One of the things I’ve learned from reading Ursula Franklin is the important role that infrastructure has with technology and on society:
Since the time of the Industrial Revolution the growth and development of tech has required as a necessary prerequisite a support relationship from governments and public institutions that did not exist in earlier times.
She goes on to talk about the divisible and indivisible benefits of infrastructure, and how infrastructure technology has shifted its role over time from indivisible benefits to divisible ones. With tech company infrastructures, they’ve taken it a step further and bundled benefits:
Another way apps hijack you is by taking your reasons for visiting the app (to perform a task) and make them inseparable from the app’s business reasons (maximizing how much we consume once we’re there).
(I urge you to read the entire post, it is great: https://medium.com/@tristanharris/how-technology-hijacks-peoples-minds-from-a-magician-and-google-s-design-ethicist-56d62ef5edf3#.yxx3qvjuk)
Presumably tech companies bundle the benefits because people aren’t as hooked in to their product and they are to their government. (You can’t take your tax dollar elsewhere)
Educational institutions are not tech companies, but they do have departments that need to make infrastructure decisions that will create certain benefits. To what degree these choices will benefit learners might be considered in terms of divisible or indivisible benefits. Learners can benefit foremost from infrastructure decisions, or they can be bundled in as an after-thought, expected to be the ones to adapt.