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Dialogue and Universalism

Volume 19, Issue 1/2, 2009
Web-Based Technology and the New University

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Displaying: 1-15 of 15 documents


1. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Piotr Bołtuć From the Guest Editor: Web-Based Technology and the New University
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implications of information technology
2. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Gaetano Aurelio Lanzarone Computational Reflection, Machines and Minds
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The purpose of this paper is to argue that, in order for the debate in Computing and philosophy to move forward with respect to its current state, the advances of Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence of the last decades must be taken into account. Computational reflection, one of these advances, is presented in detail and its philosophical implications are discussed, in contrast with old-fashioned views of computational systems such as those presented by Lucas’ papers on Minds and Machines.
3. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Luciano Floridi Artificial Companions and their Philosophical Challenges
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In this paper I argue that recent technological transformations in the life-cycle of information have brought about a fourth revolution, in the long process of reassessing humanity’s fundamental nature and role in the universe, namely the idea that we might be informational organisms among many agents, inforgs not so dramatically different from clever, engineered artefacts, but sharing with them a global environment that is ultimately made of information, the infosphere. In view of this important evolution in our self-understanding, and given the sort of IT-mediated interactions that humans will increasingly enjoy with their environment and a variety of other agents, whether natural or synthetic, we have the unique opportunity of developing a new ecological approach to the whole of reality.
4. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Piotr Bołtuć Paradigm Change in Higher Education Due to the World Wide Web
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Electronic technologies, from the internet to virtual reality and advanced robotics, are transforming the world we live in, and especially our methods of learning, far more radically than any factors since the invention of the printing press. The process is at its beginnings; it is largely unavoidable; it also presents an opportunity for learning and research. We academics ought to meet this educational and civilizational challenge and make it our own. Otherwise, the process may be appropriated by bureaucratic and narrow business interests, largely to the detriment of academic learning. We have a chance to enjoy shared knowledge as never before, which I call opening the doors to the true Library of Alexandria.Structural changes are necessitated by this new paradigm. Those incorporate three aspects: First, integration of the web into our lives; second, the use of such integration in research and education, which highly increases the opportunities but is unforgiving of excessive individualism and other inefficiencies; third the philosophically broad perspective of non-reductive naturalism facilitated by this global integration.
technology, philosophy and academia
5. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Tom P. Abeles Does Philosophy Have a Future?
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In today’s world driven by technological innovation and change, publisher John Brockman has proclaimed scientists as the new “humanists”. Many in the science arena have seized the public podium not only to discuss advances in their area of expertise, but often to speak almost ex cathedra, on the social and philosophical implications for humans and the planet itself. The break with The Church in the 15th & 16th century set in motion a secular humanism which began the movement within the scholarly communities to separate knowledge into disciplines. Following the Enlightenment, many in the social arena turned from the theory based, deductive, approaches toward the sciences with the hope that this inductive methodology would yield the same success found in the bio-physical arena. While this approach has failed to achieve such heights, “science envy” is now driving academic institutions, particularly in the United States and manydeveloping countries, to reposition The Academy to become innovative and contribute to both the private and public sector much in the same manner that Science’s handmaiden, Technology, has contributed in the bio/physical arena.The Humanities, as sensed by Brockman and others, has turned inward or has been ineffective in responding except to utter the mantra that its area represents humanity’s soul and thus provides the critical knowledge needed to save the planet and thus humans. Yet philosophy has not been able, or is unwilling, to accept the challenge and enter the academic lists or command the public pulpit. In this default, a surrogate, religious fundamentalism, has raised its head above the trenches reminiscent of the ancient Science/ Church confrontation and seeks to restore the idea of salvation in the next world, hoping to destroy the Gnostic ideal of humans being able to create such peace on earth.
6. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Jerzy Mischke The Role of e-Learning in Paradigmatic Transformation
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There are few opinions as soundly rooted and commonly acknowledged as the notion of usefulness of education. There is a deep belief, proved right by the experience of mankind, that an educated person has the advantage over a simpleton. It is considered (rightly) that educated individuals understand themselves and the world around them better. Therefore, they are more a homo rationalis than uneducated ones.In the world changing as in a kaleidoscope an educated person must have the skill to absorb incoming information easily and quickly, to select it and then process into substantial knowledge about the world. At the same time, they need to be reliable and highly efficient in its particular applications. In a word, an educated person needs to know how to develop their individual capital of knowledge. The average age of starting a career increases. Keeping up with fast occurring civilisation changes requires some outside assistance, and so the tasks for higher education are expanding to include theneed to organise lifelong learning.I think that the more effectively will an educational system deliver the abovementioned objectives-acquiring knowledge as such, understood as acquiring the truthabout the world and as increasing the intellectual potential of the society-the ’better’ it will be. This leads to perceiving also the system’s effectiveness as a value in itself, and achieving this value becomes the system’s priority.However, are the values and goals of the higher education mentioned above exclusive? What tradition is backing the priorities of universities nowadays? What should be changed to make the education in universities more efficient in the changing world?I am asking those difficult questions while not quite convinced that my opinion is the best and the only one possible, but I would like to make a small contribution to the discussion on values of education.
7. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Boria Sax Knowledge and Wisdom in Academia
