I have been using RockMelt as my main browser for a few months now. Not sure why I switched over from straight up Chrome – I guess I wanted to see how Rockmelt would change my usage of Facebook and/or Twitter. Not a whole lot, but I do like the integration of different websites into a seamless experience. Now I am wondering if the future LMS or PLE should really be a website or not. Maybe it should just be a set of browser plug-ins and mobile apps? I have pondered that before, but now I am becoming more convinced that this is a better route to go.
Breaking down the walled garden will still leave us contained in the garden if that is still where the “learning” is supposed to happen. Many LMS providers make it easier to import content from services like WordPress and YouTube – so in many ways the walls are gone or at least have more openings. Or maybe it is more accurate to call them one-way passages – you can bring more content in (or at least easier than it used to be). But you can’t as easily get that learning out into the wild for others (your PLN) to join with you in exploring and expanding it.
A recent article on ExtremeTech made a case for Firefox to create their own OS. Reading that article makes me realize how radically different the online world will be in just a few years. Will the LMS/PLE/VLE/etc be there in this strange new world, or will it be sitting along side MySpace as a nostalgic relic of a bygone era?
Matt is currently the Learning Innovation Coordinator with the UT Arlington LINK Research Lab. His research focuses on Learning Theory, Innovation, and learner empowerment. Matt holds a Ph.D. in Learning Technologies from the University of North Texas, a Master of Education in Educational Technology from UT Brownsville, and a Bachelors of Science in Education from Baylor University. His research interests include instructional design, learning pathways, sociocultural theory, heutagogy, virtual reality, and open networked learning. He has a background in instructional design and teaching at both the secondary and university levels and has been an active blogger and conference presenter. He also enjoys networking and collaborative efforts involving faculty, students, administration, and anyone involved in the education process.