Friday, February 1, 2008

AWNM Symphony Fishbowl/LiveBlog Per. 4

Participants for February 1st LiveBlog:

Lee Baber:
Lee is an educator at J. Frank Hillyard Middle School in the Rockingham School District in Broadway, VA. Lee played a major role in changing the school’s computer literacy program. Lee is also on the EdTechTalk’s Board of Directors.


Bud Hunt:
Bud is an instructional technologist for the St. Vrain Valley School District in northern Colorado. Formerly, he taught high school language arts and journalism at Olde Columbine High School in Longmont, Colorado. He is a teacher-consultant with the Colorado State University Writing Project, an affiliate of the National Writing Project, a group working to improve the teaching of writing in schools via regular and meaningful professional development. Bud is also the co-editor of the New Voices column of English Journal, a publication of the National Council of Teachers of English.

Gary Stager:
Gary is an internationally recognized educator and consultant who has spent twenty-five years helping teachers on six continents make sense of their roles in the age of personal computing and schools more constructive places for children.

186 comments:

mmoritz said...

How is the mebeam working?

Bud said...

Good morning! We can see and hear you just fine!

Gary said...

Hey kids,

I'm in the blog now ready to follow your lead.

I'm not going to talk because I'm in a Starbucks and yelling into my laptop will make me look even more like a lunatic.

Gary said...

Will most of the discussion be via text? (I hope)

LeeBaber said...

Hello Everyone
I am ready as well.

Mike Porter said...

Hi Bud! (Mike P. here)

Gary said...

What would you say that I told you that there is considerable scientific thought that believes there is no such thing as dyslexia?

There are tons of reasons why people have difficulty reading, but there is no physiological evidence of "dyslexia."

marissas said...

I don't think that being a dyslexic predetermines you to become a millionaire in the future. I think that it is just a statistic and we still may become millionaires in the future even though we are not dyslexic.

Bud said...

At what point is "different" treatable or label-able, and when is that useful and when not?

Dennis K said...

It's a common stereotype, but dyslexia is different, and it sells. Left brainers are abundant, but when that hemisphere is damaged, the right brain claims dominance.

Gary said...

Do you think that there is a possibility that successful business people claiming a "mild" learning disability like, "dyslexia," makes them more endearing to the public and fits the American mythology of "overcoming adversity?"

marissas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
stephanief said...

I think whether we are dyslexic or not doesn't matter how our future will be. I think being dyslexic or not changes how you look at life though.

Gary said...

HELP!!!!

I can BARELY hear the audio and I have buds stuck far down into my ears.

Is there a possibility of the kids interacting more via text for those of us who are remote?

jordans said...

I agree with Olivia we need both details and the big picture because without one the other cannot exist on highly developed levels.

Gary said...

What qualifies Mr. Pink to be an expert on such a wide variety of complex concepts as the brain, mind, learning, economics, art, music, etc....?

LeeBaber said...

When speaking of Symphony, I believe that the example of drawing was a good way to understand how some of us think differently.

Anna K said...

I completely agree. You need both sides of your brain. They have to work together.

stephanief said...

When you are not able to function like most people, such as you need help in everyday activities, that's when being different is label-able.

LeeBaber said...

If you could speak a bit louder and more slowly, it would be wonderful. YOur doing great!!

Bud said...

At what point does a "detail" become a "big picture" item? For example, Gary not being able to hear the audio is a bit of a detail - which could affect "big picture" experience. Are those arbtrary distinctions?

dermodys said...

Gary,
I do think that people are most liable to feel sympathy for thoes who have dislexia, the public tends to look up to them because they are not "perfect" as some of the movie stars or models that are perfect.

Gary said...

We humans need a simple mechanistic explanation for complex matters. Left/right brain is at best an oversimplified sound-bite used to pigeon hole people and excuse deficiencies. At worst, it's junk science.

matta said...

Gary, nothing really qualifies Mr. Pink to be an expert on any of those things and he is not. Which is why in his book he quotes people who are and uses what they know to get his point across

LeeBaber said...

I often read magazines on say building servers for computers and find many ideas to use for tools to use in my classroom with my computer technology 8 students.

jordans said...

I agree with Jacklyn, there is never I time when we use only one side of our brain. It’s always a majority or predominantly busier part of the brain for certain activities and tasks.

RayS said...

I think he wrote this book to inform and suggest there are other ways to look at life.

Gary said...

