The biggest headache I have as a Learning Technologist is trying to see the future clearly especially in a time of rapid technological change. Take “Flash” as an example, prolific on the web and an old friend when it comes to packaging multi platform content. A friend for life, then apple stopped supporting it on their mobile devices, Microsoft announced that Windows 8 will not support it finally Adobe announce they are to discontinue support in preference to HTML 5.
So the life long friendship wi flash is now at an end, and the climb to learn and implement HTML 5 across all the future projects in the pipe line becomes a priority, browser testing shifts up a gear and desktop rebuilds to cope with the death of flash becomes a race against the ever percent burden of the IT guys.
Within this winter of change I am tasked to write a Blended Learning Vision document for the College, a vision to take us to 2016 which can be then used to inform and shape strategy for the next 3 years at least. Where do you start, a premature rush to HTML 5 or a reevaluation of all the software packages which output to Flash, what will the world look like in 2 years?
It is not always a bleak as I feel today, technology has always changed at a pace, the browser wars of the mid 90s were not always a disaster, moving forward with the implementation of new abilities and the early implementation of a media rich write to web was at times very exciting, what seems different now is the expectations of what can be done and the changes afoot to how we “do”.
Three big targets for this vision paper have to be Mobile computing, where the mobile refers to the human ability to be mobile and not get tangled up in the platform of the mobile, the veracious ability of users to consume rich media and still cry out for more and last but not least the Pedagogy of how our users will learn, what will be our predominant theory of the how do we learn.
Well time to get out my crystal ball and peer into a misty future and with uncertain steps start putting down my thoughts.