- A decentralized web would give power back to the people online – Want open? Start with open federation. – (oer fedwiki openaccess federation )
- Institutionalized – Mike's recent paean to changing the institution from within. – (oer open_learning open )
- Clueless Microsoft language processing – It might be crap, but it can only get better – if it's mandated. "Office 365 is the crappiest, slowest, most annoying email system I have ever encountered, and that is really saying something. I could write reams for you about its stupidities and detrimental effects on my productivity. Its attempts at showing intelligence are perhaps its worst feature." – (mnscu erhetoric microagression micromanagement )
- The rhetorical style of spontaneous speech – – (linguistics orality erhetoric )
- Hypothes.is as a public research notebook – – (annotation DH notetaking )
- Choral Explanations and OER: A Summary of Thinking to Date | Hapgood – Mike's OV of choral voices. I'm connecting the choral with the Greek chora. – (oer wiki fedwiki chora )
- Language Log » Gertrude Trump – Yep: Donald is channeling Gertrude Stein in his prose. – (rhetoric modernism )
- Is “The Web As a Tool For Thought” a Gating Item? | Hapgood – > The first, biggest, and most important step is to get people to think of the web as something bigger than just conversation or expression. Once we do that, the reasons why things like annotation layers, linked data and federated wiki make sense will be come clear. Until then, we’ll stay stuck in the DMV parking lot. – (wikity wiki wikiway annotation notetaking fedwiki )
- [toread] How One Professor Is Trying to Paint a Richer Portrait of Effective Teaching – The Chronicle of Higher Education – – (assessment_as_sham assessment )
- Precarious Deliberation and Failing Faster: The Value of Glitch in Multimodal Public Writing Assignments – – (dh composing comp_theory )
- Bootstrapping the Library | Hapgood – – (dh fedwiki wikity scaffolding scholarship2.0 )
- Collaborative Literary Creation and Control – Co-written article, addresses collab in Webster's Revised, Pound and Eliot. Looks at collaborative techniques as they are supported in word processors, Xanadu, and wiki. Reviews techniques and evaluating techniques. – (#en3177 wiki collaboration collaborativewriting notetaking )
- A User’s Guide to Forking Education – Hybrid Pedagogy – critique of the domesticated technologies of Ed. Los, discussion forums.
Most of these systems recreate the bureaucracies of education without capturing the joy and rigor. At their worst, learning management systems turn students into columns in a spreadsheet, taking all that’s ineffable about learning and making it grossly manifest. Learning management systems aren’t all bad (some even revolutionize in important ways), but the idea is bad, the impulse is bad, at its core. They make homogenous what is fundamentally heterogeneous, standardizing what shouldn’t be standardized. Fetishizing the learning management system is to confuse educational administration with learning. Perhaps, the administration of education does need managing, but learning needs to be given a frame and then set loose. Very few online learning tools encourage the sorts of risk-taking that make for the best pedagogies. Quality should not be assured; it should be discovered. – (de lms discussions )
- The Quiet Page & Linking the Web | Heart | Soul | Machine – Tim Klapdor introduces the Quiet Page: linked, annotatable, contextualized, and shared.
To annotate it myself. To highlight underline and note. To visualise and add my experience with the text. (Personal)
To view others experiences of the text. To see their notes and discussions. To see their highlights and to experience the text in a social and shared way. (Social)
To create trails. To connect the text to other content, ideas and resources myself. To place the text in my context, my experience and my knowledge. (Synthesis)
And then to share those trails. To let others see how I’ve contextualised the text. To see my experience but to then be able to add to it and expand it. (Connected) – (fedwiki annotation sharing )
- Webs Of Thinkers And Thoughts – WebSeitz/wiki – Jul'2015: triggered by Mike Caulfield recent posts (emphasis on curating, connecting, annotations) plus others' responding/riffing, want to start over without even assuming wiki. Context/goals… – (annotation fedwiki )
First, a synopsis. Keeping links separate from the content has been a long-standing idea but rarely practiced on the web. As the web came into being, we started to add links to content in such a way that understanding the content becomes dependent on following the links. This is signaled by how we tend to embed links into the syntactic flow of sentences. So in my opening statement, I signal two directions for understanding by linking the phrase latest post about FedWiki. First, you can read on without reading Mikeâ€™s post and (probably) will be able to follow whatâ€™s coming next. But the link also signals that youâ€™ll want to refer to the post I linked to if you really want to understand what Iâ€™m going on about.
