Page 3.14

Though it seems like I’ve been with Seed for an eternity, I’ve actually only been here for three months. I’m pretty excited to be joining some of the ScienceBloggers at ScienceOnline09, but must admit I am a tad nervous about giving a presentation to a whole room of them. That’s why I was especially drawn to this recent post by Dr. Isis in which she complains about an awful presentation she was forced to sit through. The antics on the comment thread are quite amusing, per usual. But specifically I was delighted to stumble across this jem, a comment thread on Sciencewoman’s August post entitled, “How NOT to Give a Scientific Talk,” recommended by commenter “jc.”

Here are some of the hilarious suggestions from readers:

Mimi: There was one speaker who inhales between her teeth so it was always a hiss. Another (and I know we all do it here where I live) who kept sucking her teeth. A third had an obnoxious nervous chuckle and his slides being out of order made it worse… noises… eek.

PhysioProf: Apply verbal stress to the least important words in each sentence, and destress the most important. This will leave your audience wondering what the fuck you are talking about, and by the end of the talk they will all hate you with a burning passion.

BrianR: One of the worst talks I saw, the guy used both a laser pointer AND the cursor to follow the bullet points he was reading verbatim … the laser dot and cursor danced around each other like they were racing to the end of the sentence. I have no idea what he said.

MommyProf: Arrange for someone to call your cell during the presentation. Take the call.

Click here to go to post and full comment thread.

Have any posts from the archives you would like to see discussed on Page 3.14? Email