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Sat, Dec 6th 4:16pm 2008: Conferences

The reason I started doing conference talks was that I was really bad at it and wanted to become slightly less bad. I've spent a lot of time studying the best speakers I could find: how (or if) they do slides, how they interact with the audience, the structure of their talks, their intonation and the language they use, their timing, everything. Sitting in Tridge's keynote at OSDC in Sydney yesterday morning half my attention was on the subject of his talk and half was on the way in which he was delivering it, and I started thinking about the great speakers I've seen over the years.

Some speakers are so good that it doesn't matter in the slightest if I'm interested in their topic or not, I'll go and see them just to enjoy the experience.

So, applying the "would I go to watch them talk about random subject $foo that I'm not interested in" criteria, and in no particular order, some of my favorite speakers of all time are:

Andrew Tridgell
Eben Moglen
Anthony Baxter
Paul Fenwick
Rusty Russell
Damian Conway
Bruce Schneier
Dick Hardt

I'm sure I've forgotten a couple.

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