So I started this google doc..

That’s a joke that many of us who know Alec Couros use to describe a number of experiences he shares as part of being a network learner and crowd sourcing.

That become the intro to this video I put together along with the help of about 75 others.

The Big Picture Learning Stuff


While at first glance it may be seen as simply fun, silly and maybe a wee bit cool but I think there’s something more here. Lots of lessons perhaps around being connected may be extracted but I’m thinking about Shirky’s notion of Cognitive Surplus.

These 75 people contributed about 5-60 seconds of video. While I know that it may have been a little more time the idea that cumulative of all this content could be pieced together for something of value and meaning is non-trivial.

I wonder if the more difficult the question the greater the strength and/or structure of the organizing principle required to make the results intelligible/useful? Meredith Stewart

in this case, Alec is a compelling personality that has made huge contributions to many. I could have easily found another 75 people and likely could have made 10 videos given his network. But we can certainly come up with compelling ideas that would benefit greatly from the contributions of others. This is why having and building a network, while not easy and magic, offers new possibilities for learning and change.

The Little Picture Technical Stuff

A few people have asked about how I put this all together so here goes:

1. Jon Becker sends out a tweet suggesting I do something for Alec

2. I create this google form.

3. I waited until I had about 70 entries. I’m not sure why I choose that number because as it turned out I had to do some fancy stickhandling to make everyone;s part fit.

4. I send out this email:

5. I was careful not to ask people to submit in a specific format since it may be another barrier for some. As entries came in I used MPEG StreamClip to convert any weird files (Windows type files) I used for people to send their video clips. This is linked to my dropbox account and was a very efficient way to gather the clips. They ranged in size from 989k to 70MB. Dropittome has a limit of 75 MB which was sufficient even for HD submissions of only a few seconds.
6. I began inserting video as it came in except for the parts with multiple video.
7. By Saturday night I had most of the videos and went at creating the final product in Final Cut Express.
8. I again used MPEG Streamclip to take the full Quicktime video to a more youtube friendly mp4 format.
That’s it. I’d really like some more thoughts on the big picture part but am happy to answer questions or discuss the little picture part too.

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