How (Not) To Do a Presentation

This post is more than 2 years old.

I followed an interesting link on Slashdot to Epic 2014, a hypothetical look into the future of media. The content is pretty interesting. What is more interesting is the stunning lack of the obvious.

What do I mean? The video is eight minutes long. There are no controls. No pausing. No rewinding. For a video of such length, not being able to pause it, or jump to a section, is just plain silly.

I see this far too often with presentations online, and it really surprises me that people don't remember to include such controls when creating their content. Perhaps I'm being a bit bitter since something needed my attention... right at the end of the video so I missed it. Am I going to sit through all eight minutes again? Probably, but the point is I shouldn't have to.

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About Raymond Camden

Raymond is a senior developer evangelist for Adobe. He focuses on document services, JavaScript, and enterprise cat demos. If you like this article, please consider visiting my Amazon Wishlist or donating via PayPal to show your support. You can even buy me a coffee!

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Archived Comments

Comment 1 by John Dowdell posted on 12/21/2004 at 10:41 PM

Hi Raymond, I went to check the format, but he got Slashdot'd, and the mirror I checked was timing-out too. Is this video delivered in SWF? (If so, we might be able to help him out easily.) Or is it in some other video format that either plays in a predictable second window (QT, Real, WMP), or which plays in unpredictable fashion (MPG, some rarer use of others)?

tx,
jd

Comment 2 by Raymond Camden posted on 12/21/2004 at 11:44 PM

It was Flash. It would be cool if the Flash Player itself would let you pause. I can see it not having a position seeker, but "pause" or "freeze" would be nice. :)

Comment 3 by John Dowdell posted on 12/21/2004 at 11:48 PM

Thanks. I wonder if it was a question of not finding the SWF video templates with media controls, or if they were found and the creator decided not to use an approach like this...?
http://macromedia.com/devne...

Comment 4 by Raymond Camden posted on 12/21/2004 at 11:52 PM

I'm assuming it was just an artistic decision. I could be wrong. Certainly I see it enough to bug the heck out of me, which is the reason for the post. Another example is the JibJab stuff that was famous a few months back. I think it comes down to user education (or developer education) and considering the user experience when you develop something.