Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Time Flies in the Real World

This last month I've done little else in the moments spared from school prep than work on presentations at a variety of conferences, including a few halcyon days in the United States' most southern commonweatlth at the invitation of the University of Puerto Rico. In working on the workshops I've learned even more about technology, education, and art. The conferences have had the respective foci of Web 2.0, writing, and art museums.
I'm more sure that I'm not an expert on these topics than I am sure how I've come to be regarded as one. It seems I am just one step ahead or to the side of someone else. As I mentioned in my last post, their is a subtle difference between the novice and the veteran.
At the four conferences in which I've participated in the past month, I have been awe of the collective knowledge that abounds in a variety of fields and how instructional technology can bridge so many gaps. While at the Carnegie Museum of Art, we were making connections from scrapbooks to Scrapblog, in Pittsburgh's South Hills, we were sharing knowledge from practice, in Cayey y Ponce we were bridging art and technology, and in Pittsburgh's North Hills, blogs and writing research. With blogs at the center of the sessions, the diverse and overlapping themes of collaboration, knowledge-sharing, excitement at what's possible and potential with the Web 2.0 paradigm became abundant.
The irony is of course with all of this real world activity, my presence in the virtual waned. I guess that's not a bad thing. It's an ebb and flow.
Avoiding the risk of making another surf metaphor, I'm going to wrap up this reflection with a recollection of the opening of Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness." It's not the plot or characters that I'm thinking of, but the occasion that allows Marlow that space to spin his yarn--the men are sitting aboard a merchant ship on the Thames in London "waiting the flood." Nothing else to do, but wait and tell of one's adventures.
Moving between the virtual and the real life of a blog is something like that perhaps. While sailing amid the high tide there's little time sit and talk about it. Maybe as the flood ebbs.

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