I do a lot of presentations, and I’m often asked how I make sure that the demonstrations go off without a hitch. I have a few tricks I use in case you have to do presentations as well. Here is some of the setup I do to make things go smoothly:
1. Use a Virtual PC image – There are several reasons to do this. For one, I can back up the files that comprise the Virtual PC image and save them off to an external drive, so there I have a copy in case of a laptop meltdown.
2. Keep a copy of the Virtual PC software handy – Just in case I need to use that image, I need software to run it.
3. Set the background to black – This shows well on the screen.
4. Use 1024×768 Screen Resolution in the VPC – This shows well for almost any size audience and common distance from the screen.
5. Use Large Fonts – Ditto
6. Set the fonts in all of the options in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) to at least 14 pitch – Ditto
7. Set the Output of the queries to use a separate tab, and to switch to that automatically – This gives you more screen real-estate to work with for the audience.
8. Use Line Numbers – This lets you talk about the code you’re showing on the screen
9. Set the code to wrap – This makes it easier to read, and with line numbers it’s clear what you’re showing
10. Use “glyphs” to show the wrap – Ditto
11. In your PowerPoint Slides, “Title” the code demo – This helps you keep your place when you switch back and forth between demos.
12. In your code samples, use those titles as comments – Ditto
In other posts I’ll explain some of the demo techniques I use as well.