PF 2014


Best wishes for 2014 from 多米尼克 二零一四 Duōmǐnǐkè 2014

Education is to learning like ... (Towards the Becker attractor)

Martin Weller has an blog post entitled: "VLE is to Learning what PowerPoint is to Presentations". The title pretty much says it all but he elaborates:

The danger with both of them is that they represent not a potential stage on a journey for many, but the endpoint. Their ease of use and similarity to existing practice is seductive in this sense, you don’t really have to change what you do much.

Online Lecture (3 September): 7 Common Myths about Language and Learning

Date and time: 3 September, 2009 - 17:00 - 18:30

In this one-hour webinar organised via Dyslexia Action, Dominik Lukes will try to dispel some common myths about language and how people learn it. Some of these myths are: children are better at language learning than adults, some languages are harder to learn than others and few English speakers are bilingual.

You will be able to ask questions during the session.

This is the first in a projected series of regular online Open Lectures (webinars). You can read more about webinars here.

REGISTER HERE for this free event

The knowledge delusion: What changes and what stays the same

Classical Definition of Kno

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An interesting discussion took place between two prominent e-thinkers who both agree that the 'nature of knowledge' is changing but disagree on how and what the implications are. Stephen Downes summarises the notion of changing knowledge as follows.

Twitter backlash exposes shallowness of modern psychology

Twitter's Update Page

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The Inquisitr responds to a recent Times article on Twitter with the phrase 'load of bollocks, up to a point'  but he is wrong. It is entirely and thoroughly bollocks. There is not a single quote in that article that is not at least partially nonsense. More than anything the psychiatric response to Twitter stems from the profound failure of modern psychology which for the last hundred or so years has lived off a populist reification of some of Freud's interesting insights. For instance this quote from Alain de Botton:

A load of Twitter - Times Online “To ‘follow’ someone is to have a fantasy of who this person you’re following is, and you use it as a map reference or signpost to guide your own life because you are lost,” says James. “I would guess that the typical profile of a ‘follower’ is someone who is young and who feels marginalised, empty and pointless. They don’t have an inner life,” he says.


The female mystique nonsense

Bandai Co., Ltd.

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The perceptive folk at Shiny Shiny have hit the nail on the head. I've been meaning to write about this for a while and I'm preparing a column about this for Lidové Noviny at the moment so this post came as a pleasant surprise. The bottom line is, the folk theory that men find it difficult to understand women because of some inherent gender difference is nonsense. The vast majority of the difference is a result of the constant discursive reinforcement and socialisation by men and women, as was so perceptively observed by Shiny Shiny:

Shiny Shiny: Bandai helps women understand the men As the old clichés go, women are hard to read, woman don't know what they want (bla bla bla) and this ultimately ends up with men relentlessly moaning about how much disdain they have for not being able to understand what we want. Such a phenomenon is this little bugbear there was even a whole movie about it. But, I think a lot of you will agree (especially the women) this incomprehensible slump that men grumble about swings both ways. And if the Onna Dameshi (Girl Tester) is anything to go on, we need help understanding the male species too.

If a word falls in the woods...The interactional nature of meaning

It seems the Oxford dictionary has inadvertenly posed a rather serious challenge to the semanticians of the world. They launch a fun little website asking the net to save individual words reminiscent of the parrot Gerald Durrell's "Talking Parcel". Lifehacker immediately recognized the utility of such a project for party entertainment:

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