A three hour tour….

Yesterday as a reward, my employer took the whole team out for a lunch cruise on the lake. Unfortunately the weather forecast was calling for “chance of thunderstorms” and I was sure we were all going to be lost at sea. Fortunately the weather turned out better than that, and a good time was had by all, except for the boring PowerPoint presentation. Can’t managers even say “We’ve done well this year, thanks” without making a 45 minute long PowerPoint presentation showing every bullet point accomplishment we’ve done? And let’s not forget that this is PowerPoint, not boring “old media”, so of course every bullet point has to come skidding in from one side of the screen or the other. Sigh.

I saw Vint Cerf give a talk on the future of the Internet and when he was hooking up his laptop to the projector he said “Power corrupts, PowerPoint corrupts absolutely.”

8 thoughts on “A three hour tour….”

  1. Say what you will about Sun, but Scott McNealy had the right idea when he banned PowerPoint completely…

    Lake lunch cruise sounds fun though. It’s a shame the only body of water near my office is a muddy stream.

  2. I think the IRS requires a PowerPoint presentation if the business wants to write off the cost of the event. You print it out and include it with your forms. Or you can staple a CD to the package, whichever.

  3. I once sat through a PowerPoint presentation in which the appearance of each new slide was announced with an applause sound effect. It went down like a lead balloon, and the presenter got more embarassed with each slide until he finally muted his laptop. No one had to say anything, you could just feel the annoyance wafting off the audience.

  4. I don’t share the general disdain for PowerPoint. I reserve my disdain for those who misuse it. But I saw far more academic presentations with bad slides pre-PowerPoint. People would simply photocopy a typewritten page onto an overhead, to refer to one table on it, in faded 12 pt type. Needless to say, this was impossible to see. The PowerPoint slide templates severely limit how much you can show at one time, unless you actively change the format, and do much to ensure that your audience will actually be able to see what you want them to see.

    Of course, if you have the bad taste to use unnecessary cheesy effects and a garish background, all bets are off. But, much as I’d like to blame that on Billy G and his tame elves, I just can’t.

  5. I guess this is the wrong time to let you know that Macromedia Breeze will render WebEx and PowerPoint obsolete in the next 5 years…

  6. Tom love using all the different transition and slide-in visual and sound effects, and used them relentlessly. But then he was only eleven years old, and he uses Word for his school projects now.

    I guess some managers just haven’t grown up.

    • PowerPoint [font size=7][blink]sucks![/font][/blink]
    • Many funny things have been said about PowerPoint, too.
    • Crutch for people who lack ability to organize thoughts
    • Bad Habits of Early Days of Desktop Publishing: remember the Ransom Note font?
    • Promotes sloppy, rigid thinking
    • Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: what if?
    • Edward Tufte
    • Recap: Sloppy, Crutch, Promotes Bad Habits
    • Refreshments in Lounge after presentation
    • Thank you, Rochester!
  7. Rochester said:

    Can’t you buy a new typewriter ribbon, Mr. Benny?

    Dipping the old one in grape juice doesn’t help.

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