Sunday, October 30, 2005
Learning 2005 opening night
A country/zydeco band is belting out tunes in the big ballroom. There are about 1200 people (wild ass guess) here with me. I snared a seat at the only table up front without a Reserved sign. It’s me, Judy Brown, some ADL guys, and Deepak Sethi, a SHRM SVP who shares my interest in informal learning.
Elliott gets into it. Learning 2005 is a little bit different. We’re going to have lots of conversations, discussions, arguments, a variety of folks, citizen journalism, voting, liquid learning. We’re going to mix it up. The folks backstage don’t have a sequence to follow. We’re going to make Malcolm Gladwell blink; we’re going to tip him over.
Everything here is about extreme learning. That’s one standard deviation away from your comfort zone. Small group chat: Do you allow yourself to fail? Some will succeed; some will fail. I mention that complexity theory gives me solace: it ain’t my fault. It’s those damned complex adaptive systems at work.
We cut on our LearnBeam response devices. What’s your opinion? One third strongly agree, one third strongly disagree, and the remainder are neutral.
Avery Lerner, an avatar, comes on screen and spars with Elliott. He instructs Avery to call out whenever anyone uses jargon.
Extreme Learning. Times are way faster, more challenging and more confusing. Extreme Learning deals with higher velocity; we can’t afford to take 18 weeks to develop a program. We’ll talk about personalization. Google is responsive, PowerPoint not. We want scalability. We’ve been training the competent and available; the incompetents never make it to the session. We’re going through different generations of learners.
We’re going to look out of the box. Find two people you do not know. Talk about what we have to do to deal with the next generation of learners. John Abele and I talked about changes in the world. He said that if people understood more about risk, they would act more sensibly about their health. I replied that I thought the world was changing: the industrial age is over. The power comes as people learn to learn. Elliott asks people to sit down; they don’t. John and I conclude that Elliott’s just experienced a learning moment.
19 year old Masie employee: I enjoy learning stuff by doing it. IM is real time; email is not.
Awards. Elliott pointedly says he doesn’t charge an entry fee. (Take that, Brandon.) He simply looks for exemplary apps and good causes. CNN, eLearning for Kids, Tiger Woods Learning Foundation.
John Abele, founder of Boston Scientific, takes the stage. (Tulane Medical Center slipped a couple of Boston Scientific stents into my arteries after my heart attack in New Orleans last March.) Introducing non-invasive surgery required creating new infrastructure, learning, political support, etc.
Want to try a medical case study. How would you want your surgeon to be trained? I liked having a doctor who had not only done this operation but had also trained others. And done research.
A few pics from the Learning Consortium meeting