The first d-education session was a little disappointing. The low point was a promotional video from Microsoft, with their version of the future. This video was not specific to education (and apparently was being show in one of the other streams as well). I was having difficulty getting the wifi to work, so I could use the Wiki and so went out to the conference technical support desk (The conference has excellent technical support).
At that point I decided to take a break and wandered off for a coffee at the student union. The coffee turned out to be free, as I found I had wandered into a scientific conference. This was at something called the "Eora Exchange", by lahznimmo architects. This was a dropping cyber cafe (with real coffee). There are wall botths which seat about six students, on each side of a table. One the wall at the end of each table is a large computer screen, with a VGA cable. There are five power points available on the wall for laptops and another two points on a pop-up panel in the tabletop. Also there is the UNSW wireless. I felt right at home here and was a little reluctant to go back to the fast pace of the forums. Also I felt I was learning more about d-education from observing this room than I had at the official forum.
ps: I tried to post the following comment to the wiki comments on the forum. But I was unable to enter my user id or get the anti-spam image check to work, so here is my comment. Perhaps someone who can get the wiki to work can add it:
One of the reality checks on digital education is that in many ways broadband will not change education. Many of the fundamentals will be the same. My e-learning course, which Senator Lundy launched the book for this morning at the forum is very hi-tech, but underneath is about old fashioned education. David Lindley, calls this Mentored and Collaborative Online Learning. I have coined the term e-Oxbridge education to describe this.
Education has not changed since Aristotle was teaching: the teacher gives some guidance to the student and then sends them off to explore for themselves, later the student discusses what they found with other students under the guidance of a tutor, the student then explores some more alone or in groups and produces more and more complex analyses, until the tutor and the student think they have learnt enough.