One of the world's leading scientists on matters of mind (Marvin Minsky), refers to the left/right brain paradigm as "the dumbbell theory."

http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/minsky07/minsky07_index.html

Why do you think that might be?

marissas said...

I think that you have to have both sides of your brain. You have to know the straight-forward information in order to see the big picture. You can't see the big picture if you can't understand the logical part of it. Some people are more right-brained or left-brained, but everyone has both parts and regardless, they are constantly working together.

Dennis K said...

In response to Gary's question: I wouldn't consider Daniel Pink an expert in the fields he is writing about. He is simply expressing his opinions as to how the future might appear, and how to deal with impending alteration. I don't think a person needs to be an expert on a subject to have opinions.

jordans said...

I think what qualifies Pink to talk about such I diverse array of topics is his compilation of different facts and studies and his courage to make us aware of ideas that have been present but not acknowledged for a long time. What makes anyone “qualified” for anything? Is it there history, studies, or accomplishments?

LeeBaber said...

Gary, I agree that it is a bit of pigeon holing .. I think many writers restate what some of us already know to be true and if it is currently a hot topic and one uses the new terms to describe them again it may seem that they "invented" or discovered the data.

shannanp said...

I think that people with dyslexia are looked down upon when they stuggle with it. However, when they overcome their disability to become a self made millionarie they are then looked up upon.

matta said...

Gary I think he is saying that because he believes that the sides of the brain don't indepedently govern what we see as "right or left brain" but either way it is irrelevent because the book isn't about brains, it is about developing the attributes that have been widely designated as right brained

KiraW said...

I think that this book was kind of saying that people who want to do certatin left brained jobs are going to struggle in the future. I personally want to be a teacher so according to Mr. Pink, I will have a promising future. On the other hand, one of my best friend wants to be a doctor. Does this mean she is going to fail in the future?

dermodys said...

With what Ms. Moritz just said...I do feel exactly that way, if they can do it (meaning thoes that have learning disabilities) why can't I? I think that both can suceed but maybe thoes who have the disablilties do have certain advantages over thoes who have never experienced some of the things people with disabilities have gone through.

Gary said...

Matta,

Quoting other people does not make a book more reliable or credible. Especially if you cherry-pick facts, quote selectively, work backwards from a fase conclusion or rely on the opinions of people with dubious experts?

Then it's just propaganda or a self-help book.

The "experts" Pink quotes do not share in his profits.

Bud said...

I like Gary's push here - this book is written as a way of classifying some complex things simply. But this chapter, on Symphony, is about looking at lots of pieces as a connected whole (or wholes). If that's a good thing to do, then why do we need to break them into little bits or chunks to begin with?

Sethd said...

Gary, Mr. Pink doesn’t state that he is an expert on these subjects. He is mainly showing small and particular facts and specifics that relate to his book on how one must hone both sides of their brain instead of being mainly more right brained. His whole book is mainly about how one should be able to use both sides effectively in ones workplace.

jordans said...

Flaws are marketable because they are relatable and unique. Even models and movie stars use their flaws to make them more memorable.

Gary said...

Bud,

I'm glad you got around to the chapter, "Symphony."

Surely a symphony is more than parts put together.

Pink demonstrates profound ignorance of music and the compositional process in this chapter.

RayS said...

Bud, I think that we break things up for orginization, when we have orginization we feel more in control.

dermodys said...

Good point bud! That made a lot of sense and just gave me a whole new perspective on the book. Its a bit contradicting isn't it??

LeeBaber said...

The book talks of hidden connections and leaps of imagination. I personally find myself living in that place all the time. The book could be seen as a kind of news story saying that it is finally time for people who do think mostly in the creative realm to succeed more easily in their work. In as much as that type of person often makes their work their live and tends to be their passion, I am glad to know that the shift is towards what Pink calls the "Conceptual Age".

Bud said...

Kira - I'm not sure that teachers are any more "safe" than doctors, if Pink's right. More and more, teaching seems to be about replicable industrial practices. Medicine is moving that way, too - but is also fighting back with an emphasis on patient care and relationships, rather than simply diagnostic medicine.

matta said...

Gary,
What you are saying makes sense, but then almost every non fiction book on the market, save those that are based on the sole reasearch of the writer, cannot be veiwed as factual.
Also If they do not share his profits then why wouldn't they just tell him the truth, it seems if they shared his profits they would try make it seem as truthful as possible

Madisont said...

Metaphors are used a lot in symphony- meaning for something else- Our world is very fast paced, and if you want the world to remember what you stand for, or what you are, then you have to give them something to remember

shannanp said...

