- Aspects in the texts of Schwalbe and Meyer that would be interesting to discuss
From the text by Meyer, Torsten: “Education within a New Medium”
On page 266, Meyer writes: “If we imagine the relation of »media« and »education « in this way, if we do not speak of »the media« anymore as something on the outside (from which one might stay away, which one simply does not switch on, for example) but try to speak of that »medium« which, given the lack of alternatives, necessarily seems to be the whole for us, just as water is for the fish, then this becomes a true educational challenge.“ I think it is a very good point: when studying, one cannot be “outside“, no matter if it is art or media or whatsoever. It is essential, when studying that from the point of „mathematics“ and „education“, mathematics is never outside, it is always inside in school system. How come media seems to be outside, even though it is part of our daily life?
Also interesting questions to discuss (and that I don’t know how to answer) where proposed by Meyer on last chapter: „Concretizing Questions“ (page 270):
1. Against this background, in what way must socialization, education, and knowledge, more exactly also ways of teaching/learning and the measurement of performance, be thought in new ways?
2. How workable is the concept of knowledge society as a background for designing the field of education?
From the text by Schwalbe, Christina: “Change of Media, Change of Scholarship, Change of University: Transition from the Graphosphere to a Digital Mediosphere”
In her “Collective Intelligence?“ on page 184 Schwalbe brings out the same point that Meyer asked: “In contrast to the classification and ordering of knowledge in a typographic culture, which was subsequent to the processes of production and publication, the newly evolving ordering structures need to be part of the process of knowledge production due to the rapid and dynamic character of the medium.“ so, what are those evolving ordering structures?
In this information over-load, I think that people are more conscious about, what kind of information they “consume”. The amount of sufficient information is little, and I think that people have become more aware and alert not to trust everything…In some ways it is back to the basics: don’t trust anybody. Anybody=information overload.
Another kind of information-overload or “everything is accessible” and “anyone can be anybody” was a workshop in Ptarmigan, in Tallinn (ptarmigan.ee):
Fake It Til You Make It is a workshop/working group for those curious individuals looking to broaden their experience and skill-set. Each session of FITYMI will be on a different subject which could fall under areas of expertise such as construction, making, baking, electronics, mechanics, cooking, jewelry, physics, plants, and whatever else can be imagined. It is the purpose of the workshop to learn new things for the sake of learning and it is for this reason that participants will only discover the subject of each session upon arriving to the workshop. During each meeting there is a short talk about the subject and how to accomplish the objective of the FITYMI session followed by participants choosing how to proceed (experimenting with materials, accomplishing a project, discussion and/or playing) with food available at some point during the workshop.
- A symbolic representation
First one that came to my mind is Google, which comes from the world goggle. Now, goggles are the symbol of search and infinite knowledge: “You put your goggles on and dive into the information ocean”.
Another symbolic representation comes from artist Chris Jordan:
Where he shows an arresting view of what Western culture looks like. His supersized images picture some almost unimaginable statistics — like the astonishing number of paper cups we use every single day.
- A networked, digital medium differ from other radio, print and TV by the information amount.
Digital medium has a bottomless hole in which there is information, which is endless. Radio, print and TV chooses the amount and style of information that they present. In a digital medium, the user itself chooses.
“I think it is a very good point: when studying, one cannot be “outside“, no matter if it is art or media or whatsoever.”
This is a very good point, and one often criticised by constructivist learning proponents: To intuitively apply complex knowledge, you have to be “inside” of it, not to see it as something external to you, but as a natural extension of you (as McLuhan would put it), or the other way round, you being an integral part of it (Brown, Duguid, Allen (1989) “Situated Cognition and the culture of learning”).
“It is essential, when studying that from the point of „mathematics“ and „education“, mathematics is never outside, it is always inside in school system. How come media seems to be outside, even though it is part of our daily life?”
I hope I do understand you right. I think this is the second important point of education – besides getting the learner ‘inside’ the respective medium of knowledge- , though here you have phrased it as a deficiency: How to become aware of something (a medium, e.g. mathematics education) being inside (inside another medium, e.g. our educational system). Seamless integration is both a strength and a weakness: We do not ‘see’ that we are in a cultural “medium”; but we think we can see technical “media” (see Meyer 2007, 265).
The dilemma is: We cannot criticize knowledge from the inside, and we cannot apply knowledge from the outside.
Maybe art is one solution?
“The amount of sufficient information is little, and I think that people have become more aware and alert not to trust everything…In some ways it is back to the basics: don’t trust anybody.”
This can be read from both sides, as “Do not trust anybody”; but also as “Do not trust anybody that tells you something you think could not be true”.
This is a criticism that e.g. Eli Pariser (“Filter Bubble”) or Heinz von Foerster make: We (let) sort and order information, so that it ‘fits’ into our world view. We are distrustful to information that contradict our beliefs (see e.g. perturbation, cognitive dissonance, or learning type III (Bateson (1972), in the dropbox)).
But how to handle information overload and informational dissonance in an extremely complex, changing, demanding medially imparted world?
Thank you for the Ptarmigan-Link! Ptarmigan seems to be like an open, neverending barcamp. But it (thankfully) concentrates on only one interesting topic per real-life session. “Fake It Til You Make It” is something adorable, we should have a counterpart here in Hamburg.
• A symbolic representation
“First one that came to my mind is Google, which comes from the world goggle.”
Google’s explanation is, that their name derives from “Googol” (10 to the power of 100).
But your explanation delivers a much, much better metaphor for what Google does!
Google not just makes accessible an incredibly high amount of data, but is also, via its invisible algorithms, a pair of glasses we cannot set down, but we have to use when we want to see this data.
It’s a kind of “prepackaged dynamic worldview”.
This is a challenging video by Chris Jordan you’ve linked, thanks.
He states: “We’ve lost our sense of outrage, or anger or grief on what’s going on in our culture.” (Chris Jordan, 7:25)
It’s about space and time, the loss of the overview and interconnectedness.
The question is, as above “How do we change?” – and all questions of why, where, what connected to it.
“Digital medium has a bottomless hole in which there is information, which is endless.”
So, how should man handle a bottomless hole (Christina Schwalbe pointed to technical, social and cultural solutions (p.184)? How could we show this overwhelming dilemma of needed knowledge and endless information to choose from? And maybe also show possible solutions?
Chris Jordan uses aesthetics to ‘wrap’ the ugly facts he wants to show.