Last week, the 2008 Horizon Report was released. This is a collaboration with the New Media Consortium (NMC) and EDUCAUSE.

The report “seeks to identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have a large impact on teaching, learning, or creative expression within learning-focused organizations.” The six technologies identified in this year’s report that are predicted to have an impact on teaching and learning include; grassroots video, collaboration webs, mobile broadband, data mashups, collective intelligence, and social operating systems. Challenges as well as examples of how each are being used in organizations similar to those that many of us probably work at, are included. Take a look, or just check out the examples if you don’t have time to read the entire report. Do you see other trends or challenges than the ones listed?

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

If you’re involved in any way with teens using the Internet, you probably will want to take a look at this new survey conducted by Pew Internet & American Life Project on the future of the Internet in 2020. 742 respondents were asked to agree or disagree with a set of eight scenarios. Top leaders, activists and commentators were chosen to participate in this web-based survey.

While each of the eight scenarios could impact the next generation, the one about virtual reality peeked my interest. Participants were asked to respond to whether vr will lead to more productivity or serious addiction problems.

The respondents reactions were interesting-especially on p.55 about concerns toward youth culture and vr:

“take a close look at finding ways to provide guidance to young
people as they create their alternate, online personalities.”


“Addiction to chat rooms and online gaming worlds is already emerging as an issue. Recent research has highlighted for example, how teenagers’ ability to learn during school hours is being impacted by a lack of sleep – caused by late-night SMS/chat sessions. There is a real risk that some people will become ‘lost’ to virtual worlds.”

Discussions of what vr even is, and comparisons to books, television, and film are also made. A KidZone/Teachers guide regarding the future and history of information sharing can be found here.

What do we think of these predictions? Should we be concerned?

Here are two other recent articles on the addiction of video games. From Business Week Online: It’s Addictive! Or is It? and a preview from the New Scientist; Hooked, Why Your Brain is Primed for Addiction.

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

I finished reading the results of Long Overdue, the national study conducted by the Americans for Libraries Council that was just released last week.
As Beth G.’s post indicated, providing services to teens is a high priority to many, according to the report.

While it is great to see that this is a number one priority, the justification for it seemed to me to be more out of using a deficit model for teens than as an opportunity and place where they can create and contribute to the library. Statements such as, “Concerns about the relationship between drugs, crime and teenagers were especially salient among focus group participants” or “providing a place for teens to congregate” seem to be missing something in terms of empowering teens to offer programs with true youth participation opportunities. Perhaps I’m splitting hairs, but maybe not-or perhaps by using a deficit model, it can be then justified hypothetically that since ‘our town does not have a crime problem among teenagers, the money does not really need to be spent to build stronger programs for teens at our library.’

Also, for a report to have the words ’21st Century’ in the title and not mention video games (please tell me I missed this in the report) is something I do not understand.

While Barnes and Noble and Amazon get several mentions as competitors for the relevance of libraries-what about Netflix or even social networking sites that provide a community many are seeking-which might be blocked in libraries and schools receiving e-rate funding? (side note: as Eli Neiburger says, ‘we’re in the content business, not the book business).

I hope people will respond about this report-either on the blog-especially to Beth G’s. discussion questions or in their own communities. What about teens themselves? I hope they were asked for their opinions too.