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Re: PGCon 2008 RFP

From: Josh Berkus <josh(at)agliodbs(dot)com>
To: "Jonah H(dot) Harris" <jonah(dot)harris(at)gmail(dot)com>
Cc: jd(at)commandprompt(dot)com, Dan Langille <dan(at)langille(dot)org>, Bruce Momjian <bruce(at)momjian(dot)us>, PostgreSQL Advocacy <pgsql-advocacy(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: PGCon 2008 RFP
Date: 2009-01-05 18:21:43
Message-ID: (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-advocacy

> Well, how many DB2 or Oracle conferences have you attended?  The
> industry conferences (even those given by the user groups) are
> different than open source conferences, that's for sure.  Of course,
> you're paying a helluva lot more to attend any of those than you are
> PGCon... so maybe they just have higher expectations?

Or more much lower ones, because they know people are being paid to attend.

I attended a number of industry conferencences for Sun (Sun, Oracle, 
IBM, various Java companies).  And I can tell you, I would *never* in a 
million years have paid to sit in one single presentation I attended. 
Even when the subject matter was personally interesting to me, the 
presentation style was like waiting for pitch to drip.  And, looking 
around, 90% of the attendees were doing their e-mail and never even 
looked at the speaker.

Standardized slide templates contributed significantly to the boredom. 
"What presentation am I in again?  Is this Scaling J2EE Servers, or Web 
Security?   Haven't I seen this slide before?"

I successfully fought the JavaOne committee last year *not* to use the 
JavaOne template because it interfered with my delivery.  The result? 
My presentation was voted #2 or #3 in the conference overall (out of > 
200), even though it had no real Java content.

OSCON, the hardest-to-get-into OSS conference in the English speaking 
world, offers "OSCON" slide templates.  But we don't force or even 
harass people to use them; we prefer speakers with their own distinctive 

It's my assertion that people who promote the use of standard slide 
templates do so because they don't know how to put together a good 
presentation themselves.  Heck, some really good presentations use *no 
slides at all*.

--Josh Berkus

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