28 Apr 2010

It's your PowerPoint-of-View

There was an article the day-before, in The New York Times, called, "We Have Met the Enemy and He Is PowerPoint", on how PowerPoint presentations are making it hard for the Pentagon to focus on doing what it's supposed to do!

Well, it isn't just the largest military in the world that struggling in the cross-hairs of statistics-laden slides and bullet-points. (Oh, the irony!)

Brig. Gen. H. R. McMaster, who likened PowerPoint to "an internal threat", said: "It’s dangerous because it can create the illusion of understanding and the illusion of control. [...] Some problems in the world are not bullet-izable.”

I think the problem with PowerPoint is that excessive reliance on simplistic cause-effect formulae and statistics, suppresses the value of intangible, 'human' aspects of communication - like passion and conviction - which tell intuitively if the presenter truly understands and believes in what he or she is saying.

But frankly, I find the ability to break down an idea, and direct an audience's line-of-thinking in one particularly direction with PowerPoint, quite useful at times.

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