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FULL DISCLOSURE: I was, indeed, in Texas during South by Southwest. However, I was nowhere near Austin, and played with lots of fun nieces and nephews (all under the age of six) doing fun things like wrasslin', fishin', watching bronco ridin' and mutton bustin' at the Houston Rodeo. I didn't Tweet or Bleep all week. It was awesome.
Fortunately, there were enough Bloggers and Twitters and Visual Facilinators @sxsw to capture every angle. Check out these moleskin sketches by Austin Kleon (above) and Mike Rohde (video of live sketchnoting below).
Illustrated Man During a seminar that Blair gave at the World Economic Forum in Sharm El Sheihk, his words (and those of other speakers at the event) were rendered on a white board as he spoke. The comment "You are crazy to try" was made to the former Prime Minister in regard to his effort to bring peace to Northern Ireland.
In working with many diverse groups of people, coming together to solve complex problems, I am absolutely flummoxed by this paradox: young minds struggle with complex, inter-related problems, while "more mature" minds struggle to learn new concepts.
Rather than throw both brains out with the bathwater (what a badly mixed metaphor!) how best do we design collaborative projects and discussions that accommodate all brains, whether wily, worldly or wise?
When older people can no longer remember names at a cocktail party, they tend to think that their brainpower is declining. But a growing number of studies suggest that this assumption is often wrong.
Instead, the research finds, the aging brain is simply taking in more data and trying to sift through a clutter of information, often to its long-term benefit.
The studies are analyzed in a new edition of a neurology book, “Progress in Brain Research.”
For example, in studies where subjects are asked to read passages that are interrupted with unexpected words or phrases, adults 60 and older work much more slowly than college students. Although the students plow through the texts at a consistent speed regardless of what the out-of-place words mean, older people slow down even more when the words are related to the topic at hand. That indicates that they are not just stumbling over the extra information, but are taking it in and processing it.
We've been preaching it for years, but I guess it is now news:
Creative work environments improve creative thinking!
Congrats to Leslie Marquard and Catalyst Ranch on leading the piece. Thanks for bringing "right-brained thinking" to a "left-brained" world. (Actually, working in creative environments and using multiple learning modalities inspires whole-brain thinking.)
Steve Kagan for The New York Times
By ELAINE GLUSAC | Published: April 30, 2008
WHEN Leslie Marquard, an executive coach, holds strategy sessions for consulting firms or university administrators, she ushers her buttoned-up clientele into rooms full of Pogo sticks, ethnic art, hammocks, vintage furniture and a pillow “harem.”
“They are surprised and also endeared by it,” said Ms. Marquard, a co-founder of Marble Leadership Partners in Chicago. The “it” she referred to is Catalyst Ranch, an independent alternative meeting space in a former sausage factory near the Loop in Chicago. “They’ll say, ‘That table looks just like one I grew up with.’ It subconsciously releases the mind.”
Graphic facilitator Gavin Blake writes us of his exciting collaboration with other facilitators and scribes at a national summit in Australia's capital, Canberra.
The objective was for the 1000 participants to generate big ideas over a range of 10 topics including Governance, Productivity and Creativity in Australia. All of the ideas will make up our vision for Australia in 2020.
It was a blast meeting music god Peter Garrett, now Minister for the Arts (not sure if you guys know the band Midnight Oil, but I’m a huuuge fan) and Australia’s 100 foremost creative minds.
Yes, there were a few celebrities there (Hugh Jackman below) but, there was some serious intent and genuinely insightful ideas thrown around the room.
I’m very chuffed this video with our drawing of the journey of the day made it into the news. Stoked. Here are some more photos of us having a ball.
Christian Nold thinks we should pay more attention to how our environment shapes our emotional and physiological states.
His work with Bio Mapping—which measures people’s responses to their environment and connects those feelings to their physical location—suggests that a map of emotional landscapes represents a powerful tool for analyzing the relationship between place and broader social issues.