Euen Semple

Why blogging still matters in business - and always will.

Euen Semple

I even heard of a senior manager, involved in leadership development, being hauled over the coals because of the use of double spaces after full stops in her PowerPoint presentations! We are also going to face an uphill struggle changing expectations of our business writing in reports or even PowerPoint presentations. It''s not about marketing, or SEO, or "going viral".

Telling stories.

Euen Semple

Present a human being with disparate bits information and we will try to make sense of them, to give them meaning, to get them to tell a story. We can''t help ourselves and do it all the time. We also try to get the world to fit our pre-existing stories. Those we learned from our families, our colleagues, our neighbours. We feel better when it does. In fact having our stories disproved unsettles us and challenges our very sense of self. We cling to them for dear life.

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Trending Sources

Tools of your trade

Euen Semple

From the senior execs I worked with who winged at me about what IT wouldn't let them do, to that sinking feeling when trying to send a client a presentation and they say "your file doesn't work" or they can't work out how to get it through their organisation's firewall. Sadly I still encounter too many people who still feel that technology is being done to them.

We only have moments to live.

Euen Semple

It is meant to convey the idea that rather than live in the past or the future we should be more attentive to the present moment. In fact all of our memories of the past and our imagining of the future can only occur in the present moment so it really is all we have. We have all experienced leaders who are truly present. I've always loved this phrase from Jon Kabat-Zinn.

Mindlessness

Euen Semple

Much is being made these days of the benefits of mindfulness, being present, noticing what is happening around you, living in this moment now rather than digging up old ones or fearing the ones yet to come. But let’s face it, few of us achieve this ideal. For most of us our waking hours are usually mindless. We respond without thinking to what life throws at us based on what our parents taught us or what we see others around us doing.

Heritage

Euen Semple

Mollie gave me Rory Stewart's book The Marches as part of my Christmas present, a travel book based on his relationship with his father and the land on either side of the Scottish border. Both of them had been in the army, in Scottish regiments, and both had served as foreign diplomats. The world he describes is very unfamiliar and occasionally off putting in its antiquity and stuffiness.

Knowledge ecology on a global scale

Euen Semple

I am also reading Freedom , the sequal to Demon , Daniel Suarez's books about a MMOG designer who, anticipating his death from a terminal illness, creates the Daemon, a collection of bots, scripts, volunteers and mythical narratives that builds an alternative civilisation as our present one crumbles under its own weight.

The challenge of saying what you think

Euen Semple

I have never underestimated the challenge of saying what you think in writing, in public that social media presents. This challenge has been the focus of much of my work. How does someone representing BP, or The UN, “find their voice” and speak to the rest of us in a way that we can relate to and respond to? Can they? Is it inevitable that they resort to bland marketing corporate speak that fills our networks with more signal than noise? And what about inside work?

Sending presents to Hong Kong

Euen Semple

Christmas presents via ShopInHK.Com's, Hong Kong gift delivery service. even offered to hold the delivery till the 23rd so that Keith gets his presents. We finally got through and sent Keith and his family in Hong Kong their. delivered on Christmas eve

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Critical Thinking

Euen Semple

Many years ago I was presenting at a conference alongside Jimmy Wales, instigator of Wikipedia. In my most recent post on Facebook I shared this provocative photo of a supposed potential contact with whom I apparently share a "mutual friend".

Anxiety Dreams

Euen Semple

We're doing a live broadcast with the presenters through the glass in the studio and me rushing back and forwards from the desk to a row of tape machines setting each one up as we go through the show. Photo credit Andy Walmsley [link].

Report writing

Euen Semple

Another friend was recently presented with the results of a similarly pointless effort. A friend recently had to produce a report at work. A tight deadline caused significant stress, and an important topic meant that it felt like it mattered. However when asked if they thought anyone would read it the reply was — no.

Shadow IT

Euen Semple

Today, yet again, I tried to send a copy of my presentation to a client in advance of my keynote on Wednesday only to have the file rejected by their email system due to a file size limit. So guess what I did? I stuck it on Dropbox and sent them the link. I have also set up a Slack team this morning to work with another client, and most clients resort to using their own phones or tablets to carry out Skype calls when we need to coordinate. This sort of "Shadow IT" is becoming the norm.

Working things out at work.