Also, to what Gary said about the "dumbell theory". I think that Marvin Minsky is really right on. I don't think that there will be a difference or there is a difference of left and right brain in the business world nor in the real world. In that, the abilities of a person who just sees the details will be outsourced by someone who sees the big picture.

stephanief said...

Gary:
Mr. Pink isn't actualy saying he is an expert, this book is mainly his opinion.

Sydney said...

I agree with shannan. People who overcome dyslexia and become successful are looked upon. It shows that they had to work a little harder to become successful. Do you think that dyslexia can act as motivation to those who have it? Or do you think it's just those individuals who are motivated?

KiraW said...

Does the advertisement really impact the way we chosse the product? Don't we need to also see the end result of the product too?

Bud said...

Gary,

You're right - but that's Pink's definition of symphony - putting the pieces together, pattern recognition, etc. I think symphony is wicked complicated - as you do, I suspect, since you produce music. How would you define symphony?

Anna K said...

I think Daniel Pink is writing this book to state his opinion and have us be able to open our minds to agree or disagree and maybe become aware of things we weren't previously aware of.

matta said...

@gary

I have to disagree with your view on Pink, but I do agree that a symphony is more than just parts put together. But that is what Pink states in his book. He writes that a symphony is about relationships between the different aspects and that seems to capture the spirit of a symphony, all the parts working harmoniously.

LeeBaber said...

Can you all talk a bit more slowly? :) thanks!

Sethd said...

I agree somewhat with you Gary, but many authors quote these experts on the subject. These facts do just serve as self-help. But Mr. Pink doesn’t take credit for these facts and quotes. He clearly states that others came up with these quotes he has just compiled the data and numbers to prove a point.

Gary said...

Adding functionality to a technological device does not prove Pink's "brain" theories.

It does however undermine one of his central arguments that it is "we" who are changing by going from analytical to creative people. Rich people can buy more and produce more technology that supports mass customization.

Folks interested in a much more logical and thoughtful predication of the future may want to read Neil Gershenfeld's book, "Fab: The Coming Revolution on Your Desktop."

stephanief said...

Why do the Geicko commercials work so well? Like we said earlier, they don't even talk about insurance, they are about about a gecko and singing with a family etc. But why do people go to Geicko?

dermodys said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dermodys said...

Kira:
I think that advertisement plays a huge role in whether or not we pick the product, even if the product is a bad one. Advertisements sometimes show to much of the big picture and "skip" over some of the flaws in the product letting the viewer only see the big picture that wouldn’t always show the flaws.

Bud said...

Anna - We're certainly aware of lots after reading this chapter - but what are you going to do with that knowledge? (I worry sometimes when my students stop at awareness of new information, as if that's the place to stop. awareness is where you should start from.)

shannanp said...

Kira, I think that the advertisment very much impacts the choice of products. If someone is familiar with the products and the advertisment, they would buy it over a product they have never heard of. I also don't think that the companies are always looking at the end results because they just want to pull the customers in, sell them the product, and push them out the door.

Madisont said...

Technology isn't the only thing that is able to be customized- what if it's the other way around? Are we, as a country, getting "customized" by very much advanced techology?

Sydney said...

Kira,
I think that advertisement does really impact the way we chose a product. If an advertisement appeals to you then you would choose that product. But don't successful advertisements always show the end result of their product?

Sydney said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LeeBaber said...

Gary, I believe you are right. I think this could be more of a self-help book. I enjoy reading that type of book and am able to pick through an grab information I want to look into further. YOu could say this is a kind of del.icio.us or information list in a cover! I do see some names I want to look up that Idid not know about.

Anna K said...

I think people go to Geicko because it's familiar to them. You see the commercial so much that you start to recognize it and start to wonder if it is actually a good place to go.

Gary said...

The greatest musicians I know are as great as they are for lots of reason, not the least of which their remarkable ability to be analytical and focused on the tiniest of details with repeated precision.

There are also many acclaimed scientists and mathematicians who are accomplished concert pianists.

Since Pink has never been someone with deep experiences in either side of the bifurcated (divided down the middle) world he paints, his conclusions are suspect. In fact, I think he started with the conclusions he wanted to write about and then searched for ways to support those conclusions.

Mike Porter said...

Should we focus on cacophony?

KiraW said...

When I think of symphony, I think music. I don't think of all of the cool inventions of our time. I think that as a whole, it does impact how you look at life, but I do not think that it really a nessecity to apply it to out lives in every aspect.

