Linux, politics, and other interesting things
In my previous post about Advice for Speakers  I referred to the common problem of going through presentation materiel too quickly due to being nervous. In extreme cases (which tend to happen when giving a presentation for an unusually large audience) the materiel for an hour long presentation may be covered in 10 minutes or less. This is a problem that most speakers have at least once in their career.
I recently heard an interesting (and in retrospect obvious) way of dealing with this problem. That is to label each note card with the estimated time through the presentation when it should be presented. If you are reading from the 10 minute card at 2 minutes into the presentation then you need to slow down.
Of course this doesn’t work as well if you follow the “strict powerpoint” method of presenting where the only notes are the slides. It would be good if a presentation program supported having windows on two displays so you could have one full-screen window on an external video device for the audience to see and one window that’s not full-screen on the built-in display in the laptop for the speaker. The built-in display could have speaker notes, a time clock, and other useful things.
I have just filed Debian bug report 447207  requesting that this feature be added to Open Office. It was closed before this post was even published due to Unstable apparently having some degree of support for this and the rest being already on the planned feature list (see the bug report for details). I found the complaint about a feature request being against Etch interesting as Debian doesn’t have bugs tracked against different releases, so it’s not as if a bug reported against Etch will get any different treatment than a bug reported against Unstable.