Sunday, 3 February 2013

#edcmooc Twitter chat #2: Stargate

A round up of this week's Twitter chat and some themes that came out of it. We answered questions and had 84 participants & 1274 tweets.A TAGS analysis,archive is available at (thanks Andy Mitchell for this). My strategy was to favourite any tweet I found interesting. Then look back through my favourites to pick out some themes.

Firstly, this is the image I had in my mind during the chat:

It's Dr David Bowman entering the Star Gate in the film "2001: A Space Odyssey". There's a clip here . All those Tweets streaming in and zomming past every second left me a bit wild eyed. My imagination can get the better of me, so I liked Natalie's tweet here which was a much calmer way of looking at it:

That also leads onto the first of 5 themes I picked out of this chat. 

1. The experience of a real time Twitter chat

This can be really motivating. The flow of information is so rapid that it can be difficult to keep up, but it is exhilarating and you can get many ideas and points of view in a very short space of time. I especially like when you get a particular moment in time captured:

 Maddie expressed what a lot of people thought, but it also led into theme number two:

2. The problem of information overload on a MOOC

This is definitely a problem. If you miss a few days you can feel so far behind as there is so much to take in. This has been talked about a lot already, so what are the solutions? Aliya commented:

It's an interesting question. Perhaps the idea of a MOOC is to give people access to a course of study, but then these people need to form smaller groups in order to study effectively. And whose responsibility is that - teacher or student? (your ideas here please) Cristina, one of our 4 moderators, expressed what many people see as a huge benefit of MOOC's, that they can give people access to learning who might not have had access beforehand

Angela meanwhile has admirably embraced everything on offer:

This leads on to point three:

3. The benefits of social media

So, we were talking about this voluntarily on a social media site so you might expect us all to be giving a positive impression of social media. Nevertheless there were some very salient points made. Amy expressed one of the benefits, that an idea you put out there can grow & develop with other people's input. Natalie agreed.

Then there were the large numbers of people who are trying some of these tools for the first time. These two tweeters expressed how they had gained confidence and empowerment through trying new tools through the course. It was a thought shared by many who may have not been au fait with  social media a a month, a week, or a day ago.

Andy expressed it very succinctly too. I think this maybe got the most retweets of the evening

How we use social media or technology also cropped up in the discussion which leads to theme four.

4. Is technology a good or bad thing in our lives?

Peter pointed out how technology solves problems:

This is true, but it also raised the question of whether we have control over technology, or whether it controls us.

You can make a case for either view point. I personally think the technology we have available now is bringing up so many options we are still taking it all in. Pat's comment above is an interesting one - how might our increased use of the digital affect how we actually communicate with each other, and even in the long term how our brains or bodies work? We are mentally evolving, but what about physically? 

How we see ourselves now in relation to technology leads onto theme 5. These didn't really fit into any category, but were interesting and imaginative ideas of themselves

5. Things that make you go hmmmmm

Finally, should we just take a leaf out of Asbjørn's book and like Digitial Vikings carry on our quest for knowledge:

The Digitial Viking metaphor is a fine one. and was Amy's idea. Read more here
There was also another fun metaphor of pirates and pirate's treasure that cropped up this week. What is the treasure we are looking for?! (Thanks for this Willa)
And for a 60 second overview of the Twitter chat, Andy made a video here

If you want to try moderating the chat next week you should have a go. Thanks to Kelsey, Rick, Natascha and Cristina for organising it this week. As Kelsey says: