Saturday, October 11, 2008

Celebrate Learning, Empower it Too

I value the execution of good ideas and the process of ideation itself. I value learning even more. Before you think I'm advocating traditional education, I'm not. School sucks. It's boring, old, tasteless - but it's all we know and it's hard to do anything differently. Check out this video about this digital library project and start thinking about the near future.

We are in new era of information where 'survival of the fittest' has changed to 'survival of the savvy and scholarly.' That doesn't mean you have to go to school either. School is an outmoded system that desperately needs revamping, but learning is a beautiful thing seldom enjoyed, or shared.
'Sharing is caring' - such is the aim of a library system, or at least their general mission. Before I get to the question of access, let it be known that I worked in the University of North Texas library system for the better part of a year. Though the menial work I did was superficially boring, I received a much greater inspiration in checking out materials to patrons and speaking with librarians (and librarians in the making) because I was dreaming beyond the walls of the library and into the possibilities for learning (and entertainment). Possibilities, Possibilities! I was even inspired Keanu Reeves' film Bill & Ted. Learning Shakespeare in 30 seconds or less is way cool!

In recent conversations with international friends, I had enlightening discussions about libraries. My American friend says the library system is old and boring and died 50 years ago (I agree). My Nigerian friend says libraries in his country were being developed recently until the internet effectively stole its patrons away. After mentioning a dream to make libraries accessible to EVERYONE on the planet, my Slovak friend liked the idea for its merit as a socialist concept while I see a digital library, free to the world as a highly capitalist endeavor. However you look at it, people are hungry for information, ideas, and life. Take away traditional schooling and you can have more time and resources to live life, and help other do the same. With the benevolent and forward-thinking state of the blogosphere and internet, there's a great possibility some of the things Brewster Kahle talks about in his TedTalks video will come to pass. It will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Please comment and share how you think we can be a part of this sharing, in a real way.

No comments: