EdTechTalk Discussion of 'Learning in a Time of Abundance' (Chpt 1: Change Has Never Been a Bargain)

The EdTechWeekly gang continues its discussion of Dave's new book, Learning in a Time of Abundance
This week: Chapter 1 - Change Has Never Been a Bargain

Audio Recording     Transcript

We continue the conversation next week.
May 13, 2300 UTC (7pm EDT)
Global Times

Sections (as determined and not-so-accurately described by Zoom's AI)

Discussing Dave's New Book and AI Integration

Jeff, Jennifer, Dave, and John discussed Dave's new book, "Learning in a Time of Abundance". They reflected on the past week, sharing updates and experiences with emerging technologies like AI and TikTok. Dave shared his recent work on AI presentations and discussions about integrating AI into education. Jeff expressed his enthusiasm for exploring modern podcasting. The group also delved into the book's first chapter, discussing the implications of technological innovation and the concept of abundance. Questions about the book's structure and content were raised, with Dave sharing his struggles with finding the right starting point for the book.

Impact of Technology on Learning Systems From 07:10

Dave, Jennifer, and John discussed the impact of technology on learning systems, focusing on the differences between incremental and transformational changes. Dave argued that while technology has altered access to and sharing of information, it has not led to transformational changes in education due to established systems' inertia. Jennifer suggested that this resistance might be due to fear or skepticism and emphasized the need to explore both the positive and negative implications of technological advancements. The conversation also touched on the concept of diffusion of innovation and systemic barriers to change.

Curriculum Changes, Transformational Challenges, and AI Concerns From 19:26

Dave expressed concerns about the resistance of teachers to curriculum changes and the educational system's emphasis on incremental improvements over transformational ones. He argued that attempts at transformation often face challenges due to parental expectations and the traditional schooling system's focus on high grades and standardized testing. Jeff suggested that these expectations are based on desired outcomes that could be achieved through alternative systems. Dave further emphasized the limitations of the current system, sharing his experience of teaching his child to "play the game" of the system to improve grades. The discussion concluded with Jennifer expressing concerns about the use of AI in lesson planning and student work, and the ambiguity it creates around responsibility in the learning process.

Discussing Technology's Impact on Decision-Making From 26:54

Jennifer, Dave, Jeff, and John discussed the challenges and benefits of introducing new technology in decision-making settings, specifically in the contexts of the Senate and education. They shared their experiences with using collaborative document tools and highlighted the importance of training and gradual introduction to facilitate adoption. The group also reflected on the transformative changes in technology over the past two decades, emphasizing the shift from Apple's dominance to the widespread use of Google and the impact of mobile devices, particularly the iPhone. They discussed the evolution of social media and the internet, and the transformative impact of digital tools and social media on communication.

AI Chat Feature and Wikipedia Reliability From 40:39

The team discussed the potential implications of AI on their work, particularly concerning a new chat feature. Dave raised concerns about the potential for AI-generated content to lead to a homogenization of content, while Jeff highlighted the value of human-curated sources like Wikipedia. John clarified that Wikipedia is not banned in higher education, and the team debated its reliability. Concerns were also raised about privacy and data collection, and the group agreed that while technology offers many benefits, it also comes with trade-offs that should be carefully considered.

Education in the Digital Age: Challenges and Opportunities From 51:52

Jeff, Dave, and Jennifer discussed the changing nature of education and how it needs to adapt to the digital age. They emphasized the importance of teaching skills relevant to the information ecosystem of today's generation, while also acknowledging the negative consequences of social media and the need for responsible use of social technology. The discussion also touched on the challenges posed by the deluge of information and the implications for decision-making, political engagement, and privacy. Lastly, they explored the potential and challenges of massive open online courses (MOOCs) in transforming education and the importance of learning within a community of practice.

Social Media Platforms Performance and Content From 1:01:13

Jeff, Jennifer, and Dave reviewed the performance of their social media platforms, including TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram. They analyzed the engagement and viewership rates, with particular attention to the TikTok audience's response to their content. The team also discussed their experiences with social media, with Jeff expressing his preference for shorter content, and Jennifer sharing her engagement with TikTok's algorithm. They also addressed the types of content they encounter on the platforms, with Jeff highlighting the compelling nature of content related to end-of-life issues.

Social Media Trends, Children, and Gardening From 1:07:24

The team discussed social media trends and personal experiences, with Jeff and Dave highlighting the shift in content consumption towards curated content on platforms like Instagram and TikTok. They also discussed the impact of social media on children and emphasized the importance of privacy. Additionally, the team shared personal hobbies and interests, with John revealing his new skill of bending conduit for his garden and Dave planning a new vegetable garden bed. The idea of a builders' podcast was proposed by Jeff, and the team agreed to continue discussing this in the future.