Your Style ? Stylish presentations without Powerpoint or Keynote

11 11 2011

For the last few days I’ve been investigating possibilities to create presentations that will output a mixture of HTML / CSS / JS and are created by either using plain HTML or some kind of markup language. The general idea behind this approach is that for 90% of the presentation you create you will follow a simple set of styles and you will not need some special visualizations.

What is most interesting for me is to use my standard work environment, like my editor of choice and leave the styling to a predefined set of markups, probably following some corporate identity guidelines.

Long story short, I’m disappointed with what I’ve seen. Basically there are two reasons why everything I looked at falls short of my requirements:

  • PDF generation – I want to generate a PDF of my slides that I can easily distribute (static HTML does not do the trick, publishing slides to Heruko or Github neither)
  • Templates – I have no idea why non of the tools I looked at provides simple support for templates. Is CI something that was lost in the whirlwinds of Web 2.0? And by templates I mean more than putting a logo at the bottom right.

And here are the tools I observed with their shortcomings:

  • Showoff – Markdown for the slides is perfect, templating impossible and PDF generation fails for images defined by CSS backgrounds ( I might have a patch for that)
  • Deck.js – HTML is just to noisy to work on slides, print markup does not look like the original slide
  • Slippy – HTML is to noisy
  • LaTeX Beamer – LaTeX as markup is fine for me, PDF output is perfect, templating is a pain in the …

In general the markup based solutions are very easy to setup and use, but typically fall short to allow fine-grained customization of the layout. The simplest example is that there is typically no way to place the slide title and the slide body separately.

As a result it looks like I’m back to Powerpoint.

C++11 / C++0x Documentation

1 11 2011

You want to improve your “old” C++ code base by allowing new features or bug fixes to be enhanced with C++11? The questions you will face on the way are manifold. First, what exactly allows me C++11 to do? Where is some documentation? What is the purpose of those features. Compared to languages like Ruby or Python the C++ standard library and language itself is not too well documented online.

As a preparation for a lecture I’m holding in the next semester I was compiling a list of links to C++11 / C++0x documentation sites and as some kind of personal archive I will post them here:

General C++11 / C++0x FAQ

New Features (Overview)

Compiler Support

Standard Library Documentation

I will update this list as I find new sources. If you have any more links you think that are missing, please mention them in the comments and I will add them.