LG3D presentation report.
Wednesday, I did a presentation of Looking Glass at the Libre Software
Meeting, in Nancy (France)
I arrived there at ~11:30 (~5 hours of travel, my laptop did its best
performance : 3H30, while it's said to be lasting only ~3H on battery and
it's one year old, I must release my energy-saving tool !), and did my
presentation at 14:00. It had to last 45 minutes...
During the travel, I had time to finalize some things on my presentation, read
It was written using OpenOffice.org Impress, but displayed in Looking Glass
using my tool I hacked heavily specifically for this presentation (that's why
you won't see source code immediately, it's too dirty !)
My aims were :
- make laugh the people : people laughing will remember far more easily the
presentation than people seeing a presentation without any smile... I learned
that at FOSDEM : the presentation I remember the best was about xkb. It was
quite hard to understand (it was in english, and my english skills have still
much progress to do), but I remember it because of the great presentator :
joking, looking happy...
- explain exactly what Looking Glass is, its aims...
- have fun (when it's boring for the presentator, it's boring for the
public... And it'll help me forget the ~130â‚¬ price for the travel... (I think
it's about 170$))
Well... how to say that...
There were 3 presentations related to desktops during the afternoon. But the
man responsible for this topic wasn't there ! And off course, I had the first
presentation... So I had to run, find a video projector, set it up quickly...
Quite stressing !
My time planning was also just broken : this presentation lasted 1H30 when I
did it two months ago. Since then, I removed slides, cleaned up some
things... I believed I could do it in 45 minutes. Finally I had to do this in
less than 40 minutes ! Impossible to do :/
1) My presentation tool
It worked... Ok, don't look at the code. Ok, I have only hacked 3 slide
transitions. But it did its job, and that's what I needed. Now I'm able to
improve it really, make serious changes, try to look at OpenDocument
compatibility (ho, this point will be difficult and boring ...). Somebody
said the transitions looked like Keynote... Basically, it was only looking at
the Javadoc, finding an easy to use and interesting call... So keynote
doesn't seem to be extremely hard to "copy", great innovation there. (I don't
know this tool, and don't want to learn anything about it : knowing its name
is enough, I don't want to copy without wanting it)
2) The public
Globally, they looked interested. Especially amazed by the demonstration with
a video. It looks so great, fancy effects without slow down, flipping the
There were some people I know in the audience, they said me I spoke too
There were also some laughs, hopefully. :) For instance, when I said it needed
Java. I wrote this presentation to be... well, just after the slide saying
Java5 is needed, I have a "no Java-troll" page, about Java speed and having a
free (like in speech) Java5-compatible VM.
I was quite stressed before my presentation (I don't like doing public speech)
I suppose the audience felt it. I also didn't know how the presentation would
be running : in a small class room ? in an amphitheatre ? with how many
Finally, it was in a small class room, with about 40/50 person... There was no
place left in the room, quite a good performance.
Like usually there are improvements to do :
1) I used app mode. The LG3D window was full screen on my KDE Desktop 2. I
switched to desktop 3. When I switched back to desktop 2, it was impossible
to click anything in the LG3D window !
2) Somebody in the room suggested we implement support for true 3D icons,
using VRML or mesh. It would be really really great.
Globally, the feedback was : how can we really improve the user experience ?
Additionnal question : how many users running it full time do we have :/
Something else we really need : a panel system with plugins, applets...
*configurable*. No more config file edition for instance... A weather plugin,
a clock plugin, a systray (if possible) plugin. Also, a more interactive
background would be great, with background applets like superkarama or
gdesklets (but not like dashboard, or configurable (an extra layer, it's less
usable, and you often forget your running applets))
BTW, for the systray support, I fear it'll be hard to implement it. It looks
like it has to use XEmbed... It looks like it's not supported by Escher
actually, nor by AWT/Swing. Should we do it ourself ? I really don't know.
1) If I'm asked to do a presentation again, it'll first check the travel
cost&duration. 9 hours, 130â‚¬... That's too much ! I woke up at 5 o'clock, I
ate then, I ate two tiny pizza parts at 13:30, and nothing until 22:45 :
horrible for me (I like eating) I was back at home at 00:30, and I had to go
to work at 6:45. Tiring day, I can't do it again.
2) I had fun, the public had fun... :)
P.S : I wrote the first part of this report in the train. But I didn't know
then what was going to happen me. A storm burnt an electric isolator, so the
train was more than 4 hours late ! Which means I couldn't take the train
planned for me to go home (it was two parts : lille => paris ; paris =>
nancy). So I arrive in Lille 8 hours after the planned schedule, with shadows
under the eyes bigger than my glasses, and pale "like a cloth" (I hope it's a
good translation)... So no, I won't do it again ! Not that far from my