November 09, 2002

NASAGA Drive-By

The NASAGA conference finished up here in town today. I had to miss most of it but I got to spend three hours watching Thiagi, a personal hero, in action. As a workshop leader he's mastered all the moves and makes everything look effortless. He validated a lot of what I thought I knew but got me revved up to improve my next round of workshops in the Spring. A cool guy.

Those who attended the whole conference seemed happy as clams, but I kept wondering why the organization is so small. I'm guessing that there were no more than 120 people here. There were only four sessions for each time slot with at least one of them devoted to improv... something so far from my style that I couldn't even fake being interested. I'm guessing that the organization used to be much larger. Why the shrinkage? Surely simulations and games in education are still hot as teaching devices, perhaps even hotter than ever. For whatever reason, NASAGA seems rooted in the interpersonal exercises that were all the rage in the 70s and is arriving late to the e-learning, multimedia, etc., realm. They had a strand on that but it seemed a bit lame.

Still, it was good to see as much as I saw there. I also dropped a wad of money at the vendor display (which consisted of a single 12 foot table next to registration). Lots of books I hadn't seen before. I haven't read them yet, but here's my haul:







cover cover cover
cover cover cover


Should make for some fun rainy season reading.

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