Eight to Late

Sensemaking and Analytics for Organizations

The cloud and the grass redux…on video

with 8 comments

I’ve been playing with Videoscribe, a nice tool for  creating whiteboard videos. As an exercise I set myself the task of “video-fying” The Cloud and the Grass, a business fable I wrote a while ago:



I’d greatly appreciate your feedback. Please be gentle though, this is a first attempt 🙂

PS: I’ve just realised this is the shortest post I’ve ever written.

Written by K

September 24, 2014 at 9:09 pm

8 Responses

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  1. Hi Kailash,

    The visuals work although the fonts on some of the thought balloons need to be larger. The audio quality is the weak point as it sounds distant and thin.


    David Turnbull

    September 25, 2014 at 10:57 am

    • Hi David,

      Many thanks for taking the time to view the video and comment.

      My take home points:

      1. Preview the video at the default viewing size to check that fonts and images are legible.
      2. Find a better option to record the soundtrack – Windows Sound Recorder definitely doesn’t cut it 🙂

      Thanks again, I truly appreciate your feedback!





      September 25, 2014 at 4:21 pm

  2. Hi Kailash.

    Nice job on your first attempt. Agree the text font needs to be larger.

    Really like this Videoscribe as a story telling tool. Of course, the important thing about this medium is that you’ve got a good story to tell in the first place. Although arguably this is somewhat “chicken and egg”: the mere fact that you go through the thought processes of how you would make a video of your story, this helps you to re-think, build and fine-tune your story as you go along.

    Overall it’s the “concise-ness” and simplicity of such story telling that I like: rather like tweets (140 characters) or TV adverts (30 seconds) or trips in the elevator with the CEO, Videoscribe helps you to focus the mind and keep things short, clear and simple….

    I shall certainly be giving Videoscribe a go for my own work…

    Meanwhile I look forward to the next blockbuster !



    Mike Hawkins

    September 25, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    • Hi Mike,

      Thanks for viewing, and for your feedback and encouraging words. You’re absolutely right rethinking and fine-tuning: I had to edit the original story considerably to make it fit the medium. Now, in retrospect, I think I could have pared it down a lot more -. visual storytelling needs a lot less talk as the pictures can do the talking. Another lesson learnt, I reckon…and a tough one for one as verbose as I 🙂

      Do give Videoscribe a go. I think you’ll enjoy it.

      Thanks again for taking the time to view and comment.





      September 25, 2014 at 8:43 pm

  3. Hi Kailash,

    I loved watching the video, getting caught up in the story, and being amazed at how quickly you’re able to sketch clipart! 🙂

    After viewing it I had two thoughts. First, I wondered how the opening scene about the kids playing in the grass related to the businessmen and the consultant. I like to imagine that the families playing in the grass were part of the extended family of the businessmen. (I was relieved the consultant didn’t recommend charging the children to play on the grass as way to get $$ for the gardners!) If I’ve understood the plot I may I suggest giving the businessmen a little stronger stake in the quality of the experience of playing in the grass.

    Second, I think I must have missed some advertising suggesting that if you put your corporate data in the cloud it will be tended better for you (actually cut and neatly trimmed!) than if you kept it on your own servers. Or … am I being too literal? 🙂 Seriously, the message of the video — that the “cloud doesn’t give a damn about the grass” — seems to be an important message for those who entrust their corporate assets to the cloud. But … I’m not sure what the message is. Perhaps the problem is that I don’t read the IT press. Evidently people are implying that the cloud does give a damn about the grass. (I just think of the cloud as a safer, more shareable place to keep my documents. It’s OK with me that the folks at Google don’t care about my documents except as data to be kept safe and secure etc.) Anyway, I think you get my confusion.

    Sorry for rattling on. (Our family has decided to get *rid* of the grass, since it’s dying from too few rain clouds anyway! ooops … too literal!)



    Jeff Conklin

    October 2, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    • Hi Jeff,

      Thanks for viewing and taking the time to comment – much appreciated!

      To be honest, the story came to me spontaneously. As I recall, I wrote it out (start to finish )in about half an hour flat, so it definitely has not been deeply thought through. I see it primarily as a cautionary tale about the unforeseen consequences of a poorly thought-out cloud strategy.

      Interestingly, different people have read taken away different messages from it – a friend who works in IT strategy said it reminded him of some of the current (unforeseen) issues pertaining to data ownership and privacy whereas a colleague who works with a cloud-based enterprise application spoke of some of the difficulties he’s been experiencing in getting reliable support from a SaaS vendor. I guess that’s one of the nice things about a business fable – people will interpret things differently, based on their experience. I kind of like that.

      On another note – it was great chatting with you last week. I owe you a transcript of the conversation. Will work on it this weekend and will have something for you early next week

      Thanks again for your comment and support.





      October 3, 2014 at 5:38 pm

  4. Knowing where you are coming from, a great first stab and a format, just like your blog, that will get better with practice. Indeed, having read the original post, Kailash, I guess you need to practice transferring the “novel” to a screen play. Oscar nomination, next?

    Cheers, Sashi



    October 6, 2014 at 5:39 pm

    • Hi Sashi,

      Thanks for viewing and for your very encouraging words. To be honest, I’m in a sophomore slump at the moment, trying to put a script together for the next piece…not obvious at all, but then it never is 🙂





      October 6, 2014 at 9:08 pm

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