Musings on Vintage Innovation

Matt and I listen to a lot of podcasts.  I’ve recently gotten into a podcast called Gen Pop - A Pop Culture Podcast and I really enjoy the podcasts created by Bald Move around the television and movies I like to consume.  Matt’s go to podcasts are 99% Invisible, a podcast about design and The Art of Education, which is a podcast about art education (of all things).

No judgement on this next statement please, but I’ve recently started playing Dungeons and Dragons with a small group of friends.  I enjoy playing board games and I try to use this passion as much as I can in my teaching.  Dungeons and Dragons was something I’ve always wanted to do in my youth but I could never find a group of others to play with.  Plus, when I was younger there was always a sort of stigma attached to certain types of games.  Now that I’m older...well, game on!

Jamie on the weekends...
So obviously I fell down the rabbit hole, as one does when they pick up a new hobby they enjoy.  I wanted to know as much as I could about D&D in as little as time as possible.  I came across another podcast, dedicated to D&D called Dragon Talk.  Now, I’m not about to dive into the ins and outs of the game.  Certainly this blog is not going to become...that.  However, listening to the most recent Dragon Talk on my drive in, I was confronted with a conversation about video rental stores and the following quote:

“My kids will probably never walk into a blockbuster and rent a video...but they still pick up a book every day”

I was struck by the relationship between this quote and the concept of vintage innovation that was discussed during the Innovator’s Mindset meetup.  No one rents videos anymore because technology has pushed us past the need to rent videos.  Or did society pull us beyond that need?  Either way, that particular technology is dying out.  But in a world where any book can be digitized and published on a screen, we still reach for the physical copy.

Being an innovative educator functions this way as well.  We need to be thoughtful enough to reach for the right tool at the right time.  Sometime that tool is digital, sometime its physical.  Sometimes it is a new strategy, sometimes it’s old.  Sometimes you want to binge watch your favourite TV show while eating raw cookie dough and sometimes you really just need a good book.