Legacy Technologies

From ElateWiki

Legacy technologies are those that are no longer in popular use. There is no longer an “installed base” of users for these technologies—whether they are development software, memory devices (or “tangibles”), computing equipment, or technological methods. With fast changes occurring in information technology (IT) and information and communication technology (ICT), many high-tech objects become “legacy” ones in a short life cycle. There are tech museums full of such yesteryear technologies.


Implications for Online Instructors

The awareness of the turmoil in the technological environment should enhance the ability of subject matter experts and instructional designers to keep up with the changes. This work suggests a constant need to stay updated on development software technologies, platforms, devices, and operating systems.

Changing Methodologies

The methods for doing the work will change. For example, the methods for maintaining secure work spaces and promoting secure information exchange have changed recently. The methods for designing simulations have changed because of the development software (and changes in pedagogical research). The ways to design digital learning objects that are reusable—with metadata and proper design—has changed. Submitting objects to wide-scale digital repositories has evolved. Keeping up will mean understanding the changing terminology, too, with new vocabulary added fairly constantly.

Protecting Prior Work

Subject matter experts and instructional designers will need to engage in a constant cycle of protecting digital works against the “slow fires” of technological change. This means protecting files against corruption by having backup copies, often in different file types or formats. While some software programs are “backwards compatible” (they’re capable of reading, editing, and saving files in prior versions), many are not. Updating contents from aging files may require (expensive) manual labor. However, without updates, many older files may not be readable by present-day learners.

See Also