Jay Cross helps people work and live smarter. Jay is the Johnny Appleseed of informal learning. He wrote the book on it. He was the first person to use the term eLearning on the web. He has challenged conventional wisdom about how adults learn since designing the first business degree program offered by the University of Phoenix.
Arrived here early evening and walked over to the Grand Place. Found it filled with people watching a Christmas light show projected on the facade of the ancient buildings on the square.
Then evaded the freezing cold by hanging out by the fire at the Roi d’Espagne. Fantastic atmo, truly fine brew.
Several friends have told me they aren’t coming to Online Educa in Berlin because it’s too academic. They’re not up with the news.
Emphasizing learning and development in the business sector is precisely the reason that Charles Jennings, Laura Overton, and I have been working with the Online Educa staff to develop a comprehensive roster of business-oriented sessions.
The pre-eminent eLearning forum in Europe is becoming the pre-eminent business eLearning forum in Europe as well.
Join us! Dieser wird groß sein.
So you can’t afford the $20 to buy the Working Smarter Fieldbook. (Warning: I’m going to up the price soon.)
Or you don’t read books any more. You prefer a searchable, on-line database of goodies.
This is for you: full-text access to the Working Smarter Fieldbook | September 2010 Edition for $12. Go ahead, read the first 60 pages for free.
Visit the Internet TIme Store for other goodies.
September 1 to November 18, 2010
In late afternoon, a bunch of us piled into a friend’s van and trekked to Palo Alto for a meeting convened by the Churchill Club to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the founding of Xerox PARC. PARC (Palo Alto Research Center) is the birthplace of ethernet, object-oriented programming, the PC (Dynabook, Alto), and lots more. You wouldn’t be reading this were it not for PARC. This evening’s session asked “What can innovators learn from the past?”
What did I learn? That the magic seems to have gone. I was in the front row, my usual abode at these things, and these folks put me to sleep.
When Q&A came around, I asked why they were talking about Murray Hill, Almaden, and Palo Alto. Places. Ethernet was invented next door. This spelled the death of distance. Have networks impacted what they do here?
What did I mean? Well, does PARC have anything going on outside of Palo Alto? Marc said their alumni have carried the culture of Stanford and PARC back home with them.
But PARC’s all in Palo Alto? I asked. No other locations? None.
PARC invented the PC but missed out on the PC revolution. They invented networks but it sounds like they don’t tap into global intelligence. I could cry. What I took away from this evening at PARC was what they didn’t say.
Churchill Club is a cool group. Their new logo is a bowler hat. Butch Cassidy, Billy the Kid, and most cowboys wore bowlers.
The Churchillians are great. Years ago at a Churchill Club event, I got to ask Steve Ballmer a question, my first and only time with the guy. I mentioned that Cisco was heavily into eLearning. Would Microsoft follow suit? No, Steve said, Microsoft had no interest whatsoever in eLearning.
Kevin Kelly joined a couple of dozen innovators, activists, and gear heads in Berkeley this afternoon to talk about issues from his new book.
I’ll preface this by saying that I regard Kevin very highly. His Out of Control changed the way I look at nature and evolution; I was consumed by it. His New Rules for the New Economy is the defining work about the net economy and it is all coming true. Kevin’s presence on the web is one of my favorite sites. The earlier books, a continuation of the Whole Earth catalog he edited before becoming founding editor of Wired are there.
My friend Sylvia Paull hosts Infusion lunches in an upstairs lobby of the Berkeley Repertory Theatre every month or so. She began today’s midday session with a series of questions about the future of books, the future of music, and the future of technology. The editors of Berkeley’s Daily Planet, the author of a new book which sings bird calls when you turn to their page, several futurists, Swedish entrepreneurs, inventors, and a generally amazing group of people swung at Sylvia’s pitches.
Kevin launches into his theories around technology. What is it? Alan Kay suggested technology is anything that was invented after you were born. Denny Hillis says technology is anything that doesn’t work yet. Kevin told us technology has been around as long as humans.
