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What is a "lightning talk"?

A lightning talk is a quick presentation. See also discussion of lightning talks in Wikipedia.

As well as being tremendously interesting and entertaining for attendees, the conference organizers recognize that lightning talks offer an unequaled opportunity for new speakers to present for the first time without going to the lengths required for a longer talk.

How do I give a "lightning talk"?

Mark Fowler's article has advice on effectively lightning talking.

How quick should my Lightning Talk be?

We're looking for talks to last about five minutes. You will be cut off so that we may allow others to present. A five-minute lightning talk is totally fine. A two-minute lightning talk is totally fine. Your talk should take as long as it needs to take to make a point, and no longer. Make a point. But if you really need a few minutes to motivate your point, and then make it, and it takes nine minutes, that's OK too, just let us know.

We will prepare a specific schedule as we have a better idea of what presentations will be given. If time permits, last-minute talks are totally fine, too.

Oh, and you don't need slides.

When will Lightning Talks be presented?

Lightning Talks are scheduled for the Tuesday morning (10:15) session, in the Sheffield room.

How can I help?

Volunteer topics you could give a talk about. Lightning talks are a good way to leverage your existing experiences and interests into knowledge sharing. If you're an established presenter, people are likely interested in quick updates on what you're up to. If you're new to presenting, a lightning talk is a great way to get started. Likely there's something you're already doing at work, something you're ready to present today with a minimum of preparation.

Express interest in the talks others have proposed. Gauging interest is one important way for a slate of talks to emerge from the ideas on this page. It isn't necessary to go into the session with an ironclad schedule of talks, but it is desirable to go into the conference with plenty of lightning talks being ready to go, with participants comfortable that they're ready to present something that others are open to hearing. You can express interest in others' talks here, and you can even guide others towards focusing their remarks closer to what you're looking for. (A few iconoclastic talks that people don't really want to hear but nonetheless need to hear would be interesting too.)

Propose topics you'd like others to talk about. Help others to realize they have expertise and experiences you'd like to hear about.

Brainstorm random ideas for talks, even bad ideas These can help trigger an idea or three.

Concrete Lightning Talk Ideas

These are ideas that intended conference participants have for lightning talks that they could give. As the Conference approaches, plans will become more firm for which talks are scheduled.

Right now, the goal is to encourage as many participants as possible to suggest what talks they might give, so that others can express interest in what's here, disappointment at what's not here, and thereby guide towards a good slate of talks.

Lightning Talks Participants would like to give (SIGN UP HERE!)


Talk topic

People particularly interested in hearing this talk, comments




Lightning Talk topics Participants would like to see someone give


Who is interested in consuming this talk

Who could present this talk

Any ideas that anyone has for Lightning Talks, whether they're good or not

This is for brainstorming. Feel free to add your ideas here. You don't have to be ready to present the idea, or think anyone else might present it. You don't even have to think it's a good idea. However, if you do think it's a good idea, or if interest is growing, feel free to "graduate" the idea to the above category of desired talks needing speakers.


Who is interested