The Tyranny of PowerPoint

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I’ve reached the end of my template. I’m bored stupid with PowerPoint. Various people have said they are now using Keynote, but this seems like a similar punishment. Interestingly, I did a speech in Brussels a while back and didn’t use anything. Neither did the two speakers before me.

The problem is twofold. With PowerPoint the audience has to make a choice between reading the slides and listening to the speaker. You cannot properly do both. For the speaker the issue is between following the audience and the slides. More problematically, when you are writing a PowerPoint presentation the logic of your argument is fragmented by the need to switch from one slide to another.

Contrast this to writing something with word (or whatever). If all you have is a blank screen or a white sheet of paper you are forced to think about what it is you are trying to say and you tend you end up with a single idea or argument that flows across the page and even onto the next page without interruption.

Why have I suddenly thought about this? Because I’ve recently done a couple of lectures using Power Point and it was fairly obvious that the audiences were not listening. This was probably a good thing because I wasn’t paying much attention either. Power Point is too easy and as a result you become lazy.

Death to Power Point.

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