This was the first time for this conference, and with attendance well over 250 and from the level of activity I observed, planner Ron Joslin and colleagues should be very pleased. I liked very much how they tried a variety of session formats other than 50 minute lectures (like in the Games in Libraries session we actually got to play some of the games; I might be hooked on Wii bowling after a few rounds).
I should add another noticeable feature of note at the conference was the overt effort to be green sensitive with the amount of paper generated- the program was a singl trifold, double side printed with agenda on one side and map on the other. They asked us to turn in name badges every day to re-use the paper and holders. There were no ugly conference bags stuffed with glossy ads. Its small but commendable.
My NMC colleague Rachel Smith and I were invited to do a keynote on the NMC Horizon Report; as heard this group was interested in exploring/examining emerging technologies. For our session, we took the risk and prepared a presentation in Web 2,0 beta software, the amazing Vuvox Collage (yes its still in beta and sorry no, I dont have beta invites to share.. I just asked them for an account). I was deeply inspired by the Balancing Act presentation shared a few weeks ago by Barbara Ganley, and rolled Collage into my 50 Ways tools with one about Dominoe.
So below is The 2008 Horizon Report: Key Emerging Technologies:
Collage does provide a presentation form quite unlike any other, and easily allows the layering of images, videos, and text on screen, along with adding hyperlinks. The ability to insert media and then use the tool to slide all subsequent media back and forth is very slick. Rotating video makes for interesing effects. And the cut-out or alpha masking tool is pretty advanced in what it can do.
Vuvox Collage seems more suited to producing content people may read on their own; controlling the position in presentation mode was a bit tricky, and when you are full screen playback mode, if you go to any web links, when you return to Vuvox, it is rewinded to the beginning.
Also, there were some problems uploading video to their site last week (they were responsive in addressing the issue), but I ended up with 5 mal-uploaded videos, and references to them in my presentation that cannot seem to be removed. That’s why there are som gaps in the presentation, as there were three references to this bad movies that are stuck as green squares with a loading symbol. Beta beta beta is beta,
But presenting to this group was fun, they were rather attentive and engaged
And when we had them do the group activity to discuss the 2008 Horizon topics, it was very interesting that the most popular ones groups selected were the more difficult far horizon concepts of Collective Intelligence and Social Operating Systems.
As a supplement to the presentation, we loaded a wiki site with the examples referenced – including a number of people we video interviewed last week via Skype:
Bryan Alexander on how NITLE uses the report, including use by Colgate University as funding criteria for internal grant funding
Vicki Davis spoke on the Flat Classroom Horizon Project
Geoge Saltsman and colleagues from Abilene Christian University sharing how the Horizon Report influenced their program of issuing new students iPhones