Objective Public Speaking Feedback: Be a better public speaker

What a gift. The worse thing about speaking in public is the fear of judgement, but if you know you’re being judged there’s nothing you can do but accept the feedback and improve next time. Here’s a metaphorical video:

So here’s some objective feedback I received that could help anyone trying to become a better public speaker.

Practice – Practice a lot, and if you can record yourself and watch what objective things you can change.

Table of Contents – Set the context for what you’re going to talk about, especially if its technical. Make sure you highlight why your audience should care.

Point your feet towards the crowd – When you direct any part of your body away from the crowd they can feel your discomfort.

Careful with your hands – Don’t touch your face or any other part of your body, and make sure each movement has a purpose.

Tonality – Exaggerate your tonality to highlight points go up, find neutral, and finish down. Use this and pacing to draw in the audience. (Watch politicians for research)

Get Excited – Even if you have to fake it a bit, your energy will be contagious and if you can highlight one thing you’ll have an easier time making your message stick.

Thank you John Alioto, Felix Rieseberg, Christine Matheney, and Katherine Harris for the Feedback!

Andres in a Hobbit hole
My Friend Andres Channeling his inner hobbit in New Zealand. He sent me this photo with What’s App, which is kickin butt.

Haahaa! I made an App!

I made an Aaaaappp! I feel like an Opera Singer!
The App is Called Drop Height Calculator and you download it for free in the Windows Desktop Store. Here is the link. I’m so proud! Right now I have 2 downloads. And I bet those two people are having a great time. Dropping things from height!

The App was made in Visual Studio using C# for the Logic and XAML for the interface. XAML is a great language for quickly marking up interfaces.

I’ll be following my App iterations in the coming weeks, but the first I want to layout is the time, experiences, and and planning that is involved with your first app from a 10,000 foot view.

Idea
Coming up with a great idea is difficult if you are trying to come up with a great idea. Ideas usually come to me at the end of a random stream of thought. And just like anything, its a practice. You’ll become better and better at it the more you practice. So, having tools around that make this practice easier will help you come up with ideas. Half of my ideas stink, and the other half are decent, but getting in the practice of bringing these ideas out of your head and onto something less volatile is really important! So get a notebook or sketchpad, or even something digital Evernote, OneNote, Keep, or any of the other note taking apps to help you keep track of any ideas YOU find interesting.
For this project, I was inspired by gravity. More specifically that gravity accelerates all objects on earth equally. And if you ignore air resistance you can use that principal, a timer , and a small uniform object (Like a rock or coin (Not a feather… Unless its under vacuum)) to calculate a height.

Layout and UI
Next I spent about 30 minutes brainstorming then doodling what I wanted to UI to look like. This app only has one screen, which made it easy. But by taking time to doodle, I was able to come up/brainstorm new ways of arranging components and even looking to expand with new features.

Execution
This is the tough part. Soon I will have a post breaking down what really happens when building an App, but this in total probably took 8ish hours. Mostly because I had no idea what I was doing and was constantly referring to other materials and searching for help. Good news though, the help IS out there it just requires a good chunk of time to find and interpret. My first tip would be find a comfortable and quiet space to focus. Getting distracted at the height of productivity stinks.

Details
The next thing is the details. I was all stoked that I had an App, and the button clicked and the time showed up and everything was great. I couldn’t wait to get in the store. Then boom, details. I like details. Where are your images? Where is your privacy page? Do you have an account? Do you have screenshots? What is your app called? What tags do you want to use? Very important details. This will be elaborated on in the next post. In all it took about an hour, and it was fun incorporating ‘business’ decisions into the building process. It makes sense, your product and business practices are very much in line when releasing an app.

Upload
Haaahahaa! This is the fun part, package those files and wait four hours for verification! Yes! Begin opera singing!

Back on the Train

I’m happy to be writing again. I had taken a couple week break to get settled and determine if continuing this blog was in line with my new “Professional Career.” Turns out it is!

Desk
My Very Professional Desk!

I started my role as a Technical Evangelist at Microsoft on July 7th, and will be contributing to this blog weekly; blurring the lines between professional evangelist and unprofessional man of many curiosities.

If you have any questions about Windows development or being a man, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Today on the agenda, is practicing presentation skills. One of our many mentors, John Alioto, has given us a couple of topics to research and use as material for our 5 minute talk. The questions are really good, I can’t share them with you now, but when I get the okay they are all worth investigating.

Ahhhh good question John. Taking us back to compilers… We’ll get to the full rundown later this week.

The Moon
I took this photo at the Oregon Observatory in Sunriver through one of the many beautiful telescopes you can use for just $8!