Slide-decks the Web 2.0 way
We love giving presentations. We sponsor the Atlanta Ruby Users Group (ATLRUG), we each attend at least one conference per year where we are highly encouraged to speak rather than simply attend, and we give weekly tech talks at the office. Each Nerd has their own presentation tool-stack ranging from extremely simple using nothing more than a web browser with various tabs they manually rotate through, to sophisticated Keynote slide-decks. One can also use a very editor and CLI-centric collection of tools to build flexible presentations using many of our everyday tools like git, guard, slim, and Github with Github Pages. If you like using those sorts of tools to speed things along read on after the jump.
slimrb after every save. To enable that compilation Guard and Guard-Slim work well together to produce output that can be continually reloaded in a browser without ever having to manually intervene. For publication Github pages are extremely convenient. For a given project you can simply create a
gh-pages branch and push an
index.html to the tracked remote
gh-pages branch, and it will be published automatically (for more information see the excellent documentation).
To wrap up this whole process into a single generator command I’ve created a ruby gem Presechute, “The parachute for your presentation creation process.” It can be run by installing the gem via
gem install presechute then simply running
presechute new <presentation name>. It downloads deck.js, cleans up the environment a bit, and sets up the whole family of tools discussed above. It then creates a
gh-pages branch, removes HTML files from the
.gitignore file, and creates an initial
index.html file ready for pushing to the remote branch with a rake task. Finally it checks out the master branch again and prepares to get down to some serious slide-deck creation!
From there the standard workflow is to launch guard via
bundle exec guard (if you use Bundler), open your new presentation file, for example
prezzy.slim, and write some slides! After each save
prezzy.html will be updated by
guard-slim, and you can view it at your leisure in your browser. This makes for a very tight feedback loop while polishing slides. When you’re ready to release simply commit your work, then hop over to the
gh-pages branch, rebase against master, and run
rake to generate your
index.html. Commit it as well and push it upstream and you have a working online slide-deck.
What tools do you use for creating web-ready slides? How do you polish your workflow to keep a tight feedback loop?
Image credit: Grand Canyon NPS