Assorted Links

I think I’m going to start doing “link posts” more often. I run into content I think I should write about here but then never have time to write a full-blown post. Onto the links.

Clay Shirky says Internet reduces needs for “experts” by lowering transaction costs

“Experts the world over have been shocked to discover that they were consulted not as a direct result of their expertise, but often as a secondary effect --- the apparatus of credentialing made finding experts easier than finding amateurs, even when the amateurs knew the same things as the experts.”

Web 2.0 Is the Future of Education

Lists 10 cultural trends which is pushing education towards a web2.0 model

A world without courses

Thought experiment how universities would work without actual courses. An interesting ideas. I’ve often wandered if courses are the best method for learning. I know I learn far more outside of class then inside the classroom.

Vygotsky’s Social Development Theorymore here

Every function in the child’s cultural development appears twice: first, on the social level, and later, on the individual level; first, between people (interpsychological) and then inside the child (intrapsychological). This applies equally to voluntary attention, to logical memory, and to the formation of concepts. All the higher functions originate as actual relationships between individuals.

How to become great? Research suggests:

  1. Focus on technique as opposed to outcome.
  2. Set specific goals.
  3. Get good, prompt feedback, and use it.

Thoughts, quotes, questions about how web2.0 is challenging traditional methods of education

Bandura Social Learning Theory

Learning would be exceedingly laborious, not to mention hazardous, if people had to rely solely on the effects of their own actions to inform them what to do. Fortunately, most human behavior is learned observationally through modeling: from observing others one forms an idea of how new behaviors are performed, and on later occasions this coded information serves as a guide for action.

Lave’s Situated Learning Theory

Lave argues that learning as it normally occurs is a function of the activity, context and culture in which it occurs (i.e., it is situated). This contrasts with most classroom learning activities which involve knowledge which is abstract and out of context. Social interaction is a critical component of situated learning — learners become involved in a “community of practice” which embodies certain beliefs and behaviors to be acquired. As the beginner or newcomer moves from the periphery of this community to its center, they become more active and engaged within the culture and hence assume the role of expert or old-timer. Furthermore, situated learning is usually unintentional rather than deliberate. These ideas are what Lave & Wenger (1991) call the process of “legitimate peripheral participation.”

Syllabus for Virtual community/social media class at Stanford — Loads of links to great resources.

Learn the difference between states of order and unorder — a birthday story

One of the most profound insights into management I’ve read. To manage states of unorder you make boundaries, create attractors, stabilize the patterns you desire and disrupt the patterns that threaten danger and harm. Read the story linked above then the full paper here

On average, averages are the exception not the rule

Worth linking to for the title alone. Explores some failures of statistics particularly social scientists ignorance of Zipth or the Power law

Why bother having a resume?

Seth Godin asks why bother having a resume. He says “I think if you’re remarkable, amazing or just plain spectacular, you probably shouldn’t have a resume at all… Great jobs, world class jobs, jobs people kill for… those jobs don’t get filled by people emailing in resumes. Ever.

Ross Mayfield Shares Four Use Cases For Wikis

The four are:

  1. collaborative intelligence
  2. participatory knowledge base
  3. flexible client collaboration
  4. business social networks

How to think: Managing brain resources in an age of complexity

Great, great suggestions on how to think. Read the whole thing. One sample point:

Make your mistakes quickly. You may mess things up on the first try, but do it fast, and then move on. Document what led to the error so that you learn what to recognize, and then move on. Get the mistakes out of the way. As Shakespeare put it, “Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.

Wikipatterns — Design patterns for wikis — Great resource

Case study of Enterprise2.0 implementation at Avenue A | Razorfish

Situated Software

Clay Shirky tells how open source software enables cheap creation of social software situated to needs of a specific community. He’s ideas are partly what inspired my creation of BYU

The Psychology of human misjudgement

Psychology fascinates me — particularly how we mess up. My hope is if I understand why my psychology causes me to mess up, I’ll be able to compensate. This is a speech by Charlie Munger, a wise old sage of the business world. He lists 24 reasons why humans misjudge.

Where my traffic comes from

Popular blogger says more traffic now comes from “smart aggregators. As there is more and more good content being posted, people are starting to rely more on social filtering.

Safe String Theory for the Web — Everything you ever wanted to know about handling strings on the web.

Willpower is like a muscle says research

New York Times article summarizes research that suggests your will power can be strengthened by exercising it, much as a muscle.

In psychological studies, even something as simple as using your nondominant hand to brush your teeth for two weeks can increase willpower capacity. People who stick to an exercise program for two months report reducing their impulsive spending, junk food intake, alcohol use and smoking. They also study more, watch less television and do more housework. Other forms of willpower training, like money-management classes, work as well.

Tagged with blogging | elearning2.0 | enterprise2.0 | innovation

Posted April 17, 2008

Kyle Mathews lives and works in San Francisco building useful things. You should follow him on Twitter