Kevin described the “technium” as an extension of the self-organizing life force. It’s a system that’s been evolving for 3.7 million years. In fact, the technium is evolution and with it comes increasing complexity, diversity, mutualism, and choices. Evolution itself is evolving, and the technium is increasing evolvability in the world.
Kevin continues. The orthodoxy is that technology is neutral. Wrong. Tech is good, because over time, it increases our options. Likewise, life is good. You could say it’s bad because Free Will lets you screw up, and you don’t get life without death, but net-net, the technium, life, and evolution are all good.
I’ll admit to being more than a little confused about what we were talking about, but I was happy to have a hit of Kevin and wish him well.
Shuffle through Mary Meeker’s phenomenal research report on the state of the internet economy. (Thanks for the pointer, George Siemens.)
Here’s the Quiz Question:
Name a single trend Mary Meeker describes that won’t have a major impact on your workscape.
Which trend can a director of human resources, CLO, or chief information officer cast off as irrelevant to helping people work smarter?
My answer: None of them.
This is the soup we swim in.
In the world Meeker describes, learning is the work. It’s been a mantra the Internet Time Alliance has chanted for years; now it’s happening.
Work = learning = work = learning = work = learning, forevermore. Get used to it. Or disappear.
We welcome your thoughts on this.
Couldn’t find big trends to ignore, could you?
Some of us Berkeley folks plan to carpool down for PARC’s birthday celebration tomorrow evening. I am really looking forward to the program: PARC made magic happen. However, in accordance with the Rule of Threes, I expect the lessons of the ride down and back will stick in my mind more than the time in Palo Alto.
I plan to recount a few stories that appear in From Counterculture to Cyberculture.
Raj Apte, Area Manager, Prototype Devices and Circuits, PARC
Ron Kaplan, Principal Researcher, Microsoft Bing
David Liddle, Venture Partner, US Venture Partners
Teresa Lunt, VP & Director of Computer Science Laboratory, PARC
Moderator: Mark Bernstein, CEO, PARC
6:00 PM Registration & Hors d’oeuvres | 7:00 PM Program
Location: PARC, Palo Alto
Over the past 40 years, PARC has made a profound impact on innovation in the Valley and beyond. The birthplace of the GUI, the Ethernet, the modern PC, and laser printing, the halls of PARC today are walked by scientists making breakthroughs in clean tech, the newest phase of networking, and other commercially impactful products. As we look forward to the next 40 years, what has changed in innovation? Have we–and even can we–learn from our past? Can business and innovation co-exist? And what is next?
Join current and past PARC thought leaders and innovators as we discuss these issues and celebrate both PARC′s 40th anniversary and Churchill Club′s own 25th anniversary.
*Price: Members $40 | Non-members $65
My sister in law Jan just emailed me…
Now, 40 years later Ram Dass (with Rameshwar Das) has published a new book titled Be Love Now. I wanted to share the following email about this exciting event with you.
BE LOVE NOW, The Path of the Heart, by Ram Dass with Rameshwar Das has just been published by the HarperOne division of Harper Collins. It’s been five years in the making and for me a truly joyful project.Be Love Now covers the territory of the heart that Ram Dass’ journey has traversed since Be Here Now was published forty years ago. An intimate recapitulation of his inner explorations, it includes the difficult lessons of his near-fatal stroke and a deep reflection on finding Oneness through unconditional love. The devotional path, the shower of the guru’s grace, and the inspiration of the great saints of India are all here.Enjoy! And please help us spread the word to your family and friends and the great arc of humanity we all connect to with love. Since Ram Dass no longer travels and lectures, your help is crucial. Think of this as a viral marketing campaign for love. As Meher Baba said, “Love is essentially self-communicative. Those who do not have it ‘catch’ it from those who have it … True love is unconquerable and irresistible.”Attached is both a pdf flyer with links to the book, and to a new 40th anniversary e-book of Be Here Now (including an enhanced edition for iPad), and an opportunity to join in a live stream of a Krishna Das/Ram Dass event in New York on November 30th. Please pass it on. There is also a text announcement in case there is an issue with forwarding the pdf attachment.You can order books onwww.ramdassnow.com where there’s also a great blog on Be Here Now.Be love now,Rameshwar Das