I love learning.  I love technology. Learning Technologies Summer Forum (#LTSF15) is therefore right up my street.

Recently, however I find myself asking how much do I really love tech. I am honoured to have been asked to be an official tweeter for #LTSF15. I’ve tweeted from conferences before, usually from my phone, sometimes from my laptop, but always in the moment as I’ve been inspired or irritated by a speaker. Yet as this is Learning Technologies I’ve felt under mild pressure (from myself) to follow the crowd and tweet better, using tech. I figured I must be missing out not timing my tweets, or not following multiple streams at once, or not syncing my social media to hit every platform simultaneously.  Therefore I looked into using a Hootsuite or similar app to bring me up to date. Such tech ads regularly pop up as sponsored posts in my timelines and I’ve seen fellow tweeters at conferences using them, so must be good, hey?

Having looked for the Apps and options available I gave them less than three minutes of my life before I knew it wasn’t for me. When I think about timed tweets, I get a bit twitchy. I can spot one a mile off. I’ve never been a fan. So why would I do that myself when I actually love and value the authenticity of live tweets, inspired by surroundings, activated by activity, part of a conversation? And why multiple timelines at once, when I love to be fully present and in the moment. Following multiple conversations in a Tweet chat is about as complex as I want to get. I know I am probably underestimating the tech available and not being fair in my very brief assessment. Convince me if you’d like, however tomorrow you’ll get me tweeting personally; no tech tweeting on my timeline! I have no current motivation for anything to change there, but I’m always open minded.

Interestingly when I heard Periscope is to be used at #LTSF15, I downloaded it immediately, with no hesitation. I’ve heard quite a few Tweeps talking about it lately and I can’t wait to have a reason to play. I wondered why so confident about Periscope yet hesitant about Hootsuite-type Apps? Then I realised it is all to do with personal motivation. I guess I’m nosey, and I enjoy visual and live stuff, plus I enjoy and value video based learning. It is all part of my need for an authentic voice. Consequently I’m totally up for Periscope! How more authentic than live video could I get?

It is interesting that new technology and apps guide you through downloading, getting started, and how to use via experiential learning. Yet two popular apps with typical such UX appeal saw me jump on board with one and dismiss the other without much thought. Our expectations are set, our experience the same, yet our commitment varies. Intrinsically learning needs motivation from within, no matter what the subject, technology or trainer. The tools may be perfect, but perfect willingness to be involved, to learn, only comes from the person in learning need.

So my advice to you as you plan your trip to #LTSF15 is to ask yourself:

  • What will motivate you at #LTSF15?
  • What are your values?
  • What are your learning needs?
  • What is your intrinsic motivation?

Then challenge the tools you choose to give you what you need. If you are excited by something, you will use it and learn more willingly.

Oh and one more piece of advice before attending the event; wear great shoes and take a bottle of water, as comfy feet and a hydrated brain makes for much better choices.

I wish you all a great experience at #LTSF15