A. I am your friend. I don’t work in education. You are talking to me about the idea that we all learn from each other, in all kinds of contexts, and that this can often be richer than more formal classroom based learning. I am sceptical. Tell me about an informal learning experience you have had online in which collaboration was involved, show me a concrete example to help me to see what you mean.
As computer engineer I often have to deal with problems in developing software. Exist lots of reference books for each programming language but it is actually complex to find the instructuction or set of instructions that fit your needings.
Internet Forums are a channel of informal e-learning very used for that tasks because have a big audience and everyone who participates teaches and learns things for others. This knowledge broadcasting is very possitive for those who search concrete answers because increases the probability of finding the exact information.
In my case i have learn a lot about this software forums althought you must discard a lot of "spam" or wrong posts.
B. We all explore new technologies, some grab our attention more than others, some seem revolutionary, others simply bore us. Tell us about that new tool, or set of tools, you have just discovered that really excites you, talk about the potential it has to change your work. What do you want to do with it?
The last tool that has impressed me was WebEx (a CISCO company) a web conferencing and collaboration solution with an incredible performance.
For an small, monthly amount of money, you will avoid silly travels for half-hour meetings in a 400 km far city.
It has huge funcionality: web meeting (with audio and quality video), sharing files, power point presentations, team scheduling, etc... and what's more, very easy to start to work with it.
My way of working has change (better of course) since I decided to use it in my company.
C. Do you see yourself as a pioneer? Do you think you are more innovative than others in your organisation? Do you think your organisation is lagging behind? Tell us how you feel about this?
I love testing new solutions, exploring new ways to do old things and I never get used to do things without thinking what and why i'm doing what i do.
My working experience taught me that innovation is much more possible in small companies wich are more agile and flexible than big corporations, which are like huge dinosaurs, with slow wolking, slow thinking.
Talking about my partners and bosses, i have to say that for people has more strenght fear of change that the own need to do things in the optimal way. Such feeling added to the extended lack of self-confidence, are the most important stops to innovation.