Virtual presentations

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Meeting system

We use the WebEx meeting system, and before the event/course begins, we will send out the URL to connect. Presenters will use the same URL, and the presentation controls will be handed over prior to starting. Please see the following instructions:

Hardware preparation

  1. You will need a computer with Windows or Mac OSX and Java installed.
  2. You will need a fast Internet connection using an Ethernet cable. IMPORTANT: Do not use wireless, since it can cause your connection to drop.
  3. You will need a headphone/microphone combination. We recommend a webcam with 320x240 or 640x480 resolution. A microphone with a foam windscreen is strongly recommended. Test that these work at least a day before the event/course.

Video preparation

  1. Set your computer's screen to a low resolution, such as 1024x768.
  2. Increase the font size on any applications that you will be showing (this should also be a consideration when making slides).

Logging on

  1. Log in to the URL provided. A host from Bioinformatics.Org will moderate.

Audio preparation

  1. Make sure your computer isn't capturing/recording desktop sounds (e.g., "stereo mix"). Your microphone should be your only capture/recording device.
  2. If using a headset, make sure your microphone is positioned below your chin. This will help prevent audio "popping" from your breath.

Desktop sharing

  1. When the moderator indicates that you're ready to go, click on the "Share My Desktop" button.
  2. Anything you now see on your desktop (such as a slide show) will be seen by the attendees. IMPORTANT: Host and guest messages in the chat box will appear in a yellow "balloon" at the top of your screen.


In order to overcome the strong potential for technical problems that can interfere with a live presentation, we'll need you to pre-record your talk.

There are 3 options for presenters:

  1. Pre-record only
  2. Pre-record PLUS give a live presentation
  3. Give a live presentation only (with live recording)

Our preference is #2, but you might prefer #1 or #3, in which case #1 would be a compromise. If you choose to pre-record only, then you may just watch your own talk and take questions afterward. But, it's up to you.

We use and recommend TechSmith Camtasia Studio, which is available for free (as a trial) at this URL: Please see the following instructions:

Please note the following settings to use when recording: AVI (.avi) output, 3 frames per second, and a screen width of no more than 1024 pixels. If you have a different way of recording your presentations, please try to use similar settings. If you have any questions about this, please ask us.

Please place your recorded presentation on a file transfer site, and send the URL to us (let us know if you don't have access to such a site).

We would like all recordings to be completed 5 days prior to the start of the event/course.

See also

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