What makes Connectivism unique?

An interesting question for this week. What is it that makes connectivism unique!? Well, for me it is one thing in particular. The natural way of doing things. I really believe that connectivism has a very biological way of being. Making connections is something that happens in nature everywhere! From the way we are build, to the workings of our body, the way animals live, etc. Everything is so much connected with each other in someway or another. We, people, have been doing a great job in categorizing everything in families, classes, and so on. Everything must be labelled and placed in a specific spot on the shelf. Why do we do that? What is it with our need for order? If I look at my own life, I’m probably one of the great “evildoers”… I catch myself multiple times a day, trying to make things “unnatural” instead of learning to live with the chaos.

Connectivism, for me, is a way of dealing with that inevitable chaos. Some form of not arming yourself against it, but cooping with it… You can’t label the entire world, so why don’t we try to learn how to live with it? In this world of information overload, we have to be able to find things, information, stuff,… about everything. The ability to swim through this pool of infinite sources, is crucial for people in 2011. The Wednesday-session of Elluminate hit the spot, when Thomas Vander Wal explained taxonomy and folksonomy. A very interesting way of telling that information is found, shared, but also should be re-found. And again, instead of the orderly taxonomy, the chaotic folksonomy proved to be the more agile, better equipped to coop with the fluctuating world.

In my spare time I practice Tai Chi. A Chinese martial art that teaches a very similar way of fighting. We learn that your body should absorb the energy, change it and explode back at your attacker. This theory about Yin and Yang is very existing also in connectivism. Adapting to the needs of today: absorbing, changing and extrapolating. As in Tai Chi, connectivism works with this alternately soft and hard way of working with the things around you. Finding balance and in it encountering peace.

Anyway, back to reality! For me there are a lot of similarities… Hoping to find more of them this week!

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