Okay. I need to get on with it. I bid farewell to my very first blog last month. I wrote a ton prior to this first blog, but it’s all lost in LMSs of the past. So here’s what’s up. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about bikes, transportation, civic spaces, open education, teaching, learning, spaces for learning to teach; my list of super cool projects continues to grow. Last week, I wrote them all out on my office wall. As I was standing there staring at this massive list, my office neighbor came into my office to visit.
As I described what I was doing, he asked me if it’s possible to complete everything in the next six months like I’ve promised. I just looked at him and blinked. And blinked. I kept staring at this wall blinking and thinking. He laughed really hard and I giggled like a toddler. Dunno, mate, but we’ll see.
Here’s another reason I need to start this blog. I’ve been asked to join this really cool project, and my other blog isn’t the right space. I’m thinking more long-term there with colleagues, and I need something for the my random day-to-day thoughts.
Yesterday I spent the entire day reading and writing and I also spent a ridiculous amount of time looking for old research that I couldn’t find. I’ve got this giant mess of thoughts, quotes, and digressions on different computers and files. My “Shared with me” function in G. Docs could induce a panic attack. Is this all possible in the next six months? Blink, think.
So why the title Spoke and Hub? Well, quite simply, I like the design of the bicycle. It’s simple, utilitarian, and timeless. The wheels, especially when hand-built by somebody who knows you, ride like nothing made on an assembly line. The wheel builder takes each spoke and trues them one-by-one. It’s an art full of grace, patience, and tradition. Truth be told: I lack the patience for this type of building and I could never afford this luxury. Luckily somebody who loves me is self-taught wheel builder. We like this quote about a fancy bike hub: “It rolls good with angry bee sound.”
When I put “Hub and Spoke” into the internets machine, I learned that there is bike repair shop in San Francisco (not surprising, mercifully with no photos of waxed mustaches). I also learned that there is a business term: Spoke and Hub Distribution. WiseGEEK.org explains that “The hub and spoke model is named for the bicycle wheel, which has a stable center connecting to multiple spokes.” Some writers use examples in terms of airline travel and the distribution of goods. Some business folks chat about the hub and spoke distribution in terms of profit, investing, and ZZZZZzzzzz.
To be fair, I did find business writer who explains that “To better understand the hub-and-spoke system, imagine an intricate bicycle wheel, with the hub as the strategic center of the network, and the spokes radiating out to connect it with remote points. The functionality of the hubs and spokes differ according to the industry.” Who the stable center is and what this blog connects to I’ve yet to discover. The hub and the spoke is a could be metaphor for the personal learning network and connected learning. Blink, think.
Substitute “industry” and “goods” for “education” in the above descriptions, and if you think of the “remote points” as research I’m hoping to do, then I think I’ve got something rolling. But really, I have no idea what I’m doing.