From the Domstika platform and Taschen publishing house, Brazilian Julius Wiedemann bets on creative exchange
We are technological creatures. Undoubtedly, in the last 40 years, innovations modified the ways in which we link, learn, perceive and interact with the environment. The
smartphone, together with the facilities for access to information provided by the internet, plus the new forms that each of the human communication edges take on from these tools are the kicks for an ongoing revolution that covers the ways of training and learning. . And although in a world that changes so vertiginously we don't know what future jobs or professions we aim for, we know that we will do it in an increasingly digital context.
On these issues the Brazilian Julius Wiedemann, expert in new content and chief curator of Domstika reflects,
a digital platform made up of more than 4 million users that provides more than 400 courses, In charge of recognized creatives from each area, it allows collaborative work and aims to feed both the creative economy and the permanent search for new solutions to new problems. "It is a challenge in the era of hyperinformation to find and cure relevant content and give it the appropriate framework and form to be transmitted as knowledge, taking advantage of the global potential that the digital era gives," he says.
Time does not stop
"It is less about imposition and more exchange. The encyclopedist stage linked to watertight formulas for all the same ceases to be effective in a world in constant metamorphosis," says Wiedemann.
As it stands out, this is where the "learning revolution" arises and online teaching platforms sweep across the geographical barriers of knowledge. This means that a design student who is studying for a degree in Graphic Design in São Paulo, and who is interested in illustration courses and wants to make all possible experiences, can take training with illustrators from Germany, Holland or Argentina without moving of your city But the systematization of these courses, the creation of community is transformed into an optimal environment to boost the economy and the growth of these professions as a sector. "According to Google statistics, the term
education onlineit has a popularity of between 75 and 100 points, of a scale in which 100 is the maximum and 0 is the minimum. "And in this sea of information and possibilities, the true finding of what we are looking for, the relevant and the relevant , effectiveness, is usually a challenge. Therefore, the role of Wiedemann as
Chief curator of content, content format, quality and how it is offered are the key that seems to explain the reason for the resounding success of some platforms and the lack of attractiveness of others.
In full reign of the algorithm that is based on previous choices and other metrics to offer content to the user, what is the specific value of the editor?
It becomes a key role. It is the difference between quality and effective content, which in less time solves what you were looking for, and the 200 hours of searching and stirring tutorials that leave you with a slight idea of what you want, but do not finish completing the knowledge to which you are You want to access. Domstika's two keys, for example, are community and editing. It is about healing in motion. My role is to connect the best creatives, realize the best they have to give, if step by step courses, inspirational documentaries or other content, and then turn it into a visual and dynamic language, of course looking for excellence to arrive with full potential Then, there is a job from the person who receives or purchases the course, to take advantage of it, contact the community, interact, participate. I see a huge opportunity, because creative people tend to be hungry to learn, and a lot of willingness and imagination to take paths that were not previously traced. That nourishes the platform.
What is the initial question when starting to put together a course?
It is very similar to when you start thinking about a book we do in Taschen. It is always from asking what we can do that does not yet exist on the internet. While it was before what book or course we can do that does not make another book or course, now the competition is against the internet, that the course is online is anecdotal or not [laughs], but if I can find it easy and free on the other hand, to what to pay for the course? Ok because it is a vision, because it is a careful, edited, thought and organized content in detail for the purpose for which it was created. And the plus, fueled by a community of common interests.
And how is that?
Immersed in the ground. I live on top of the plane, between Cambrige, Barcelona, United States, Germany … It may not be a complete innovation, but a look, a return to some theme that is already there. There are different ways to make people perceive the content we have, but the fundamental question is whether one can go to Google Images and in half an hour have what we need. Because if so, it is not for ah. Therefore, it is key to work with a healing team that takes time to make a selection of what is important, relevant, and make sure of the history and vision behind anything that is being told.
And how is the content organized?
It can be done in five ways, according to a theory that I like and that created the founder of the TED conferences, Richard Saul Wurman: by location, as do supermarkets in the gndolas; alphabetically; temporarily, where the clearest example is the Facebook timeline; by category, as e-commerce usually does, and hierarchically, such as star rating. They are instruments of organization of any content and basic notions of information architecture, but in short, I always personally adhere to the phrase
Less is more. Do not reload, go to the bone. The synthesis, simplicity, added to the beauty to organize the content, especially visual, always works for me. Something totally hooked on the value of time, which is a finite resource and must be taken advantage of.
The platform emerges to take advantage of time? Is his
Domstika's soul is her teachers. Excellence in time management is important, but what each incredible person owns that human vision, crossing millions of stories that make up the head of a creative, is what we carry as a vehicle, to which of course we add value. They are the protagonists and the important thing. We can be his arms, his legs, even his brain sometimes when giving ideas of how to lower the information, but the heart, the core, without a doubt they are. Therefore, we put together conferences, activities and events that nurture that contact that is then transferred and that we have in digital.
Born as an impulse or an order from them?