Dennis K said...

Sydney, I think the reason attributing to the higher success rate in dyslexic individuals is that they are underestimated. When people are frowned upon, powerful incentive to succeed is developed. Maybe because the dyslexic population is at a "disadvantage" they develop a certain moral duty to prove that they are just as talented or more so than non- dyslexic people.

jordans said...

I think fashion has elements of symphony. One thing looks good and another goes out of style and all the ideas of what is “in” are compilations from different inspirations over time that got refined into a look. You can wear a fashionable bracelet but that’s not your whole outfit or look you’re trying to achieve its just a small part that when patched with other small details creates the “big picture” and the entire statement. Weather its conforming or contradicting what the majority of people like.

matta said...

Bud

I think we are going to use this knowledge to maybe help us prepare for the future, when we will be out of school and in the workforce, this is when we may or may not be able to apply this knowledge, depending whether or not Mr. Pink is right.

Madisont said...

Gary:
Good point, but did Pink ever say that he had no knowledge of the left brain? How do you know he has never been someone with deep experiences in both of his worlds?

marissas said...

I think that Geico commercials work so well, because it a recognizable product. Everyone sees the cute little gecko and they know the insurance. It has also been around for awhile, so people trust that it is a good company. Noone wants to buy insurance from a company they have never even heard of.

dermodys said...

So if we can't have the big picture without the details...Why should we try to forget the details??

Alexm said...

I would define symphony as looking at a puzzle and be able to see it fit together perfectly. This puzzle could be anywhere in life. I think an important aspect of the future buissnes world will be being able to put everything together because you will recieve different pieces of the puzzle from all over the world. For example, if you are putting together a presentation the pieces might be sent from all over the world. For the presentation to be successful it must be put together in just the right order and accomplish a goal as a whole.

shannanp said...

Why is seeing the whole picture so absolutely important? Shouldn't seeing details be more important, so that problems are solved with every detail intact?

Madisont said...

I don't think the "big picture" is what it is all about- I think it is the details that make up the big picture

AustinD said...

We need to see the details to find the connections.

Gary said...

There is NOTHING new here.

A few months ago I was on an airplane reading a magazine article about how medical schools preferred "liberal arts" majors to math and science majors because of the well-rounded experiences liberal arts students bring with them. This has a lot less to do with right/left brain and a lot more to do with bad educational systems. Perhaps math, science and engineering students are deprived of rich cultural experiences because their undergraduate programs are more vocational in nature than they should be.

When I went looking for the magazine article online, I could not remember if I read the article in Time of Newsweek. It turns out that both magazines published similar articles - one in the 1950s and one in 2007.

A good well-rounded education has always been a good idea, even if the system wants to limit students' options.

Bud said...

Shannan:

Why does there need to be a "more important" here? Can we recognize that we need to be able to zoom in sometimes and zoom out others?

Sethd said...

Gary, as a musician myself, I can tell you personally that being good at what I do is a combination of both analytical thinking (to keep the time, key, and the music flowing) and a holistic view of the piece. One must put all of the little things together and only then will the music truly be great.

marissas said...

@Shannon

Yes, I agree that sometimes the little details are important too, but I think it is also important to see the big picture. If you concentrate on the little details, sometimes you will miss the big idea.

matta said...

Gary

You said that Many scietist are also concert pianists and I do not deny that fact, and neither does Pink. In his book, very early on actually, Pink states that left brained thinking is still very important but no longer enough, his whole book is about having both types of thought, left and right. Later in the book Pink also spends a large part of the chapter talking about people who can excel at many different things, I think a scientist/concert pianist is what Pink is telling us that we should try to be.

dermodys said...

Exactly austin! But then why are we worrying about the big picture?

Anna K said...

I agree with austind, how are we supposed to figure a problem out just by seeing the "big picture?" We have to look at the small details.

LeeBaber said...

OH too true Gary.

Gary said...

I AM a programmer AND a music composer. The intellectual processes I experience in both activities are remarkable similar.

Despite programming and composing music throughout high school, I earned Ds in "math."

Sydney said...

Shannon, I think that details are more important, but I think that looking at the big picture and looking at details is someone's choice. I know that I can look at the big picture if I wanted to, but I personally perfer to notice the details. I think that if the details are perfect, than that will lead to a great big picture.

stephanief said...

Seeing the whole picture and the small details are both very important. When you just see the big picture you miss out on the details which are very important in helping to understand better, and vice versa. Seeing both the details and the big piture are needed to understand.

