Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thank You Stephen Downes

Stephen Downes helps keep it real, man.

Sometimes I read something and it clinks around in my brain for awhile and won't let go. This was one of those things -- in keeping with the latest conversations on PLEs -- in keeping with my own struggles with working in the corporate realm.

Perhaps also because I sat at the same table as Stephen during Cecily Sommer's closing keynote speech (I offered you a dish of candy, which you politely refused) and watched as a he shook his head in seeming disgust/disagreement at her remarks on the opening of the Arctic icecap and the potentials for discovery and commerce and exploitation.

Sunday night I read Stephen Downes' posting on the The New Green. Downes adds a postscript (taken from a comment he made on Wesley Fryer's post on WalMart -- also an excellent read):

Learning isn't about being productive or being able to compete in today's world or even being entrepreneurial. It is about making choices for yourself, being in control of your own destiny, about leading a good life, being the best you can be, however you define 'good' and 'best' to be.

I remind/console myself that by producing good training programs I am (hopefully) helping to make someone's job better -- and in that moment, perhaps, I am helping to make his or her life better. Even if that person works for one of the big bad guys. Even then. Cuz we're still all just humans -- fragile and flawed and very connected.

Here's to leading a good life.

No comments: