stretching the envelope

Taking it easy

At my last performance review some of the CPD tasks I set myself were to attend more conferences (taking into consideration work and staffing levels) and present at same.  I desperately wanted to attend LILAC 2012 but the cost was prohibitive and as it was also too close to CILIP Cymru Wales conference (which I was attending), I sadly let it go.  I did try to focus and write an abstract but just ran out of time and inspiration.

So with a little bit of fear and trepidation I booked my place at Mobile Technologies in Libraries – information sharing event on the 8 May 2012 in Birmingham and at the same time I ticked boxes that said “Yes please, I’d like to volunteer to do something to help” or words to that effect.  Didn’t think much more about it until I received an email from Jo Alcock asking me to do a 5 minute lightning talk and chairing a session.  EEK!  Well there was no going back now!

Never has a presentation of such short length caused so much pain and angst.  I’ve always steered clear of using Powerpoint as I loathe and detest the thing having sat through many a one listening to someone drone on and on repeating exactly what it says on the slide.  I have lost too many hours of the day listening to dreadful presentations such as these.

Use Prezi! I hear you say, well yes, that would’ve been nice if my dead laptop could’ve coped but it couldn’t.  And there was no time to really get to grips with it before the big day.  So I dived straight into Powerpoint and the result is on slideshare.

This was my first EVER powerpoint.  It was also my first presentation although I have spent many years officiating as a Superintendent Registrar at weddings, so standing in front of an audience is not that scary…. well not that much anyway.  It seemed to go down very well and there were a lot of lovely positive twitter comments from the gathering too.  The rest of the day was excellent.  There was a lot of content to get through and there are some amazing projects out there too.  All the presentations along with loads of information including handouts on the day are available on Lanyrd.

I particularly enjoyed the Keynote presentation by James Clay.  Thought provoking and some interesting statistics to mull over such as

  • 71% of 16-24year olds accessed the internet via mobile phone in 2011

This is particularly interesting as we observe this age group coming into the LRC to use computers and failing to know How to use them.  They are more comfortable using their phones than static computers.  Increasingly we are being called upon to help with simple tasks such as saving work, saving to folders, folder management and how to print.  There is an assumption that this age group know all about computers, clearly this isn’t so which causes problems when that assumption is taken during teaching sessions and they are asked to retrieve set coursework through Moodle but not shown how to do this.  More and more students are connecting to the college sites through the college wi-fi on their mobile devices.  At the moment this is fine, until they need to print (no wifi enabled printers … yet) or the wifi crashes.  This is clearly an issue we need to address.

The day was peppered with meeting lots of lovely twitterfolk and receiving plenty of hugs.  Lovely to talk my sort of shop too.  Thanks for a brilliant day.


One thought on “stretching the envelope

  1. Great post! Will check out the content on Lanyrd. That statistic is really interesting, also if you flip it on its head and think that it suggests 29% of 16-24 year olds didn’t access the internet via a mobile phone. This is over a quarter, which is pretty huge I think for this group of so called digital natives.

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