Big (for me) Data

I use SlideShare to share my slide presentations with the world. They send me weekly stats and they always surprise me.

This last week, the most viewed was one on "Moodle: a free learning management system" which has had 47,000 views. I feel a bit embarrassed by that because the presentation is kind of out of date by now. I think I should do an update. Obviously, there is interest.

The latest popular download of the week was one I did on "Student Blogs As Reflective Practice."

My SlideShare stats showed that 1,000 people have embedded one of my slide presentations on their blog or site. Some can be embedded as a slideshow but some are pdf documents and 2000 times people have downloaded the presentation. That is way more people than I will ever stand in front of live and share a presentation.

I started using Slideshare seven years ago when I posted a set of slides with quotations that I was using in a teacher workshop. I wanted to make them available to the teachers later, so I posted them and told them they could download the PowerPoint and then edit or use it in any way. It was an easy way to open source the idea. (You can add a Creative Commons license to your uploaded work. I generally use the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.)  That set of "Thirty Quotations" has had more than 18,000 views. A few people who downloaded it have even emailed me to let me know how they used them in their classes. I uploaded a "Thirty Quotations Volume 2" the following year.

The really surprising stat that Slideshare emailed me this month was this: 5 Titanics worth of people have viewed those slides. That's one way to think of big data - though I might prefer to think of my readers as being on a Caribbean cruise ship rather than a doomed ocean liner. 


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