Who are you, and what do you like to learn about? (academically, professionally, and/or personally)

As an instructional systems designer, organizational coach, and yoga therapist, I love to learn about design and transformation of all kinds – design of teams or organizations, learning systems, individual, family, or community systems, architecture, fashion, graphics, software, services, music, consciousness – you name it…if it can be designed or transformed, I’m interested. As a mom, adventurer, and active citizen, I like to learn about home-making/homesteading/home improvement, family-cultivating, arts and culture, outdoor skills and opportunities, and socio-political issues.

What hardware do you use to learn? (Eg. smart phone, tablet, laptop, desktop)

I mostly use my iMac. I have kept up with Mac hardware ever since I spent almost every penny I had on the first Mac-Plus. I also maintain a MacBookPro (I max out each upgrade so they last a few years), iPad Pro (love sketching on it), and iPhone (using the 11pro now).

What software do you use to learn? (Eg. search engines, mobile apps, social networks, eBooks, digital libraries, wikis, blogs, videos, podcasts)

I use digital libraries a lot. For learning software, Adobe Creative Suite has good lessons, and I subscribe to LinkedIn Learning and a few other subscription learning sites and select blogs. I listen to podcasts in the car or while walking, but for news I prefer to record TV programs I’ll speed thru when I have time…probably only viewing about 1/10th of what I record. I don’t see the logic in learning something with visual content on my phone (versus big-screen iMac), unless I have to learn something on-the-spot while I’m away from home.

What digital tools do you wish you had access to for learning? (Eg. any graphic organizers, mind-mapping tools, resource management tools, progress tracking tools, design tools, etc.) Why?

I haven’t found a digital tool that doesn’t end up taking too much time to manage and/or has limited content-organizing or accessing capabilities. I use a spreadsheet to keep track of all my accounts, including learning accounts, and bookmarks to organize sites (very much looking for a better bookmarking tool) and Pinterest to catalog things. I’ve just started using Miro, it looks promising for mind-mapping. I love Zoom, and they seem to be evolving it, I hope they add more participant management tools (like controlling the order in which the gallery is displayed), and more interactive tools like a built-in wiki that is more than a whiteboard.

What might your ideal Personal Learning Environment (PLE) look like?

I would love to find a PLE that is easy to use, flexible, well-organized, interactive, and intuitive; that would keep track of all my bookmarks and learning accounts and help me sort my learning priorities and catalogue my completed and in-progress learning, as well as keep track of learning “someday-maybe’s” (David Allen terminology), and maybe even help me scan for relevant learning opportunities and integrate with my calendar. That would be dreamy!

Julianne Fanning

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