Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Moving on from Web 2.0?

I am just about coming to terms with Web 2.0 and I feel happy that I can relate to a few tools that I have been experimenting with the past year or so such as Animoto and Xtranormal.

Holding on for Dear Life

My mobile is a Nokia 1600. This means I am literally already part of the "Mobile" generation. However, it has no Internet, no camera. It is what it says on the box. A simple mobile phone. It has been very reliable and perfect for my needs. My kind hubby calls it very ancient, but I like it! It is easy and straightforward to use. My plan is to hold on to it for dear life until it falls apart. And then what?? Will I be brave enough to acquire a more modern mobile? One that will jettison me into the exciting arena of Web 3.0?? I am tempted.....

A Confession
The idea of Web 3.0 worries me a bit. Does anyone else feel the same? I hope I am not alone in thinking that I need more time to consolidate the fast-flowing flurry of new ideas and technologies. I feel I am trying very hard to keep up but.....I'm just not sure if I'm ready yet to confront another new Web number!

ImageChef Custom Images
The future of teaching is learning. I fully agree with this maxim. I am continually learning and I love it. But, a part of me would like to just pause to consolidate what I have been learning. A couple of years ago, I knew nothing about Web 2.0. It's taken me a while to adjust to it all. Maybe I came into this new era a bit late in life. Who knows? Anyway, it's been an amazing and huge learning curve up until now.

The million dollar question is, however, will I be a bad teacher if I don't fullheartedly embrace Web 3.0 technologies? Will I be viewed as incompetent? The future is definitely Mobile Learning or indeed "Ubiquitous" Learning. I can feel in my heart of hearts that it is inevitable. A foregone conclusion. Generation "M" has already arrived.

Without consciously knowing it, have I already embraced "Ubiquitous" learning? Maybe the fact that I am thinking about it is a very good sign. Is there hope for me yet?

Lifelong Learning
I came across this fantastic presentation on Slideshare by Steve Wheeler , from Learning with "e"s blog called "Web 3.0: The Way Forward?" I like the presentation very much. It makes for very compelling viewing. It has opened my eyes to the fact that I have an awful lot to learn. We all have a lot to learn, from each other. It will never stop!

Web 3.0: The way forward?


Tara said...

Your phone reminds me of a phone my friend has. She made a button for her blog that makes fun of it (and her own texting abilities). You'd have to read the whole story "about a couch" to get it. Next time you need a break, check it out. It's a very unique blog that has nothing to do with teaching but is very entertaining.

Paradox said...

Dear Friend,
Never worry you will get stuck in Web 2.0 technologies (personally, I'm a bit skeptical that we are actually on the threshhold of 3.0; perhaps 2.2 might be more accurate). At any rate, the danger is not in getting stuck (we all need to know our limits and play within them), but rather, of thinking that we can stop on the cutting edge at some point and still be 'current' in new developments. These new developments will always make us feel swept away because of their newness, but if we persevere, our efforts will pay off in huge ways later. If as you say, the future of teaching is learning, then your willingness to learn (not necessarily your ability to control) will have more impact upon students you teach than anything else.

Janet Bianchini said...

Dear Tara

Thank you so much for visiting my blog. I have checked out the blog you mention and it certainly looks like a fun one.

Best wishes


Janet Bianchini said...

Hi dear friend

Your words are very reassuring and just what I needed to hear. The notion of being "swept away" sums up how all this "newness" feels at times. Wave after wave of new things. However, I do know that once I grab hold of the big wave and master it, then surfing it should become second nature.

I agree that in this day and age, the teacher is also learning at the same time as the students, so we have moved into a new pedagogical era. One which is in fact evolving as I write.

Thank you so much for your support. I do hope we can resume our weekly meetings soon.

Best wishes



Hi Janet,

I haven't had a chance to comment in ages but this one has summoned me out of slumber (or rather my big project is finally done)...

Honestly, I think this mobile stuff is a bunch of hype and nonsense.

There is some kind of mad assumption that people want to be connected all the everyone and everything.

I think the prospect of that is simply incredibly unhealthy (mentally...

Off the top of my head, I am instantly reminded of 2ndLife and the lack of connection between what people want to use their tools for and what those who would make money would like them to use them for.

I can see much promise in things like netbooks and tablets, but with regard to mobile phones - phones are principally, no.1 a person-to-person communication device - they are about quick, (smile...for the ladies) efficient communication not hour-long reflection, information seeking etc.

But we shall see... we shall see...

Janet Bianchini said...

Hi Karenne

Thanks for commenting here and for your thought-provoking response.

It's always interesting to hear all aspects of a topic- the very good, the good, the not so good and the indifferent.

At the moment, I am using my mobile purely for quick communication and texting. It is an indispensable tool for when I am out and about in order for me to keep in touch with family and friends. That is all I use it for, and I can't live without it!

As you say, we shall see what the future holds. I do think that mobiles / hand-held devices will play an ever increasing role in education. The articles I have selected in my post reveal a lot of practical information and research regarding this subject.

We ignore the future implications at our peril, I guess. That's why I have grouped the 5 posts in one place, in order to read, analyse and ponder over them more effectively.

I hope the comments section will provide room for discussion :)

Tara said...

