Continuing the discussion from Using federated instances as discussion communities:
I may contribute to my reputation as a polemist, but again, I have a different experience: e.g., pupils let alone by their professors, unable to socialize properly, or university students struck by absurd partitioning rules forcing them to attend courses in person according to their student number (odd/even) so as not to have too many people in an amphitheater at once, while having to attend a follow-up practice workshop in a smaller room – where are they supposed to wait for that workshop? Etc.
The way institutions react to change is appalling most of the time: leaving individual students on their own, unable to think for the collective other than statistically or in terms of institutional liability. Distance learning can be a good way to acquire skills, but it should not become a primary mean of education for a number of reasons, that we may go through if people are interested – and that may help position developers on why we do what we do? and how we do it?.
Simple solutions to complex issues, such as outsourcing our social life to the Internet, are usually ignoring the complexity of life and in the end complexity begs to differ.
So I’d like to propose this discussion about designing technologies to improve [learning], and what are the trade-offs to keep in mind.