What’s the Next Big Thing (@ ISTE)

Infographic of Word Trends for ISTE 2011
I’ve seen the question a number of times on Twitter, “What’s going to be the big ‘buzz’ at ISTE this year?” In the past, it has been blogging, podcasting, video games, MUVEs, and others. This year, well who knows. But to get a glance, I collected the text for all of the session, poster, and workshop descriptions and anayized them for key terms and phrases. It’s something that I do frequently, but this is the first time I have compared an upcoming conference with a past one — in this case, it’s ISTE 2011 with ISTE NECC 2008.

The attached file is a PDF that includes a word cloud of the most used terms in this year’s program descriptions, and a count of the occurrences of session descriptions with key words that I scanned for back in 2008. There is little that is scientific about this, but interesting, none the less.

For me, I was surprised to have seen infographic mentioned only once in all of the session descriptions. Although we’ve had infographics almost for ever (think The Periodic Tables), it has emerged as something of a buzz in recent months. I’ve started a new blog called IGAD (InfoGraphic A Day), where I feature different graphics or datasets that could be translated into graphics.  Today’s infographic is “A Better Life Index.”

Another one that I was surprised not to see a lot of (and not entirely disappointed) was QR-Codes. In state and regional conferences I’ve been a part of recently, QR-Codes seem to have become something of the rage. Again, they’ve been around since 1995, but only recently have educators been testing out applications in classrooms and schools. I think they have a place in education, but there are logistical limitations, and do only one thing really well — they can turn a flat surface into a hyperlink for smart phone users.

See you at ISTE 2011!

Author: David Warlick

David Warlick has been an educator for the past 40+ years. He continues to do some writing, but is mostly seeking his next intersect between play, passion and purpose, dabbling in photography, drone videography and music production.