[EuroPython] by all means let's keep the slides downloadable...!

Alex Martelli aleax@aleax.it
Wed, 12 Jun 2002 15:47:44 +0200

I hear there is debate about removing Nicolas Chavaut's presentations from 
the site (for some reason I'm not getting most/all msgs, so pls Cc me 
personally if responding, thanks!).  I hope they stay, and indeed I hope more
presentations go up!  Including mine -- I have the .PPT files ready and if
anybody knows how best to put them into formats acceptable for EuroPython
(such as PDF as mentioned on the site -- I don't have any PPT-to-PDF products 
installed on the Windows-XP laptop where I can run PowerPoint...) I'd be 
overjoyed to send them -- just let me know.

The value of going to a conference is human contact.  If the presenter is any 
good, the actual, real-life, face-to-face, interactive presentation will be 
far more valuable than whatever's on a .PPT (or equivalente) slides 
collection.  The value will also be quite different (not lesser or greater, 
but different) than a paper with the same information -- a paper affords more 
opportunity to reflect, re-read, and ponder, but a live presentation affords 
far more opportunity for _interaction_.  That's why I'm so keen on having my 
slides up well in advance, handouts in people's hands (in advance if that 
could possibly be arranged!) and so on -- the more time I give to the people 
who will be at my talk to study the materials I'll be presenting, the higher 
quality the interaction we'll have during my actual presentation.  The one 
thing I hate most when I present something is to see attenders busy writing 
down the same stuff that's on my slides, which interferes with their 
listening, and asking questions, i.e., with the real potential for "added 
value" of a conference over a bunch of papers.

Personally, all other things being equal, I'd far rather attend a conference 
where I _know_ roughly what will be presented and discussed, rather than one 
where no materials have been made available in advance.