Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Must Focus!!

There is a significant amount of noise these days. Much of Knowledge Management is about helping people cope with the massive amounts of information available to them. George Siemens had a nice little post that got me thinking. Knowledge workers are bombarded with email, IM, twitter etc. New media is becoming more centred on commercial-size chunks. YouTube videos and micro-blogs are a perfect example. Finding the time to listen to a 20 minute podcast feels daunting at times. I really feel my ability to focus has been compromised by too much time multi-tasking. In the moments where I have important tasks to complete I find difficulty focusing on it to just "git'er done". I'm far too used to just clicking a link and going down the rabbit hole.

Related Posts

Shut UP already


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

easy validation

When searching on obscure topics I'm bound to get results from questionable sources. When I see a more modern layout, it lends creedence to the source. The article in question could be out of date or a complete fallacy but the layout validates it. I noticed today a newer form of validation.

When a site has social media buttons ( submit to Digg, Reddit, Since that site is "more hip" I'm more inclined to dig deeper.

What other cues do you find when you encounter new sites?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

twitter loyalty?

With developers apparently jumping off the bandwagon it's natural to assume users will follow. As less development occurs other tools will become more integrated and easier to use.

As a user do you care? if i move to friendfeed, getting reconnected would be a pain, but i'm not really leaving much behind. Links are bookmarked in Personally I don't really favourite many tweets. If I like a link I tag it. The real-time nature of twitter doesn't translate that well for long-term value.

Related Links:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

video games and failure

Let's say you're 10 years old again. You drop the game-ending flyball and your friends won't let you live it down for a week. Bomb on your math test, your Dad won't let you go on that trip.
In your latest PS3 shoot-em up game you run around trying to kill the bad guys. If you get shot and die? That's terrible right? what will you ever do???

How about select continue and try again. No big deal. You get booed off the stage in Guitar Hero - fine. Load it up let's have another go.

No wonder kids love video games. In the real world failure Sucks. People remind you of failure even hold it over your head ("well remember that time..."). In gaming, there's no punishment there for failing. You don't let anyone down. You just play.

With new revolution to gaming from the Nintendo Wii, the door has opened even wider to let video games become a teaching tool. The Wii has allowed us to take gaming from the controller-elite to anyone.

How can we take a lesson from video games and create painless failure in learning environments?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Gap? more like gorge...

Work Literacy asks: is there a gap in work literacy?. The idea behind work literacy are methods and processes that could make people more proficient in their jobs.

A group of engineers gather. The client is not happy. The technical problem is tougher than expected. Everyone's in the war room to figure it out. You start to explain that you've figured it out... but no one gets it. They look for a second and stare. Then someone else pipes on and everyone is onto another idea... but you had it... why won't they listen, why don't they get it?

There is a big gap inbetween intelligence and effectiveness, that gap is communication. I would call it a massive gap or gorge. Your effectiveness is directly related to your ability communicate ideas.

I meet and work with many bright minds on a regular basis. Their intuition and insight continuously amazes me. The sticking point is that I see a lot of wasted time when people can't successfully exchange ideas. Their brilliance is hindered by their language. Many people are unable to structure, and present their ideas in a coherent fashion. It's something I catch myself struggling with. I understand it in my head but the practice of making it easy for someone else to grasp is a different matter.

Regular practice is the key to successfully communicating. Presenting, and writing on a regular basis will only help improve your writing. You can also learn from other examples of good communication, but practice will yield the most benefit.

The ability to structure and communicate ideas concisely and effectively is hugely under-valued.
No matter how smart you are, unless you work completely on your own, if you can't convey your ideas - you're useless.

Related Links:
Beyond Bullet Points by Cliff Atkinson
Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (Voices That Matter) by Garr Reynolds