Trend #4 hits the mainstream next year and will revolutionize the speed at which we all learn.
Learning networks are the evolution of social networks. When social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn appeared 10 years ago, they transformed our speed and volume of connections. But as the focus of social networks is conversation, they also multiplied our noise and distraction.
Over the last five years, more and more people are using social networks to learn.
Want to find the best health tips? Follow the right pages on Facebook. Want to play the guitar? Watch the right videos on Youtube. Want to keep up with future trends? Follow the right people on Twitter.
Over the last two years, the phenomenon of social learning has accelerated. Skaters, surfers, skiers, singers have shared their latest moves on Youtube, and as others see what’s possible, they’ve learned from the learning, and entire global groups have learned exponentially new ways of doing things beyond what any of them would think would be possible – far beyond the level that any one expert could learn on their own.
These learning networks – united by action more than distraction – have accelerated even further with the addition of artificial intelligence.
Early this year, DeepMind developed an A.I. called “AlphaGo” to beat world champions at the Chinese game of GO – seen as the “Holy Grail of AI”. It did this by studying hundreds of thousands of games, and then playing itself millions of times. It then began playing humans, starting with 3 time European Go champion, Fan Hui – beating him in all of their games. The standard of AlphaGo brought millions to the game of Go, learning from the televised games and improving their own games.
Fan Hui himself, despite losing, learned so much by the accelerating standard of AlphaGo’s game, that this summer he rose from 633rd ranked in the world to up in the 300s.
With learning networks, we collectively learn far faster than when on our own.
Now, learning networks have begun springing up around every area of learning, with their own tailor-made tools and with the help of artificial intelligence:
> IBM’s Watson is at the centre of “Ecosystem” – A learning network for doctors and the medical industry, learning from doctor and medical expert inputs in over 100 milion health records to diagnose disease for any patient better than any one doctor can.
> Google’s just launched “Trips” – A learning network for travellers to share their experiences and preferences that, together with artificial intelligence, can then recommend the ideal trip for you based on your own history and preferences – and everyone’s combined experiences.
> Our company, Entrepreneurs Institute launched “GeniusU” – A learning network for entrepreneurs to share their best learning and connections with each other. In just over a year we’ve attracted over 600,000 entrepreneurs from 180 countries, exponentially growing and sharing the best strategies and resources to grow their individual and collective profit and purpose.
Expect many of the fastest growing companies next year to be learning networks, where the networks are not just ABOUT learning, but the networks themselves ARE learning.
What could you do to create a learning network for your customers?
What learning network will you join?
All the biggest global challenges, from the environment to energy to equality, are being solved by new learning networks. It won’t be individuals that come up with the ultimate solutions, but a combination of humans and AI working together.
Education itself will be transformed not by some new school system, but by learning networks where the students drive the social learning, united by a common purpose.
We are moving from communities united by place to communities united by purpose.
And as learning networks (based on exponential action) grow, social networks (based on exponential distraction) will begin to decline.
“Education is learning what you didn’t even know you didn’t know.” ~ Daniel J Boorstin