Friday, 21 September 2012

A few of my favourite things...

Ooooo Thing 17 is about SlideShare and Prezi. Well, if anyone hasn't even tried creating a Prezi, then you should. It's so much fun! You can see my Prezis here:

Interestingly, I've created a few of these because I love the way they create a visual 'path' than can link you from idea to idea, and are far more interesting then PowerPoint presentations. However, I very rarely use them in practice. Mostly they've been embedded in subject pages I've created online, and I've included the links to them in handouts and guides. I am wary of using them to present because of the way Prezi 'swings' between slides, which can definitely make you feel a little bit ill if you overdo it! It's also not always easy to move forward and back through your path, although I do like the ability to go 'home' and see the whole presentation and then select which bit you want to zoom in on (I'd love it if, once you've done this and then click forward it automatically takes you to that part of the path and moves you on from there, but it doesn't do this unfortunately). Also, using Prezi means you're relying on a functioning internet connection where you are delivering your presentation, which can be a gamble, but perhaps I should be braver and give it a proper go. I do so love making Prezis after all...

However, I am not a PowerPoint hater. I think PowerPoint is an extremely useful tool. It's exceptionally easy to knock-up a few ppt slides when you need to, it's a platform for delivering information that is easy to understand and follow, and it is certainly possible to use ppt well. As for SlideShare, I love it. I find it an invaluable tool for keeping up-to-date with professional practice - especially for things like accessing conference presentations which you were unable to attend. It's also a great place for getting inspiration for slides, although as I mentioned in Thing 15 I think watching how someone uses slides in their presentation delivery is probably the most useful way of learning best practice. Here are some of the presentations I've accessed on SlideShare recently:

I haven't started sharing my own material on SlideShare, even though I have an account.Sitting here now I wonder if this is because I feel my slides would be a voice amongst many, adding unnecessarily to the internet noise. Do I not have faith in the material I've created? Does part of me not believe my work is worthy of sharing (and if this is the case why was I happy to present it in the first place?) Also, my slides tend to be very image based, with little words, so do I just assume they wouldn't make sense or be useful to anyone? In fact, I hope that as my experience and confidence grows and I write more material to contribute to the profession, I'll start to feel sharing my work in this way is a natural part of the professional process. For now though, I've just uploaded the presentation on my MSc dissertation I gave to the AULIC group on Thursday 26th July 2012. Enjoy!

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