Tom Green’s article The Education of Geeks and Freaks at Digital Web Magazine is must reading for anyone teaching designing or coding topics. Even if you don’t agree with him, you need to read it.
His main point is that the design track people and the coding track people need to talk to each other a lot more and find a way to integrate the approach to working on the web so that everyone understands a bit of what the other geek or freak is talking about. A few tidbits to whet your interest:
There is a growing disconnect between the skills being taught in the classroom and the skills you need to possess in the “real world”.
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One cannot be a master of code and a master of design. There was a time when this was possible, but the industry has grown so fast in so short a time that anyone claiming to be a master of both has a real need to get back in touch with reality.
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I quite agree that Adobe and, to a degree, Microsoft, are on the right track here. Whether we care to admit it or not, our industry is moving away from the browser to the desktop. AIR, Flex, Silverlight, and whatever else is being cooked up are taking our work and making it a desktop application. As such, multidisciplinary work teams are critical and, whether you care to admit it or not, those teams will be composed of Freaks and Geeks.