Why Web 3.0?


The graph refers to the formal properties network and the network to the physical properties of the graph.

The beginning of the Web: It started out as a decentralized network of interconnected servers, overtime it became dominated by platforms like google. The original web was hard to use. They needed an index, bookmarks etc. The people who were on the internet began creating indexes, library things like that. It was the domain of academic libraries. Overtime the human activity of indexing the web was replaced by the computational functionality of search engines. These began to be used not just for indexes but also articles, messages, journals. So, the platform gradually became the predominant thing. Web 2.0 was born and so was E-learning 2.0 and at some point we gave up on the idea of distributed web. This brings us to today when these platforms have become the “source of truth”.

Netscape was the standard bearer for Web 1.0, Google is most certainly the standard bearer for Web 2.0. While the former was based on old software, the second appeared as an application used to manage data. So Google developed both as a set of tools and specified data (O’ Reilly) 

What has come to be known as Web 3.0 is a response to this. It is the idea that each of us should be able to share our data directly with each other through special protocols. The graph is the conceptual basis for Web 3.0 networks. It’s actually the name of a software library written in java script to support data sharing and interaction by means of the block chain network, the ethereum block chain network. The idea here is that we have this distributed web our data recorded in this block chain and then we use this for contracts, applications and whatever we want to do with this data. You don’t have to use block chain to get to distributed networks. The block chain offers an answer to a key question: why should I believe anything that I hear over this network?

Types of networks

  • Social Networks: made up of people connected by means of friending or following and interacting by means of texts or messages etc.
  • Neuron Network: made up of neurons or in a computer by artificial neurons, interacting by means of pins or signals etc.
  • Financial Network: made up of web ids, people, it may have balances of various sizes: coins, tokens, it is connected to transactions, contracts recording a transaction in a block chain
  • Semantical Network: such as the web, where what we have resources, people, books, libraries, institutions etc, and they are connected conceptually and they interact with logical relation with each other. Block chain is the latest from a series of conversions from centralized mechanisms to decentralized ones offering new dimensions to sth that has been around for a while.

Networks/ Graphs are important because they show connections and not just relations (relations is different from connections: when a change of state in one node can result to a change of state in another node). Graphs are also important because as a collective entity they constitute a distributed representation of a state of affairs. There is no specific place where an idea is located. The state of affairs is itself knowledge.

web 3.0

What’s changed in E-Learning 3.0 is the question what makes it knowledge? Because it is a just a set of connections. What is the source of truth? What grounds ontologies and trust? These are the questions that led us to the use of platforms in the first place. The platform became the source of truth. But this is not always the case: first because there are multiple competing platforms, second because the platforms are subject to being manipulated by bad actors. Web 3.0 manifests a dissatisfaction with that solution, a distrust of platforms and centralized authority. Therefore it proposes to incorporate elements of identity, community in order to create what we might think of as a shared graph.

Remembering is not cognitive decoding but a physical process based on experience and perceiving. To learn is to experience through all facets of perception: sensation, reflection and interactivity.

The graph is the conceptual basis for Web 3.0 networks. The graph is a distributed representation of that state of affairs created by our interactions. The graph itself is at the same time the outcome of these interactions and the source of truth about these state of affairs. The graph is not a knowledge repository but a perceptual system that draws on the individual experiences and contributions of each node. This is why each node is important. This informs not only what we learn but also how we learn, creating new learning contents, new forms of learning, new literacies required.

Notes from E-Learning 3.0 Video on Graphs available here

Images available here and here

ID Graph, E-Learning 3.0/ 1st draft


So, here I am, first attempt. I thought I’d show the complexity of being a. an architect, b. in Greece, c. during crisis. Graph shows a multiplicity of roles and some of their interconnections (dotted lines): for example freelance self-employment leads to a certain amount of knowledge in construction which leads to an educational position in building technology in two universities. Same thing for my PhD research on arch education which informs and is informed by the studios I’ve been teaching in NTUA etc.

Memo: color orange indicates roles; color blue indicates the institutions I have been involved with in the past 4 years (public sector galaxy); color green shows the courses I’ve been teaching and finally yellow color shows all the activities related to my PhD research and studio(private sector galaxy). Thicker lines show first degree/ direct affiliation, thinner lines show connections, dotted lines show mediated interconnections (causal). Vectors indicate what informs what (also causal). Blogging id is both yellow as a writing activity and orange as an autonomous role.

I used cacoo to draw this graph. I’ve discovered it recently and it stole my heart.

Identity, Personality & Agency (E-Learning 3.0)


One needs it to be oneself; yet being oneself solely on the strength of one’s free choice means a life full of doubts and fears of error … Self construction of the self is, so to speak a necessity. Self confirmation of the self is an impossibility’(Bauman 1988:62).

