Brain Death by Dull Cubicle – or Complex surroundings Create a Complex Brain

Kathy Sierra – Brain Death by Dull Cubicle – Creating Passionate Users (Via Stephen’s Web ~ by Stephen Downes ~ OLDaily RSS 2.0.) Stephen points to Kathy’s post. I point to it because right now I work in a cubicle… and I have it better than most of my coworkers… at least I have a view of the parking lot. I find my home office much more stimulating and a much more productive work environment. Admittedly, this is at least in part because there are fewer interruptions, but I think the media rich environment and the view of trees and distant mountains (read “and Life”) are beneficial, too.

Naturally, this is the sort of thing we should keep in mind when designing learning environments for our students. Do chairs in rows work like the “caged-living that stopped the neurogenesis process” in the scientific studies alluded to in Kathy’s post?

Dewey’s ideals begin to look better and better, particularly coupled with modern communication technologies. At the OCDE we recently had occasion to brainstorm what a learning park might look like… with (beautiful) architecture that promoted discussion set among landscaped open spaces… all with WiFi (or WiMax) access. We imagined this as an augmented reality (to take advantage of GPS enabled devices), and it might best be realized by incorporating what Squire (2003) calls ubiquitous gaming (or “gaming that can be played anytime, anywhere, and often …across multiple media,” p. 22), about which I have a future post coming up.