IAE Blog

Information Age Education (IAE) is an Oregon not-for-profit corporation founded by David Moursund in August 2007. The IAE Blog was started in August 2010.

Preparing Students for Their Futures

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Education for the Coming Technological Singularity

“In times of change, the learner will inherit the earth while the learned are beautifully equipped for a world that no longer exists.” (Eric Hoffer; American social writer and philosopher; 1902-1983.)

This is Part 2 of a two-part IAE Blog entry about our rapidly changing technology. The previous entry introduced the idea of a technological singularity. The term technological singularity refers to some time in the future when computers become much “smarter” than people.

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The Coming Technological Singularity

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” (Arthur C. Clarke; British science fiction author, inventor, and futurist; 1917-2008.)

This is Part 1 of a two-part IAE Blog. Part 2 explores some of the educational implications of the coming technological singularity. It is available at http://i-a-e.org/iae-blog/entry/education-for-the-coming-technological-singularity.html. 

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Attacking “Big” Problems Part 2: Bottom-up Approaches

The previous IAE Blog entry explored top-down approaches to attacking big problems. It illustrated this with the Apollo moon project and the War on Cancer. Both involved large amounts of funding distributed through a central source and coordinated in a top-down manner.

This blog entry considers the use of technology to attack some big problems by using a bottom-up or combined bottom-up and top-down approach. It focuses on improving education.

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Attacking “Big” Problems Part 1: Top-Down Approaches

Jason Pontin is the editor-in-chief and publisher of MIT Technology Review. His 2014 TED Talk is titled: Can technology solve our big problems? (10/4/2014). Examples of really big problems include: global warming; an increasing shortage of fresh water; sustainability; worldwide poverty, hunger, disease, and education; and war and terrorism.

Here is Pontin’s summary of four conditions that he argues must all be present if technology is going to help solve really big problems in a top-down manner:

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