As the presenters begin preparing talks for PNSQC 2020, our first virtual conference, we realize that this is not only a new paradigm for us, but also for our speakers. Meeting virtually and providing pre-recorded videos presents both opportunities and challenges. To provide the best experience for both attendees and speakers, we would like to offer some tips and guidelines for making the video of your presentation and preparing for the live Q&A session afterward.
Remember that a team of PNSQC volunteers is eager to help you refine and enhance your presentation.
Make use of the Author Resources page, or reach out to the PNSQC program committee if you have questions that aren’t answered here.
Here is what we expect for a high-quality presentation:
Make a good first impression
The first few minutes are just you (the speaker) talking to the camera about what you are about your talk. Why should we continue watching? What compelling new information or experience will you share with us? How will we benefit?
Set the stage
Use the conference branded slide deck. This is especially important for this virtual online conference as videos when played individually need context as to where, when, and what event the video took place.
Focus on what’s important
Screen share your slides or show the use of a tool, technique, or tip that will help us in our day-to-day testing efforts. You don’t need to have your camera turned on during this part if you don’t want to. Or, you can have a split-screen showing your slides as you talk us through them.
Use your resources wisely
Depending on your topic, speakers are encouraged to dive into the actual code to “show us,” not just “tell us” how something can be achieved. This is what will set us apart from a “live,” in-person conference — more in-depth with real, hands-on, screen-sharing-type demos. Please ensure that your motions and actions on the screen can be followed easily by the viewers and that it’s big enough to see!
Finish with a bang
The last few minutes should just be you on camera wrapping up your session telling us the main takeaways and highlights while leading into your Q & A session.
Leave time for discussion
PNSQC technical paper presentation videos are expected to be around 25 minutes, as this leaves plenty of time for interaction with the audience. Technical brief presentations should be 15 minutes with 5 minutes for Q&A. Without the Q&A, attendees can just watch videos at their leisure. Remember, YOU are the highlight of the talk, answering questions and responding with more in-depth as time permits.
Use the best equipment
We recommend an external microphone (not the one on your laptop), and a dedicated webcam or video camera (not your laptop or mobile phone camera). Since the bulk of your presentation is a pre-recorded video, you won’t be able to sense whether the audience can see or hear you. You want to make the best impression possible, so it’s critical that you have a quality microphone and video camera. Also since we will be LIVE for Q&A, join using a wired internet connection whenever possible.
For more details on content, review the PNSQC Author resources page. If you have questions about the actual process of recording a video, the speaker kit on the Guild Conferences site has many useful technical tips.
For those engineers out there, we’ve developed a matrix that you can use as a checklist to make your video the best it can be.
Lots of background noise, difficult to hear, volume not loud enough.
Voice sounds like a movie star with no background noise, clear.
Can’t see their face, lighting is too dark or too light, difficult to discern.
Presentation slides background provide poor contrast, can’t see clearly, too small.
Adequate lighting to see face clearly, slides have good contrast to see, correct sizing. font is suitable size (24pt).
Screenshots and graphics (if any) are big enough to see clearly.
Lots of distraction. Can’t see well.
Clean, distraction-free background. Easy to focus on presentation.
Presentation Style Quality
Speaker looking constantly to the side or down/up like they are talking to the wall.
Speaker occasionally looks into the camera to establish audience connection.
Speed of delivery is too slow such that you’re bored to death, or too fast, such that you can’t understand and keep up.
Speed of delivery keeps viewers engaged, and understandable.
Speaker is monotone and boring, makes you fall asleep.
Speaker speaks with vocal variety.
Speaker doesn’t let you know if you want to continue watching or not.
Speaker introduces themselves, title of their talk, and what you’ll get from the talk in the first 90 seconds.
Jumping around from place to place, and can’t get the flow of their ideas.
Logical flow of ideas and examples to help explain their subject matter.
Abruptly finishes and you don’t know it’s over, nor what were the main points.
Closes the talk, letting you know it’s over, and what you should take home from the talk.