Go ahead, mark this as read

I’ve been thinking for a long while about some of the angst people feel about content and keeping up. We definitely are suffering from an old school belief and/or understanding that in order to be current we have to have a handle on the very latest research or content in our field. Obviously 20 years ago, actually you probably only have to back about 5, it was quite easy for educators or anyone for that matter to feel like they were aware of the latest greatest. Subscribe to a few key journals, read a book or two and year and you were done. The good old days?

So now we add to the mix every blog, social network, new tool, changing media, easy publish, youtube, rss reader and the list goes on. We hear about information overload. We hope these tools will help us manage. They won’t.

Is this a generational thing? We need to get comfortable with the messiness as a virtue. Most of us don’t like messiness. My kids don’t seem to have a problem with it. Although I razz Will at times for his struggles with managing it all, I heard him say recently that doesn’t worry about missing things because his network is his filter and that the cream of content will eventually rise to the top. Good advice.

While there seems to be a desire for first posts, I’m also grateful for the revisiting of old links. Today I was reacquainting myself with the lectures of Randy Pausch. Although I posted on this back in the fall, I noticed Wes Fryer just recently discovered him and posted on him today as well after someone posted this on twitter. I think this is great. Ideas, people and stories worth telling are worth telling about more than once and they will. So if you missed Randy Pausch in the fall, you got to hear about him again. (if you’d like a great lecture on time management, watch this one)

I missed the whole color war thing, don’t really get diigo, still don’t really know all the my new Macbook can do. I don’t care. I’m not sure if I was Alec who said it, or where I heard it, but understanding that learning and content today is not a reservoir but a river, is a great metaphor.

Don’t panic if you don’t get twitter. If you don’t check your facebook account for 3 weeks, who cares? So I’m urging you to mark this post as read in your reader. Don’t worry if you don’t read it. Okay, that may be stupid to say since if you’re reading this it’s already too late. But the fact that you’re around, sipping in the river leads me to believe you’ll be fine. If you don’t read this post or the next, it’s no big deal

Update #1: Stephen Downes may have said it first
Update #2: Rob Wall posted a similar idea a month ago. See good ideas resurface. 😉

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