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Showing posts from December, 2011

Travel in the Future

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My wife and I are heading off to Europe this year, specifically to Italy and Germany.  It’s quite an undertaking to plan such a trip.  I’ve talked to quite a few seasoned travelers to garner their wisdom about flights, hotels, car rentals, places to see, and to borrow Frommers travel guide books, etc.  But to be honest, without access to the Internet, I’m not sure how we would plan a trip like this.  We wouldn’t be able to do it without a travel agent/expert.  Note that the castle in this picture is located in Neuschwanstein, Germany and influenced the design of Sleeping Beauty’s castle in Disneyland, cool hey.  After a short stop in Munich, we will drive to this small German town, near the Austrian border, and begin our Romantic Road journey through various medieval towns.When my wife and I planned our honeymoon over 26 years ago (yes, I’m getting old), I recall us consulting with a BCAA travel agent.  They helped us figure out which cities to stop in and hotels to book, along the wa…

Be Amazed

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Every so often I just have to pause to contemplate the awesomeness of our world.  Technology has certainly brought the world amazing tools and services.  I’m reading an historical fiction book “The Seekers”, book #3 in an 8 book series.  The story is set in the late 1700’s, early 1800’s in the newly formed USA.  At one point a young couple migrates west down the Ohio river, acquires 20 acres, builds a crude cabin, begins to clear land, plant corn, and own a cow.  The harsh lifestyle is astonishing.  I suspect that most of us in the developed world take for granted what we have and enjoy.  Those early settlers lived on corn mush and semi-sour milk, every day, every meal.  Their cooking, bathing, clothing, labouring, entertaining capacity was very poor.  To reach the small village near the fort to trade with others, they walked four miles through harsh terrain.  At least they had ‘central heating’ for their cabin, a fireplace!  Think about the impact of central heating and electricity o…

The Technology Adoption Challenge

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People have optimal learning paths involving diverse means and difference paces.  Taking that to heart should drive us to personalize learning for adults and students wherever possible.  For years, society has accepted the efficient path of teach to the middle, keep to the schedule / pace, etc.  Not only in K12 classrooms but most places training or learning is offered.  In adopting technology, I’ve learned that we must differentiate the learning of the tool, in a real context, and at a pace suited to each individual.Technology for learning is gaining new emphasis and importance in education systems world wide.  In British Columbia our government recently published the BC Education Plan.  This lead message sets the stage for change:“our education system is based on a model of learning from an earlier century. To change that, we need to put students at the centre of their own education. We need to make a better link between what kids learn at school and what they experience and learn i…

The Seduction of Technology

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My wife and I love to go for walks in the woods, by a river, lake, or the ocean, or take our bikes for a ride in a park.  I like to get out and hike mountains (nothing too serious), and mountain bike ride deep in the woods up in the mountains.  There is something surreal about being connected to nature, away from the distractions of our smartphones, computers, tablets, TVs, and PVRs.  Actually we don’t have a PVR or cable channel package.  Good ol’ rabbit ears and a $40 digital to analogue converter gives us about 6 decent channels of digital HD for free! But I digress…  I wonder what we as a culture, a society, have lost or given up, by being so intertwined with our technology.  It has literally invaded all aspects of our lives.  You might be wondering why I, a person so passionate about, amazed by, and engaged with technology would even be thinking this way.  Well, I like to consider all angles of most topics and technology is no exception.  I become concerned about increased Techno…

Leading Through Extreme Change

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Do any of you feel like we’re in times of extreme change?  If you don’t, you must be living in an alternate reality!  I talk often about how change is exponential.  When we look back hundreds of years or even 30-40 years, things didn’t feel like they were changing all that quickly.  But now, when we reflect back just a single year we can marvel at what has changed, in particular how technology has changed how we do things, enjoy things, play, interact, work, and learn.  Notice the green (exponential) line in the graph.  The leading edge is history past where change was almost unnoticeable in one’s lifetime while we are now likely at the sharp up-turn point of change.“If you make some very logical, and even conservative, assumptions about where technology is likely to lead in the coming years, much of the conventional wisdom about what the future will look like becomes unsupportable”, The Lights in the Tunnel (Kindle 222)I’ve been in my current role in with Coquitlam School District fo…