jafa39
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PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:17 am

I use PowerPoint a lot, I have even attended a course on how to avoid "Death by PowerPoint" I love it, some people spit at its very mention.

How do a.netters feel, do you miss flip charts and fat marker pens? (at least you could sniff them and get off your face during a presentation!)
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deltagator
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:19 am

PowerPoint has always been the red-headed stepchild of the MS Office suite. IIRC they still have that development group in the SF Bay area versus the main site in Redmond.

I hate suffering Death by PowerPoint and usually bring along some of my own markers to sniff during the presentations that go too long.
"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
 
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yowza
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:32 am

It's better than most similar softwares out there. The least of many evils...

YOWza
 
SmithAir747
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:53 am

PowerPoint?? Heck, I've only used it once--after struggling for weeks on how to make a PP presentation in the first place!

Historically, even to this day, I've always used overhead projector, transparencies, and OHP pens to make my presentations--both at home in my American university and here at King's College London.

SmithAir747
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
 
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AirPacific747
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:55 am

I like power point. It makes it very easy even for amateurs to create a presentation
 
searpqx
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:00 am

Love it - if the user knows how to use it. In the hands of someone who doesn't understand the mechanics or rules, it's murder.

My favorite is the noob that discovers all of the animations and effects, and loads each slide w/ pops, stars, cartoons, sounds and of course at least 10 different colors.

The opposite end of the spectrum are those that put 2 or 3 full prose paragraphs on each slide, slide afer slide after slide after slide afte. . . z z z z z z z
"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity"
 
9V-SPF
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:05 am

I think it´s pretty easy to use. I´ve been making all my presentations with PP since I used it for the first time a few years ago. I didn´t attend any course so I had to teach myself which sometimes can be tiresome but often most efficient.
 
prebennorholm
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:07 am

PowerPoint is the absolutely best sleeping pill ever invented.

With charts and markers it is legal to ask questions. Details can then be explained with another chart. The people asking questions can use the charts and markers to clarify their questions. It all makes it worth staying awake.

With PowerPoint the author must dream up all possible questions before the presentation. Which of course is impossible.

PowerPoint is a virus which has hit businesses world wide and has cost billions in lost efficiency. And sleep.

Used correctly - as a supplement to a living presentation with charts and markers, then PowerPoint can undoubtedly be used to advantage. I have never seen that being attempted. And the "sequential nature" of PowerPoint does not support that philosophy very well.

When you do attempt a good and living presentation with charts and PowerPoint combined, then you will very often end up telling over and over again: "And now we will load another small PowerPoint file, let's see, what stupid name can I have put on that file?". And the audience will reach out for the thermos in an honest attempt to stay awake, wondering what the next few frames may contain.
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max999
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:22 am

PowerPoint has incapacitated our ability to comprehend anything beyond a bulletin point.
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prebennorholm
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:27 am

Quoting Max999 (Reply 8):
PowerPoint has incapacitated our ability to comprehend anything beyond a bulletin point.

Exactly!
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs
 
desertjets
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:29 am

As much as I like to bash PowerPoint (and I do use it a fair bit), there were just as many bad overhead project/transperancy and/or flip chart presentations in the the Pre-PPT era. If you sucked doing a presentation w/o PPT, then you will still suck no matter how good you are at using the technology.

Part of the problem is that most presenters use powerpoint wrong, let alone know how to use their own computers. So inevitably they spend the first 5 minutes trying to figure how to open the file, how to start the slide show, what to do if they need to go back to a previous slide. And it is an easy crutch to the underprepared speaker... basically putting your talking points on the slide and speaking from there (which I am sure a lot of us have done).
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
rossbaku
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:40 am

It's ok I suppose. It can convey across your point but sometimes people use it too much and things just start to get messy and overcomplicated.

Thumbs: hovering in the middle, folks.

RossBaku  Silly
 
Pope
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:44 am

Day 1 of my first job in public accounting, my supervising senior gave me a rule that was to be used whenever you were preparing a powerpoint presentation. That rule - ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS make sure you have a non-digital backup for every PowerPoint presentation.

Nothing makes you look more stupid or looses you more credibility than your presentation failing. We made it a rule within our group to always order both a digital projector and a traditional overhead machine whenever we made a presentation. I can't tell you the number of events when we won a job just because our competition couldn't show their presentation due to computer / projector or software problems.
Hypocrisy. It's the new black for liberals.
 
luv2fly
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:50 am

Love it, though with that said there is a fine line between to much bells and whistles and boring.
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JBirdAV8r
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:56 am

PowerPoint can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Unfortunately, for most, it's the latter.

PowerPoint is the biggest crutch ever in the history of public speaking. I find that most presentations that use it become "reading skill demonstration" affairs, with presenters turning their back on the audience and just reading off the slides.

