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Friday, September 30, 2011

Using Prezi?


Prezi is a cloud-based alternative to PowerPoint and other presentation software. Of course you can download your Prezis for use without internet as well. If you want to learn how to use it, click here Learn About Prezi. There are 3 video tutorials that will teach you all you need to know. If you want to learn why to use Prezi or the pitfalls to avoid, read on...

Unless you are an advanced user of PowerPoint or other presentation software, your audience is potentially somewhere on the "Barney Arc of Hatred" when PPT pops up on the screen. They are so tired of seeing someone read their bullet points off of their blue background slides that they'll pull out their phones and pretend they're tweeting about you, when in fact they're checking Facebook or playing Angry Birds. Or worse, they're tweeting about you.

Prezi can shake these jaded audiences up by providing a flow of motion that is refreshingly unexpected. It's NOT about creating a synopsis or handout of your presentation. It's inherently about presenting key words, concepts and imagery to reinforce learning and memory of the concepts you present in person. It's not about making a text heavy presentation "prettier." Someone who tends to put all their content as text in their presentation and reads it to their audience, probably shouldn't use Prezi. (and, probably isn't serving their adult learners very well) However, for those speakers who use their presentations as a visual experience and memory aid to enhance learning for their audience while increasing the impact of live, interactive presentations, then Prezi can sing. 

 GoalBusters Prezi created for the AFP Los Angeles Regional Philanthropy Conference. 

Prezi can, by itself, without "you" deliver a meaningful learning experience. Use it like that if you want to create a stand alone presentation that does not need interpretation. However, that is NOT the most effective way for professional speakers to use Prezi. If you are delivering a live presentation or wish to provide support materials to someone who has been in one of your presentations, think of your Prezi as more of a visual or contextual outline with memory cues of the content you present. It has value for someone who has participated in your presentation, but does not replace "you" or allow someone to easily "borrow" your work and present it on their own.

GRIPES: A common complaint I hear is that "All that movin' around makes me sea-sick." I'd argue that if a viewer has that experience, then the Prezi may need editing for better flow. When setting "motion paths," be conscious of the fact that in western cultures we expect to read "top to bottom" and "left to right." Create your motion to accommodate these expectations, especially with bullet points and text blocks
to minimize potential "motion sickness."

Also, I've heard claims that Prezi retains the copyright to your content. That is not true. Prezi does not impose, nor retain copyright. Here's a link to their policy http://prezi.com/copyright and Terms of Use http://prezi.com/terms-of-use/

In their TOS, the pertinent sections are 4.3-4.5 and 5. You can read it all, but cutting to the chase, all of this "rights to use" language is about Prezi protecting themselves from someone trying to sue them for distributing copyrighted material because the presentations are "cloud-based."


BOO! IT'S SCARY! (or maybe you're complacent) You've heard that saying "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got. Yeah, that's a lie. Keep doing the same old tired stuff without innovation and "updates" and your effectiveness will decline. We all need to be shaken up a bit now and then don't we? So, what do you have to lose? Prezi is free, give it a try and see how your audience responds. Also see if it tugs you to rethink presentation of your work to better serve your learners. Change is good.

Happy Halloween!

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Schultz Fire Flood - One Year Later

GoalBusters works to support the efforts of nonprofit organizations of all sizes. None of which can succeed without volunteers. We also volunteer for numerous organizations and often "wade in" to help our neighbors. The July, 2010 Schultz Fire Flood in Flagstaff, AZ was a literal example of that commitment.

Jim volunteered for 4 days helping dig homes out of deep mud and create high sandbag barriers to protect those homes from the next inevitable downpour. Our friends called and emailed reporting that Jim appeared in numerous Phoenix television broadcasts. He is shown briefly taking a "water break" in this local story at the :50 second mark. This was 4-5 hours into the first of his 4 days slinging sandbags and shoveling mud and ash. The clip shows the devastation suffered and the teamwork of volunteers and homeowners to prevent this level of damage when the next storm strikes.

 
The Schultz Fire was a human caused wildfire that burned more than 15,000 acres in the Coconino Forest near Flagstaff, AZ. The resulting loss of trees and other ground cover created intense flooding from the following monsoons. Flooding continues when heavy rains are experienced more than a year later.

A neighbor had watched everyone work to exhaustion that first day and just after dusk as it began to rain again, she approached with her children to deliver a tray of fresh, hot fry bread for the volunteers. Jim washed up in a rain gutter downspout and took a bite.

A Hopi friend took this photo and commented while laughing, "Jim, he'll work for frybread."

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Monday, September 12, 2011

Buying Bird Seed: Does the Public Broadcasting Funding Model Still Work?

"Is membership philanthropy?"
This was a seemingly simple question during the Ethics session led by Walt Gillette, ACFRE from WAMU and Roberta (Robbe) Healey, ACFRE at DEI's Public Media Development and Marketing Conference in July 2011. But given that this was a room of public radio people, it strikes at one of the core principles of the public broadcasting funding model.

How the Public Broadcasting Funding Model is Built
Funding for public broadcasting has been high profile in 2011 due to renewed attempts to zero out funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). With all the attention Federal funding of public broadcasting has received, many of the general public are less aware of the private funding pieces.

Most public broadcasting stations are funded by a combination of sources in varying proportions. These sources may include:

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