This is the story of Jenny's day in 'school' in the year 2025.

Jenny is an 18 year old student in the Open Polytechnic, only the Open Polytechnic does not have a fixed physical location, no building at all, and certainly no lecture theatres. That's not all. She doesn't even carry around a textbook anymore, something that her brother used to do 10 years back and found difficulty recouping any value from once his course was over. Instead, she carries around a re-sizeable, multi-functional, high-powered, learning slate system, simply called RUTHLESS.

No, Jenny's day is spent in the ether. Her learning occurs in the ether. Her life is mostly virtual, except when she goes down to the pubs and parks with her network of friends. That is still very physical, very personal. Jenny learning is done largely on the ultra high speed intelligent internet. Students in her class meet online during certain scheduled hours, where she is joined by students from other institutions and even students overseas who speak and understand a different language. This isn't problem because their online conversations and discussions are facilitated by a universal translator that simultaneously converts what are spoken and written instantaneously. There is no questions that each and every student is engaged in the discussion. The interesting thing about this class is students are all not necessarily of the same age. There is Abdullah M, a 14 year old male who lives to the north in the Malaysia, and Siew Ken, a 25 year old from Hong Kong, and Dave from Canada, who is 35, among a total of 12 students in this goup. There is stricitly no teacher because everyone contributes to the discussion, to varying degrees. Because classes start on a particular topic for the day, every student needs to research the issues. Coming together, a moderator from among the group is appointed to guide the discussion.

All discussion is documented online in a wiki, which allows other groups to pick up the issues and contribute further to the knowledge. The 'classroom' never sleeps as the material is worked on subsequently by other students in another part of the world. Such collaborative sychronous / asynchronous learning allows the greater amount of learning from the greatest number of people, thus enriching the learning which was never possible before.

To the extent that a student can subsequently moderate the discussion, he will have mastered the objectives that the group has agreed to as they explore the issues.