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Tim's blog

Surveillance Capitalism and Human Will

Anyone who appears to be against the great machine of technology is open to be seen as a Luddite, or worse. It is challenging to be articulate in one's own defense when there is so much propaganda and so little understanding of how technology really works, and how the largest, most profitable and politically powerful corporations are effecting human behavior. I found some solace in the the following words taken from an article by Harvard Professor Shoshana Zuboff:

Hannah Arendt once observed that indignation is the natural human response to that which degrades human dignity. The bare facts of surveillance capitalism necessarily arouse my indignation because they demean human dignity. The future of this narrative will depend upon the indignant scholars and journalists drawn to this frontier project, indignant elected officials and policy makers who understand that their authority originates in the foundational values of democratic communities, and indignant

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I'm on! I'm on!!!

Forgive the movie trailer but sometimes I feel just like she does. - Bad carpel tunnel that.
I wrote this movie, Carver's Gate, A.K.A. DreamBreaker, with Douglas Bagot. Hard to believe that a sci-fi's plot of gaming addiction and the desire to be 'always on' has already turned into the norm of our society.

But it seems that most people are Always On. According to a new PEW study, 36 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 29 see themselves as "almost constantly" on the internet.
http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/12/08/one-fifth-of-americans-r...
Of course you'd not need a study to grasp the fact that many people are always on if you looked at a highschool. It would...Read more

Painting

"Aina" Acrylic on board - 48 by 48 inches.
I should re-do the photo of this painting as the painting is vastly superior in its coloring. But as so few people actually comes to this blog I will instead spend the time making more paintings.Read more

Technological Literacy and the Curriculum

I am reading Technological Literacy and the Curriculum edited by John Beynon and Hughie Mackay, circa 1990. Spoiler alert! 25 years later and nothing seems to have changed. It would seem that Daniel Chandler's essay, "The Purpose of the Computer in the Classroom" with its closing statement was a warning not heeded.

"....whether it is actually possible to counteract the bias of such a dominant technology. Unless we can, the purpose of the computer in the classroom may not be that which teachers choose for it."

25 years later and the insightful content of these fine essays have little affected the educational system's blithe love affair with technology. Pity.Read more

  • Jul 27 2015

How Does Technology Affect Schools, Part I

"We can't ignore the social implications of our technical progress."Douglas Engelbart

The study of Technology and Technological Media is perhaps a subject more suited to Social Studies than Science. Though computerized technology runs on mathematical formulas, algorithms made up of binary code, the ubiquitous network of computerized systems that we use has become the infrastructure by which our world is run. Technology is therefore a socio-economic and cultural structure as well as a machine of engineering. It is imperative for the student to be educated in the workings of technology so that they may be prepared for the experiences of their future.

The digital technology with which we are dealing has already, is still and will continue, to alter the old infrastructure of our world, changing it forever in many obvious and many hidden ways. We do not see the workings of this computerized infrastructure, as they are largely invisible, performed...Read more

“In (Education), many take advantage of the ephemeral awe that the new computational tools bring — only to have it revealed later that their power was based on the tool they used and not on their own intellectual ability.”

“It is possible to claim that a (child’s) creativity is limited by the very programs that are supposed to free their imagination. … …Whenever they use a new tool provided for them by programmers, they think that they are now able to do something new and “cool.” But are they really doing anything new? Or are they simply replicating a process already conceived by the programmer who provided the tool?”

“In (Education), many take advantage of the ephemeral awe that the new computational tools bring… by using them as means to establish a new concept, style, or form — only to have it revealed later that their power was based on the tool they used and not on their own intellectual ability.”

The above quotes are taken from the introduction to "Algorithms for Visual Design Using the Processing Language" by Kostas Terzidis. I would have printed his whole introduction as it is an elequent comment about the need to understand programming in order to take personal control of the...Read more

Interview with Mona Knudslien & Joe Bower

Brian Mason and I were very interested in learning what it was like when Joe decided to give up grading students so we went to Red Deer and interviewed him. I think this video worth watching largely because it shows the intelligent sensitivity of both Joe and his Principal, Mona Knudslien. Very fine and caring people who want the best for their students.

The Stalker is in the Machine

Controlling outside influences upon our students when they are supposedly in the safety of their public school isn't as straight forward as discussing whether a company's logo should be on the gymnasium wall, or whether soft drinks are being distributed from a machine, because the corporate logo is already in our classroom. It is on our students' computers and it is present on every page of the new textbook that is the Internet, which we provide to our students and demand they use. Corporate logos are placed upon the TV monitors in our classrooms, advertising movies to our students as part of the default function built into Apple TV, --a flagrant sales device designed to be difficult or impossible to remove, constantly reminding the open young minds of our children that the store is always open, that we can consume with the click of a button!-- Advertisements are played out to our students in nearly every transaction they make upon the Internet through adds on Google and Youtube,...Read more

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