A belated, but no less massive for it, THANK YOU to everyone who joined us two weeks ago for our best and biggest weelearning yet.

This time we made it a ticket holders’ affair for our first trip to Urban Wood, a lovely little bar on Colston Street, just off Bristol centre. We were joined by some 20 or so elearning and knowledge professionals, some of whom we knew, but plenty of whom were new to us.

In the past we’ve had practice pechakuchas, themed discussions, tweetchat and regular old beer ‘n’ chat, but this event we lined up a couple of friends of weelearning to lead a couple of talks.

First up to speak was weelearning regular Zak Mensah of JISC who gave us the lowdown on ebooks. Giving a variant of a talk he would usually deliver with slides, Zak used his talk to cover not only what constituted an eBook, but also to question what we mean by the word book (at least a 100 pages was one possible definition; at least an hour to read was another – pretty fluid definitions of the type we are comfortable with at weeTowers).

Zak Mensah holding forth

Zak speaking, photo by John. How’s that for style.

After a break for more refreshment from the great selection of craft beers available from the compact bar and we were straight in to our next talk, from John Curran of Designed for Learning (but also Willow DNA and Sponge). John’s question to us for the evening went to the heart of the kinds of learning instructional designers spend their time thinking about – do we learn from reading and and do books fit in to our habits for getting support. Rather than it being about John, he gave everyone in the room a chance to air their views and contribute.

As you might expect for an audience of learning geeks that included at least two librarians, books got a fairly positive review, but there were dissenters who prefer the instant find of Google to leafing through pages. In the final analysis, we had to agree that no matter what the medium, even in an age of easily distributable video or animation, reading was going to continue to be the go-to format of choice for most of us.

Both our speakers are active users of the Twitter and post interesting stuff, so why not read what they are up to now: @zakmensah and @designedlearnin

We liked Urban Wood so much we’re going back – hopefully you can join us on Wednesday 19 September, 7.30pm. Tickets available late August.

For further reading about or inspired by  the evening, check out:

(if you have something to add, let us know and we’ll chuck up a link)

Post by: Dan Roddy (13 Posts)