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I'm thinking of posting slides from some of my technical presentations online. One option I've used in the past is just posting the PDFs. But I've seen some sites that offer nice interfaces for others to view and share your slides without downloading them, such as

I am primarily interested in advertising my research to other researchers who might be interested in using it or collaborating.

Which site should I use, and why? Or are raw PDFs the way to go?

In case it matters, I'm a computational mathematician and my slides are a mixture of text, equations, plots, short videos, and diagrams.

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Personally, I love when people link raw PDFs to github or similar. –  user107 Aug 4 '12 at 14:20
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I'd instinctively find anything else than a raw pdf file annoying, due to the lower portability and implied access control. I suspect I am not the only one in my field (numerical mathematics). –  Federico Poloni Aug 6 '12 at 8:18
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Keep in mind is that, if the presentation contains unpublished results, you shouldn't publish it at all. Doing so could jeopardize your ability to publish the papers in a reputable journal. –  eykanal Aug 6 '12 at 11:51
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@eykanal That may be discipline-dependent. I publish all my preprints on arXiv prior to submission and it's not a problem. Presumably slides are even less problematic. Take a look at carlboettiger.info/wordpress/archives/3641. –  David Ketcheson Aug 6 '12 at 12:02
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@eykanal: I agree with David. In computer science at least, posting anything to the web (formal preprints, technical reports, slides, blog entries, videos, StackExchange answers, whatever) absolutely does not preclude or jeopardize later formal publication. –  JeffE Aug 6 '12 at 22:09
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8 Answers 8

I typically post my slides on my website as pdfs. On the title page of my slides, I have started adding a line that says something like "slides available on my preprint page", and sometimes I'll mention this at the start of my talk. On my website, I have a page for all my slides and I also link to the relevant slides on my preprints page. Personally, I prefer when speakers make their slides available as pdfs, because I like being able to download them and file them away, rather than needing to bookmark a website. Similar to my preprints, I'm excited to have folks download my slides (so I don't see any reason to control their distribution).

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I agree about the downloading - I know some people really care about controlling access (which is why I mentioned it), but I don't think it's actually advantageous. –  Anonymous Mathematician Aug 6 '12 at 3:55
    
Downloadable pdfs are nice on many grounds, but using one's website may be not a long-lasting solution (unless one has a tenure), effectively making pdfs disappearing after a few years. –  Piotr Migdal Nov 7 '12 at 18:42
    
@PiotrMigdal I don't have tenure yet, but I do expect to get it. I guess my plan is to move my website (and pdfs) with me wherever I go (if I do end up moving). A Google search on my name easily finds my website, so (possibly with a little digging), my pdfs should be easily accessible for a long time. One possible future alternative would be if the arxiv allowed posting of auxiliary files. Then you could post your slides as an attachment. Currently, one hack would be to post the TeX source of your slides to the arxiv. –  Dan C Nov 8 '12 at 3:50
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From what I can see, some key issues to think about are:

  • Social media integration and analytics. These sites will help you advertise your presentation and gather data on who views it.

  • Downloading. You can make it inconvenient or impossible to download the slides. That's an advantage if you want to control the presentation and keep anyone from archiving a copy or extracting figures (you can't stop someone determined and knowledgeable, but you can stop casual users).

  • Accessibility on devices. My smartphone cannot view Present.me presentations at all, and it has a little trouble with SpeakerDeck and Slideshare presentations. (I can view them, but they are awfully small and I cannot zoom in.) I don't usually view slides on my phone, but I do every so often.

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I agree with Anonymous Mathematician, but I want to add an additional key issue:

  • Rendering Compatibility: Can whichever method you choose properly render all of your content? I have had trouble converting PowerPoint files containing chemical structures drawn in ChemDraw (which are vector graphic objects). Creating PDFs seems to be hit or miss depending on the method I use. Notably, Office is better at it than Adobe software. Slideshare will not render these objects at all. I do not have experience with Present.me or SpeakerDeck.
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If you want to keep track of the people viewing our work, Figshare might be worth a try.

I do not think they provide the nicest viewer for presentation, but they keep track of the people viewing and sharing your work. They also enable your work to be citable but providing a permanent link to it. The only drawback is that once you publicly publish something, they do not allow you to remove it...

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In addition to figshare, zenodo.org is worth trying. –  dgraziotin Oct 31 '13 at 16:00
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If your presentation is in LaTeX, you may want to try writeLATEX. You can actually make your presentation in writeLATEX, and share it from there once it is ready.


Google Docs is another option that allows you to:

  1. Embed the presentation on your site with a nice interface.
  2. Provide a public link to the presentation, where viewers will have the option to download as PDF, PowerPoint or Text.
  3. Make lists of viewers (possible contributors) authorized to comment or edit.

Additionally,
While making the presentation:

  1. Work from school, home or anywhere with an internet connection, without the need of manually synchronize.
  2. Work collaboratively, collaborators can edit or comment.
  3. Revision history (who changed what) with the possibility to revert changes.

During the presentation:

  1. See your notes using speaker notes.
  2. Present remotely using Google+ Hangouts
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Interesting, but this would require that I write my presentation using Google Docs (no TeX!) so that's a non-starter for mathematical fields. –  David Ketcheson Aug 17 '12 at 20:45
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I found scribd to be useful in sharing files/papers. You can also know who accessed and downloaded your paper or at least you would know how many times it was downloaded.

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I am one of the developers of SlideWiki and would suggest you to use that (http://slidewiki.org)

SlideWiki features include:

  • WYSIWYG slide authoring
  • Logical slide and deck representation
  • LaTeX/MathML integration
  • Multilingual decks / semi-automatic translation in 50+ languages
  • PowerPoint/HTML import
  • Source code highlighting within slides
  • Dynamic CSS themability and transitions
  • Social networking activities
  • Full revisioning and branching of slides and decks
  • E-Learning with self-assessment questionnaires
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If I understand correctly, you are in the SlideWiki team. It would be fair to mention this fact in the answer, just to let people know that this is a "self-advertisement" and not a recommendation from an uninterested user. –  Federico Poloni Feb 22 '13 at 21:53
    
Actually, it's even in policy of StackExchange sites - you are allowed to recommend service that you are affiliated with, but you must disclose your relation. –  Piotr Migdal Feb 25 '13 at 15:33
    
I edited my answer. Thanks for reminding me this policy –  Ali Khalili May 21 '13 at 13:32
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SlideJar is a great platform (http://www.slidejar.com) since it provides search and results at a slide level. It also has a way for you to provide real value to the folks who you want to share with as they can mash up individual slides into new presentations and save them for later reference. ANyone can set up their own slidejar site (see http://neillasher.slidejar.com as a reference) and can actually earn revenue by people mashing up their slides and saving them.

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Unfortunately that site only accepts powerpoint slides. In my field, almost nobody uses Powerpoint. –  David Ketcheson Jan 5 at 7:52
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