Replied to E-Learning 3.0: Conversation with Ben Werdmuller by Jenny Mackness
I have used both Dreamweaver and GoDaddy to create websites in the past and found them hard work. I have considered whether to move this WordPress site to Reclaim Hosting, but there is very little cost difference (I only pay for two plugins which I renew each year on WordPress) and I am very happy with WordPress. I find it easy to use. I do use a template which I am not 100% happy with, but I don’t feel strongly enough about it to take full responsibility for my own website.
Interesting reflection Jenny on owning your own domain. I am an advocate for this, being both immersed in the IndieWeb and using Reclaim Hosting, however I am mindful that one size never fits all. I always come back to this post from Mike Caulfield.
Replied to Talking about dying by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
Having watched ‘Awakenings’ I think I should have had more faith that she could ‘hear me’. I remember on the day before she died the District Nurse told me to go and sit with my mother and talk to her. I felt awkward about this. I hadn’t had a conversation with my mother, or really talked to her, for years. But I did what the nurse told me to and the last thing I said to my mother was that she was not to worry, she would not be moved from her home into a hospital (her wish was always to die in her own home) and she would not be left alone. At the time I wondered whether she had heard or understood me, but now, with hindsight, I think that she did, and that she knew I was her daughter and was reassured that she would die at home. My regret is that I didn’t talk to her more during her last weeks.
Thank you for sharing Jenny.

I think that I was probably in denial as I watched my mother die of cancer. The biggest shock was the body transformation. I cannot think of any film (I have not seen Awakenings) that authentically reflects this. Maybe I was naive? Not sure what I did expect. Was a challenge none the less.

Something that you might be interested in (if you have not already come upon it in the past) is this podcast capturing Sacks’ last days:



One of the most moving things I have listened to.
Replied to E-Learning 3.0 : some initial thoughts by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
Stephen then went on to discuss the significance of the Cloud and Graph elements of his diagram. Here he lost me. He told us that anyone could learn this if we put the effort in and that through this we would learn how to create new types of distributed and connected learning resources. I found myself thinking that I have always like driving; I know how to change a wheel, and when opening the bonnet where to top up the screen wash and oil. I can even jump start another car if necessary, but beyond this I am not interested. I take the car to the garage and let someone else with years of experience sort it out. Similarly with technology. I am simply not sufficiently interested to get into the nitty gritty. I am not interested in learning how to programme or learning different computer languages. I think there will probably be more people like me than technical experts (although maybe not on this course!), so I wonder what the implications of this are for a distributed model. Further, I like the fact that I can come to this course and know that Stephen has the experience, has done all the work and is willing to share this. I am grateful to him for this and his generous openness, but it does not make me want to learn programming 🙂
This course sounds interesting Jenny. Might have to take a look. I think that I must have overlooked it because of busyness.

I also like your point Jenny about driving and technology.

Liked Understanding ‘Betweenness’ – seeing beyond the parts by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)

I suspect that any attempt to fully articulate and define what ‘betweenness’ might mean is going to fail, if only because, if it is embedded in experience, then it will necessarily be personal to each and every one of us. The nearest anyone I know has come to presenting a holistic view of ‘betweenness’ as expressed by McGilchrist is Matthias Melcher with this map

Liked Human Existence is Difficult. Existentialism and Phenomenology. by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
The existentialists lived in times of extreme ideology and extreme suffering, and they became engaged with events in the world whether they wanted to or not – and usually they did. The story of existentialism is therefore a political and a historical one: to some extent, it is the story of a whole European century.
Liked There are No Things. There are patterns. by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
‘The statement that ‘there is no such thing as truth’ is itself a truth statement, and implies that it is truer than its opposite, the statement that ‘truth exists’. If we had no concept of truth, we could not state anything at all, and it would even be pointless to act. There would be no purpose, for example, in seeking the advice of doctors, since there would be no point in having their opinion, and no basis for their view that one treatment was better than another. None of us actually lives as though there were no truth. Our problem is more with the notion of a single, unchanging truth.’ (McGilchrist, p.150)
Bookmarked Trust in the steps. Focussed and whole picture thinking by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
The last step doesn’t matter as much as you think. It is not about the summit.
This is an interesting reflection on climbing Mt Everest. The idea that the summit does not matter as much as we think reminds of a point that Jeff Haden made on the Curious Minds podcast. He explained that planning for a holiday can actually be more beneficial that going on the holiday. This relates to the arbitrary nature of goals. What matters is that we care.
Replied to Death is a friend of life by jennymackness (Jenny Connected)
Iain McGilchrist’s stress on the importance of poetry, music and presence at a time of the death of someone you love, or indeed of anyone, resonated with me. I am fortunate to know at least two people who really understand this. As many testified at her death, my mother was unique. Had she not existed there would be a Betty-shaped hole in the Universe.
My sincere condolences Jenny. Sadly, death seems to be a topic of reflection at the moment.

Your post has me reflecting on the death of my mother. Although it maybe a part of life, I am not sure I was willing to accept death. I naively thought she would be around seemingly forever. I remember missing our last moment together:

My last real one to one chat happened when I was least expecting it. With my step dad out picking up my brother and sister from school, I had a few moments with my mum. All of the sudden the tone of the conversation changed from being chatty, talking about this and that, but nothing in particular, to being more serious. I am not sure if it was something that I said or whether it was something that mum was just waiting to say, but she learnt forward from the couch and told me that I was a great brother, an amazing son and a fantastic husband and that I should not listen to anyone who says otherwise. In my usual manner, I tried to dodge these compliments. Like my mum, I just don’t like being pumped up. However, it didn’t occur to my till much later that these were mum’s last meaningful words for me. Although we had a few more conversations, none of them were as deep as this moment.

I am not sure how I thought she would pass, but no-one and definitely no movie prepared me the change and transformation associated with cancer.

I find your mention of music interesting. My sister and I played Miley Cyrus’ The Climb over and over in our last night with my mother as she lay there slowing passing. I remember the track playing randomly on my phone in class one day. I had to check myself, let alone somehow explain why I had Miley Cyrus on my phone to a bunch of teens.

Thank you Jenny for sharing.

Aaron