Thursday, October 14, 2010

Is it me--or are PowerPoints pretty snoozy?

Anita Bruzzese, Gannett, has some tips for zipping up presentations.

First, let me freely admit I have never used PowerPoint.

OK, now second, I have been captive in a seat as bullet-points are flashed on a screen and someone reads them off.

Bruzzese reports on one presentation with stars and planets behind the points—no one could read anything! White backgrounds can also snowblind people.

Stephen Kosslyn, a social science and psych pfo at Harvard, says lots of people think their presentations are fine, but they could be way better.

He wrote: “Better PowerPoint: Quick Fixes Based on How Your Audience Thinks.”

Group similar words and graphics together is one piece of advice.

Involve the audience—ask them to vote on whether they agree with a certain point (involve—wake up).

Text should be at least 28 pt. No uppercase, italics, or bold for more than three or four words.

Don’t put a bullet on everything.

Use pictures

Don’t throw on spaghetti graphs people could not puzzle out even given an hour.

Whoa—been there.

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