For myself I think there is still a disconnect in my relationship to others for whom I haven’t met face to face but interact with online only. Just the same as my students this week who had difficulty being quiet when Wes Fryer was sharing his thoughts on his Ustream presentation for the ProTechT project because he wasn’t a live speaker in our class. I feel a connection but also a certain distance to people I interact with on networks like Twitter, Second Life, and Ning.
I’ve enjoyed David Weinberger and many of his ideas on altering the hierarchical thinking of how we organize ideas and thoughts since I saw him for the first time giving the opening keynote presentation at the NECC in Philidelphia. He comes to mind because for his recent book he used the title Everything is Miscellaneous and for the most part I prefer listening to him speak of his ideas such as his presentation on the topic at places such as Google. During the New Hampshire primaries while the student Arthus was sharing his ideas on the political candidates via Ustream, the issue came up of one of my favorite edtech people being a Creationist, later on another of my favorite edtech bloggers took Arthus to task for not pressing the issue from an Evolutionist perspective and offered to take on the person in a debate. I myself don’t feel a need to debate someone who believes in the Creationist philosophy and wondered if that is a justifiable passiveness on my part or a disconnect from these virtual relationships. I don’t know of anyone in my circle of friends where I live as being a Creationist I do know that I have been emotional and very moved by direct messages and communication with people on Skype and Twitter that I haven’t met face to face. The thought that came to mind is “if everything is miscellaneous,” then is truth just another tag in the virtual universe with no more real meaning than the electrons it takes to create the text in displays? How can I as a science teacher not argue for further examination of the motivations of someone to side on one side of the argument which is in opposition to how I teach and believe in?
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