Tuesday, June 17, 2008

ICCMSN 2008: final random thoughts

Here are some last final random thoughts about The International Conference on Computer Mediated Social Networking held in Dunedin last week.

Apologies to people who are unattributed, but at this stage I have forgotten who said what.
  • Interesting that people who were studying social networking didn't appear to be doing it much themselves.
  • Social networking tools are great to enhance conference participation but need to be thought about and organised well in advance of conference. And even then, will not be taken up by many - the old 1 (or is it 10) % rule.
  • Keep social networking/e-learning simple. In the case of midwives who rely so much on mobile phones, think about how we can deliver information/education by phone. Also, consider how we work with people who have basic computer resources eg offer recordings of online sessions to people on CD.
  • Don't let education and academic funding mechanisms (and traditional thinking about knowledge production) constrain social networking activities ie publishing online papers in open access journals as well as presenting in online conference/seminars. Be involved with setting the bar as opposed to letting the bar dictate the way you engage with online learning and knowledge generation.
  • People should use more images and less text on their PowerPoint slides because nothing but text is very, very boring - see the slideshow below.
  • John Medina, author of 'Brain Rules', says that multi-tasking is impossible and always being online is distracting and unproductive. I am beginning to believe him. When I did online things like engage with Twitter, I stopped listening to the presentations so I turned off my computer when I wanted to listen carefully to a speaker.
  • I use my PLE for the majority of my learning these days rather than activities like attending conferences. For example, Clay Shirky and his ideas about time were talked about at the conference but I had already learned about him from YouTube. The real value of face-to-face conferences is the informal networking that is done between sessions. The other value, especially when you attend multi-discipline conferences is that you are 'forced' to engage with subjects/perspectives that you would otherwise
As an aside, here is a great slideshow based on 'Brain Rules', which gives excellent advice on giving presentations.



Peta Hopkins said...

I agree with your video comments abotu social networking happening well before a conference. I was so surprised weeks before-hand that there appeared to be no thought to this.

Having been involved with library conferences and symposia with blogs and network sites set up well in advance it was ironic that a conference on computer mediated social networking didn't really get into this until the conference had already started.

If you want to see an excellent use of SNS pre and post conference take a look at Beyond the Hype. This network was set up at least a couple of months before the symposium was held.

Sarah Stewart said...

Thanks for that, Peta. Its good to get ideas. I am always suggesting things for midwifery conferences, but not having a lot of luck. My latest suggestion, putting slides on Slideshare, has been met with complete silence. :)

Kate Foy said...

Sarah. I got my copy of Brain Rules from Amazon yesterday. It has an accompanying DVD which gives the reader an 'intro' to the 12 rules that Dr Medina discusses. Terrific stuff and a great way to introduce a book and revise content I reckon. I wonder will there be more of this in educational publications in the future.

It's also full of marvellous stuff for educators.

Sarah Stewart said...

I know that this is not new news, but the rule about exercise and brain function has really got to me ie exercise improves brain function. So I am trying to get a good walk done at least 3 times a week. I'm hoping that will make me really, really clever :)