Identity: sharing an identity suggests some active engagement on our part (…) We choose to identify with a particular identity or group (…)  identity requires some element of choice and awareness on our part (…) late modernity suggests that identity matters more now because we have more choice (…) Identity is marked by similarity, that is of the people like us, and by difference, of those who are not (…) symbols and representations are important in marking the ways in which we share identities with some people and distinguish ourselves as different from others (…)  identities are necessarily the product of the society in which we live and our relationship with others. Identity provides a link between individuals and the world in which they live. Identity combines how I see myself and how others see me. Identity involves the internal and the subjective, and the external. It is a socially recognized position, recognized by others, not just by me (…) The link between myself and others is not only indicated by the connection between how I see myself and how other people see me, but also by the connection between what I want to be and the influences, pressures and opportunities which are available (…) The concept of identity encompasses some notion of human agency; an idea that we can have some control in constructing our own identities (…) identities are not fixed and constant; they change too (…) The body is also an important component of personal identity (…) identity is forged in the social sphere is located within temporal relations; a sense of the past, present and future haunts identity-work and identity practices (…) The inter-relationship between past, present and future in the on-going work of developing an identity suggests that who we are, what we do and what we become changes over the life course and furthermore, the work of identity remains fragile and unstable to the point where settlement is unachievable (…) Something as ordinary, everyday and ubiquitous as talking to others becomes central to defining oneself and one’s place in the world (…) Volsiniv identifies two poles: the ‘I-experience’, which tends towards extermination as it does not receive feedback from the social milieu; and the ‘we-experience’ which grows with consciousness and positive social recognition (…) identity is confirmed through processes of social recognition and challenged through processes of misrecognition. Identity formation from this perspective remains structured through the identification of processes of ‘sameness and difference’ (…) it is possible to see identity as relational – formed and played out in relation to those who are similar and those who are different (…) Identity can be seen as multiple: spoken through and in dialogue with a range of social categories and positions (…) Significantly, identity is contextually specific

Personality: the sort of person I am (…) it describes qualities individuals may have, such as being outgoing or shy, internal characteristics

Agency the degree of control which we ourselves can exert over who we are



Kehily, M. J. (2009). What is identity? A sociological perspective. In: ESRC Seminar Series: The educational and social impact of new technologies on young people in Britain, 2 Mar 2009, London School of Economics, UK.

OpenLearn, Identity in question: What is identity? Retrieved from here

Image: Facial casts of Nias islanders, J.P. Kleiweg de Zwaan, 1910, Rijks Museum (personal collection)

Where do trees come from? Graphs!


Trees start from a root node and might connect to other nodes, which means that could contain subtrees within them. Trees are defined by a certain set of rules: one root node may or may not connect to others, but ultimately, it all stems from one specific place. The tree follows one direction and cannot have loops or cyclical links.

Graphs are non linear structures: their data doesn’t follow an order. Trees will always be graphs, but not all graphs will be trees. Graphs do not have a concept of a root node. They can have a direction or not or they could have some links that have direction and others that don’t. Every graph must have at least one single node. (a graph with one node is called singleton).

Edges (sometimes referred to as links) can connect nodes in any way possible. Edges are what differentiates graphs. There are two types of edges: a edge that has a direction or flow, and an edge that has no direction or flow. We refer to these as directed and undirected edges, respectfully. In a directed edge, we can only travel from the origin to the destination, and never the other way around (digraph). However, it’s an entirely different story with undirected edges. In an undirected edge, the path that we can travel goes both ways. That is to say, the path between the two nodes is bidirectional, meaning that the origin and destination nodes are not fixed.

In mathematics, graphs are a way to formally represent a network, which is basically just a collection of objects that are all interconnected. For example, in mathematical terms, we describe graphs as ordered pairs. Remember high school algebra, when we learned about (x,y) ordered pair coordinates? Similar deal here, with one difference: instead of x and y, the parts of a graph instead are: v, for vertices, and e, for its edges. If our graph has more than one node and more than one edge that ordered pair — (V, E) — is actually made up of two objects: a set of vertices, and a set of edges. The “unordered” part is really important here, because remember, unlike trees, there is no hierarchy of nodes.

Facebook, a massive social network, is a type of graph. Twitter, on the other hand, works very differently from Facebook. I can follow you, but you might not follow me back.


