My day at BETT 

Spent all day Friday walking the exhibition at BETT and all day yesterday thinking about it.

A new venue, coincided with LT13 and for the first time to include workplace learning.

They called it a conference (that’s a laugh) thousands of teachers with little budget oo’ing at technology they probably can’t afford. Hundreds of kids milling around. Why?

A few stages dotted about, crammed to the gills with people trying to hear over the exhibition noise and about 1000 exhibitors trying to force their brochure in your hand. Everyone with multiple huge carrier bags full of them. I wonder how much ends up in the recycling by the end if this weekend!

There has to be a better design.

No roadmap to find your way around, no logical layout of the hall, no real colour scheme and a lousy map. I thought the iPhone app was cool till I tried to use it on site.

They set out the hall supposedly in areas but with little signage, I was, according to my badge, part of ‘workplace learning’ took me 4 goes round and I found something called workplace learning lounge. It was full of teachers eating their packed lunch. Not another workplace badge in sight. My pedometer reported 3 miles by the time I left.

Were there specific workplace vendors? If so I missed that entirely.

Networking was non existent. I had two conversations with vendors. One with the coolest overhead projector I ever saw making an Elmo look like a monster from an older era, I can’t wait to order one. And, a conversation with a guy with some animation software. Problem you would need a year to make a 10 minute animation.

I had a further two conversations with attendees who were willing to chat none who was confused like me and another when I stopped for an overpriced tasteless bagel. He was from Eastern Europe and was surprised that everything was video technology.

Lots to learn from this shambolic ‘conference’.

Maybe they will hire me to make it a real conference next year.