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Putting Context Into Knowledge

Presentation for a talk on the future of libraries Manchester May 5 2011;
Focus on Learner-generated Digital Libraries and a post-enlightenment project of putting context into knowledge

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Putting Context Into Knowledge

  1. 1. Learner-Generated Digital Libraries
  2. 2. Putting Context Into Knowledge
  3. 3. What context are we in? The first knowledge artefact of our culture was a map Over 60,000 years ago people living in ‘Russia,’ actually a Viking term, had one such They used them to remember food locations
  4. 4. Sing a song of knowledge
  5. 5. Out of Africa But the little Ice Age 25,000 years ago changed the way we related to a newly harsh environment; And gave us a materialist epistemology; we became creator gods
  6. 6. Wall Paintings
  7. 7. Let Civilisation begin So we began the history of recording knowledge. As Dawkins said, everyone alive today came from an ancestor who succeeded in living And our ancestors had particular knowledge
  8. 8. Into Jericho The vagaries of who owned the fruits of emerging agriculture practice lead us out of the plains & into property & then property rights We learnt how to measure success
  9. 9. From Pictographs to Symbolic Language
  10. 10. Let Bureaucracy begin In the Beginning was the Word Religion became the repository of knowledge And Books appeared, stores of recorded knowledge & property
  11. 11. Let Academia appear Socrates, the undisputed star of Plato’s Academy, opposed written knowledge The design of the Academy almost changed that; building, orchard, gymnasium. But the Romans cut down the trees & cut out learning conversations
  12. 12. Let’s Drink A Draft of Print
  13. 13. Enter mechanical innovations Innovations occur when a new invention, type , is added to existing tools; wine press, paper, symbols, fonts, metals, ink And mashups maketh new
  14. 14. It’s a Heliocentric World! And then that mercantile opportunist, Galileo, pointed his telescope speculatively at the stars Instead of speculatively at the merchant navy And changed professions…
  15. 15. Enter the Enlightenment Meet Catherine the Great Dad Peter went shipbuilding in Deptford Catherine was smarter To The Hermitage In St Petersburg
  16. 16. When Catherine met Denis
  17. 17. Then Charles met Ada
  18. 18. Let’s Lighten Up Meet Aria Giovanni
  19. 19. When Jimmy met Aria Jimmy Wales made his money from the hyper-linked Bomis Web Rings Starring Aria Giovanni Sex enabled the crowd-sourced digital mashup of encyclopedias Wikipedia
  20. 20. Yet women moved from Philosopher Queens to Porn Queens during the Enlightenment! Or is that a…
  21. 21. Artificial Intelligence Ducks
  22. 22. The Book of Laughter & Forgetting But as Joseph Weizenbaum asks W hy this obsession with storing everything? The really good thing about the brain is it’s ability to forget Time to move on…
  23. 23. Putting Context into Knowledge So I am not arguing for a post- physical virtual project of taking books out of libraries I am calling for a post- Enlightenment project of taking the hierarchy out of knowledge Let’s put context into knowledge So Context is Queen …
  24. 24. Taking the hierarchy out of knowledge So what do have to offer? The unlibrary & if:Book Transliteracy/Participatory Culture Everything is Miscellaneous Ambient Learning City#mosialong The Human Knowledge Project
  25. 25. The #unlibrary Crouch End
  26. 26. #Transliteracy
  27. 27. Participatory Culture
  28. 28. Everything is Miscellaneous
  29. 29. Ambient Learning City Uses Emergent Model of Learning; “ Non-linear dynamic systems” So learning responsive to context Systems-designed for use & appropriation by learners Wifi-enabled learning conversations Follow #mosialong #contextisqueen
  30. 30. The Human Knowledge Project
  31. 31. Conclusion; Time to move on Understand how knowledge grew from various historical contexts What we know, Academia, IPR & the Enlightenment are all ‘ Temporarily Useful Eccentricities’ Create new context-responsive tools for new forms of participation Design knowledge for context & appropriation by citizens
  32. 32. Links David Weinberger; Everything is Miscellaneous (YouTube) Siva Vaidhyanathan; The Googlization of Everything (Blog) Daniel Levitin; The World in Six Songs (WebSite) Clay Shirkey; Here Comes Everybody (RSA talk Video) Joseph Weizenbaum; Computer Power & Human Reason (Wikipedia) Henry Jenkins; Convergence Culture (Blog) Blake Morrison; Testament of Johannes Gutenberg (Website) Sue Thomas; Transliteracy (Vimeo) Fred Garnett; Emergent Learning Model (The Heutagogic Archive Blog) Images; Google Search & Wikipedia; Vaucanson, Babbage, Lovelace
  33. 33. Learner-Generated Digital Libraries