Personally, I think mobiles are not going to go away especially in our industry. Think of all of the English learners who are stuck on the train for a few hours each day. I think it's fantastic that they can do something such as practise #twinglish with learners and teachers around the world or take a Conversation English course for as cheap as $2.99 from their iPhone. Personally, I see myself still carrying my library book and my journal and gel pen everywhere, even if I'm writing mobile learning apps as a day job.

Janet Bianchini said...

Hi Tara

I see your point re how useful it is to learn a language via a mobile device such as an iPhone. Your example of commuting learners using their time effectively on the way to work is a good one.

I guess the biggest advantage of using one's internet-connected mobile on the train over one's laptop is the smaller size and therefore greater ease of handling. In this case, then yes, the mobile device definitely wins!

Mmmm, I wonder how much longer my reliable 4-year-old Nokia phone is going to last??!!

Hanifa K. Cook said...

Hi this is @hiannie from twitter.

Until early this year, my husband, who has more phones than his hands could handle, decided I should have a new phone to replace my Nokia. So it was either the iphone or blackberry.

I bought an iphone. This device literally got me all sorted out, it took the nuisance out of me which makes up the character of a busy me. Before the iphone, I thought I could never see the light at the end of the tunnel to get out of the web. Seriously. Nothing seems to get sorted.

Web 2.0 or web 3.0 has nothing to do with how my experience with the world. The device I use to experience beyond the boundaries of my own space across borders and regions, without having to fly on the plan, controls that. No matter how well I understand this subject called web *.0, it is the machine and the software that takes me into the web decides if I want to be remain plugged in or stay away.

And I must say, for many years, I have been using a Vista with only 512mb RAM onboard x 2. For many years, I hated Vista. So just recently, only recently, my husband had enough of me grunting so much about Vista, he demanded that I upgraded it to Windows 7. That was when we discovered that this laptop, had a such a small Ready Access Memory. And the max it can take is 1.5 gig.

So there, even before I could start enjoying web *.0, it is the device that determines my existence in the worldwide web.

I am already thinking of buying an iPad. I suppose I am stuck in Web technologies. I just don't want to admit that having a machine that does it for me, is the same as being in the web. Fat chance!

Having a Nokia is great. I still believe it is a brand like no other. It was a basic phone. But having the iPhone makes me enjoy more time on the net than the Nokia could offer. I actually think I am enjoying getting stuck in web 2.0 technologies.

Best regards

Natasa said...

Thanks for linking to me, Janet.
I have to admit that I am a computer person, not a mobile person. I hardly ever use the internet option on my mobile. Perhaps I am already stuck in the Web 2.0 era. But basically I agree with Karenne - we don't really want to be connected all the time. It took me a long time to buy my first mobile precisely because I was afraid of losing my privacy. Late at night, when everyone in my household is asleep, I go and connect with my PLN. I set aside the time to do that, rather than interrupting whatever I am doing to go on Facebook or Twitter.
Now, using mobiles in the classroom is a completely different thing. My students already use their mobiles to look up a new word or check something they are not sure about on Wikipedia. Once a student started telling the rest of the class something she had heard in the news just before she left for class, then used her mobile to find out the rest of the story.
Yes, we need to go on learning if we are to keep pace with our students.

Janet Bianchini said...

Hi Annie

Thank you so much for relating your experiences with mobile phones and technology. It's great that you are happy with the iphone - sounds like a must -have device :)

I found your comments about the machine and software that one uses very interesting, and "it is the device that determines my existence in the worldwide web", made me pause for thought.

It's great that you are enjoying web technologies more and more. It is definitely such an exciting era that we are living through at the moment.

Best regards

Janet Bianchini said...

Hi Natasa

Thank you for entering the discussion! Like you, I am deinitely a computer person rather than a mobile one. I like the fact that at the moment they are 2 separate things, and so I can control what I want to do. I also set aside special time for keeping up with my PLN via twitter and blogging and so on.

The downside is of course, I can't check emails or twitter when I'm on the move unless I cart my laptop around and that could be a problem in some situations.

Howevever, to date, I have managed perfectly well with my own system and so luckily, it hasn't really affected me or my life too much.

The example you gave of your student informing the class of the latest news via her mobile is a great one! This is the future, and I agree with you entirely that we need to continue learning to keep pace with our students!

Take care.

Anne said...

Hi Janet,

Steve Wheeler's presentation is great :)

A device that does one thing well - and has a long battery life - has a lot going for it. So go, your phone!

The iPhone is great in one-to-one for recording and having the internet available as a resource. But there's no projector, which you need to get everyone in class involved, or to show what someone has found! So I wind up using it mostly for audio in class, and have my students use my laptop for everything else.

I don't like the currently available EFL/ESL apps for the phone, but the augmented reality stuff certainly looks promising. But again, that means every student - or at least most of them - needs to have a phone with that facility. That bothers me.

Janet Bianchini said...

Hi Anne

It's great to hear your point of view on this subject. Many thanks for popping by in order to comment.

It's interesting to note the way you use your iphone in class already and you are happy with it.

However, the fact that you need a projector to show the materials more clearly does seem to be a limitation, but I guess that could be on the cards for the next generation iphone? That would make it so much more portable and versatile.