Technology in itself will never guarantee great learning, but deployed well, it can facilitate and enhance the storytelling and experiences that do.
There’s a shift in how learning technology works, away from giant, expensive and inflexible legacy systems towards more agile, highly communicative approaches. Small systems that are talkative trump large systems that are disconnected from the market and require extensive customisation.
This shift away from central control (and the mindset that drives it) is significant as it allows artisan workers to being their own technology to bear, as well as allowing learners to bring their own devices. Facilitating learners and developers to be agile enables us to connect more easily into our communities too: “bring your own community” being the ultimate Social Age adage.
The mindset piece is relevant: it’s about procuring diverse technology (hardware and software) that works within our social dynamics of learning (effortless, intuitive, connected, agile). It’s is a move away from technology that unifies and homogenises experience towards a model of adaptability and flex: the ability to plug in new modules and components at will.
In the wider world of software, these plugs are called ‘API’s, and open APIs are ones that let a system talk to other systems.
We need an ecosystem of learning technology that is based around open APIs, letting us connect communities, letting us choreograph learning experiences between different sites and systems.
In the Social Age, our role as organisations is not so much to provide the tools to do the job, more about facilitating agility. Creating spaces for experimentation and learning (in technology, but also in the soft skills that surround it, such as Social Leadership).
It’s less about command and control, more about the Darwinian evolution of the learning landscape, giving us the ability to rapidly iterate the generations of the landscape towards something that truly suits the Social Age of learning.