27 February 2007

Coffee Cup Philosophy

I can't remember for sure, but I think I saw this on a cup of coffee, and I was impressed enough to write it down... then today I ran across it in my notebook and thought I'd share it.

"In my career, I've found that 'thinking outside the box' works better if I know what's 'inside the box.' In music (as in life) we need to understand our pertinent history... and moving on is so much easier once we know where we've been." -- Dave Grusin

I could add that there's a risk in spending so much time understanding history that you can't move on, but there is a proper balance out there.

26 February 2007

Print is Dead: Books in Our Digital Age � NY Magazine: The Kids Are Online

A recent entry in Bruce Sterling's "Beyond the Beyond" blog pointed me at the Print is Dead blog with its provocative title and thoughtful entries. Pretty much everything this guy writes is a gem, but I particularly liked this one because of my focus on education.

From the blog: "In terms of publishing and the 'print is dead' debate, today’s kids are not going to want to pick up a big book and spend hours in a corner silently, passively reading. Why in the world would they do that? It’s not interactive. They can’t share the experience with their friends. There’s no way to change the book to suit their own tastes. Instead, they’re going to ditch the hardback and head over to Facebook. The publishing industry needs to realize this..." I would add, so does the education industry.

23 February 2007

The Secret Society for Real School

On its best days, Art Center College of Design is quite a bit like what Gardner calls a "Real School". My job is to try to figure out how technology can help make more of those days.

21 February 2007

Henry Jenkins' "YouNiversity"

I like everything about the article except the title. My favorite quote is "The modern university should work not by defining fields of study but by removing obstacles so that knowledge can circulate and be reconfigured in new ways."

Unfortunately, I have real doubts about the powerful institutional antibodies of nearly all higher education institutions allowing something like this to happen. So often, even tentative moves in this direction get rolled back. The most likely scenario is that "higher education" ends up having very little to do with "institutes of higher education" and vice-versa. Seems a bit depressing to me, but it's probably a good thing. And a few progressive institutions will make it through, and new ones will spring up. The old universities will never die - at least not in my lifetime - but they may become increasingly irrelevant.