Mike Porter said...

So, Gary, are you advocating a symphonic educational system?

LeeBaber said...

So let me ask, what DO YOU think is of value in Pink's book?

KiraW said...

I agree with Shannan. We do need to pay attention to detail in order to solve problems, but we also need to look at some of the big picture and the whole conflict.

RayS said...

Gary,
Yes there is nothing new here but it may be considerd new to some people because not everyone is aware of what Pink has to say.

marissas said...

This is Karly-
I think that parents can influence what you grow up to be like and what kind of life you have. However, just because your parents want you to have a dream job doesn't mean that that is the road you will take. For example my mom really wants me to be a vet, she doesn't take into acount that I am bad at science and I faint at the sight of blood.

Gary said...

Just curious...

How many students in this class have done either of the following:

1) Composed music

2) Programmed a computer

??

jordans said...

I see what you’re saying Hilary, but I think you can outsource almost anything but you cannot outsource everything for the better or in the best interest of the future but it can be outsourced.

Gary said...

Can you always rely on a teacher?

shannanp said...

Bud, Marissa and Sydney--
I agree that the big picture and the details are just as important. What I meant to say was that Daniel Pink highly emphasizes the big picture, so much over the details. I absolutely agree that one is just as important as the other.

matta said...

Gary your apptitude at programing could help you with math, but then you do not need to be good at math to get a good grade, there are many factors that could have resulted in a D such as being in a class that is too advanced or just not turning in the work.

Bud said...

I suspect that the success of this book is not in it's originality of ideas, but more the collection of them and their placement in easy to understand metaphors. I wish, though, that the focus was less about job fear than it was about the value of rich educational opportunities for all.

Dennis K said...

In response to Jackie’s question: I would definitely have to agree with the fact that lawyers and other "strictly" left brained professions do encompass some symphonic skills. Lawyers are constantly faced with differing cases; they need to think abstractly every time. Even doctors as well need to treat every patient differently; we aren't all robots, every living thing has qualities that differentiate than from the rest.

dermodys said...

Leebarber:
I think there is value in Pink's book. I think it is good that we are having our eyes opened to the fact that jobs are being outsourced and automated. This alone is valuble. Pink wrote this book to open our eyes not to tello us something new. And its about time we start listening- we can stay in thoes outsourced and automated jobs but we have to learn to step it up and be aware.

Sethd said...

Do you think that our schools have deprived us of a symphonic learning style?

Madisont said...

I have composed music but I would never be able to program a computer- I am way right brained which is why i am able to understand that for me to be successful I can't be an engineer, mathemetician, or so on.

stephanief said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anna K said...

Teachers are human and they sometimes make mistakes, but we all do. Can you always rely on what you find on the computer?

Bud said...

Gary,

We'd better not be teaching our students to rely on us - we're supposed to make ourselves obsolete.

marissas said...

I have neither composed music or programmed a computer, but I am young. Are you saying that following these career paths are the only careers to choose in order to be successful in life?

marissas said...

This is Karly-

I have written music and stuff but I have never composed music or programmed a computer. Why do you ask?

stephanief said...

I think Pink's book is all about looking at the world in a way that we don't. He is making people aware of different things in life. It's not like we have to follow and agree with everything he says, I don't. The book is just his opinions and him showing us something new.

dermodys said...

sorry typo Leebaber**!!!

Alexm said...

Gary, I have composed music before and it is difficult to get all the parts to work together, symphony could be very important in this industry.

Gary said...

The chapter being discussed is called, "Symphony."

Yet Pink makes almost no reference to music. On page 131 he shares some nonsense about understanding and developing the aptitude of symphony by learning to draw. This is utter nonsense!

If we are to excuse this sloppiness by saying, "symphony is just a metaphor," should he not have chosen a stronger more coherent metaphor?

Why not call the chapter omelette? Omelets have lots of stuff in them stuck together. They're tasty too.

matta said...

Gary

Yes I have composed music and I am currently learning how to program in c++ and real basic

jordans said...

I think some people who read this book disregard the difference between what can be done and what can be done well.

LeeBaber said...

I am an audio engineer, musician, and artist with a lot of training in technical aspects of media and computers. I also think left and right side of the brain work in harmony for me with no problem. It does come down to the system through which we are educated. Are we being "programmed" for failure as a student in the average system? I must say that I made my education work for me and did not get much help from the educators. I now have a graduate advisr who is the first "teacher" who understands what education should do for me. I have NEVER felt more empowered.

