. Also does Kevin Kelly (wrote on digital library may 2005) is also a born again christian. So second life is the digital version of christian heaven. My objection to that (Andrew is a Marxist) is that second life is the opium of a new type of person. They are so stressed with their own life, they flee into another world.
While digital life is anarchic, real life is not. Read Hobbes Leviathan or other social contract theorists. Hobbes: there must have been a moment where people will have gone from no rules to rules.
If we want to make the internet habitable, what we need is not only a bill of rights but also a bill of responsibilities.
Many internet users only think they have rights, not responsibilities and this is wrecking pedagogy and destroys the (digital) world (my comment: this sounds very extreme right in Belgium where extreme right says immigrants (new humans) invade the old culture and wreck the old world)
In my opinion anonymity is the biggest problem. Anonimity has wrecked discussion boards etcetera. So it would have to be encouraged to take an identity. (my comment: free identity helps in hierarchical cultures)
Anarchy never works! and it is corroding culture and the people in it.

a person has used mahalo in his company, but the teachers turned it down in favour of google.
reason: more resources via google, but not mahalo

searching and getting from one place to another. Two examples, the best application for searching is gps to get from one point to another. In India it takes a lot longer to find places. But one thing stuck in my mind. In the desert even with a map is impossible to get somewhere. The desert people use camels as vehicles, the camels can always find a way back. The latest is a self-organising application which works.
Google is the most powerfull learning company, but they are not here (congres) because it is a fenomenal company in just a couple of years time. It has created a new business knowledge economy. They grow sooo big, they are too huge.
What you have to do is think about google can help you.

globalisation and curation
curation is a value judgement. In 20 century the west had control about history, economy... Media is not neutral (Murdoch). Knowledge is value based. Curation makes a value judgement on what is the 'right' knowledge. (HOURAY for Daxa Patel!)
Mathy Van Buel (not sure name from ATIt) supports and adds.

Andrew Keen does NOT understand this question. He must definitely take a course on either gender studies or other critical studies that look at the impact of kolonial structures that affect everyone.

where do we stand if some students feel better in the virtual world, than in the real world?

Some topics are easier to discuss in a virtual environment, and others better in the real world. The best stands somewhere in between. (answer Sugata)

What about open communities of practice of academics? They might engage students more to learn about a topic than in any other way?
Andrew: no it decreases the academic value.

Andrew Keen definitely likes to rant AND he contradicts himself.
Sugata Mitra is very intelligent, humouristic and full of nuance.

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