I personally use them for visual aids (pictures/graphs, videos, and sounds) with key points thrown in as well. If they've got a lot of text, they're bore-fests and lose your audience pretty quick.
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UAalltheway
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:04 am

PowerPoint is okay, but sometimes its presentations can get dull (looking). I'd rather do something cool in Flash or Keynote (Apple program).
 
searpqx
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:06 am

Quoting DesertJets (Reply 10):
If you sucked doing a presentation w/o PPT, then you will still suck no matter how good you are at using the technology.

 checkmark  PPT is a tool, just like transparancies and markers, you either know how to use it or you don't. It can help make points, or lighten up dry info, but if you can't make an effective presentation without it, no transition or twinkley text in the world is going to save you.

Quoting Pope (Reply 12):
ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS make sure you have a non-digital backup for every PowerPoint presentation.

I learned the same thing - we always came prepared with transparancies made from our slides, along with printouts/handouts.
"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity"
 
Dougloid
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:50 am

Quoting Pope (Reply 12):
Nothing makes you look more stupid or looses you more credibility than your presentation failing. We made it a rule within our group to always order both a digital projector and a traditional overhead machine whenever we made a presentation. I can't tell you the number of events when we won a job just because our competition couldn't show their presentation due to computer / projector or software problems.

If you're in the legal business and someone trots out a Powerpoint presentation, better have all your motions canned and ready to argue.
If you believe in coincidence, you haven't looked close enough-Joe Leaphorn
 
777236ER
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:55 am

Quoting Pope (Reply 12):

Nothing makes you look more stupid or looses you more credibility than your presentation failing. We made it a rule within our group to always order both a digital projector and a traditional overhead machine whenever we made a presentation. I can't tell you the number of events when we won a job just because our competition couldn't show their presentation due to computer / projector or software problems.

What's worse is when the person giving the presentation doesn't know how to use it. Switching between slides by going out of the presentation, having to open separate video files etc. It makes me (and the audience) cringe. Powerpoint is a tool, like anything else it must be learnt and used as a cool. It's not a panacaea.
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jafa39
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:59 pm

I have a remote device that allows me to wander about when presenting, draw on charts etc and flick back and forth between slides, as many have said, a bad PPT SUCKS! a good one can keep you in your seat. I have more pictures than words, I find it really helps.
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deltairlines
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 1:18 pm

I'm a fan of it. Of course, a good deal of it is knowing how to use it. If you put everything on the screen and read word for word from it, you're a fish in a barrel and someone's standing over that barrel with a gun. It's excruciatingly painful.

Personally, I use PowerPoint, putting the main bullet points up there. I might put 2-3 points up there, and then I'll elaborate on each one with stuff not on the slide for about 1-3 minutes each, depending on how significant each point is. However, I will supplement this by using other methods - handouts, overhead projectors, etc. This way, the audience does not become fixated on the Powerpoint and listening to my voice in the background...it keeps their eyes moving around, having to look at a chart I have up somewhere else in the room or flipping to something in a small 3-4 page supplemental handout I might have given out. You keep people engaged, you stand a much better chance of keeping their attention.

Short and sweet is the way Powerpoint should be; if you have more than 50 words on a slide, then you lose your audience.

Jeff
 
max999
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 1:42 pm

Quoting DeltAirlines (Reply 20):
Short and sweet is the way Powerpoint should be; if you have more than 50 words on a slide, then you lose your audience.

That's the main problem with PowerPoint for some users. Some will use the 'short and sweet' bullet points to cover up the lack of real substance and detail in a presentation. I've sat through some meetings where I ask a detailed question, the presenter will just regurgitate the bullet point for me.

While I don't like using the program and I rarely do, I agree that you can't have too many words on a slide.

[Edited 2006-03-01 05:45:00]
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AirPacific747
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 8:00 pm

the good thing about powerpoint, excel, publisher and word is that if you know how to use one of the programs, the others won't take long to learn how to use either.
 
mhodgson
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 8:03 pm

My teachers at school were awful with powerpoint, they got to the stage of using it to teach us - we'd be copying notes from slides full of text.

It's a great tool, but people tend to rely on it too much, letting it do the talking, rather then allowing it to prompt them and give the audience an outline of what is being discussed.
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desertjets
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:44 pm

One major gripe that I have w/ PPT. You can spend more time trying to put together a good presenation than you do with your actual speech/lecture. In fact I think that is the root of the problem w/ PPT.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
scott2187
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:50 pm

I love it when people make PPT presentations that have clashing fonts and backgrounds that you can't read at all. I've done a few presentations, and I agree that using more photos than words really helps. Throw a video in there if you're skilled enough.
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Jaws707
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RE: PowerPoint Good, Bad Or Ugly?

Thu Mar 02, 2006 11:45 pm

Personally I feel powerpoint made college too easy for some people, especially in the business college. In many management classes all we did was print out the slides, and you could study off of those, even without going to class. The classes I had such as some accounting classes and one difficult economics class that did not use powerpont, I feel I worked harder in those classes, but I also feel that I learned a lot more, and the knowledge has stuck better with me.

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