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Posts Tagged ‘collaboration

I like watching Marco Tempest, technoillusionist extraordinaire! I have watched his TED talks and now I feature his talk on Inventing the Impossible.


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One of the things he said struck a chord with me.

He explained how magicians of old lived by the code of secrecy. But in modernizing magic with technology, he found that he could not protect his knowledge. Instead, he chose to share experiences with his audience and saw the importance of collaborating with others. He might be the first person to coin the phrase “open source magic”!

I think the parallels in education are in collaborating, being open, and collaborating openly.

There is too much information now for one person to know. Teachers need to form collaborative networks of teachers-as-learners if we are to stay relevant to our learners.

As we teach, we could share openly instead of hoarding what we think we know. If we do not share, our audience will simply go elsewhere. If we do not share, we do not build up our reputational capital.

The problems we leave for our children are more complex than ours and we do not have all the solutions. But we could adopt an approach that will help them solve those problems. That approach is open collaboration. After all, we cannot each be brilliant, but we can be collectively brilliant.

One other thought: A talent like Marco Tempest draws from multiple fields. He is good at what he does not just because he specializes, but also because he can connect the dots by connecting with other people.

I watched these YouTube videos and picked up some principles of collaboration.

1) It requires a lot of planning, hard work, and persistence in the face of failure. The insights gained from the process are as important as (sometimes more so than) the product.


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2) You can “collaborate” with yourself with the help of technology. Get creative.


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3) If you are going to collaborate with technology, do not use it to do the same old thing. Think different, do different, be different. Think better, do better, be better.


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This iOS game, Johnny Test: Roller Johnny, is different in that you can create shared gaming spaces simply by putting other iPhones or iPads nearby.

Some might propose that this idea could be extended simply to share and extend a digital whiteboard. But that idea is not valuable in itself. More complex variants of that idea might be.

For example, I can imagine three or four iPhone/iPod Touch instrument apps near a central iPad or computer that serves as a mixer or compiler for music notation, synthesis or creation.

I can also imagine a multimedia project group first brainstorming and then managing their project with this tool. First each member composes ideas in their own devices and “flicks” them to the central device which is displayed for all to see and discuss.

After the group agrees on a plan of action, each member uses a different tool on each device, e.g., web search, background music composition, video editing, and text crafting. They then discuss their progress in real time by sending updates to the central device and by putting the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together.

Ooh, I smell an app for project-based learning!


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The video above is a short digital story about thinking and doing outside the box.

The video might raise more questions than answers. Like how might we promote creative and critical thinking at the same time? How do we get learners to communicate and collaborate effectively?

Big questions require big answers. Fortunately, the big answers might be provided in smaller chunks. Here is one answer below courtesy of Microsoft:


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There is some good stuff there if you ignore the obvious marketing.

This short reflection on the collaboration vs cooperation and collective vs connective is making me think!

I often sell collaboration over cooperation after drawing out the differences between the two with my participants. But the examples in the article of Wikipedia (collaborative and collective) and Delicious (cooperative and connective) make sense.

What also makes sense is that the “selfish” gene in cooperation can be a good thing and should be leveraged on in order to, ironically, promote cooperation and connections.

Think, think, think…

I’ve featured this video before.


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But I’ve not mentioned this quote from Twitter about coordination, cooperation and collaboration. It’s brilliant in its context!


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It’s been a busy time leading up to Christmas. The folks who made this video, Torchbox, have been busy too!

They spread Christmas cheer, use iPads and show a great example of collaboration. Ho-ho-ho!


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