Echoes - Echoes camshot
vendredi 11 décembre 2009 (1 post)

For some reasons, I had to create some slides, and it's been some time I wanted to do some latex/beamer, so I jumped in and created them using vim (hating latex/beamer a few times in the process, but that's expected. At least, I didn't have to hate OpenOffice this time).

Now, when presentation time comes, I started missing the nice “Presenter Console” extension for OpenOffice. It's a nice extension which (a bit like Keynote) (and maybe other) enables you to seperate the beamer and laptop screens. So you put on the beamer the presentation itself, and on the laptop one you can put you notes, the next slide preview, a nice countdown etc. Really useful, but it's only for OpenOffice (or PowerPoint) slides, not for pdf ones.

So I started looking at PDF readers which could do that, and found multiple solutions:

  • Cyril (Brulebois) proposed to start two pdf readers (one for each screen), to have them shifted by one slide, and to advance both of them at the same time (using xdotool for example). Not really convenient but, indeed, it /could/ work;
  • in the same vein, some people proposed to use Impress!ve, which has the ability to run a script when changing slide. So again, one starts two pdf readers (Impress!ve and another one) and make Impress!ve change the “preview” reader each time it changes slide. Again, it should work, but it's not really convenient.

So in the end, I was almost ready to submit a bug report to epdfview (which I already maintain in Debian) asking for that new feature, when I found PDF Presenter Console which does exactly what I want.

I'm not sure the project is really active at the moment, and I had some problems with the tool not detecting one of the screen (so it only appears on the beamer, or only on the laptop). It might be related to xfwm4 or something, I already contacted the developer about that.

In the end, it's not 100% reliable (so I'm not yet packaging it for Debian) (especially since it uses CMAKE) but once it started, it does the job pretty fine.

That's just something I wanted to share in case people would be interested.

Yves-Alexis@11:49:39 (Debian)

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