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Collecting learning futures

I'm frustrated with the narratives around education, learning, and technology. I have a vision of the future of learning, one centering the process of learning on the learning, and I beleive that technology can enable that future.

This is at odds with the ways technology is used in education today, and the visions of the future that are talked about (at least in the most common narratives).

I want to create an alternative narrative, and prompt people to think much larger and much further away from the current educational paradigm.

As someone working to build a future of learning, I want to challenge my view and inform it with others'.

The structure

Selecting and reaching out

I have a rough list of people I want to reach out to. The plan is to spread out the interviews over the next couple months, so that I can be flexible for people's schedules.

One of the secondary learning goals here is actually learning how to reach out to people on the internet! There are so many incredible people out there and I want to get good at introducing myself and interacting with them.


Conducting the interviews

The interviews will be conducted over whatever medium works for the interviewee with preference given to higher bandwidth (i.e in person > a video call > emailing)

For each interview I'll prepare questions specifically for the work and context of the interviewee.




Capturing the interviews

I'd like to capture the interviews in some way, both to make it easier for me to learn from them and to share for others. However, this largely depends on what the interviewee is comfortable with. I'll take notes during the interviews, and record if they're okay with it (and it wouldn't impact the interview).

Collating and thinking

Once I've done more than a couple interviews I'll begin pulling together some kind of overarching view to be published as an essay.


Brendan Schalgel

Brendan has a whole stable of different projects, each of which relate to learning in different ways.

They are all, to one extent or another, experiments. They're all also social experiments, which is what resonated with me so much.

This was my first interview in this series, so I'm already noticing all the things I wish I'd done differently.

What does the future of learning look like

People sitting down and talking to each other.

Personal learning, personalized learning.

People putting together curriculums and sharing them with each other.



Longest running project. Started with a tumblr theme which was structured like a bookshelf. Was building up large amazon wishlists and pinboard lists. Was a newsletter at one point, sharing books and links.

Book data is hard.

Came from Black Swan or some taleb book.

Idea exchange

These were originally more social than for learning

5-10 people in a comfortable space 5-10 people in a structure where everyone is involved, asking for donation to make it the right amount of formal

notes through the events and sent them out afterwards

Failure states


Five letters long names.

Project structures weren't made with specific outcomes in mind but more just towards experimentation.


A self contained project that one could still come back to over time.


Extremely niche learning

Kinda person who 'reads the manual'

The adjacent possible and the anxiety of infinity

List making as creative practice

Challenge: how to scale intimate things

Working in public and sharing the "exhaust", makes one think of things as important

did side project bootcamp (12 weeks) at orbital, which idea exchange came out of. Had a loose idea for self-starters guide


Erin Glass


Learning how to run interviews

A secondary learning goal here is learning how to interview people, or more generally, learning with/from people in conversation. I'm not really sure what skillset it even requires, but it seems like a very useful tool to have.