From washing machines to Web 2.0

Just been dipping into the Eduserve symposium on 'Inside Out: What do current Web trends tell us about the future of ICT provision for learners and researchers?' It's all streamed, which is nice for those of us who couldn't make it to London in person, especially with the linked live chat. I particularly like the way the chat is set up alongside the video stream - sounds obvious and simple, but has probably taken someone a lot of head scratching on the technical front. Shame we can't see who is in the live chat, but you can't have everything. There is a efsym2008 social network tho.

The first presentation was from Larry Johnson of the New Media Consortium. (NMC is the organisation that along with the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative produces the Horizon report.) Larry talked through some of the history of innovation and the impact of inventions (like washing machines!) drawing on "When old technologies were new. Thinking about electric communication in the late 19th century". He moved onto the Horizon report which "charts the landscape of emerging technologies" especially as they expand the "boundaries of teaching, learning and creative expression by creatively applying new tools in new contexts". The report is in its fifth year, and part of his talk included a meta-analysis of the last five years. It was striking how despite changing membership of the panel who produce the report, there was a shared vision over the years.

Larry's presentation was delivered via his avatar in Secondlife, which was a neat idea, but not so easy to see his slides over the video stream. Although Kate has just pointed out in the chat that if Larry shares the location, anyone can explore the presentation later and chat together there, "which would be a much richer experience than just looking at his slides somewhere online".

I'll just have to read the report direct, which is probably a good thing!

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