Shown above is a snapshot of the Jade simulator’s boot screen. There are a few tidbits to be gleaned.
The reveal preparations are progressing. I am very thankful for your patience.
After reviewing the available assets, our resident artist agreed with me that the concept geometry needs cleaned up before the reveal. This week, I have dedicated my time to this task.
I’ll tell you just a little more about Jade. I do not want to spoil the surprise.
Like most expressions, Jade was born from my imagination. If you are a regular reader, you will appreciate how very neuroplastic we are. Every sensory experience and every thought we have had since birth shapes us in an unknowable way. In that regard, every hour of my life has led to this moment.
I have had several odd experiences that mixed education and STEM. I played with 30-in-1-style kits as a young child. At the age of 8, I was fortunate to have received a Tandy Color Computer 3. The manual was extremely well-written – well enough that a motivated child became self-taught with BASIC. I would later teach BASIC to my peers in 5th grade and even receive a paycheck for it.
This stroll down memory lane is important. Technology in my childhood was self-directed. If you wanted something to work, you had to work for it. This is a sharp contrast against today’s backdrop of pre-loaded apps, error-proof drag-and-drop programming blocks, and “disposable” electronic gimmick kits. The activities are now railroaded. That is, the destination is known before you get started, and there is no other way to go. No wonder there is an outcry that creativity is gone from learning STEM.
A life of destinations is one of disposable pleasures. It looks good from the outside, but that external product does not fulfill an internal need.
Shift Sight is here to change the narrative. The company intends to bend the trajectory of every consumer electronics company. The industry path is not sustainable, and I have no plan of drowning in e-waste.
In addition to being durable, Jade is a tool for building a sustainable future. Sustainability is born from imagination in a world of constraints. Imagination is born from self-directed activities. Let’s talk about those.
When you hear the word “Montessori,” a few images probably come to mind. Through observation about human development, Dr. Montessori gained insights that neuroscientists are only now “discovering.”
Dr. Montessori stressed the emphasis for a carefully prepared environment. Products on the edtech market have a complete disregard for this. Virtual breadboards on a tablet screen where parts are dragged-and-dropped. “Easy” programming languages where skill development plateaus quickly and boredom ensues. The devices themselves can be classified as technological Swiss Army knives.
Would you expect a chef to cook a gourmet meal with a Swiss Army knife? Would you expect a child (or an adult, newcomer, or seasoned engineer) to build a sustainable future with a disposable device? The answer to both of these is no.
There is another image for Montessori that pops into my mind. It is the source of Jade’s namesake:
This image is a snapshot of a website from long ago. It was a school that was founded by someone very dear to me. She was a Montessori teacher who always strived to act with compassion, kindness, and justice. She would work to keep those around her comfortable. Even when the path she walked had no map, she was fearless if it was the right thing to do. “Bad” outcomes did not stop her from trying.
She was my mother-in-law. She is no longer with us.
I can only hope that Shift Sight would have her approval. Through Jade, we are attempting to carry her spirit and her ideals against one of the biggest obscured crises facing society today. Shift Sight will not stop until Jade is in your hands. We will act with compassion and kindness. We will move with justice – that equity, not fairness, is necessary.
We will do so unconditionally. Too much is at stake.
Once again, I have only given you a glimmer of what is coming soon. Montessori and edtech have been water and oil up until now. The former is associated with self-directed development. The latter is external stimulation and, ultimately, e-waste.
We will change this dialogue.
Stay with us while I iron out the details of the reveal. I will post a countdown on the website when I have a date and time.
Ty is a Founder of Shift Sight, LLC.