Select Page

Previously we were discussing how certain platforms, we called them games, create the ground upon which people can learn by doing, and develop DIY learning capabilities. In that case it was the game Minecraft, and how “Maker Culture” worked with game play to develop learning machines, if you will. Learning tools might be a better way of saying it, something we use to interact with our environment in productive ways.

…while learning at the same time. Two birds, one circuit board.

IOW, learners need something to form the basis for growing their DIY learning plants. Like, say, a medium. Something that organizes human perception and experience through a “means”…a way, a method, of interaction with the world. This medium is necessary for DIY learning, and there’s many examples we could cite, such as games, but also VR worlds like “Second Life”.

A recent article in the New Yorker discusses the genesis and uses of Sphero, the robot white ball that can be programmed to “do things” in the world, such as roll around, in response to commands from a mobile device using bluetooth to wirelessly connect. Remember the rolling robot in the most recent Star Wars? Based on a version of the Sphero.

Sphero rhymes with hero, doesn’t it?

It turns out Sphero is an example of a means to interact with the world and learn at the same time. Not just an interface with humans, but an interactive “thing”, as in “internet of things”. Which is kind of like training in the real world, as opposed to classroom environments. And very much a DIY learning opportunity.

Download (PDF, 243KB)