Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Practicum BizMoticum

photo by K. Urner, Knott's Berry Farm

So one of my first conversation openers at the summit was to talk about bizmos, especially to Guido, who recently joined Google.

Guido pointed me to Brewster Kahle as worthy of emulation in this regard. Brewster took the concept of bookmobile to the next level: print on demand and let the patron keep the asset, as there's more where that came from.

Of course this approach means specializing in copylefted works and/or works with copyrights expired. That's a huge domain, to which many live authors even now readily contribute.

The TeacherMobile concept is also uncomfortably akin to another template straight out of American folklore: that of the snake oil salesman, purveyor of panaceas, maker of outlandish claims for the healing properties of mostly-alcohol.

On the other hand, I can't deny it: the Wild West wandering medicine show image is a colorful one, and resonates with the root meaning of geek, as in circus performer of some species.

On today's agenda (in addition to buying some prayer flags): watch the DVD Kim gave me: Squeakers "a documentary film celebrating a new way of teaching math and science to young children using computers, with computer pioneer Dr. Alan Kay" (from the cover).