Will Richardson’s mind is bloggling after listening to Stephen Downes, again. Time to get radical, eh?
On the whole, I’m all for the kind of changes and innovations that Will and so many other bright minds (Dave Warlick, and so on) are writing about. But I always have a slightly niggling unease about the sense that all this enthusiasm may be partially (in some cases perhaps wholly) driven by haste and fear (I’m thinking here of a comment in one of Dave Warlick’s recent posts Bits of string, but several other bloggers have mentioned Thomas Friedman’s book The World is Flat, which I haven’t read and am frankly biassed against as I was not impressed with his previous The Lexus and the Olive Tree ). And sometimes I wonder if the rush isn’t being fuelled by technology itself – because all this stuff is happening, because we can do all these things, we must otherwise we’ll be left behind.
Just because we can do something doesn’t mean that we should.
And secondly, my own personal leaning is towards harmonising the technology with innate human needs, and I don’t mean the need to keep up with one’s neighbour, but the need to learn, to grow, to communicate, to participate in and help maintain or create a community, to create/share beauty and creations of value and usefulness. If in the end the technology and all it brings just leaves us more tired, more breathless, more stressed than before, if it does not help us to relax and enjoy and feel grateful, feel wonder and suprise at this existence, what in hell good is it?