Congratulations on being chosen as a speaker for linux.conf.au. This is a significant achievement. Each year we have many more talk submissions than we are able to accept, which means only the very best talks make it through. We're thrilled that you're going to be joining us for the conference, and contributing towards giving our delegates the best conference possible.
Even if you've spoken at an LCA before, you're bound to have questions about the conference. Some of those questions are general questions about LCA and how it works, and others might be specific to this year's venue. We've put together this guide to help answer the questions we think you might have. However, if you have other questions that we haven't answered here, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll get back to you with answers as soon as we can.
Is there a speakers mailing list?
Yes! When you confirmed your registration, we added you to a mailing list which is exclusively for speakers. Any announcements specifically for speakers will come through to this list, so please make sure you're checking it in the days and weeks leading up to your talk. You can also use this mailing list for sharing thoughts and ideas with other speakers.
Will there be a pre-conference briefing and room familiarisation session for speakers?
Yes! There will be a session on the Sunday afternoon especially for speakers to get familiar with their rooms and the audiovisual equipment available. This is highly recommended for all speakers. Times and meeting place will be announced on the speakers mailing list.
Is there a speakers' dinner?
It is linux.conf.au tradition that a Speakers' Dinner is held each year, to provide an opportunity for all speakers to get to know each other better. We have an exciting (and a little bit secret) night lined up for you, and we'll be sending out more information as we get closer to the event.
Can I bring my partner or children to the speakers' dinner?
Please bring your partner to the speakers' dinner. They have had a hand in your success, and we would like to thank them for their part in helping our conference be the best it can be.
You are welcome to bring your children to the event, but please be aware that some younger children can get bored when it seems like it's just a bunch of grownups sitting around and talking. Consider if your children (and you!) are going to enjoy the event, and plan accordingly. If you need help arranging childcare for LCA events, please contact us at email@example.com and we'll help you out.
What happens on the day of my talk?
Make sure you know well ahead of time which room you will be speaking in, and the location of that room on the campus. Don't forget to double check your room allocation before you set off. Sometimes we need to make last minute changes to room scheduling. Aim to be at your room to set up your talk at least half an hour ahead of time.
Once you have set up and are ready to begin speaking, your room monitor will introduce you. Have a chat to your room monitor ahead of time, make sure they know how to pronounce your name, and understand what your talk is about so that they can say something meaningful about your work.
Try to keep to your time allocation as closely as possible, even if there is a scheduled break immediately after your talk. Your room monitor will be able to give you signals about time throughout your talk, and can also help you with reining in question-time overruns if you need it. Remember you can always ask a long-winded audience member to ask you more questions outside once you have packed up, or to send you an email if they need more information.
When you are answering questions from the audience, if the audience member doesn't use a microphone you will need to repeat the question for the benefit of the recording, and for any audience members who might not have been able to hear the original question.
At the conclusion of your talk, take a deep breath and pat yourself on the back. Then pack up as quietly and efficiently as you can, to make way for the next speaker. Head to the pub for a well-deserved drink with your biggest fans from the audience.
What is the go with social media at the conference?
Go right ahead and share information about your talk and your work on social media. So that conference-goers can find you easily, tag your posts with #lca2013. We have presence on Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter, Identica, and flickr.
We love seeing people (especially our speakers!) sharing their experiences of the conference on social media. However, if you have a complaint, you can usually achieve more by approaching one of our volunteers or core team members directly instead. We promise we won't bite (not unless you ask us nicely, anyway), and we can often clear up any misunderstandings or issues pretty quickly.
How long can I talk for?
Each presentation slot is 45 minutes, except tutorials which have a double slot of one hour and 30 minutes. It is expected that presentations go for approximately 40 minutes, with 5 minutes for questions, unless you prefer to take questions during your presentation. For tutorials, it is assumed that questions will be asked during the tutorial rather than at the end.
The room monitor in your room will help guide you with timing and identifying questions from the audience. It's a good idea to practise your talk ahead of time so that you have a better idea of how long you need to talk for.
What are the rooms like?
Watch this space
What audiovisual (AV) equipment is available in my room?
Watch this space
Due to the large range of distributions, presentation software and other tools and utilities which are likely to be used by speakers, conference organisers are not able to pre-load presentations on computers or laptops. You will need to bring your laptop with you, or contact the organisers so we can arrange alternate methods for displaying your presentation.
Will my talk be recorded?
Unless you have specifically withheld your permission, all talks given at linux.conf.au will be filmed and digitally distributed to share with the community. However, linux.conf.au is a volunteer-run conference, and sometimes (but rarely!) things go wrong. We will do our best to ensure all talks are recorded and shared, but we cannot guarantee that this will happen.
Each room at the venue will be staffed by a small AV team who will provide you with a lapel microphone and perform a quick sound check before you begin, to ensure everyone in the room can hear you clearly. Positioning of the lapel microphone will involve a microphone being clipped to your clothing – such as a collar or t-shirt band – and a wire being run under your shirt, to connect with a battery pack which clips on to the belt of your pants or skirt. Please consider this when planning what to wear for your talk.
A standard VGA connection will be available for you to plug your laptop into to display slides on a projector (slides will also be recorded on the video of the talk). If you require something other than VGA (such as HDMI, DisplayPort, or DVI) please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to make sure we can accommodate you. Power will be available for you to plug your laptop into, please use only the power board indicated as others may have critical conference equipment plugged into them!
For speakers travelling from outside Australia: Australian standard electrical outlets provide 240V, 50Hz and use an AS3112 type outlet (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_power_connector). Please don't forget your travel adapter and make sure you check your power adapter is capable of dealing with 240V!
Will there be internet connectivity in my room?
We will be doing our very best to ensure you have reliable, high-speed internet access available for all conference talks. However, linux.conf.au is a volunteer-run conference, and sometimes (but rarely!) things go wrong and we cannot guarantee that this will happen. If your talk relies on internet connectivity, consider having a 3G device ready as a backup solution.
What are the demographics of my audience?
All presentations are expected to be given in English, and all conference information will be available in English only. All attendees are expected to have a high level of proficiency in written and spoken English.
The majority of attendees – approximately 80% will be Australian, with a significant New Zealander contingent (10-15%). The remainder of attendees are from countries such as the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, with a very small number of attendees from Europe.
Approximately 80% of attendees are male, however the number of female attendees has risen steadily over the years. Just under 25% of speakers at last year's conference were female.
It is reasonable to assume a VERY HIGH level of technical competence amongst conference attendees. Many work in highly skilled occupations such as systems administration, network administration, software development and infrastructure management. Other attendees have at least a general understanding of computing, Linux, systems administration and are likely to work in affiliated professions such as technical writing or technology management.
The vast majority of attendees are over 18, although many people choose to bring their children with them, so young people are likely to be seen around the venue, and could possibly be present in your talk.
Attendees are associated with a wide range of organisations – affiliation such as Universities and scientific research organisations, private technology companies and government departments. Many attendees have no organisational affiliation and fund their own conference attendance as 'Hobbyists'.
Is there a dress code?
The dress code for the conference is 'neat casual'. Jeans, t-shirts, shorts etc are acceptable. We request that for the comfort of yourself and others at the conference that high standards of hygiene are maintained at all times. The Australian summer can be very warm, and you may find that you perspire more than usual.