November 19, 2005

Breakfast with Stephen

I was privileged to spend 2 hours with Stephen Downes and Rob Wall on Saturday. The talk ranged from education, DRM, politics and music. The interesting thing is that all of these topics ended up pointing back to concepts of distributed learning and the openness of the read/write web.

It’s not often you get to sit down with a keynote for 2 hours and basically fire questions and ideas at him and listen to his responses. Not only did I feel privileged but guilty that I was getting this kind of time and other participants at the conference were not. Yet because of the technology and Rob’s time, we’ll be able to share the same ideas with everyone. You won’t taste the eggs or smell the coffee but the ideas will be there. Hey Rob, why didn’t one of us think to take a picture. Duh!

I listened to a podcast from Steve after he attended NECC and he questioned why every session of a technology conference wasn’t recorded. This really isn’t a difficult process. Stephen had his session that ended at 10:00 a.m. online before lunch. My recording was uploaded a few hours after it finished and it could have been sooner. I would ask conference committees to not only ask their participants to have a link to handouts but also create some type of recording of their session.

Maybe it’s just too radical.