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This paper traces the shifts in relative emphasis on knowledge and wisdom as educational ideals from the time of Plato to the present. In the Industrial Era, the increasing pressure towards specialization made professors serve primarily as content experts. This role, however, often threatened to trivialize the academic calling, and there were many attempts to restore a lost unity to knowledge. Today, with the advent of the Internet, the easy accessibility of information diminishes the importance of specialized knowledge. It is no longer essential for an instructor to serve as a provider of factual material. He or she will, however, be more necessary than ever to assist students in placing information in a meaningful personal, professional, and socio-historic context. Pre-industrial, even ancient, educational models such as those of Aesop or Socrates assume renewed importance. Wisdom, rather than knowledge, may again become the most important quality of the educator in post-industrial society.
8. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
H. E. Baber The Virtuous and Vicious Circles of Academic Publishing
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Traditional hardcopy publishing brought about a division of labor between producers and disseminators of information. Online publishing makes it feasible for authors to disseminate their work much more widely without any investment in equipment beyond the ubiquitous laptop, without labor costs and without any special technical expertise. As a consequence, the division of labor is no longer important and is, in a range of cases, inefficient. For some scholarly works and teaching materials in particular, traditional hardcopy publishing rather than rather than facilitating the dissemination of creative works not only restricts access to these materials but also undermines their production. Arguably, hardcopy journals and textbook anthologies, are inefficient and only persist because of institutional inertia and what has become the vicious circle of academic publishing.
9. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Viorel Guliciuc How Do We Need Universities in a Technological World?
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The changing of our way of being, toward homo sapiens digital, is also responsible for the transformation of the learning/teaching in the 21st century. In K12 education we could speak about “Digital Natives/Digital Immigrants” “herding”, “digital multipliers” etc. In Academe, the focus has to be on creativity and digital wisdom.
online learning (in collaboration with e-mentor)
10. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Vlad Wielbut The Second Waive—Why Is US Higher Education Changing?
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The beginning of the current decade witnessed the collapse of many ambitious and costly initiatives in distance learning, but that does not mean that this was just a short-lived fad, and that the march of change was halted. There appeared on stage forces and processes that work more slowly than decisions of university administrators, but that are also much more difficult to ignore or reverse. This article describes these change factors and the how they influence American higher education.
11. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Andrzej Wodecki, Rafał Moczadło University in Second Life —the Experiment’s Results
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The article presents some conclusions arising from an educational experiment conducted by the University Centre for Distance Learning (Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin). The aim of the experiment was to verify the applicability of Second Life for educational purposes. The most important conclusion of the experiment is that SL is not as much productive as an e-learning platform but it is quite efficient for the realization of multi-disciplinary projects. It is also effective as a tool for creating digital animations and simulations. Moreover, the article presents some factors indispensable for the successful application of SL observed during the realization of the project.
social impact of the new media
12. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek New Media Technology, Interculturalism, and Intermediality
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Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek discusses in his paper “New Media Technology, Interculturalism, and Intermediality” the importance of new media technology and the concept of intermediality with regard to the relevance of interculturalism in today's society. Intermediality refers to the blurring of generic and formal boundaries among different forms of cultural practices and in the field of pedagogy. The trajectories of intermedial spaces, actions, and processes of types of new media including the world wide web, hypertextuality, online publishing, blogs, interactive media, etc., suggest possibilities and potentials to work toward interculturalism. Interculturalism is understood as a practice of social life including government at all levels, education and pedagogy, as well as all instances of every-day life towards active recognition and inclusion of the Other and a commitment against essentialisms. In this process, the potential roles of new mediasuggest as of yet un-tapped resources and possibilities.
13. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Michał Ostrowicki Immersive Nature of Art
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The phenomenon of immersion mainly appears and relates to human existence in the interactive electronic environment. Immersion can produce an experience of electronically generated reality, which consists of feelings similar to those known from the experience of the physical world and can influence our sensuous and intentional attitude (Michal Heim). A person enters the electronic world, frequently finding there the value of being and a sphere for her/his own activity, which can release personality and produce the kind of emotional attitude which sometimes possibly does not appear in the physical world. Immersion was also described in electronic interactive art as a phenomenon which operates on the basis of aesthetic experience, where it is connected with feelings of being surrounded by outside influences, or with the “absorption” of perceiver by the work of art. The description of immersion on the basis of interactive artbecame the foundation for treating it as a general feature of art and also makes it possible to treat art as an immersive environment, where immersion becomes a historical notion, shaped by the historical development (Oliver Grau).
14. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Włodzimierz Gogołek Manipulation on the Web
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Due to the Internet, the traditional media monopoly has been irretrievably broken. Available technologies have created unavailable earlier conditions for personalization and manipulation of information that is generating to the Internet users. It is sharply noticeable with reference to the computer games, media and the potential of Web 2.0, social networking. The freedom of information concerning the social networking seem to be a temporary phenomenon—effectively dominated by the commercialization.
15. Dialogue and Universalism: Volume > 19 > Issue: 1/2
Piotr Bołtuć In Memoriam: Andrzej Zabłudowski
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