It may be because of the rather heavenly view I have from my room here in Dubai, but the post on the celestial jukebox really hits the nail for me.
The evolution in music is often a good source of inspiration for where we could be heading in learning technologies.
As Paul writes:
In the book ‘The future of music’, authors Kusek and Leonhard write about a future where music ‘flows like water’. Where all songs are playable, on demand, anytime. This is the Celestial Jukebox – the great jukebox in the sky that is ready to play any song you want. 2008 will be the year of the Celestial Jukebox – at least if you are sitting at your computer, You will be able to listen to virtually any song that you want, on demand. The only time you will need to pay for music is if you want to listen to it on your iPod or your living room stereo. And of course, in the not too distant future, all of our devices will be connected to the net – when this happens, the Celestial Jukebox will really exist. We will be able to listen to any song, at any time, at any place, on any device.
Think about that: why couldn’t we have access to any learning resource (content, people, …), at any time, at any place, on any device? That sounds a lot like abundance to me – the theme of my keynote earlier this week.
The conference in Dubai was a really nice experience: there is obviously a lot happening in the region, and the dramatically fast transformation that this society seems to be going through is really fascinating. There is a lot of energy and eagerness to change things for the better – the abundance of resources is also helpful, I guess…
It is also clear that there are some issues to be worked out: when I tried to find some pictures on flickr to illustrate my talk, I found out that the site was blocked. Finding pictures with a creative commons license without flickr is far from easy. When I mentioned this at the conference, the typical reaction was that everybody gateways his internet traffic through other sites, in order to bypass the blocking services. Makes you wonder…
Anyway, I had a great time in Dubai, met lots of interesting people and am eager to help folks to set up a Pan-Arabic network of learning object repositories, which will be connected to our GLOBE infrastructure. This story is only just beginning!