Sethd said...

Gary,
although you may be good at math, your grades in the subject do not directly correlate to your ability in the class.

Bud said...

Don't say that you can't program because you're "right brained" programming is a creative process. wish I was better able to do it - but I'm discovering plenty of good tools to help me out.

Mike Porter said...

I see some movement to a symphonic style--as a simple example, combining English and social studies into a humanities class.

KiraW said...

Gary:
I have never programed a computer, but I have composed music. This is probably because in my free time I would rather write a story and put a beat to it than program a computer. Plus a computer can program itself, why do I need to?

Gary said...

(page 143)

Pink talks about poets making good managers.

This assumes that poets want to BE managers. If they wanted to BE managers, they wouldn't BE poets.

Madisont said...

Gary:
Mr. Pink is not saying that the left brain is incoherent when we compose music or draw or whatever. He does tell us that the left brain and right brain work together to be as successful as they are today.

Bud said...

Mike,

I hope so - but I also see more and more compartmentalizing of information into specific silos and subjects. Perhaps it's a pendulum - and we'll go back towards humanities and integrated STEM - but I don't know. I hope so. And music class for everyone that wants it, too.

Gary said...

What is the purpose of Pink's book? Isn't it to scare Americans about a real or imagined economic threat from people in other countries?

shannanp said...

So, if Moritz is right about Daniel Pink wanting us to be aware of these 6 traits and for these to help more run of the mill employees to stand out, wouldn't it make sense that this book isn't just for the new age we are moving into? Shouldn't Mr. Pink have said that these are just suggestions and not present them as revolutionary ideas?

matta said...

Gary

The apptitude of symphony is named after the relationships neccessary to creat a good symphony, all the parts must work together, omelette would have worked as well but if you were writing a book I doubt that you would name it omelette instead of symphony. Anyway the chapter is not about music as you can probably tell. And the drawing portion was about how much relationships matter in art.

dermodys said...

Gary:
I understand where you are coming from but are you an artist? Are you good at drawing have you ever taken a drawing class like that of pink? what gives you anymore right than PINK to say that drawing isn't symphony? I think you and Pink are both right. Drawing emplies both and it depends on the type of drawing done.

marissas said...

Gary,

I agree with Pink that learning to draw is involved with symphony. You need to see the picture in order to start drawing. Why do think that this comment of his is complete nonscense?

Alexm said...

Gary,
I think this chapter is called symphony because in a symphony all the different instrumental groups must work together in harmony. Mr. Pink is just using symphony as an example to better emphasize his point.

marissas said...

This is Karly-

I also wish that the book focused less on the importance of jobs. I am only 15 and even though I should be looking into the future and planning I feel that the book would be more helpful if it focused more on the skills you can use to develop our right brains and adapt it to our learning.

Madisont said...

Even if on page 131 Pink is describing how drawing enhances your characteristic of symphony, it never says that you have to draw to enhance it. It just is stating it is one of the ways Pink described to enhance your right brain. It doesn't mean it is the only way.

RayS said...

Gary, what you said about Pink pretty much creating his own meaning for symphony makes me think of Hitler, the way he created a new definition for "Aryan"

Gary said...

Kiraw,

I celebrate your desire to be a teacher. I would be happy to share much more credible books about learning with you if you are interested.

Feel free to email me at gary@stager.org

Best of luck!

Gary

Anna K said...

I don't believe it is to scare Americans at all. I think the point of it is for him to state his opinion on the matter and help other people become aware of what qualities they will also need to possess to be able to improve their lives.

Sethd said...

Gary,
Mr. Pink is not only using the word symphony referencing music. It has to do with a whole or total. that can relate to music but it can relate to drawing the "whole" face instead of drawing the symbols that we have learned. Does the omelette describe any of that. I believe that your views on the book are rather tunnel visioned. Think of the chapter as a whole.

Bud said...

Gary,

Most of the poets I know want to be managers - but that's because they're not very good poets. (Not because of the quality of their work, but because of their lack of attention to it.) I think you're right about your earlier point about liberal arts educations - math and science programs, if they were focused on the whole student - might be just as good at producing symphonic folks. Right now, I suspect they emerge in spite of their programs.

jordans said...

I see what Jason is saying, is conveneience always what we base our decisions on? and if so why?

mmoritz said...

Shannon-I'm pretty sure that Daniel Pink doesn't say these ideas are "new" or his ideas, he is just putting them into a nice little package.

Bud said...
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Gary said...

