Thinking about Thinking the Unthinkable

For Gardner Campbell’s article and presentation on the “Personal Cyberinfrastructure”, I started reading it expecting to be confused, seeing as I had no idea what a “cyberinfrastructure” could be. I believe I thought it would be a discussion on some science about how computers and the internet works as far as blogging is concerned. And while, technically, that might be true, it was delivered with the main idea that people should be introduced to this type of communication as early as possible. As I continued reading and listening, I found that I fully agreed with the idea of using the internet and teaching students how to have a presence on the world wide web.

Campbell talks extensively about how we should be giving college students a web domain, and use that to teach them new things about the internet and “digital fluency”, as soon as they enter college. By using the first year of college to introduce these students to blogging, maintaining a website and social media accounts, etc, it would inspire these young adults to incorporate themselves more into the internet. The reason for this being that, with the constant increase in technology, and the new methods of storytelling it introduces, it is becoming more and more evident that digital storytelling will be the way of the future.

I am in full agreement with this sort of teaching method, although there is a part of me that believes that, at this point in time, it would be a little strange to be teaching students about those kinds of things at this age. While the importance of internet presence and the way someone behaves on the internet is definitely an excellent thing to be taught, it seems like it would be fairly difficult. A lot of things have changed since the OpenEd presentation in 2009. In my opinion, while I am fully in favor of teaching people how to have a good presence on the internet and learn how to use their own web domain, it seems as though starting it when they are 18 years old seems fairly late.

It is, of course, never too late to learn things like this, but to have this kind of teaching begin in high school or even middle school seems like it would be interesting. It would certainly introduce a number of skills that colleges could find interest in, although that is entirely dependent on how willing a college is to believe that the internet is, in fact, important.

Overall, while this article and presentation were certainly interesting in their point of view and suggestion on teaching, I am under the impression that, since technology and the internet has been evolving so quickly, it may be a good idea to introduce blogging and storytelling to an even younger audience.

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