I’m witnessing a wonderfully low-tech trend lately, and it’s happening in some pretty high-tech environments. I’m talking about good old fashioned note taking…like, on paper and stuff. I’m even seeing more scribbles, doodles, and downright art in the margins. Be still my inner Picasso!

Is anybody out there not bringing a notepad and a pen to conferences and seminars? I know that for me, if it’s a social media conference or a tech event; I am prone to neglect these utensils for attention to my laptop. I know that the pen is mightier…and all that, it’s just a matter of preference for me. I prefer to look high tech and cool in public whenever possible 8)

There’s a reason that the conferences and seminars of today hold to the ancient oral tradition of storytelling as a format, it’s memorable. From before Jesus stood on hillsides, stories were told to an audience with a rhyme and a meter for memories’ sake. Still today we easily remember melodies and jingles whilst spoken words escape recall. There’s a reason that you brought along that Moleskine® too.

Time-tested and true, the studious practice of writing things down is still one of the best ways to utilize the different parts of your brain, and this to help retain important information. It’s just that simple, looking, listening, speaking, and writing all draw from different physical faculties and neurological processes. The more of these that you make use of, the better you’re taking it all in.

I include the presentation below for inspiration. This is a set of sketch notes from Mike Rohde of rohdesign.com. Mike is a man who is well known and sought after for his note taking skills. This particular set is from a Word of Mouth Marketing Crash Course. Look for Mike as a presenter at SXSW10 later this year.

Give it a try the next time you attend a conference or seminar. Have a little fun with your note taking. By all means, add a few :)’s and a lightning bolt or two! You’ll remember the story longer, and the sharing will also become infinitely more interesting when passion meets paper.

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