Euen Semple

We spend a great deal of our lives at work and, while there is a fair amount of routine, it can also present us with our most challenging situations. Working things out at work. Apart from time spent with our families work is the setting for our most intense relationships with other people. We get to test ourselves, to discover ourselves, to act out different versions of ourselves. We do this along with dozens, or even hundreds, doing the same thing. It's no wonder work gets stressful.

Being good enough

Euen Semple

This is the time of year when Santa will bring us a present if we have been good enough. Once we get to school we get good grades if we are good enough, and at work we'll get promoted if we are good enough. As we get old we're told that we'll get to heaven if we've been good enough. We are trained to let others decide if we are good enough. But we trust those others less than we used to. We need to learn to aspire to our own highest standards and realise what we are capable of.

Being brave

Euen Semple

Many of us sense the uniqueness of the opportunities this presents us as individuals and collectively. We live in a time of massive change and instability. But we are daunted too. In many cases we are trying to shrug of lifetimes of conditioning and habit. In the "real" world of work most of us are afraid, most of the time. We comply, compromise, concede. We know we "should" be brave and then we beat ourselves up about being too scared.

Discretion

Euen Semple

There are many, many times that I am presented with situations which I am dying to blog about that would reveal really important stuff about the workplace. I write all the time about the benefits of sharing our thoughts and insights with each other. Thinking harder, writing better, and sharing more is my mantra. But there are many times when the stories we want to share involve other people and it is not always easy to decide if and how to share those stories.

We need more rubbish on the internet.

Euen Semple

I was listening to a Jim Rohn tape the other day in which he talks about giving presentations and knowing that only some of the audience will respond well to what he says. Most of the audience will be mildly interested and some will be what he calls "the perplexed". He says that he loves doing the talks even if only a small group are what he calls "believers" because much of the reason for speaking in public is to aid his own learning.

Digital

Euen Semple

Aside from presented by women there was little in common between the two events either in style or content, yet both came under this umbrella word Digital. Last week I went along to Reclaim The Net, hosted by Eva Pascoe one of the founders of Cyberia (who ran the first network of cyber cafes in Britain). Held in Digitas Lbi off Brick Lane it was attended by a mix of Hoxton Hipsters and hard core geeks.

State Of The Net - opportunity and threat

Euen Semple

Enjoying the mind stretching presentations at State Of The Net 14 but swinging wildly between excitement and concern. The theme is "smart life" and there are so many opportunities opening up through greater thoughtfulness, increased openness, and smarter use of technology to help us lead better lives both individually and collectively.

The passing of time

Euen Semple

Ongoing attempts to "live in the moment" and "be present" get swept away in a constant stream of regrets about the past or fears for the future. Robert Paterson wrote a moving blog post this week about his dog Jay who he had to have put down a couple of years ago. In it he writes of the inevitability of things coming to an end. We all act as if life was a blank cheque that we never have to cash. We'll try next time. It'll be alright when x,y or z has happened.

Facebook Graph Search and your company's "digital plumage"

Euen Semple

A couple of years ago, I wrote a post titled The Rise of Digital Plumage in which I predicted that we’d all become habituated to “dressing” ourselves in structured data, so as to best present ourselves to the world at any given time.

What is love?

Euen Semple

I felt enormous respect for this girl who had so beautifully captured the essence and momentousness of leaving childhood behind and excepting this new mind and new body that is presented before you. The story of Anne Frank, and the injustice of what happened to her, is hard enough to contemplate at the best of times, but when it is written about by your own daughter at around the same age it is all the more unbearable. . What is love? When I was 11 years old I read Anne Frank's diary.

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Blogging and the Heart Of Darkness

Euen Semple

He, don’t you see, had been planning to be assistant-manager by and by under the present man, and I could see that the coming of that Kurtz had upset them both not a little. I sometimes wonder what it is that bugs me. What is it that drives me to do the work I do - because it does feel driven, something I am passionate about. Who or what am I reacting to? What windmills am I tilting at? What itch is it that I am scratching?

Pretty Patterns

Euen Semple

As part of training the software which face is which you are presented with a screen full of faces which have been extracted from the photographs within which they appear. I have been enjoying getting to know the new iLife 09 set of applications for my Mac.

