Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Unbooks, Informal Learning, and Collaboration: The Age of Questions

In an earlier post,The Meaning is the Message, I quoted from Stephen Downes' presentation:  
Knowledge has many authors, knowledge has many facets, it looks different to each different person, and it changes moment to moment...
Today, while reading Working Smarter by Jay Cross, I came across the reference to "unbooks", books that are in a permanent state of Beta.
Unbooks are never finished (because there’s always room for improvement). Unbooks make room for readers as well as authors. Unbooks put the author back in control.
The definition of "unbooks" is similar to that of Informal Learning
  1. Informal learning is never finished.
  2. It puts the learner back in control.
  3. Informal learning has room for multiple perceptions, sources of knowledge, collaboration.
These are three distinct areas that I have mentioned above.
  1. The first lies in the realm of Knowledge Management.
  2. The second talks about unbooks and the changing nature of information.
  3. The third is about learning and learners.
But the root of all three is the same.

They usher in:
  1. Co-creation of knowledge
  2. Collaboration and sharing
  3. Change and the ability to keep up with it
  4. Comfort with the "less than perfect"
  5. "Un-closure" vs. neatly closed, boxed in pieces of information
  6. Fluidity vs. rigidity; dynamic vs .static
  7. The age of the Revised Bloom's Taxonomy (Blooms is not dead; just undergoing an order reversal)
  8. Celebration of "unlearning" and "relearning"
  9. The Age of Questions instead of Answers
  10. The age of WE vs Me
Another interesting post in this context: Social OS and Collective Construction of Knowledge


    1. I just wish they would allow you to have an Undissertation! It seems that as you write your thesis or dissertation, the hardest thing is to know when you are really done. You always want to look for more supporting literature or review you data for new findings. It is one of the hardest parts of the dissertation process.

    2. I know! All the best for your dissertation. It is a little strange--on the one hand they want you to be creative and original, on the other hand you need to support your originality with existing literature. :) A merry dichotomy, I think!


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