Bill Cheswick Speaker Information

I often get asked to speak in various places around the world, something I generally enjoy greatly. Here are some answers to the usual questions relating to a speaking engagement:

My talks can usually be adjusted from general audiences to highly-technical, as desired. Depending on the version, they can last from 25 to 60 minutes.

I will be happy to supply a copy of the actual slides used at the end of the talk via thumb drive or web. Often, my slides are changed or updated even shortly before the talk.

If you want me to create a new talk, that is possible. It takes me a while to do this, and guidance about what you want should be supplied early on. I can walk around for months thinking about what to say.

Name, job title, and organization

William Cheswick
Gentleman farmer/farm hacker
Visiting Scholar, Univesity of Pennsylvania.


Short bio, and longer bio.

Video and recording?

Both are fine with me. You can find videos of a number of my talks out on the Interwebs that give good examples of my talks and speaking style.

General presentation details

These days my presentations are created in Keynote on my Macintosh laptop. In all cases I strongly prefer to give the talk from my laptop or my iPhone or iPad, with my own control over the keyboard. This helps with the pacing: I average two or three slides per minute, and peak rate is much faster. This can be a problem for some fancy software-based slide presentation systems, which often envision a much slower slide rate. I rely on the Keynote interface for slide presentation.

I am quite experienced at setting up the A/V stuff, and will be happy to test before the talk. There should be no problem supplying any of the three major projector inputs. Sometimes I have brief audio portions. These can usually be handled by putting the speaker microphone next to the presentation computer.

Please do not ask me to use PowerPoint! Also, it is important that I drive the slides myself, from the podium.


Here is an old, Photo of chesprofessional photo of me.

If you would prefer, you can take a pick out of shots of me from our family photo album. You will probably want to use one of the more recent ones near the end. (We have something like 170,000 photos online.)


I am "retired". That means that I am not working at a lab that pays my way. In general, that means that you should pay for the big items, i.e. airfare, hotel, etc. My food requirements are strange and generally cheap: I often don't put in for reimbursement for them.

Except for certain long trans-pacific flights, I don't take red-eyes: they leave me wiped out the next day. That generally means that if you want me at a European venue on day x, I will fly to Heathrow on day x-2 during the day, spend the night there, then catch fairly early transport on day x-1 to wherever I am going. For the long flights I fly United, where I am a million-miler.