You Have to Be There


For my presentation at ETel yesterday, I adopted the rapid-fire presentation style pioneered by Larry Lessig. Ever since I saw Dick Hardt give his Identity 2.0 talk at OSCON 2005, I've been itching to try it out. It requires more preparation and practice to get the timing right, and the slides don't make much sense to someone who wasn't there, but rapid-fire presenting really grabs the audience (that's how I felt when Dick gave his presentation, and people who experienced my presentation seem to agree). The rapid-fire style also deeply engages the presenter, because you're not just speaking, you're performing. I found the experience similar to playing music, especially the kind of music I've played as a singer-songwriter -- you're all alone on stage with nowhere to hide. This is going to be my preferred presentation style from now on, at least before large groups (for small groups, up to 25 or 30 people, I prefer a more conversational approach with lots of ad-hoc scribbling on a whiteboard).

Peter Saint-Andre > Journal