So you’re doing a presentation and you think that it’d be useful to make the content available afterwards. Well you can put the slides online. Job done. But does that give attendees at the presentation enough? What about people who come upon it in the future?
Well we’ve got technology available now that allows us to record more. (In fact we’ve had that capability for a long time; pre-digital and pre-web, it was just harder to do for most people.) But now it’s easy to do. Surely having your dialogue will make the content of that presentation a whole lot more useful, immediately and into the future. Therefore when you get up to speak record it with some kind of digital recorder; be that an mp3 player with a mic, a phone, an ipod, whatever gives a decent quality recording. Now you can tie the two together. The easiest way is at Slideshare. There you can host your slides and add your mp3 file (with position markers) to re-marry the slides with the audio commentary.
But we can go further. Set up a video camcorder somewhere nearby or have a colleague in the audience with one. By the end you’ve got a video record of the presentation. Now you can put that up on a video hosting site, YouTube being the best known, but there are others which might suit your needs better. That’s okay as it goes, but what about the slides. We’ll there are free online facilities that enable you to put the video and slides together, a good example being VCASMO.
Your video plays alongside your slides, which is rather useful for a demonstration.
Of course, there are other presentation alternatives, some of which I’ve previously written about here. And another one I need to do some work on being Prezi.
I came across this video today. It’s by José A. Bowen, dean of the Meadows School of the Arts. What José has to say aligns exactly with what I was saying at a recent forum to discuss the uses and implications of new technology, read/write web, and collaboration in lecturing within higher education. Whilst I don’t necessarily agree with removing computers from the lecture theatre, I certain agree with using the open educational resources, including lecture series’ provided by Stanford, Berkeley, Princeton, Yale, Harvard or MIT, and using podcasts to present lecture material. Why not use the best lecture material available? Students can access this material at any time. The added value of universities is the interaction with faculty; and this time could be increased by reducing the ‘pushing’ of lecture material. It’s said that students value face-to-face interactions with faculty; is a 50 minute lecture really that useful an interaction, or do they actually want more challenging discussion?