Thursday, August 9

Knowing Knowledge - George Siemens

Download book (free): (8 Mb)
Wiki version:
Online Connectivism Conference (podcasts, slides and forums):

"Knowing Knowledge is an exploration of knowledge - what it is, how it is changing, and what it means to our organizations and society. It was developed in a non-traditional process... Instead of an extensive writing/editing/publishing process (often in excess of 18 months), I adopted a democratic, end-user controlled process. It seems a bit silly to write a book on how the context and characteristics of knowledge are changing, and then subject it to the slow, plodding process of traditional publishing. The stages of traditional publishing are valuable (peer review, editorial review, typesetting, etc.). The challenge is the pace at which a book moves through these stages. In a world where knowledge is continually being updated and rewritten, many books risk obsolescence by the date of publication...
Principles of Connectivism:
  • Learning and knowledge require diversity of opinions to present the whole…and to permit selection of best approach.
  • Learning is a network formation process of connecting specialized nodes or information sources.
  • Knowledge rests in networks.
  • Knowledge may reside in non-human appliances , and learning is enabled/ facilitated by technology.
  • Capacity to know more is more critical than what is currently known.
  • Learning and knowing are constant, on going processes (not end states or products).
  • Ability to see connections and recognize patterns and make sense between fields, ideas, and concepts is the core skill for individuals today.
  • Currency (accurate, up-to-date knowledge) is the intent of all connectivist learning activities.
  • Decision-making is learning. Choosing what to learn and the meaning of incoming information is seen through the lens of a shifting reality. While there is a right answer now, it may be wrong tomorrow due to alterations in the information climate affecting the decision.
"Know where" and "know who" are more important today that knowing what and how. An information rich world requires the ability to first determine what is important, and then how to stay connected and informed as information changes..."

"Knowing Knowledge" is certainly a book that will open your mind to the growing complexity of dealing with knowledge and its increasing importance to individuals, organizations and society. If you are looking for answers, I am sure you will have more questions than answers (and great ideas) in your mind after scanning or reading this book. I believe (or know) this is an evolving book that is in its early phase, and George Siemens will evolve this book with the connected community over the years to come (Collective intelligence). It is not only a reflection of the growing knowledge galaxy of the past, present and future, but perhaps what we call a "SUPERFLECTION" of it (another mambo jumbo word that we can add to the dictionary).
Coming to think of it, "Knowing Knowledge" is like abstract art, which might thrill the reflectors and thinkers, but will simply annoy the "Doers" and "implementers", who want more practical examples besides all the ideas and wonderful diagrams and illustrations. George Siemens might argue that there aren't many existing real examples of what he is visualizing using his predictive imagination. Whatever, in the era of "Action Jackson" (or Execution) we are often more impressed when the theories are backed up by authentic knowledge as you might call it.
Whatever people might say, I believe "Knowing Knowledge" is a piece of art that will grow in importance together with the future (as technology and our mindset evolve too, the ideas can increasingly be carried out practically), much thanks to the connected knowledge intelligence and engagement (just like Leonard da Vinci's great work of art. Well, perhaps not to that level, but you never know).
If you are not getting confused (or bored) with my words, then I recommend that you read "Knowing Knowledge". If you are, then perhaps you should at least get some inspiration from the great diagrams and illustrations.
Overall, I love the book and I will continue to read it, because like abstract art when you read (or explore) it again you get knew ideas and thoughts (on how to solve problems, innovate and make better decisions in the knowledge galaxy).
Alright, let's explore "Knowing Knowledge" together, and please send your ideas and feedback to George Siemens, because this book is certainly a global conversation that invites you to explore knowledge together with him, and your reflections might just add some more juice to it.
Finally, after exploring "Knowing Knowledge", I am not sure if I know what knowledge is. Hmm, alright I better do some superflection in my mind beyond this blog.
P.S. Please download this book now (and explore it). It has already been downloaded more than 130,000 times (From Nov 2006 - Jul 2007). So, if you want to be part of this gobal connected "Knowing Knowledge" conversation, you better just "Do It Now", or be left behind (in the super-growing knowledge galaxy) :)

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