The first decission to be made is the subject and target of your talk.
I hope you know the subject of your speach, otherwise it will be
terrible task to write about it! The common practice to hand-in an abstract
to the conference before you write your presentation itself is a
good way to have your subject straightened out.
Even if you don't need to provide an abstract, then still make one! This
will help you enormously. But first, read the rest of this page.
In three ways your talk can benevit your audience:
Defining your message is as important as having a good idea about the
The type of audience you get the next important part of the content of
your speach. Consider the following aspects about your listeners:
- Improve their knowledge;
- This should be the target of most talks to technical audiences on
conferences. The new, or maybe not too revolutionary new, facts
- Increase their ability to perform tasks;
- This is the student-teacher relationship. The target of tutorials
on conferences, or lectures on schools.
- Get them to appreciate (you or) your subject.
- Common target of commercial speaches, and speaches on the management level
in an organization.
Ask people who had do a comparible speach to the same group, if you are not
sure. Ask people from their audience as well. Results may differ a lot.
Where will you have your presentation? Is it a conference, or is it on
your company or university? Different organizations have different rules.
Especially, they differ on:
- What is the social background of your audience:
age, gender, level of education, occupation;
- In what way are the people in your audience related:
strangers to each other, colleages, friends, as well bosses as workers;
- What is the relation of you to your audience:
your teachers, your students, colleages on same level, friends;
- What does your audience know about the subject:
more, less, or about the same background on the subject. To what extend
can you use specialist terms;
- What is the relation of the audience to your subject:
is it a (mainly) hostile, friendly, or disinterested group;
- Why are the people listening to you?
Do they have to, are you their God, or are they really interested in
PPresenter requires a computer which can display its screen-output to your audience.
It does not matter if you will use a beamer, an LCD-projector, or something
else, as long as you are certain it is there. You also do not need to
know beforehand what equipment is available, because PPresenter scales text and
images to the available screen-size. PPresenter has different defaults in colour
for different output devices; a last moment switch is simple.
- time for presentation related to time for questions;
- whether interumptions during the presentations are allowed (subtract
many minutes from your available time if so);
- formal or informal addressing of the audience;
- availability of audio-visual equipment; and
As computer, I suggest to take your personal (or borrowed) laptop, with
at least a 200MHz Pentium. Perl and Tk are not really your performance
problem: creating the large fonts is the bottleneck. If the time from
slide to slide is too long, then try a different fontset.
From the subjective information received from above considerations, you
have to determine the level of detail, and which details you will give.
This also strongly dependents on the amount of time you have: 30 minutes to
one hour is just enough to explain one or two small items in a bit more
detail. Most time has to be spend on introduction into the precise subject
of you talk and conclusions.
Now you can write your abstract (do write an abstract, even when this is not
an obligatory part of your preparation).