When demonstrations go wrong: video evidence

I mentioned the other day that I gave a talk at TEDx Teddington, and video evidence has now emerged. Happily the 16 minute movie has been gracefully and mercifully edited so that several minutes (which felt like hours!) of faffing around on stage has been lost.

Seeing it now I feel that my first conclusions were right

  • Live demonstrations trump PowerPoint every time: even  when they go wrong the audience enjoy them!
  • But a few sparse PowerPoint slides can also communicate volumes.

The whole business of communicating on stage is subtle and that some knowledge of ‘stagecraft’ is essential and this is not my strong point. I feel this particular talk would have been better if I had had a chance to do it just once before hand!

2 Responses to “When demonstrations go wrong: video evidence”

  1. doug1943 Says:

    ‘Live’ vs ‘Powerpoint’ (or ‘Live with Powerpoint Assist’) is SO much better.

    Kids are used to seeing ANYTHING on the computer screen: flying dragons, faster-than-light spacecraft, you name it. They file away computer-screen ‘facts’ in the same place sensible religious people file away miracles.

    Seeing is Believing-sub-two when it’s on the screen. We need to get them to See and Believe-sub-one.

    Or, as the Maths Educators say — first Concrete, then Pictoral, then Abstract.

    • edhui Says:

      I was responsible for TEDxTeddington and can confirm that Michael was a remarkable speaker on the night. We were amazed at the ambition of the demonstration, to measure the speed of sound at two different temperatures live on stage. The significance of the technique was clear, and the reveal of the actual stainless steel apparatus at the end was magical.

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