e-group rant!

Below is my first contribution to the e-group discussion with the rest of the class, and previous class members. It was bourne out of being unable to get onto wordpress yesterday lunchtime. Turns out the had a bit of downtime that they were able to fix promptly, which is great, and it was nice to read this communication on their site, as well as all the positive comments from other wordpress users about the good service wordpress gives, so that we can all have a blogvoice. Perspective is a wonderful thing!

Dear group,

This is my first post to the group, but I am consciously trying to make an effort to add to, and perhaps inspire conversation through it…so here goes.

I  had planned to update my blog (http://www.flexiblelearningrach.wordpress.com) this week with some interesting and relevant info, but keep coming up against (fire?)walls. Yesterday, I sat down at my work computer to look up some other blogs from participants in the course, search other people’s ‘dflp07’ tags to bookmark in http://del.icio.us and look at some videos on youtube to comment on…and found the whole experience so frustratingly slow that in the end I gave up. The combination of trying to multitask with several tabs open downloading various things, and having a short time-frame (snatched moments) available to keep momentum in the course up, just didn’t work for me..

I do find that this is one of the deterrents in the past I have had with using del.icio.us…it is quicker to book-mark with my browser…I don’t need to go from web page to web page, and back to original webpage, waiting for pages to download, before I can keep reading/searching/playing on the interesting website I have found. However, I do think that social bookmarking has its rewards, and not being tied to a computer station is essential though, so I will keep pluggin’ away until it becomes more natural….

One of the things I like about wordpress is that you can tag all your posts, and search related information this way, as you would in del.icio.us. I don’t think blogger has this function. (although I haven’t checked – too scared to go online in case I get more frustrated…)

Today, I can’t seem to log onto my account in wordpress at all, to update my blog – bit unsure whether this is their problem or mine…I might try again in the evening at home…

I also wonder how much time I have to browse everybody else’s blogs (including the downloading of them) to see what their discussion surrounds, in comparison to the same discussion happening on this e-group? Can their be too many ways to communicate the same information that is taking up more time than is necessary? Certainly, by the time I read an e-mail to find out that someone can’t make a meeting at 11am on a Thursday(etc.), I could have read their response to something flexible learning related…This is not meant to be a complaint but open discussion on the practicalities and challenges of using these technologies; how do we control the flow of data using these ‘flexible’ technologies? How do we know that everyone has agreed to use them with the same rules/assumptions/skills/knowledge? e.g. Can I suggest that everybody adds a signature to the end of their e-mails so that we all know who it is that is posting, because we didn’t all meet face-to-face in the beginning?

VIDEOS

as I mentioned, I did turn my thoughts to the videos that Leigh posted for us and have watched a couple of them. ‘The Machines are us/ing us’ I found very interesting, in part because about 2 days before I looked at it for this course, I had found it through a completely different topic/search, and had myself used it in a example to someone else. I find it interesting that with so much information ‘out there’ the same stuff rises quickly in popularity, and therefore to the top of searches. It strikes me that ‘Word of mouth’ is in a whole different league with this type of instant communication and categorisation.

‘Epic’, I found similarly interesting because my partner appears to hooked on every new app that google brings out, and quickly becomes an expert through using them and integrating them into his work. The video highlighted how much google is making itself the dominant software corp and how reliant we quickly become on technologies, without perhaps a back-up plan when it all goes wrong. Having been a big T2 fan, I have my fears….

Okay, rant over (and so is lunchtime).

Kind regards to all flexible learning practitioners (did anyone have the time to read this long e-mail?)

Rachel

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One thought on “e-group rant!

  1. a fantastic rant Rachel and you emphasise several salient points. Yes technology can be very frustrating – partly I believe this is because we have come to expect “instant gratification”. If it doesn’t work straightaway we often move quickly on to something which does. Perhaps this is because there is so much to experiment and work with now.

    It sounds like word press is working well for you. It all comes down to the purpose for which we want to use these tools. Myself I have trouble keeping up with all the communication coming into my mailbox – I subscribe to several mailing lists and generally scan for items of interest. That is where the subject line is crucial – if it isnt relevant to me I wont open it.
    we could just use blogs for our communication and discussion -and as people get going we will hopefully see more references to what others have been posting. Leigh has given an example of how this can be done on the DFLP blog.
    Now on to read your other postings.
    Bronwyn

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