For a presentation yesterday, I talked about Personal Learning Networks. I was inspired by the graphic created by Jan Hegna and used by David Warlick to create my own image of the Personal Learning Network (PLN) I use for this blog. That sentence gives an example of how a PLN works. Our PLNs are expanded by the people whose blogs we read and comment on and Twitter accounts we follow. We are able to connect with experts in a field in ways we couldn’t before the advent of the Internet.
Part of my PLN for this blog is Daniel Levitin’s Twitter feed. His feed includes many responses to readers of his books, so I decided to ask a question I’ve had for awhile, in part as an experiment in more actively including him in my PLN. I asked this question:
What books did he recommend?
- The Psychology of Music Diana Deutsch, ed.
- Music, Language, and the Brain by Aniruddh D. Patel
- Music, Thought, and Feeling: Understanding the Psychology of Music by William Forde Thompson
- Hearing in Time: Psychological Aspects of Musical Meter by Justin London
- Musical Cognition: A Science of Listening by Henkjan Honing
Forty years ago, if I’d had a similar question, I might have crafted a carefully-worded letter, searched through phone books or Peterson’s Guide at the public library for an address, and mailed the letter, waiting weeks or months for a reply. Since I followed that path once in the 1970s, I can tell you that the scenario is a valid one. When I received the personal reply from the professor, I appreciated it no less than I appreciated this reply from @danlevitin. In fact, somewhere in my files I still have that letter. But it’s *my* letter, never shared with anyone else. Because I asked my question about books in the public forum of Twitter, others were able to benefit from Daniel Levitin’s response.
Here is the image I created which shows the many resources we use to find information for this blog. You can see other, larger sizes, at my Flickr page.
For more information about PLNs, check out this page by David Warlick or try a Google search.