a blog about technology management

Understanding vs doing

From this blog (http://www.elearnspace.org/blog/archives/001905.html) , a study on the use of camera phones notes how the younger generation approaches technology adoption as “if it works, I’ll use it” whereas adults take the “if I can understand it, I’ll use it” approach.

This is an interesting observation that can highlight some of the underlying challenges in getting faculty to try out new technologies. Things continue to grow so complex that trying to comprehend how they work can leave one thinking this is too hard to do. But the doing is now far removed from how it works.

The Internet is such an example, and one on my mind because of the course I’m co-teaching. If you tried to explain to everyone who is using the Internet how packet-switched networks work, what routers do, what dns is, I suspect they’d say “no way, this is too complicated.” However, typing in www.yahoo.com into a web browser doesn’t scare people off.

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