Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Still the best learning conference

What have I seen and done at Learning2009? I've interacted with organizations engaged in using social media for learning. User-generated video for training. 3D virtual worlds for leadership development. Twitter for business. I've seen an iPhone application for new employee orientation developed in three days by a cadre of college kids, invited for the purpose. I've heard captain Sully Sullenberger and Malcolm Gladwell talk about learning and training and growing. I've watched Second City not only deliver but develop their comedy. And I went to a concert by a Beatle cover band, Fab Faux, that was so good, I found myself thinking... if the Beatles in their 60's were actually playing here, they would not sound as much like the Beatles of the 60's as these guys do.

Elliot Masie's conferences border on the goofy or the giddy at times. I didn't need to see him do the salsa with a talented Latina, while he stayed on his ubiquitous Segway. But what Elliott has never forgotten, what he never lost, apparently, is the joy of learning. I'm talking about the native, intense fun that is bound up in discovery, what most of us remember about learning from kindergarten or first grade, when it was all still exciting and the world was nothing but possibilities. I'm talking about that sense of wonder that was then systematically dredged from us by the ninth or tenth grade until "learning," "education," and "drudgery" were pretty much synonymous.

I am pleased to have been able to present in this context, glad to have offered some value. More on the specifics later, and there's more to do here today, but I wanted to share these overall impressions.

And the overriding overall impression is this: Elliott Masie still puts on the best elearning conference.

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