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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • I don't know if you caught the talk that Tom Phoenix and I gave a few years ago at OSCON on "Teaching 'Learning Perl'".

    Damian's talk yesterday talked about having only five items, and the subitems to support it. I say that in a different way: have a path.

    Every presentation or class is a journey from a starting place to an ending place. Identify the starting place clearly, because it should be where the core of your audience can find themselves as well. Identify the ending place clearly, and hope that this is also where the audience wants to go.

    And once you have the starting and ending places identified, make sure that every bullet, every thought, every concept, every example is some progress towards the end place and leaves no gaps from the prior steps.

    It's OK to take a few detours, but make sure the detours are identified explictly (both as you're creating it, and as you're delivering it), so if people aren't "getting it", they don't think "geez, I don't get this, so later material will be completely useless".

    I think this results in the same sort of outcome as Damian suggested, but it's another way to think about what makes a successful training or talk.

    • Randal L. Schwartz
    • Stonehenge