Cafe Envy

Jeff Utecht wonders why those of us populating the Blogger Cafe find it more engaging than many of the sessions. Well for one, you have a group of the most knowledgeable edtech people from all over the world in the same place, at the same time sharing and mashing all that knowledge and enthusiasm – “ and that’s powerful and addictive. You aren’t tied to “the topic” of a session – you can pick and choose and blend topics.

More intriguing to me is how do we replicate “Bloggers Cafe” on the web? Of course the answer is you can’t – Blogger’s Cafe has no time zone issues (if you’ve ever wanted to do a Skype session with other places in the world you know how difficult time zones are to deal with), it has no connectivity, platform or software issues. Sharing is immediate and not bound by what you can see or hear or feel on your computer.

This is the first “Cafe” and no one could anticipate its allure and how it has leveraged the entire conference. But it does then beg the question – how could we capture any of its power over the net? Skype or Elluminate are good tools for connecting – but the time zone issue clouds them. Wikis, blogs, feeds, and so forth all have their place – could they be mashed in some way to capture any of the magic of this place? It would be more than worth it to try – so you do it – you have the time, don’t you? Hmmm – yep that’s the rub. What new web 2.0 (3.0 actually) app could we come up with that would do this – you’d be a gazillionaire if you come up with it and develop it because this is way too powerful and meaningful.

Jeff Utecht, Chris Lehman, Darren Draper, John Pederson, Janice Stearns and I Skype-chatted a great session by Will Richardson just now –  Dean Shareski, Clarence Fisher, Bill Fitzgerald and others joined from as far away as Canada – here we were live Skype-Chatting Will’s preso and sharing it with people thousands of miles away.

Afterwards Chris Lehman may have captured the essence of “Blogger’s Cafe” when he said, “Blogger’s Cafe  is the reflection time not present in the sessions.” We all literally said, “AHHHH!”

Here’s to another example of “messy learning”

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4 thoughts on “Cafe Envy

  1. Here’s an idea – do a webcast and call it Bloggers Cafe! Then you brught minds from all over the world could meet, talk, debate, chat istead of twitter (or do that too) again on a let’s say monthly or semi monthly basis? Sounds promising to me!

  2. …and that’s the reason we all go to NECC. Great post!

    We still crave that face to face conversation, we still want to meet people, physically shake their hand and look into their eyes. Hence the reason why education will never move completely online in my opinion. We want/need that human connection, we crave…to the point that I flew half way around the world to have it….and our root we are people of personal connections!

    Thanks for the conversation!

  3. The face to face interaction of the blogger’s cafe was amazing! I felt like it was a sort of welcome home that I could return to after sessions to make connections. Thanks for the conversation. It was such a pleasure to meet you!