Technically, the link is a deixis. It points to something not present that is necessary to complete the meaning or to extend the meaning. In this case, it points to something I donâ€™t own. Itâ€™s Mikeâ€™s blog post, and itâ€™s worth reading. The issue at hand is how I have embedded it into my own content.
This is the way we have learned to link, the way we have taught people how to link. “Embed those links, gang. Make them follow the sentence, but also write so that readers do not have to follow the links to understand you.” Iâ€™ll leave it to you to search for the web writing advice on linking, both hackneyed and sophisticated.
Wrong. As Pound wrote, â€œWrong from the start – No, hardly, but, â€¦ â€ (Hugh Selwyn Mauberley, if youâ€™re interested.)
Mike reminds us, by re-considering Bush and Englebart and Nelson, that we can re-think this idea of linking in the text.
[L]inks as imagined by the heirs of Bush â€” Engelbart, Nelson, Van Dam â€” formed a layer of annotation on documents that were by and large a separate entity.
Links as conceived by Bush are separate from the document: annotations, trails, value added, paratextual â€¦ By being links, they specify that they lead to other material outside the immediate text, not material that is integral to the text weâ€™re reading. Thatâ€™s what the link means: this is an annotation, a supplement to what I am offering here.
This doesnâ€™t necessarily make links merely suppplemental. Thereâ€™s no merely about it – any more than the paratexts of novels or articles are merely extra. But it does place links on an independent layer. I want to explore this idea of independent in more detail some other time, but for now Iâ€™ll say that the document can circulate without the links an still be understood. The links add but the document doesnâ€™t depend on them. By the same token, the links can circulate on their own and, very likely, mean something, if not the same thing as they do when circulated with the document. Paratexts.
For all the wonder behind the embedded link as links to sources, as Mike points out, the link doesnâ€™t point to anything the author doesnâ€™t already know. So, while the writer might point to a source, weâ€™re still confined, even in the linked text, to what the author knows rather than bringing in something the author was unaware of, or something the author just doesnâ€™t want to mention.
So you can link your history of the Polaroid ID-2 camera up to suit the engineering people, or to suit the history of corporate boycotts people, but you canâ€™t set it up the links serve both without overlinking the crap out of it.
Upshot: For all the breadth the web and hypertext promises, it is still limited by single authors getting their stuff out there as their single perspective. To develop multiple perspectives in a single documenbt using links to other content would overload the text and send Carr into even more neuro-cognitive apoplexy. For the rest of us, it would just be really really hard to read. (That reference to Carr is an old-fashioned link: an allusion. It serves a rhetorical function in my post, arguing that what Iâ€™m talking about is not what Carr is talking about.)
The thing is, weâ€™re not talking about just links here. Itâ€™s about the entire system of which the link is only one element.
To recap, even with links, the document will present “only one valid set of relationships, inscribed by the author.â€ Ok, so now we get to the core:
Federated wiki deals with this issue by keeping links within the document but letting every person have as many copies of that document as they like, with whatever links they want on each. Itâ€™s a simple solution but in practice it works quite well.
Think about that a moment. It means one person can fork and consequently work with three or four or howevermany versions of a document. There may be little point in keeping exact copies (but who knows). There may be a big point in keeping an original (as in the sense of the first version to be distributed). But itâ€™s the other versions that make things happen.
I’m not talking extreme differences so much as potential versions of a document that can still be identified as that document.Mikeâ€™s version with his annotations. Wardâ€™s version with some of his annotations. My version with some of Mikeâ€™s annotations and some of Wardâ€™s, and some of my own. I donâ€™t actually need to maintain three copies. The fedwiki does that. I fork Wardâ€™s or Mikeâ€™s version to my fedwiki and adds what I want, move paragraphs around, add other stuff to create my own version. If I need to, I can see who added what. If the new version is going to depart too far from the one in circulation, I start a new document.
Hereâ€™s how it might look, and is starting to look:
In the newer style, content is kept fairly short, and fairly link-less. But at the bottom of the articles we annotate by linking to other content with short explanations of each link. … People seeing your links can choose accept or reject them. Good and useful connections can propagate along with the pageâ€¦. as federated wiki pages move through a system they are improved, and thatâ€™s true. But the more common scenario is that as they move through a system they are connected.
