Advice for conf speakers:— Tomasz Łakomy (@tlakomy) August 25, 2018
When someone you care for is speaking, sit in the first row. Be there for them. Laugh at their jokes, _actually_ watch the talk (Twitter can wait), make yourself visible for them.
Be the audience you'd like to have, and next time you will have it.
My approach to supporting other speakers is not really about the audience I would like (we're all different!), but more about making two things happen:
- someone being the best they can be
- them getting credit for that
In fact I've been a speaker coach and mentor for a few years and have variously watched rehearsals, suggested where to stand and not stand, walked nervous speakers around outside before their talk, fetched water ... all sorts of things. However this twitter thread (I got a bunch of tweets and the replies are also great) shows that _anyone_ can give great support to any speaker, whether you know them or not. Here are my favourite three things to do to support anyone giving a talk. Continue reading
- What's going well/what are you excited about?
- What's tedious/annoying or actually a problem?
- What could I be doing that I'm not?
Over time I've developed some particular processes that I find helpful when reviewing code. In particular, I often surprise people at how much review I do before I run the code. Sometimes I grab the branch so that I can use my local diff tools, but I don't actually execute code until I've established some basic facts. This post is a little insight into what's happening in this not-running-the-code-yet zone. Continue reading
In fact this is my dream job. Steady, REAL development work, with real people in my timezone. Part time to allow the other aspects of my business to still get some time and attention, and to fit in my other interests/family commitments. Too good to be true? I hope not :)
Donna's been a virtual friend for a few years; I "intermet" her when I was preparing to host the Dutch PHP Conference in Amsterdam, in 2010. I had some great role models from the PHP community to show me how to "ringmaster" at a big conference, but I was unsure how it would look on a woman. Having already done a similar role for PHPNW, I'd had negative feedback about being teacherish (something that I still get complaints about), and I wasn't sure how else to wear that role. Lots of things work well for men but not for women (silly things, swearing on stage (this differs between cultures), asking for a pay rise, falling out of bed into whatever free conference shirt you were given yesterday ....) and I was determined not to turn myself into a decorative but ditsy hostess.
My good friend Kathy Reid talked through my anxieties with me, and sent me a link to a video of Donna introducing an even more major conference: Donna organised Linux Conf AU and the video showed her introducing it with equal helpings of excellence, approachability, and entertainment. Confident that I wasn't alone, I stopped worrying and gave that conference my best shot. Continue reading