Monday, May 12, 2008

Automobiles and Learning Technology

In the past year I have become a big fan of the BBC television series Top Gear. For those of you who have not seen the show, it is a odd mix of British slapstick humor and reviews of the creme de le creme of automotive engineering. I'd like to share a 10-minute clip from the show in which two of the hosts look at the evolution of the driver's controls.

Now, what you may ask does this have with learning technology? I think that what we see happening today with the learning industry trying to work these tools into their offerings is the same as how the automobile industry worked out the details on how the driver controls the vehicle.

The means of working wikis, blogs, and podcasts into a structured learning environment is wide open and will remain so for another 20 or 30 years until the individuals we refer to as digital natives become the majority of decision makers in the corporate world. And then they will find what is the proper means of implementing these technologies in the corporate training world.

In the interim, we digital immigrants need to just keep experimenting with these tools and be prepared to get laughed at by the digital natives as we misuse tools that are ostensibly theirs. It will be through our trial and error