Kiraw,

You ask a good question about your friend who wants to be a doctor. Learning ANYTHING is a valuable activity.

The point of education is not getting a job. It's preparation for life, making sense of the world, seeing beauty, solving problems and much more.

Read books, go to lectures, attend concerts, engage in conversation, take classes in subjects unrelated to your major and TRAVEL THE WORLD. You'll be fine.

You may even find that you change your mind. Perhaps you'll end up a doctor and your friend a teacher.

matta said...

Gary

No it is not to scare us. Does it seem scary, no it does not. He doesn't even try to tell us that if we are a left brained thinker we are doomed. No he just tells us what he thinks is going to happen and then if we choose to believe him he tells us some attributes that we can try to make stronger, whether we are left or right brained. He even gives us easy ways to do this, although I don't think I'll be perousing O magezine anytime soon.

Dennis K said...

The purpose of Pink's book is not to frighten or provoke horrifying thoughts. It was simply composed to convey the message that alteration is evident in the future and how to enhance one's life in the future in accordance with change. The book is an exaggeration, but that's business; sometimes people won't listen until they understand their lives are directly affected.

Bud said...
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Sethd said...

Gary,
The book merely informs ALL people that they may do better at their jobs if they improve upon and raise those qualities to a higher sense of understanding.

jordans said...

Good point. Technology replaces human contact, I think people are so afraid and caught up in being judged by other people they hide behind technology and that way they don't get hurt.

LeeBaber said...

OH my..do not ever think that if you are right brain dominant that you can not pursue "left brain" type activities. I must stress that you should never define your own abilities before they hatch. After all, following one's passion may take you back and forth from left to right over and over. I think one must follow their passion or be aware of their interests as an indicator of what their "niche" might be. A niche defined as the what you do better than anyone else. There may be 2 million programming composers but Gary is the only one that is able to do things as he does..because he has found his niche. There is no competition once there.

Alexm said...

Dennis,
I agree with your comment. Mr. Pink is just exposing us to new ideas. He wants to better our lives in the future. He is just showing us what might happen in the world.

shannanp said...

Gary--
This is a little late, but I completely agree with your comment about we might as well call the chapter omelet. I think it would have been more helpful if Daniel Pink had made his metaphor to Symphony to include music to better relate the metaphor to things everyone can relate to.

Gary said...

Sethd,

You are correct. The great musicians I know (and I was part of a team that won a Grammy last year) have a remarkable ability to explain what they have done, even after a prolonged improvisation. They can also connect their actions to the history of music and what their fellow musicians did to inspire their decision.

Every city has a legendary player who spends all of his time in the practice room and has incredible technique. That does not make them an artist or musician. An artist reflects their culture, time and life experiences through their performance or art. They are not technicians.

Bud said...

Jordan - Can technology increase human contact or connections? s it all de-humanizing?

jordans said...

Wow that was brilliant Jackie! I never even thought about how seeing the big picture could be good but also bad. The bigger you look the more you loose, and look over, the more lost you become.

stephanief said...

I also agree that technology is replacing human contact, but we have a choice whether we want to text someone or whether we want to actualy meet with them in person. I hear people complaing alot about how phones are taking over human contact but its our own individual choce, if you dson't like it don't do it. We are the ones making the world more about technology.

matta said...

I just wanted to comment on somthing I heard in the circle, they said that both humans and computers make mistakes but because computers are faster, they should be used. The only problem with that is anyone who has tried programming a computer it is alot easier to fix a problem with something a human is doin, just say "don't do this", it is alot harder with a computer

Gary said...

Madisont,

If Pink had deep experiences in either "hemisphere" he would have certainly told us.

His official biography is too cute by half and anti-intellectual. It says that he was a lawyer who never practiced, a speechwriter for VP Gore and a latrine digger in Botswana.

Why should we give him more credit than he deserves?

Sydney said...

I agree with dennis and alex. I don't believe that Pink is trying to scare America. He is trying to make us aware. He's trying to put out ideas that we usually wouldn't think of.

Sydney said...
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KiraW said...

Gary:
Thank you. I think that that is a great point. Learning is an amazing tool. Although a major focus of many students is to get good grades, we are also learning life skills along with learning how to include them into our lives.

Anna K said...

I think what Daniel Pink is trying to say is that you need to be able to apply the thinking abilities of artists and technicians (for example) not that technicians have to be able to create magnificent art work.

jordans said...

Bud- I think the majority of technology does, because you loose, tone, expressions, body language, and emotion. But no neccessarily all of it.

matta said...

