• e-learning,  history,  metaphor

    What’s in a name? Early internet metaphors

    My friend and all round good chap, Rajiv Jhangiani, dropped me a message asking for my favourite current metaphor about the web for a talk he is giving. This set me thinking about some of the early labels we used for the internet and the web, and what they tried to convey. If you are old enough, cast your mind back to the late 90s when the web (and wider awareness of the internet more generally) was still new, and we were trying to understand what it was, and what it could do. Metaphors are very powerful in this respect as they provide a bridge from the familiar to the…

  • edtech,  history,  OU

    50 years of IET

    At the OU I work in The Institute of Educational Technology (IET). This year the OU is celebrating it’s 50th, and thanks to some excellent historical research from my colleagues Lesley McGrath and Patrick McAndrew, we think we have a date for when the first proposal for IET went forward too. Apparently it was fashionable not to put a date on documents back in 1969 (thanks past people!), but Lesley proposes the following dates: June 1969 – establishment of An Applied Educational Sciences Unit Mar 1970 Proposal for this to become IET Jul 1970 approval of IET staffing and costs The role of IET is explained in this 1973 clip.…