The Shape of the Horizon to Come #NMChz

I’m about to start Day 2 of a meeting to examine the 10-year history of the Horizon Report. Last night was scheduled as a reception, public health but that launched right into a couple of presentations and a large discussion about what the Horizon Report has done so far, there what it has predicted accurately, and how we use it for inspiration as we look to implement new projects of our own. This is a panographic view of the visual summary created by David Sibbet that represents out discussion. Seeing that method of visual facilitation has already made this trip worthwhile.

So coming off of that, I had a good night sleep and had some dreams about the Scooby-Doo gang talking to universities about new technologies. I woke up with two questions:

1. What are the last names of all of the Scooby-Doo characters?
2. What would I like to see change about the Horizon Report.

The first question was easily answered by a quick visit to Wikipedia (thank God the blackout is over): Blake, Jones, Dinkley, and Rogers. As for the second question, here are some quick ideas that came to mind this morning:

1. The Horizon Report Technologies to Watch (the six main featured tools/practices) should be closely tied to each of the trends and challenges. For example, how do electronic books relate to the trend that people are increasingly using cloud-based services? Quite well – but in answering that question, we will show why the technology is relevant. In turn, the technology becomes an example of how the trend affects our work.

2. It may need to focus more on verbs than nouns. In other words, saying “electronic books” says what a technology is, but not what it does. This need may actually be met if #1 is implemented.

3. Include an image or preferably video about each of the technologies that are being highlighted. That would help someone who is new to a technology develop a better sense of what a technology is and its potential. The Horizon Report is put together by experts in new media and technology. I’m certain that group could assemble some killer images and video.

4. Each of the technologies may need a section about what it takes to get started – “Interested? Here’s how you try it yourself…”

5. We need a reunion issue: something like a review of all of the technologies covered over the past 10 years and with a “Where are they now?” update about them. This particular idea came out of a discussion that I had last night with my small group (specifically Cyprien and Nick) and other discussions around the room about technologies whose potential came to fruition (3D printing), have not had as much adoption as expected (Virtual Worlds), or that were replaces by something else. In this last case, I talked about Open Educational Resources – we don’t have the big open eRepositories of content organized by academic institutions with embedded intellectual property controls. What we have are systems like YouTube – massive repositories in the wild that provide faculty with a rich media collection to draw upon when they need to illustrate a topic.

Anyway, those are my quick thoughts. Time to head off to breakfast and Day 2.

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4 Responses to The Shape of the Horizon to Come #NMChz

  1. Natalie Harp says:

    I love the idea of a reunion issue! For those of us that have been following the H.R. for a number of years, a look back would be very helpful. The other ideas are great too – especially tying the technological "things" we're talking about with actions. I need to channel Scooby Doo in my dreams, too.

    • Allan Gyorke says:

      Thanks Natalie. One of the presenters later on (Ruben) had done some analysis of all of the topics that were posted and how they had morphed and merged. It was fascinating. When his video is available, I may post it. It was an anthropological perspective on our concepts of "social", "mobile", and other ideas that we think are new.

  2. Brad K says:

    Switching from nouns to verbs make so much sense. New technology "things" tend to have multiple impact in varying ways.

    • Allan Gyorke says:

      I could talk your ear off about Activity Theory (CHAT) and how things are just artifacts that mediate human activity, but I won't. I need to give that a nod though since that has shaped my interest in verb focus.

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