Proteus vs Papert – Musings by Dr. Jasmin B. Cowin

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What does the future of public, private and corporate education hold for us? I believe Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning, natural language processing, neural nets and deep learning will be the catalysts for world-changing disruptions in fields such as medicine, education, and job creation. Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Baidu, Ford, Tesla to name but a few are positioned to be leaders in this transformation. Questions on institutional pathways to success and viability need to be framed against the background of AI, super intelligent machines and the broader questions of humanity and human consciousness.

In The Gears of my ChildhoodSeymour Papert states “What an individual can learn, and how he learns it, depends on what models he has available. These questions raise, recursively, the question of how he learned these models. Thus the “laws of learning” must be about how intellectual structures grow out of one another and about how, in the process, they acquire both logical and emotional form.” Papart sees the computer as the “proteus of machines,” the universal enabler, an instrument flexible enough so that “many children can create something” which assimilates new models of knowledge into their individual styles of learning. However, kindling the spark of “love” for learning and inquiry as the driving force in creating a “genesis of knowledge” is the dominant message of Papert’s essay and the universal message to and for educators.

For Ray Kurzweil “Technology goes beyond mere tool making; it is a process of creating ever more powerful technology using the tools from the previous round of innovation.” As a generation of students prepares for their future, they must be prepared for a fluid and lifetime assimilation of new technology and models of national and international coexistence.  However, Luke Rhinehart aka George Cockcroft, a psychiatrist, university professor, and writer of the cult novel The Dice Man wrote: “Man must become comfortable in flowing from one role to another, one set of values to another, one life to another. Men must be free from boundaries, patterns, and consistencies in order to be free to think, feel and create in new ways. Men have admired Prometheus and Mars too long; our God must become Proteus.”

Thinking about the future of education and humanity brought forth the questions: Is the quest for AI a quest to create God? If yes, in whose image? Alternatively, is this quest for the ultimate AI the ultimate archetypical story on the search for immortality? After all, humans have fantasized about the possibility of bringing a loved one back from the dead ever since that fateful, everlasting separation of Eurydice and her husband Orpheus on their wedding day through the venom of a viper. In this light, Rhinehart’s words that “men must be free from boundaries” seem prophetic.

Education, Virtual Reality and the 3D Campus

Virtual Worlds (VW’s) are bringing new challenges and a possible disruption of campus life as we know it to the forefront of higher education institutions via virtual campus creation. The quest for exceptional immersive learning spaces requires leaders in higher education and institutions to reflect on processes and practices into VW and 3D environments.

In their book E-Learning Ecologies: Principles for New Learning and Assessment, Bill Cope and Mary Kalantzis explore the role of new technologies in communication with learners, changing knowledge representation and the role of new technologies in transforming educational institutions. E-learning has created robust learning societies outside academia. I predict that in the near future, educators, students, and VW participants will spend considerable time in VW’s interacting with each other.

Exploring new technological resources such as VW’s and their unique environments opens new dimensions of the formative teaching and learning process. The landscape of these”multimodal” workspaces has a global reach. Pierre Baldi and Crista Lopez discuss in their article The Universal Campus: An open virtual 3-D world infrastructure for research and education the “Universal Campus”, providing a campus 3-D virtual world with multiple buildings featuring fully furnished laboratories, classrooms, meeting rooms, auditoriums, concert spaces, libraries ,and lecture halls enabling virtual meetings and interactions for faculty, students, visitors, and administration. In my opinion, VW together with 3 D technology such as the Oculus will create innovative, global, transformative knowledge spaces.

 

#RotaryWalks – The Rotary Club of New York, Host Club#6 Hurricane Relief Walk through Central Park

We walked to raise awareness for our Club, enjoy fellowship, raise money for a good cause and do something for our health! Thank you to everybody who joined.

 

Open Access, Author Rights, and SPARC by Jasmin B. Cowin, Ed.D.