As Mike suggests, it’s the federation that makes this style of linking valuable, with links accruing as the article circulates through the neighborhood. The design of the fedwiki page facilitates accrual. Each paragraph is a dragable object, which lets writers create an annotated link that can be placed into the stream of an article at any point. A few fedwiki style guide suggestions also help. Links to external content are created using single brackets, and the fedwiki style guide suggests these links designate the kind of content being linked to (blog, video, academic article). Links to existing fedwiki pages are created with double brackets and the exiting page can be forked to the userâ€™s fedwiki. If the writer changes a page, the page is forked by the system so that a writer starts with a copy – her own copy – that is still connected to the other copies in circulation by way of the flags in the upper left hand corner of the page.
What we develop is a neighborhood.
Fedwiki starts look like a new genre, differentiated from other online text genres such as blogs, listservs, sms exchanges – and the more traditional wiki. The orignal wikis asks visitors to contribute to the common document. Fedwiki asks users to fork what they will and create a variation for their own purposes, as well as contribute to the neighborhood. This also means that using fedwiki involves a different set of social negotiations than traditional wikis. That is the subject for another time.
Fedwiki becomes a genre that operates not using multiple authors to create a common document but a chorus of voices each creating a version. Fedwiki starts to look like the place where those authors do their work.
Chorus stems from chora, and chora [khÃ´ra] is a potent term in my field of rhetoric, meaning, variously, the discovery of ideas, the space outside the walls of the city where ideas are born, or as a place of “emerging possibility”. Wikipedia will probably tell you all you want to hear. But if you want the most recent hubbub, try a paper by Michael Souders, “KhÃ´ra, invention, deconstruction and the space of complete surpriseâ€ [PDF].
- Beyond Conversation – FedWiki – “In the newer style, content is kept fairly short, and fairly link-less. But at the bottom of the articles we annotate by linking to other content with short explanations of each link. … People seeing your links can choose accept or reject them. Good and useful connections can propagate along with the page. I mentioned ages ago (was it really only November?) that as federated wiki pages move through a system they are improved, and thatâ€™s true. But the more common scenario is that as they move through a system they are connected.”It’s the federation that makes this style ofÂ article linking valuable. – (fedwiki annotation notetaking )
- The Web We Need to Give Students â€” Bright â€” Medium – Audrey weighs in on The domain of ones own initiative. “And thenâ€Šâ€”â€Šcontrary to what happens at most schools, where a studentâ€™s work exists only inside a learning management system and cannot be accessed once the semester is overâ€Šâ€”â€Šthe domain and all its content are the studentâ€™s to take with them. It is, after all, their education, their intellectual development, their work. – (dh d2l privacy )
- The tools don’t get you the job – An argument that goes behind open source. Teach theory and the tools will find their own way. "Education is not meant to structure itself to the expectations of people seeking education." And "And maybe even sadder is that instead of teaching the students to be independent, to think about things in a different way, we educators are teaching people to fail. We are teaching up-and-comers that if something stands in your way, the correct response is to either throw money at it, and if you haven't got the money, then either get out or surrender, but do not under any circumstance deviate from the established course that the ads have proscribed" – (pedagogy ed_reform fedwiki opened opensource )
- The Un-education of a Technologist: From EDUPUNK to ds106 | bavatuesdays – By happenstance maybe? provides a gloss and commentary on the April 2015 EDUCAUSE Next-Generation LMS report for more of the same by re-awakening more of the different. – (DE edtech edcationaldesign lms PLE federation edupunk )
- The EDUCAUSE NGDLE and an API of One’s Own -e-Literate – A well-considered response to the EDUCAUSE paper on painting the LMS a new color. A federated and personal PLE would address the EDUCAUSE criteria for LEGO, while also opening the doors to alternative models of teaching and learning – like letting the student control her content. – (DE LMS PLE federation fedwiki edcationaldesign )
I finally made a start on Composing in FedWiki, with Rethinking Composing in FedWiki. The premise: FedWiki presents a rhetorical context unlike that of traditional, commons-based wikis. So itâ€™s an opportunity to rethink some of the compositional moves developed for the traditional wiki.
