How to keep people interested in your technical presentation

The next time you deliver a highly specialized presentation to a group of lay people, follow the approach that a Wall Street Journal columnist took in a TED talk on Antarctica.

Ragan Insider Premium Content
Ragan Insider Content

Technical topics can make audience members’ eyes glaze over, but that needn’t be the case.

My longtime friend and colleague, Wall Street Journal science columnist Robert Lee Hotz, gave this TED talk about Antarctica, a cold, distant, hard-to-imagine placeā€”and did it in under 10 minutes.

His slides have no bullets, just pictures of a foreign, frozen world, both inside and outside an Antarctic laboratory. Hotz is a bit of a ringer when it comes to translating technical topics for public and non-scientific audiences, but here’s some of what you can glean from his talk and technique:

1. Give us some (well-chosen) detail.

To read the full story, log in.
Become a Ragan Insider member to read this article and all other archived content.
Sign up today

Already a member? Log in here.
Learn more about Ragan Insider.