As a confluence between a need and the technological possibility that it was possible, I think. The story is that Spanish owners, designers and passionate about the creative, had an internet services company. They sold everything and were left alone with this platform because it was interesting, they were in contact with other creatives, they loved the round trip, but they didn't have a business model; It was an information exchange community, just that. After selling, they began to observe an important movement, without doing anything, of people wanting to connect, to learn from each other. And they focused on what things they said and noticed that they were wondering about tips, techniques. They supported its growth, but, of course, there were costs and then there was a way to monetize it. They put a course, people started shopping, without doing much to make that happen. And in three years it became so professional that 1.2 million people buy courses and the composition exploits in very distant latitudes: the community is made up of 30 percent of Mexicans, 30 of Spaniards, 10 of countries whose language is Portuguese or the English, and the remaining 30 comes from Latin America.
Then naturally arose from the potential of a social network with new ways of learning?
Exactly. It is a project that combines the strength of social networks with the specific resources offered by online education thanks to technology. Ac no, but in Spain there is a free employment exchange and for all passes, of course, free inspirational documents that everyone can access. It is a different tool focused on creatives. Everything that can be found in photography, illustration, design, animation, typography, calligraphy, technical courses such as
After effects… I think that in these fields we have everything to grow and the possibilities are endless.
Wiedemann knows that technology has come to exponentially push social change. "I am fascinated by how technology plays a giant role, because it offers us very fast social change tools. In the short term, it will revolutionize the world of employment, we are already seeing it: jobs became part of flexible hierarchies, especially in the creative area, it is no longer necessary to be in the office, because the work is intellectual, and is sent in an instant to the other side of the world.The structures are completely decentralized.The decision making, the organization of resources, is facilitated, of talent, the reach is really revolutionary, "he says enthusiastically.
Of course you can look at the phenomenon from the perspective of cost savings, but while it is an existing dimension, the interesting thing is to see how this new landscape gives new possibilities. "Now, even where the person who seeks to train and learn wants to reach depends almost exclusively on his will. The market is much more flexible, global and full of possibilities. Professions – back, especially linked to the creative – have given a huge leap that implies that each professional takes charge of his passion, what he wants to contribute, and is willing to take it to the next level, can nourish his community and take advantage of the tools. In that, the Argentine, the Latino, is specialist for an almost cultural issue, his willingness to learn and find new ways of doing things is always latent. "
The future, within reach
Wiedemann is convinced that he does not exaggerate with this that remarks again and again: infinite possibilities. "Technology will change so much that we will find ourselves as humanity at the point where we have to decide where our own nature intervenes."
How do you imagine that future?
We will face ethical dilemmas, we already do it, at times. Ah let's discover the true role of technology. Now it is mostly utilitarian, but go further. Come the day we can ingest a pill that makes us experience, without touching anyone, the best sexual relationship we could have without the side effects such as pregnancy or the transmission of sexual diseases, for example. We are going towards that. And there we have to decide what are the paths we want to take. The challenge is moral, ethical. We will have to answer the question if the technology will do us good or do us bad, and how to use it. It could affect nature, intervene the color of the eyes, the natural intelligence of a person. In fact, we're almost there. My mother, who lives in Brazil, has Parkinson. And it has a chip installed in the brain that emits electromagnetic waves that compensate for the lack of dopamine and other issues. This causes you to take 80 percent less medication. It is called Deep Brain Stimulation. And it's protocol, it's not a crazy experiment. It is a frequent procedure. Then, everything that changed slowly with people, technology comes to accelerate it with everything and the effect it has on a social level is directly proportional, enormous.
Is the face-to-face model or system opposed to digital?
Of course not. Before, learning was linked only to a face-to-face class and was a rigid system, because there were no other options, that does not mean that the model is wrong, but that there are other parallel methods that can complement it. The key is that there is not so much standardization of learning processes. We do not want to be in-person competence, even one of the short-term objectives, which is already being discussed with several of the most important universities in the world, is to design digital formations so that they can offer, with their staff of teachers, programs that nest in their institutions with our
know how and the help of our knowledge of editing, production and dissemination. Provide dynamism, narrative resources, make the contents attractive from the visual, highlight, rank, among other things. Be productive, because universities will have a way of launching their brand to the world without having a project development department that may not be willing to launch from within. Be a kind of alliance. The formations today aim to be 20 percent digital, and that is how it is reflected in the CVs, but soon they do not reach and the formal educational institutions know it.
How do you explain the success of monetization in this case and the failure of other similar projects?
The success of learning platforms is inevitable and is due to the combination between a dramatic change in learning, access to information and ways of communicating, connecting, networks. Therefore, it is unstoppable. It only takes a calculation and good financiers, investments, and not even luck. The courses are sper accessible. The picture is given. Now we are with American investors, because they share this vision, and they are also attracted to the second largest market after China, the Spanish speaker.
Is there a special potential in Latin America and developing countries in this regard?
The potential we have is greater because hunger is greater and the will also, we are used to the difficulties that do not stop us, keep us more creative and in the end the tool we have, which are mobile. Access is democratized in such a way that there is no difference between a boy in the United States, Germany, England or Argentina. We believe that the future lies in helping and providing tools for the creative economy and the creative community to expand and be even more global.