Seeking a new learning horizon

Forecasting the future has come in for a fair bit of disbelief recently, hasn’t it? (Hollow laughter greets the future for the weather in the UK, the safety of New Orleans, global economics…)
I’m on holiday but reading about the future. I’m hoping I’ll be more creative with one eye on a sunny sky merging to a hazy Mediterranean horizon.

But I need to force myself into challenges in such a setting! How about this: “anyone who attempts to write about the future should take warning from all the failures of the past” (the great ‘forecaster’, Sir Arthur C. Clarke).

Almost everyone agrees that we are in the midst of one of the fastest and most profound technological revolutions in the history of the recorded world. On the whole I think technology could be one arena where forecasting could be possible. The difficulty is that not everything that can be produced by humans for a purpose IS actually created and if it is, it may not be adopted, at least not within living memory (space elevators?). Conversely, failures of imagination become very comic after later wholesale acceptance (Telephones & “The world has a need for maybe 5 computers…”).

Those of us who are educators in this technological world, tack across the waters picking up the wind where we may, pulling on board those people and things that might contribute to an amazing future for 21st Century learning. My little boat is full of geo-mobile devices as I contemplate my next research journey. What’s in yours?

Gilly Salmon

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