Daily Archives: February 12, 2017

#iAMb Communities

The lines have ten syllables but they don’t scan. Never mind, it was an attempt to encapsulate this week’s thoughts on networks, connections and communities. It reminded me slightly of The New Mobilities Paradigm, an article full of visions of networks, fluidity, sudden flights and resettlings, circulation and points of stasis. The paper is a description of an emerging paradigm in social studies and voices not only the more romantic or commercial rhetoric surrounding networks and connection, but speaks, too, of the necessary static and immutable infrastructure that enables them. It is a reaction against sedentarist theories and details how commodities of every kind are “on the move”. The paper evokes feelings of time and hurry for me too with its evocations of dynamic, contingent, emergent and ephemeral communities and happenings.

A much better network iAMb posted subsequently.

Urry, J. & Sheller, M. (2006). The New Mobilities Paradigm

Week 4 weekly thoughts

Image S B F Ryan, Flickr, https://www.flickr.com/photos/47572798@N00/8397808475

I liked this music on Soundcloud because, as a set of variations on a theme, it serves as a melodic link between Blocks 1 and 2. From early cybercultures and their playful interpretations of the net, EDC is turning to concentrate on network-enabled community cultures and their meaning for education.

Looking back, variations on a theme make me think of our burgeoning ability to create iterations of our human selves as cyborgs, each slightly different from the original, although whether an improvement, is subjective and up for debate.

Looking ahead, variations hail the start of my chosen mooc, A Philosophical Road Trip.  I chose this mooc for its experiential introduction to phenomenology and the mise en abîme effect of making an ethnographic study of students of phenomenology. It is a philosophy which urges an active observation of the world and of ourselves. It encourages us to explore and exploit the double take so that we waken from perceiving the world as expected and view it anew and differently: epoché.

Following this philosophy, I might uncover some of the tensions and obscured constructions behind what it is to become part of an online learning community. I may observe “tensions between the creative, open sources practices of web media and the economic and commercial forces with which they react” (Lister, 2009, p.205), tensions between a Socratic understanding of knowledge delivery and theories of connectivism and distributed expertise, (Stewart, 2013) and tensions between a free community sharing a common interest and a forced, ersatz participation.


Lister, M. … [et al.], (2009) “Chapter 3. Networks, users and economics” from Martin Lister … [et al.], New media: a critical introduction pp.163-236, London: Routledge

Stewart, B., (2013). Massiveness + Openness = New Literacies of Participation? MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Technology, 9(2), pp.228–238.

Comment on Betty Sneezes by jknox

Really fantastic artefact here Helen! It was very clever to mimic an advert, and I couldn’t help but think of relations to fake news here too!

I thought Cathy’s point about helplessly referring to Betty as a she was interesting. It made me wonder if your gender choice was intentional? There is a link here with an old fashioned or stereotypical view of nursing, but it might also say something about societal views of service. I was also reminded of ‘Gumdrop’, and how accepting we seemed to find ‘her’ – perhaps a conscious choice for a company wishing to market an A.I.

There was also something distinctly frightening and dystopian about a robot that could signal the presence of airborne viruses – thinking here of much more deadly ones that the common cold – yet not be affected by them. Was this a comment on A.I.s ability to outlast our human weaknesses?

I also wondered about the title ‘Betty sneezes’. In the advert it only suggests that Betty turns red? So what about the sneezing? Was that perhaps a hint that Betty might develop the ability to *catch* a cold ‘herself’? 🙂

from Comments for Helen’s EDC blog http://ift.tt/2kklmpT