Open Access, Author Rights, and SPARC publication model exploration.

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Open access allows researchers to access books and other items for free.  These resources are openly available to users with no requirements for authentication or payment:www.cs.cornell.edu/wya/DigLib/MS1999/Glossary.html. 

In this publication model neither readers nor a reader’s institution are charged for access to articles or other resources. Users are free to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles.  The free availability of scholarly research literature, without restrictions of price or permissions on the Internet, is an important research tool in the age of IoT. Open Access journals allow researchers self-archiving in a digital repository or publication.

Using Open Access does not mean giving up all copyrights of ones scholarly work since it is anchored in the U.S. copyright system. When publishing with traditional scholarly journals, authors typically sign an agreement that transfers all their copyrights to the publisher, retaining no rights for themselves to re-use or distribute their own work. However, with open access journals, authors retain their rights to re-use their work in teaching and further scholarship. (Information consolidated from Lloyd Sealy Library)

One of the best ways keeping scholarly work within one’s personal control is the SPARC Author Addendum. SPARCis a legal instrument that modifies the publisher’s agreement and allows authors to keep key rights to their articles. The Author Addendum is a free resource developed by SPARC in partnership with Creative Commons and Science Commons, established non-profit organizations that offer a range of copyright options for many different creative endeavors. (quoted from SPARC BROCHURE)

Dr. Jasmin Bey Cowin

Currently, I am the Chief Marketing Officer for a start-up IT company, PeopleMovers®, a Community Networking Platform. As an experienced executive, both at a strategic and operational level, with strong track record in developing, driving and managing business improvement and development, change management and turn-around I worked with value-adding leadership. The main drivers have been branding, marketing and efficiency, improved customer satisfaction and retainment, customer service, product management, cross functional business improvements and development of sponsor presentations with sponsor meetings.

The Presidency of the Rotary Club of New York is dear to my heart. As the second woman to be elected in 109 years, I have a leadership role in shaping and directing the club’s programs and international strategic alliances. Part of this volunteer leadership position centers around cooperation and collaboration to do “Service above Self.” The Rotary network encompasses more than 1.3 million members worldwide. Currently, I am working on our International Breakfast Lecture series at the United Nations and a Harvey Relief event to increase visibility of the club’s Rotary branding. The International Breakfast Series is streamed live on Facebook with an audience of 5000+ international viewers. In addition, I am the US Ambassador of the Hepatitis Zero Campaign, a worldwide campaign for which I am part of the Media relations team. Through my volunteer position as the President of the Rotary Club of New York and host mother to international students from South Korea, Venezuela, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Belgium, France, China, Kazakhstan, and Italy I am extremely knowledgeable about cultural differences and sensitivities, team work, plus meaningful cooperation and collaboration within a team structure. Due to my Rotary position, there is a strong national and international network available for outreach.

As a University Pathway facilitator at EF – Education First, I conceived, designed and developed multiple portfolios of face-to-face, online and blended curricula across a variety of disciplines. For EF’s Russian branch I hold interactive Adobe Connect webinars for Russian ESL university faculty at academic institutions such as Moscow University, St. Petersburg, and Siberia with practical applicability into real-life teaching scenarios. I successfully designed, implemented and taught 21st Century courses for international students which focused on educational technology literacy, assessments, activity paths, learning objectives and content for each course with a 100% paper-free learning environment. Excellent student participation and student ratings for my courses were achieved through online collaborative tools.

Realizing that Educational and Instructional Technology are pivotal in today’s fast changing education environment I completed this August a Masters Degree in Educational Technology at the Marlboro School of Graduate and Professional Studies, Vermont, with a GPA of 4.0. During my time at Marlboro College, I studied, analyzed and applied pedagogical best practices and supporting media and educational technologies needed to successfully execute online, f2f and blended learning and marketing environments.

I am a Fulbright Scholar, who holds a Doctorate in Education from Columbia University and a Masters in Educational Technology.