Friday, March 1, 2013

Staying Grounded in Large Software Systems

I gave a guest lecture at the University of Toronto yesterday for CSC302, Engineering Large Software Systems. All in all, I feel like it went reasonably well. My presentation is available on Speaker Deck:

There were some hiccups and there are some things I think I could improve:
  • Even though I believe there are no simple answers for this, I feel like the case for why it's hard to stay grounded is stronger than my suggestions on how to stay grounded. I'd like the presentation to feel a little more balanced.
  • I tried to keep the 'About Me' section very brief, but it still felt a little longer than I wanted it to in person. The 'about' part isn't key to the presentation.
  • I didn't have to read my presentation, but I needed my notes a little more than I wanted, which prevented me from spending as much time as I wanted making eye contact with the audience.
  • I didn't feel massively nervous, but I could see myself picking up a few mannerisms during the talk that implied I was nervous anyway, so more practice would help there as well.
  • I hadn't tried Keynote Remote with Bluetooth yet, so I was disappointed to discover that keynote remote can work with bluetooth, but not for iOS-to-Mac, which is the most likely case for me. Seems like a pretty serious limitation.
All that said, I enjoyed the experience, and I might look at refining the presentation and doing it again.

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