Saturday, April 18, 2009

Death By Powerpoint

Sorry, but I just cringe every time I have to sit through a Powerpoint presentation. If you want a good laugh, read "Power corrupts. PowerPoint corrupts absolutely" by Edward Tufte. To its credit, Powerpoint has been around for 20 years, and if used effectively, can be a useful tool. Let a class of kids loose on Powerpoint and you usually get lots of clashing colours, annoying noises, animations and not much useful information. I usually start with a lesson on how to prepare an effective presentation and I am fairly strict with the rubrics I set for assignments using Powerpoint. I just really needed a change and this week searched for other presentation alternatives. I like Open Office Impress and think that it is a good free alternative to Powerpoint for most presentations. I think Impress has actually been engineered to be similar to Powerpoint to allow MSOffice centric types an easy transition. I found a few interesting online tools but the prize so far goes to Prezi . It is a non-linear presentation tool that allows you to zoom in and out, move around at will and save your presentations. It takes a short time to learn to use and is such a breath of fresh air compared to Powerpoint. There are some shortcomings, which will no doubt become apparent as you use it but the concept of a zooming presentation tool is quite exciting and revolutionary. You can sign up for a trial version.

2 comments:

  1. Charlie!! I love Prezi! I have just had a go at it and have completed my first one which I plan to use at our Staff Development Day next term. Thanks so much for doing all the research. I always read your stuff. Here is the link to my Prezi http://prezi.com/my/
    Please remember it's my first time ;) so it can be improved upon but I know just this much will wow the staff!
    Regards,

    Kate

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  2. Thanks Kate. I can't view your Prezi page unfortunately because the /my/ link is the same for everyone. Glad you like it.

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