Sunday, June 29, 2008

Opening Keynote-the Wisdom of Crowds

Tonight has been a true magical experience for me. I have wished to attend the NECC conference for a long time and today that dream came true. I am actually sitting here in a gorgeous landmark hotel (The St. Anthony Wyndam) located in San Antonio, Texas. Even with alot of problems with airplanes, connecting flights, and taxi cab driver that couldn't drive, we made it safe and sound. Did I mention the connecting airplane ride out of Nashville, TN. made me have a flashback of "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" in Disney?

Well, now back to tonight's magical experience. We arrived at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center to listen to the opening keynote speaker. I was biting at the bit (yep,right here in Texas) to plan my week's workshops, to convene, connect and transform as a learner, and of course look at the books that were on sale. How can I do all of this and not miss one moment? Then there was an answer right in front of me. The keynote speaker was on every closed circuit flat screen in the convention center. Talk about multi-tasking. Mission accomplished.

The keynote speaker was James Surowiecki. James Surowiecki is a staff writer at The New Yorker, where he writes the popular business column, "The Financial Page." His work has appeared in a wide range of publications, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Artforum, Wired, and Slate. He spoke about his latest work, "The Wisdom of Crowds".

I walked away with this jewel of wisdom... If you have a diverse group that works together with free flow of information the better the decisions will be. The sum intelligence of a group under the right conditions are often smarter than the smartest person in that group.

Wisdom of a crowd + new tools =POWER. I can't wait to see what the week brings.

My hope is to learn alot to take home to my Chets Creek family, eat good food and have fun.


Stephen C. Veliz said...

Sounds like fun. I look forward to hearing more. Keep up the good work.

Hopefully next year will be my 1st to NECC.

From Tallahassee - Stephen

Suzanne said...

I'm on my way to buy his book now! Can't wait to get started. Your pearl of wisdom has me curious. Have fun today!

Anonymous said...

I know exactly how you felt as you looked through the workshop schedule trying to decide what you could miss because there is so much you want to see. I can't wait to hear all about it. By the way,
I love Mr. Toad's Wild Ride but I prefer to be touching the Earth when I am riding it. Love ya.

Anonymous said...

I think the key is "new tools", we as teachers should always continue to stretch and grow. That is what makes Chets the best. We never settle on what we already know, we always want to know more.:)Michelle

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you're in your element. I can't think of anyone better to soak up this information w/Susan and Melanie than you! Enjoy every minute.
Lori M.

dayle said...

I love that quote - the sum intelligence of a group of people under the right circumstances is greater than the smartest person in the group. That's what I think when I sit at the Leadership table or when I meet with my Kindergarten Team and why I enjoy thinking through problems with a group. The ideas are always so beyond what you could think of all by yourself. Debby and Michelle, it reminds me of the year that we had the first grade teacher leave and the grade level sat down and came up with a plan that not one of us could ever have imagined on our own. It was the synergy of the group. Just love that thought! dayle