Vertopia Blog
Designing a Future for Learning: A School in the Cloud

Get on with it!
Design and build a School in the Cloud, where students explore, self-directed learning through a Curriculum of Big Questions. The teacher only poses provocative BIG Questions.

We need to “Design a Future for Learning” by supporting the children all over the world, to tap into their wonder and their ability to work together. We need to build a school, called “A School in the Cloud”, where children go on these intellectual adventures driven by the Big Questions.

Build your own Self-Organized Learning Environments (SOLE) and send Sugata Mitra the data.

Read More here ~ Education scientist Sugata Mitra tackles one of the greatest problems of education — the best teachers and schools don…

I (Pang) wrote about this research a few months ago, but Salon has an article on some really interesting research done in Edinburgh on the effects of walking on the brain.


In the study, subjects

began on a tree-lined shopping drag, turned along the tranquil northern edge of the Meadows, one of the city’s larger parks, and wound up in a busy commercial district some half-hour later. The pastoral section of an otherwise urban jaunt, the researchers found, induced a significant increase in meditative thinking…. Participants took their 25-minute walk with a web of electrodes [mobile electroencephalography (EEG) technology] glued to their scalps and a laptop computer in a backpack to record their neural impressions, step by step.

I have a chapter in The Distraction Addiction about restorative environments, and how they help you slow down and let your mind think more deeply. This book was finished before the Edinburgh work became public, otherwise I would have loved to have talked about it at length. (I really like Edinburgh.)


The blog for the contemplative computing project, which documents efforts to create technologies and interactions that don’t distract users and fracture their attention, but promote concentration and mindfulness.

Great book by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang: “The Distraction Addiction” - check it out, or follow his Contemplative Computing blog @ 
- Greg

Questions for Agile Product Management

Questions for Agile Product Management:

  1. Who represents customers and users at your company?

  2. Who identifies and describes customer needs and product functionality?

  3. Who leads the visioning activities, and who leads the activities that bring the vision to life?

  4. What roles do teamwork and collaborative decision making play?

  5. What would it take to implement the product owner role, as described below:

The Product Owner is responsible for bringing new products to life, and also in managing the entire product lifecycle:

  • Leading the development effort to create a product that generates the desired benefits;
  • Creating the product vision;
  • Grooming the product backlog;
  • Planning the release;
  • Involving customers, users, and other stakeholders;
  • Managing the budget;
  • Preparing the product launch;
  • Attending the Scrum meetings;
  • and Collaborating with the team.

Very cool art installation. Check it out!


Contemplate the elegance of infinity. Don’t ask “When will I use this?” Follow your natural curiosity.

Nothing coaxes jumbled thoughts into coherent sentences like sitting under a shade tree on a pleasant day. 
“Trouble is,” says Mr. Louv, “it’s getting harder to find places beyond electrotrusion.” (using an apt term he just coined.)

One of my recent faves…. Laura Marling

In our digital cocoons, we go everywhere and nowhere.

This NYT piece taps into a common delusion/challenge we share today… “to be here now.”