I have wronged the Open Source movement by misrepresenting them in front of my coursemates.
I’d decided to make my presentation without notes. Public speaking has always been my greatest phobia, so I waited while half the class walked up to the front and read out their presentations. I was beginning to sweat just sitting in my chair and I decided to get it over with.
The first blooper was that I talk very quietly. I watched embarassed as the class turned off the AC just to hear my voice — some still had to come forward to hear me. My shirt under my arms was soaked and my palms were moist as I gripped the podium.
I started out fine, explaining what source code was and introducing them to open-source and closed-source coding. Suddenly, I went blank. Everything I’d thought to talk about flew out of my head and immediately, my reflexes kicked in. I went on a round of Microsoft and Windows bashing, extolling the virtues of Linux. Everyone appeared to be rapt with attention.
I was asked if Linux still ran from the command line like DOS and I, of course enlightened them on the how easy the installation was. Sometime into my explanation, I said,’Depending on your computer architecture, Linux can be a bit geeky to install.’ I had to explain what geeky was…
Suddenly, I was going on and on talking about how insecure WIndows was and how your data is sent to Microsoft, etc. Everything that came to my mouth went right out without me thinking. I was in a disjointed state, observing myself talk with increasing horror at what I was outputting.
I finally rounded up by making an appeal to users to make use of open source software. Now, everyone was going to think Linux was un-crackable and that Windows was evil. With an embarassed smile on my face that most people took to be joy, I walked back to my seat amidst applause.
As I sat down, I kept thinking,’Azuka what have you done?’
My presentation was a failed experiment — next time no one’s going to tell me to use notes.