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Re: my reflections on next symposia

From: Shadi Abou-Zahra <shadi@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 07 Dec 2011 01:38:01 +0100
Message-ID: <4EDEB569.2030202@w3.org>
To: giorgio brajnik <brajnik@uniud.it>
CC: public-wai-rd@w3.org
Hi Giorgio,

Thanks for these initial pros/cons lists. I agree with all aspects and 
look forward to discussing them further on the call this week.

Some quick responses inline below too:

On 6.12.2011 11:59, giorgio brajnik wrote:
> Hi to everybody.
> Since it's still fresh in my mind I'm going to utter my feelings about
> yesterday's event and how next ones could be improved.
> First of all, I'm happy that despite the initial mishaps we were able to
> carry it out decently well.
> Second, I think there is plenty of room for improving.
> Third, thank you to those that participated and to those that spoke
> during the event.
> Pro's
> 1. a two hour slot is good so that many people can participate without
> clogging their schedule
> 2. the panel run on the basis a few predefined questions is also a good
> thing
> 3. good to have a page with papers, slides, captions.

I want to explore the possibility of broadcasting an audio channel too. 
We could use the phone lines for speakers and the caption/audio streams 
for scaling-up the number of participants (and simplifying technology).

> 4. it's a good idea to provide participants with an individual code so
> that zakim can tell the name of the person that is speaking or that
> raised hand.
> Con's
> 1. initial presentations were too long. Next time I would ask authors to
> give a short presentation of themselves (1 minute long) and that is. The
> end result is to give more space to the panel and to the global Q&A part.
> 2. 1000-word long abstracts are ok. Next time I would ask authors to
> provide also a 2-3 slide summary of their work (for participants that do
> not feel like they have to read all the abstracts), but not ask authors
> to present the slides.
> 3. 11 participants were too many; next time I would go for about 8
> people. This should also increase the quality and the cohesiveness of
> the event.
> 4. the panel and the final Q&A part were ok, but there was too little
> interaction between panelists and also between panelists and public. It
> might have had something to do with the machinery for raising hands,
> handling "the mic", following a somewhat rigid schedule for who was
> going to talk when. I feel this was the major defect of yesterday's
> event. We need to make these events more interactive.
> 5. in addition to a person that leads/moderates the event, we need at
> least another person that handles zakim. And both these persons should
> have a backup so that if they suddenly disappear the backup person can
> continue the event.

Besides Shawn on the call, I had two other colleagues helping out in the 
background. Ralph Swick (the programmer/maintainer of Zakim) was helping 
with managing attendees and another colleague was on-call in case of 
emergencies. I do need to improve the contingency plans though.

> 6. next time I would ask speakers to join the conference 30 minutes in
> advance and make sure that their settings is ok for talking and hearing.

I actually want to ask speakers not to use Skype/IP phones. I asked them 
to make sure they had "good lines" but that was too subtle.

> 7. it could be good to provide participants with another info channel
> (like a twitter code) to let them to tell something to
> chairs/panelists/audience.

I was thinking about IRC but did not want to add more technology (and 
complexity) for this first meeting. We could think about twitter too.


> Giorgio

Shadi Abou-Zahra - http://www.w3.org/People/shadi/
Activity Lead, W3C/WAI International Program Office
Evaluation and Repair Tools Working Group (ERT WG)
Research and Development Working Group (RDWG)
Received on Wednesday, 7 December 2011 00:38:38 UTC

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