Power corrupts but PowerPoint corrupts absolutely

Lincoln MemorialI loved Garr Reynolds’ comparison of Darth Vader’s PowerPoint style with Yoda’s. (Actually I love his site generally). It got me thinking…

I remembered the website I had seen ages ago which featured the Gettysburg Address as if delivered by PowerPoint.

My favourite bit is the “Review of Key Objectives & Critical Success Factors”

What makes nation unique

  1. Conceived in Liberty
  2. Men are equal

Shared vision

  1. New birth of freedom
  2. Gov’t of/for/by the people

I think Guy Kawasaki has it pretty much right about presentations with his 10/20/30 rule:

It’s quite simple: a PowerPoint presentation should have ten slides, last no more than twenty minutes, and contain no font smaller than thirty points.

My history tutor at Oxford was trying to persuade me to use more facts in my essays (“please try to use at least one date in your essays, Matthew”). He said “you’re like the drunk and the lampost. You could use it for illumination but you keep using it for support.” It’s the same with PowerPoint.

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4 Responses to Power corrupts but PowerPoint corrupts absolutely

  1. Susan LK Gorbet says:

    One of the best presentations I ever saw had hundreds of slides and no font at all. (Sort of 500/60/0, perhaps) It was a talk by Karim Rashid, the designer. The powerpoint had what seemed like thousands of photos of his work, and it just ran continuously behind him while he talked. Whenever he ran out of steam, he’d glance up, get reminded of another story about a project, and he was off and running. The stories were fascinating, the eye candy was delicious, and he left us wanting to know more about all the things we’d seen.

  2. I ROFL at the tittle


  1. Bad Language / Is PowerPoint really that bad? - 29 August 2006

    […] I’ve posted previously about the value of visual evidence and the way in which PowerPoint condenses thoughts into bullet points. Certainly, I use PowerPoint when I give speeches, but almost always use images and sometimes a few words per slide. Darren Strange has some good advice about making presentations and so does Guy Kawasaki. […]

  2. 25 ways to improve your presentationsBad Language - 16 March 2013

    […] is a lot of debate about whether PowerPoint is good or evil, but the fact is it’s the standard. That does not […]

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