Vaidehi Joshi, A Gentle Introduction To Graph Theory. In Medium, Retrieved from here

Learning Record Store (Downes-Shelly Blake-Plock conversation) E-Learning 3.0


xAPIThe Experience API (or xAPI) is a new specification for learning technology that makes it possible to collect data about the wide range of experiences a person has (online and offline). This API captures data in a consistent format about a person or group’s activities from many technologies. Very different systems are able to securely communicate by capturing and sharing this stream of activities using xAPI’s simple vocabular

Learning Record Store

There are three things that it does as a server site abstraction for xAPI: it provides validation for any of the data that is attempting to go into that store/ it has strict and stringent standards/ it’s not just a Dropbox repository/ if the data doesn’t meet those standards it is rejected. So, LRS:

  1. provides the means to validate the confidence that one can have of that data into the learning ecosystem/ it is a great open source measure to know we are dealing with valid data
  2. stores that data in an immutable format/ we are tracking activity over time and that time of activity is stored in immutable chronology/ at any point in time we can go back and recreate that activity
  3. stores all the data on a machine readable format/ that allows other data consumers to use that data in machine driven ways defined by functions to produce all kinds of automated things (automated audio visualizations etc)

***important notes

  • Standardization regards technical standards only not content/ schema
  • Blockchain can serve create certifiable record of activity that specifically leads to competencies and credentials 
  • activity data can be success data show either that you’ve done something but also that you’ve succeeded in doing something

Privacy and Data Governance

  • anyone who types a URL into their browser should be aware on what is happening about data governance/ how we relate to any web based technology
  • any technology that’s being used in learning space needs trade-offs about privacy, one should be aware

Data to project trends

xAPI profile that maps against certain business processes / alignment between their business processes and learning processes/ mission control visualizations/

Distribution of LRSs

That is policy question than technology question/xAPI is basically inter operable. Identity management is a bigger issue, however.

Who owns LRS data?

LRSs Identities

  • easy: xAPI statement requires a unique identifier for the person who is doing sth/ people us e-mail addresses to do that
  • difficult: when the e-mail is a work e-mail.

Experience with a digital footprint is a form of media. 

Downes-Siemens discussion (E-Learning 3.0) 17.10.2018


Just finished watching the conversation between Steven Downes and George Siemens in the framework of the E-Learning 3.0 course. Here is some of the key points I wrote down:

  • In the last five years we are kind of being in the wilderness/ now, there is an emergence of a more shared consistent narrative about AI and human intelligence and how these two intersect/ how we learn is structurally different way that predicted
  • The human equation in learning is critical to understanding/ Ai is influenced by human intelligence, one determines what the other does/ so the question is: what is uniquely human? Siemens advocated for an idea of beingness, who we are as people, kindness, compassion, emotion, maybe, he says, that’s our final domain of control. Machine learning model can be more accurate and effective that human intelligence, humans may slip through, computers always learn more/ So, if cognition isn’t our domain there are still areas where we are can prevail. Downes rejected the idea of being as fuzzy and suggested purpose and definition of goodness instead as more unique human qualities. However,  he said, that if we can come up with ethics, so can computers and that perhaps we are destined to be the voice in the computer’s head. 
  • What is learning? A persistent change in behavior or behavioral potential due to having undergone some type of experience, reflection or interaction with the environment/ the first part of learning is the capacity to choose what is important to you/ choosing-deciding that’s the skill in support we should be providing to students developmental attributes/
  • The things that are not being measured but end up to be more consequential
  • We can not not learn unless there is sth structurally wrong with us
  • So, why are we teaching in a way that is counter intuitive and not personally satisfying to students? Learning can be a bit of a struggle sometimes unless you are doing something that you absolutely love/ if we can have access to systems that can learn and out-learn us what should we be teaching? What’s the point of a formal system of learning when a student has an enormous disadvantage in relation to any type of technology agent? Maybe we should turn to the library of Alexandria, the lyceum or the academia for a model of more random exploration.
  • Siemens prediction for the next 50 years (short term) is that we are going to be working with technology, build knowledge and physically work in some in of relationship with technology. He quoted Andy Clark’s phrase about the mind being extended in the environment so our knowledge is not solely in our heads/ the ideas of connectivism seem all the more relevant as we proceed, he said.
  • Underlying layers of bitcoin and related technology reveal imply a significant change to the web itself (Downes)
  • The trustworthiness of the system is significant/ the places to hide are becoming minimum/ fragmenting the conversation has the same effect as denying a fact because people can’t get on the same page. Siemens used the word obfuscation: the conversation is not held long enough to have a shared opinion on that/ the strategies of dealing with is is fragmenting the main participants so that won’t be a coherent narrative
  • The joker problem: sometimes you just want to see the city burnt (Downes)
  • We are no longer engaging with information but with identities/ we only care about the info that validates our identity, the authenticity is secondary
  • Will to power (narcissistic) or will to control: I want to have control of what I do/ we often don’t see the long term impact-
  • What information abundance consumes is attention/ in the past we had more attention that information/ getting better for using our attention/ raising the IQ of individuals is important especially in an analytics world drives everything what happens

E-LEARNING 3.0_02.jpg

You can watch the discussion here