I have two ends here. One is to make wiki writing more substantive than it has been in the past:
Years of watching thread mode discussions go on at Weblogs and Wikis and the advent of FedWiki as a distributed system has encouraged me to re-think the old ThreadMode into DocumentMode pattern of composing. ThreadMode is an inventional technique – a way of locating and trying out the ways that an idea might be constructed and a document composed. But documents don’t get composed; contributors stay in thread mode. The reasons are complex, I’m sure, but little moves forward in thread mode.
And a second is to explore what federated composing can bring us:
Because each contributor owns her own iteration of the fedwiki, she – each of us – is responsible for her own refactoring – her own development of the argument, her own dissertation, which lives with her. A set of notes won’t do in this case. For a page to become part of the linked federation, the [[Chorus of Voices]] (an idea forwarded by Ward and now picked up by the community), it will need to be discursive. Or, put better, those pages that become part of the community will be discursive rather than threads.
What Iâ€™m doing in Rethinking Composing in FedWiki is looking at both street-level techniques and rhetorical strategies.
Iâ€™m setting aside some of the patterns from traditional wiki writing (ThreadMode, DocumentMode, the WikiWord, the fallback use of bullet lists) for patterns more aligned with the distributed nature of FedWiki. Even the pattern of moving from ThreadMode to DocumentMode goes away for a move from Dissertation to Discourse.
That is, we move [[From Dissertation to Discourse]] rather than from thread mode to document mode. In Radical Discourse, we place partially- or wholly-formed arguments in meaningful orders. This can be done as a set of paragraphs on a page, or as a set of links and stubs.
A few things are lost: WikiWords as topics, for instance, is a loss because it serves as such a quick way of creating a linked page, a quickness and facility that the wiki was named for. But that quickness is a feature of the new rhetorical context Iâ€™m addressing in Rethinking. Yeah, being able to create and link nodes with little effort is good. But what goes in the nodes needs some refinement to be valuable to oneâ€™s federation. We were taking the quick-to-create-a-node idea into quick and easy to create content. Rather than outside research and serious drafting, we would go onto ThreadMode-like freewriting. Even formatting is implicated in the drive for speed: bullet lists instead of formed paragraphs. We worked with the idea that someone else would come along and tidy things up.
The aspect of the commons also gets in the way of creating commonality. We were trying to negotiate all aspects and points of view on one shared page – a rhetorically difficult and sophisticated task. That difficulty is really worth working thorough, but the wiki, with its emphatic speed and shared commonality works against the task. Contributors leave pages in pre-draft states – pages of notes rather that of arguments and propositions that can be further built on. We never really get to enacting or presenting the multiple points of view.
Iâ€™m thinking about a different way of thinking about software tools. A move from valuing them for their Ease of Use to valuing them for their Augmentation. Using a tool for the augmentation of intellect is not easy to do, and itâ€™s not easy to learn how to do it. In augmentation, at the very least the tool doesnâ€™t get in the way of doing something new. At best, the tool changes understanding. Iâ€™m not looking at FedWiki as a typewriter-like tool, where work is selecting from a finite set of signifiers, so much as a painterâ€™s brush and pallet, where work involves conceptualization and reconceptualization. Yeah, itâ€™s an art rather than a transcription (which a lot of ThreadMode tends to be: a transcription of commonplaces).
The significant change in the rhetorical situation of writing with FedWiki is a move from a shared commons to a locally-owned federation. This move changes how we handle multiple arguments and points of view. It doesnâ€™t eliminate them, but it seems they have to be more fully formed than a set of notes in order to work with them in a federation. The federated model is, perhaps, a more accurate – er, useful? – model of how knowledge is distributed in both its commonality and difference than the commons-based model. It could be more fragmented than the commons-based wiki seems to suggest, but it could also be that the commons is pretty fragmented already but tarred over to conceal the differences. The matter that interests me is the dynamic of local construction and public distribution. Each contributor architects her own iteration drawn from publicly shared elements – right down to the paragraphs! – and places that iteration in public circulation. There are rhetorical possibilities in these circumstances that are worth exploring.
Finally, to consider is the wiki not as an end but a space of creation and composition. A few weeks of The Teaching Machines Happening, and the articles, ideas, and posts that are emerging from that Happening (Hello, Audrey) made it clear that FedWiki needs supplementing by way of a blog, email list, twitter, or some other commons. The FedWiki might become a working space, where material is re-mixed and repurposed, until it is brought out of the shop and distributed.
So: Augmentation, Federation, Distribution. Weâ€™ll see where this goes.