Ada Lovelace Day

Euen Semple

Her comprehensive knowledge of the programme, which has a steep learning curve and is highly customizable, means the videos are packed with information but they are also presented in a way that doesn't make the viewer feel stupid. Today is Ada Lovelace Day and in celebration of the first computer programmer Suw Charman Anderson has encouraged us to write about women in technology whom we admire.

Exciting times

Euen Semple

The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. We can succeed only by concert. It is not “can any of us imagine better?” but, “can we all do better?” The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise — with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country. Abraham Lincoln, Annual Message to Congress, Dec. 1, 1862. Via a great post from Dave Snowden

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Twitter for Learning: The Past, Present and Future

Jane Hart

Twitter turned 9 on 21 March. I’ve been on Twitter since March 2008. After it appeared in No 11 position on the 1st Top 100 Tools for Learning list in 2007, I realised I’d better sign up!

Ancient present

Doc Searls

Reality 2.0 was my original blog: a pile of stuff I wrote before there were blogs. All of it is old now, but some of it still rings new, connects to what has happened since then, or is going on now. Since Reality 2.0 is deep in the Searls.com basement, I’ve decided to surface some old pieces that might be interesting, for whatever reason.

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Keynote at TheNextWeb: The future is motion graphic presentations

Ross Dawson

However one of the most interesting aspects of my keynote is that my visual presentation will consist entirely of motion graphics, 3D, and video – there will be no still images. For many years I have wanted to create an entirely moving graphic presentation.

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2011 Top 100 Tools List and Presentation finalised

Jane Hart

The final list and presentation is available… Read the rest. Yesterday, I finalised the Top 100 Tools for Learning 2011 list. In the last few days of voting there was a surge of contributions (both online and by email) that brought the number of contributions to 531. Many thanks to everyone who took the time to share their Top 10 Tools and help me compile this, the 5th annual survey of learning tools. Social learning

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A few recent presentations

George Siemens

Haugesund. Canadian School of Public Service

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International MOOCs Past and Present

Stephen Downes: Half an Hour

OpenLearning.com , a venture born out of the University of New South Wales ( UNSW ) in Sydney, Australia. Starting this week, you can begin taking two of their courses ( Observing and Analysing Performance in Sport & Services Marketing – The Next Level ). University of Western Australia. By next March, the Perth-based university plans to offer two courses (one in sociology, the other in oceanography) using an adapted version of Stanford’s open source platform, Class2Go. SpanishMooc ?

Parallel Supercomputing: Past, Present and Future

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

From the early days of the industry, supercomputers have been pushing the boundaries of IT, identifying the key barriers to overcome and experimenting with technologies and architectures that are then incorporated into the overall IT market a few years later.

Good Presentations Matter to Rock an Audience

Luis Suarez

Over the course of the last couple of years I have developed that habit of watching the recordings of the presentations that I give myself at public speaking events. Good presentations matter from Ned Potter.

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Presentation: Build Your Business with Crowdsourcing

Ross Dawson

Below are the slides from my presentation. Usual disclaimer: these slides are meant to accompany my presentation, not to stand alone. View more presentations from rossdawson. Today I spoke at Australian Chambers Business Congress on Build Your Business with Crowdsourcing.

The ideal Christmas present for your staff …

Jane Hart

Are you are looking for a Christmas present for one of your staff? Then why not give them a gift voucher that can be redeemed for a place of their choice on one of the pubic online workshops facilitated by Harold Jarche or me at The Connected Workplace Consultancy in 2014. Here is the schedule [.]. Social learning

Presentations: MOOC Research Initiative

George Siemens

This past week, in preparation for our upcoming MOOC research conference ( early bird registration ends Oct 31 ), I held two online presentations on a) MOOC Research Initiative (a review of literature, research themes) and b) Lessons MOOCs can learn from online education.

Payment Technologies: Past, Present and Future

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I was reminded of this dictum when recently attending a very interesting workshop, Payment Technologies: Past Present and Future. History can be a useful guide to the future, especially when trying to predict the impact of disruptive changes on human organizations and cultures.

Presentations I’ve recently enjoyed watching

George Siemens

The number of lectures and presentations freely available online provide great opportunities for professional development. Here are a few I’ve recently enjoyed: Hub DE summit Sydney. Learning analytics, soft and hard. Learning Analytics: Notes on the Future. The Future of Learning.