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Posts Tagged ‘age

I created this image quote in 2015 after reading a variant of the words attributed to George Bernard Shaw.

We do not stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.

But with every axiom comes exceptions.

Video source

According to the research cited in this video, age is a factor at the highest levels of video gaming.

However, this does not invalidate the principle that we do not have to outgrow curiosity, a sense of fun, or risk-taking. Older gamers also learn to metagame — they devise strategies to compensate for split second slowness.

Whether you have a good memory or not, your memory is imperfect. According to this video, our memories are like fake news if we can only compare one part of a book with another part of the same book.

Video source

The video went on to explain how it was psychologically easy to implant false memories or reshape existing ones, and then influence a person to believe falseness as fact.

If we shave the our memory problem down to its core, the issue is that we do not have one or more other reliable sources for comparison.

Take the recent fake news scandal about one of our Ministers of Education — and later our Director-General of Education — supposedly claiming that Singapore was winning the wrong academic race. The person who wrote the article reported a false memory.

It was impossible to prove because the event was not open to everyone. It was only when the speech transcript and video recording were shared months after the fact that there were sources for comparison.

In a similar vein, the invisibility of a learner’s thinking can lead a teacher to make assumptions. To compare what the teacher and student knows, the teacher can require that student to make their thinking and learning visible.

I do not rely on just my memory. I externalise it by tweeting, blogging, photographing, and video recording. These provide evidence of memories and learning that I can compare with what I have in my head.

A value of current technology it is that is helping us arrive at the Cyborg Age. Our memories are less fallible because we augment and improve them with various technologies.

My earliest recollection of an article that mentioned “the age of context” was this 2015 piece describing the music service, Spotify.

If Web 1.0 was the age of expert-created content and Web 2.0 was and still is the age of user-generated content, then Web 3.0 is the age of context.

These ages are not discrete periods. They overlap and all three are present in our lives today. If you are interested in a medical condition, you might get information from an official health service, Wikipedia, and an RSS feed or an IFTTT applet.

Web 3.0 is sometimes called the semantic web because meaning is made in context. Applied in learning, it is context that defines content that learners need. However, instead of requiring learners to seek it, the content finds its way to learners in their situations.

For example, a pharmacist filling in new forms in the office gets information from a performance support system that is different from the strategies s/he needs while promoting a new drug to doctors in a hospital.

A student might work on a community project in different contexts: School, a neighbourhood library, at home, and the venue of the project. A project management system (uh, PMS?) driven by Web 3.0 would provide different scaffolds and information to guide and suit the context.

For example, that student might need help on interviewing and recording while meeting someone at the community project venue. When the context changes to group work in school, the information and scaffolding might be about planning and conflict resolution.

How might students and teachers change in the age of context?

Learners will adopt and adapt quickly. They will also shape the technology as it shapes them.

However, some teachers will likely go kicking and screaming into the future because they already do that now.

  • Allow phones in class? No!
  • Or optimise phone use in class? How?
  • Operate outside a walled garden? It’s not safe!
  • Share openly? Why should I?

For teaching to change in the age of context, teachers must figuratively make the classroom walls transparent. Content should be learnt not for an assignment’s or curriculum’s sake, but for usefulness in context. They need to recognise that context is not limited to exams or the school environment.

One way for teachers to think outside the schooling context is to learn what happens in other jobs. They do not have to abandon their careers to do this. They need only remind themselves that they should be lead learners first and be driven by curiosity to find out what their non-teacher family members and friends do.

Another way teachers can think outside the box while operating inside one is to link what they already see and do in their lives outside of their classrooms. How do they leverage on social media? Why do they pursue hobbies or passions? What do they use to keep learning after they get their teaching qualifications?

These are things they can transfer from one context to the other. It is called the age of context after all.

It is almost the weekend and here is something lighthearted.

[Youtube source] [Vimeo source]

At the end of 2011, a boy decided to propose to a girl.

What was uniquely early 21st century about it was the Internet memes that the guy used in his proposal. (If you need to catch up on memes, visit 9gag regularly or try this app.)

Video source

Another boy proposed to another girl, but this time the guy used stop-motion LEGO minifigs to make his intentions known.

Stop-motion has been around since movies were black and white. LEGO has been around for about as long. But stop-motion was not something that the layperson could do easily or conveniently. Today we have tools like JellyCam on the Mac and iTimeLapse on the iPhone to make short stop-motion movies.

We really should stop labelling the time we live in as the Information Age as it reeks of consumption. We are in the Creation and Interaction Age!

As a side note, I think that most Singaporeans will have this reaction: Spoil market! All I can say is I am glad that I am happily married and do not have to think of outdoing proposals like these!

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