Bookmarked Learning the rules of predicting the future – The Ed Techie by Martin Weller

In short, the future will have much resonance with the present, but it will be one where the relationship between people and increasingly powerful technology is one that is constantly examined and negotiated. I would not expect any grand revolution in the higher education space, the much quoted concept of disruption is almost entirely absent and inappropriate in this space. So don’t expect the type of future often predicted by educational technology entrepreneurs, with all existing universities made redundant by a new technology centric model. Instead we see a continual model of innovation, testing, adaption and revisiting within the constraints of an existing, and robust system.

Martin Weller responds to a request to predict the future of higher ed by identifying four rules:

  1. Very little changes, while simultaneously everything changes.
  2. Change is rarely about the technology.
  3. Appreciate the historical amnesia in much of educational technology.
  4. Technology is not ethically or politically neutral.

Alongside the work of Gary Stager and Audrey Watters, this is a useful provocation to think about the past, present and future of education and technology.

Liked HEWN, No. 298 (Hack Education Weekly Newsletter)

Technologists suck at predicting the future. They suck because they don’t understand the past; they’re blind to much of the present. They’re terrible at predicting the future because they fail to grasp the systems and practices surrounding their products, firm in their faith instead that their own genius (and their investors’ continued support) will be enough to muddle forward.

Liked Empty half the Earth of its humans. It’s the only way to save the planet | Kim Stanley Robinson by an author (the Guardian)

The Global Footprint Network estimates that we use up our annual supply of renewable resources by August every year, after which we are cutting into non-renewable supplies – in effect stealing from future generations. Eating the seed corn, they used to call it. At the same time we’re pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere at a rate that is changing the climate in dangerous ways and will certainly damage agriculture.