With all the live blogging I did last week at ILTA, I found this story on NYTimes.com interesting: Minding the Meeting, or Your Computer?
I rarely use my laptop at work to take meeting notes. Since my laptop does not dock and undock smoothly from the network, it is a nuisance to lug from meeting to meeting.
At a conference, like ILTA, I find this blog to be a great way to take notes. The NYTimes story made me wonder if the laptop note-taking has a negative impact on the presenters. They do see the big gray back of the laptop instead of a notepad, but I am not any less engaged using a laptop instead of a pad of paper. If a presenter is engaging me as an audience member, I am just as inclined to ask a question or disagree with a presenter regardless of my note-taking method.
Of course if I am bored by the presenter, I am inclined to check email, ESPN or my RSS feeds for something more engaging. The alternative would be checking my blackberry, which is the universal sign for "I am not paying attention to you!" With the laptop, the presenter can assume I am still taking notes instead of checking the latest Red Sox score.