The Role of RSS in Education

What can a simple xml file do for education? What’s the big deal? So what if RSS gets the word out easier and more consistently than other forms? So what if its standardized and often rich in metadata content (making it more thoroughly searchable even than html)? So what if it caters to a society that doesn’t want to take the time or effort to actually go anywhere even when they’re not going anywhere (i.e. to not have to surf the net while sitting at a chair at their computer)? So what if it helps make the user the meta aggregator of what is meaningful and useful, and the editor of their own publishing empire? So what if learning opportunities are made more readily available and mobile? So what? Why should we all get excited about a couple of xml tags with some simple content? What’s so revolutionary about having the world’s news, entertainment, blog entries, podcasts, and latest updates in education sent to your favorite E-mail client or feed reader? What’s so great about not having your head explode from information overload? And from a Web programmer’s point of view, what’s so great about being able to serve up others’ continually updated content for free without having to code a thing?

I say RSS has no future in education. Why would we want to educate more people anywhere in the world? What kind of bleak world would it be if everybody was able to streamline their content so that they could control their own education? If students didn’t have to sit in a specific chair in a specific room in a specific building at a specific time of day to learn? And why would people want to increase their choices in educational media delivery and production? Do we really want to learn more often? Do we really want to hear a professor on our ipod? Do we really want to share with the world? Nah. I think clay tablets are the future.


2 thoughts on “The Role of RSS in Education

  1. Thanks to the miracle of XML that make lots of things possible, particularly in the realm of information access as well as in education. RSS is one feature of XML potential that allows the automated search; users would not have to check for new files. The convenience of obtaining files via RRS increased the likelihood that they would download files. However, this brings the issue of information overload. So, it is the responsibility of users who have to select and organize their required content. This is another skill that is not contained in the curriculum; users/learners must obtain on their own, and perhaps educators are an appropriate resource to guide them.
    For a series of questions you have posted, I think “long life learning” is one answer that could apply to all of them!

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