Being There: nets, tweets, avatars…
Slides (with links) from my presentation at Faculty Academy 2007 at University of Mary Washington (May 17, 2007).

Starting back in 1993 with a strange program called "Mosaic", for me, a singular arc extends from listservs to the early web environments (and dreadful home pages) through blogs, wikis, to YouTube, Second Life, Twitter, and beyond. As an optimist, I am hopeful these are pathways to Doug Englebart's notions of organizations increasing their improvement capacity to solve complex problems by becoming "smarter faster" -- yet at the same time sense what is likely a common dread of the tsunami of change. The magic keys, at least for me, are to discard notions of being an exert and to instead be an active node in a network of people that, in sum, generate expertise. By "being there", I refer to the importance of being in the nwtwork, not on the sidelines, and embracing newer modes of communication, community, and content. Through a series of live demos, quirky photos, and perhaps annoying video clips, I aim to convince you that the question is NOT "How can technology X improve my teaching and students learning?" but really "How can I leverage, tweak, exploit technology X"-- and the answer more often than not relies on the networks and connections we make, as well as having some wide-eyed wonderment of Chance the Gardner-- just by "being there."

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