By Harold Jarache
The videos for Learn Trends 2009: Convergence in the Workplace Learning (Nov. 17-19) provide an excellent source of information on social learning. Although this free, online conference focused on social learning in the corporate world, many insights apply equally to the university setting.
A recurring comment by presenters was how difficult it is today to stay up-to-date. George Siemens observed that today's abundance of information means we have to change how we operate. "Continual change requires rapid learning and innovations for individuals and organizations."
Harold Jarache shared the personal knowledge management (PKM) system he uses to handle today's overload of information. This 5-minute presentation gives a quick overview and links to posts on the topic. He showed the relationship between the recursive, internal elements of sorting (gathering information), categorizing (tagging and filing), making explicit ( writing) and retrieving (looking up info when needed) with the external elements of connecting, exchanging and contributing.
In addition to the process he outlined, several individual ideas he mentioned resonated with me. One was the importance of adding notes, tags and categories to your blog and Delicious account. Another was backing up your Delicious account. (I'll have to figure out how to do that one). Perhaps for me the most salient idea was hearing that he blogs every Friday. That's a practice worth emulating for those of us who need some structure in our lives. I often glean ideas from others' posts but don't take the time to pull together a week's worth of ideas. I think I've been missing the critical-thinking or explicit part of managing knowledge and I plan to correct that!