Presenting with live slides – OER, literacies, libraries and the future preso

Had a great presentation yesterday and though i’d take the opportunity to lay out what i did and how the process of building live slides works. It’s pretty simple really.

The theory
Well… it may be a surprise to my mom… but i don’t know everything. Not even close. There’s a sense in which being invited to present at a conference, that you are the expert coming in to notify the locals of what they should know. You could also be presenting your own work, or, say, trying to explain a particular point… and live slides might not be best for that. Lets assume you have a broad topic like I was given for this presentation “the future of libraries”.

I’m not a librarian.

So what i decide to do is offer a platform for that discussion and a lens through which it might be useful to examine the discussion. Below are the slides that i put together with a series of questions that are about the work that i do – openness, literacies, digital stuff, learning, rhizomes – all focused towards the topic of libraries. The questions start at a controversial but audience focused (audience was supposed to be mostly librarians) so the first question i asked was “what is a library”.

I took these slides and put them into an eluminate room kindly borrowed from George Siemens and then invited some friends to come along. So, now we have 15 people in a room (i had fifty five on the first go around) and 11 questions on 13 slides. (first slide is a doodle slide to get people accustomed to doodling and the last a participant slide) We go through the questions and the “live slide guide” (me in this case) starts the discussion going. What is a library…? the audience posts their ideas into the slides… I do approx 5 min on each slide and try and present the slides as they are being built, using my own perspectives on the topic brought in through the questions and blending them with the ideas coming live from the collaborators in the elluminate conference. After 50 minutes the slides look like they do below.

At the same time, I was also doing a screencapture of the whole eluminate conference so i could post it later. The fine folks at seem willing to host this kind of stuff for us… here’s the direct link to the big video… embed below.For me
I love working this way. I learn from the audience, my prep time is lower, and I think people are far more engaged. Both times i’ve done this people seem to have had a good time. I think we learned interesting things. The title of this presentation changed after we did it… it focused far more on literacies than i was expecting and made some very interesting links between teachers and librarians (actually, several people thought there was really no difference)

More theory
I think this presents a far more realistic vision for knowledge. When asked a question like “what is a library” a single person has to come down to a single definition that can’t possibly encompass the full cultural impact of a word. If you look at the first question slide of the presentation you’ll see a very broad ranging definition created by a collaborative of people… the definition is rhizomatic, created in time, and the record presented here is a snapshot of it… an archive of a live moment of knowledge.

I’m really excited about this.