Bud

You are right, there is nothing to say that technology is going to get rid of human contact, but in many cases it can increase it such as easier travel, and even e-mail make conversing easier, just because you can't see someone doesn't mean that you aren't talking to them.

dermodys said...

Texting is altoghter replacing human contact. Why talk on the phone when we can text something we don't feel comforable saying aloud. This is both good and bad and when we are texting we might want to keep this whole dehumanizing in mind. For example you can't have a relationship built on texting, you have to have human contact. But in a lot of cases texting relationships are the only way to go!

shannanp said...

But Mortiz, before he got to the chapter of the traits, Pink discussed that he had thought about what we are supposed to do and he claims the senses as his own answers and in that, his own ideas.

Bud said...

Jordan: We're having this conversation. That, to me, is a good thing.

Mike Porter said...

Remote bloggers--we're getting ready to shut down for the bell. Thanks all!

marissas said...

Jordan and Jackie, I agree that sometimes seeing the big picture and only the big picture can be bad. But, do most people really only see the big picture and lose the little details? I think that in order to see the whole picture, you need to understand the little details that are a part of it. So, seeing the big picture is overall a good thing as long as you don't completely ignore the details.

LeeBaber said...

I do not think technology is dehumanizing unless one does not already have a strong sense of identity. It can take the place of defining one's own identity.

Madisont said...

He may not deserve as much credit as he is getting... I agree but then again isn't that just business?

LeeBaber said...

have we lost audio?

Dennis K said...

Some of the greatest and most notable scientific discoveries have been accomplished through serendipity. Combining two seemingly unrelated materials can result in a great holistic image. In this sense, even traditionally left brained professions are sometimes right- brain oriented.

matta said...

Gary

When you say Mr. Pink was a latrine digger, that seems to have a negative connotation. But I am fairly sure he didn't go to botswana and get employed as a latrine digger, from what I understand he was on a mission trip or some similar thing.

Gary said...

Bud,

My daughter is a sophomore at Bard College. Bard is a remarkable liberal arts institution where science and math art taught by experts with the passion of artists and musicians. Students are required to take courses in seven domains before they even contemplate a major and then their major is based on a senior project that often combines disparate disciplines.

There are signs on the campus that say, "Math and Science are the New Liberal Arts!"

Anna K said...

@ Matta

When you are communicating with someone via technology, you are not getting the same emotional feel which is what we as humans need in conversations.

KiraW said...

Sabrina:
I think that texting can bring people togther, but it can also tear people apart. In a text, you can't show your emotions. You can sent the wrong message and than the friendship is hurt.

Mike Porter said...

Lee, Bud and Gary--

Thanks for bringing your voices.

Madisont said...

Gary:
Do you consider then that art and music are needed to be included in math and science? If so, then you would be agreeing with Daniel Pink.

dermodys said...

Exactly my point kira!! I have seen countless relationships ruined over a misinterpretation over a text or email!

dermodys said...

Exactly my point kira!! I have seen countless relationships ruined over a misinterpretation over a text or email!

Sethd said...

Dermodys,

I think that texting deprives us of some of our normal human contact but by no means is it replacing it. i agree with you that when we text we are taking away the humanizing parts of our contact. But texting is not replacing it.

Gary said...

Matta,

OK, let's stipulate that one sort of thinking is no longer enough.

Was it ever?

Didn't rich people always receive the quality of education Pink advocates?

We need to be careful in reducing all of human history to stereotypes about how life was for perhaps one "Ozzie and Harriet" generation.

...nothing new here.

Bud said...

Gary,

It can certainly be done - and it's a beautiful thing when it is. But are all schools as functionally integrating those disciplines? (I hope you'd agree that they aren't and should be.

marissas said...

Gary,
I do not think that anyone here is giving Mr. Pink more credit than he deserves. He is just a guy that wrote a book full of his opinions that we are reading and discussing. I personaly agree with alot of the things you are saying but I also think that it must be taken into consideration that we are not worshiping this book as fact and their are many peole here that disagree with alot of what he is saying. As for him being a latrine diggger you said that we can learn through traveling and I think that having many jobs gives him more qualifications.

Gary said...

Kiraw,

Learning is not a TOOL.

Learning is LIFE.

Gary said...

Kiraw,

Learning is not a TOOL.

Learning is LIFE.

LeeBaber said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts today. Gary and Bud, I enjoyed your comments and I certainly would enjoy continuing the conversation sometime.