In an article called “Auxesis and meiosis. Because size matters,” Peter Watts introduces his reader to two words they likely have not encountered before. Auxesis is a figure of speech in which one overstates something, think hyperbole, and meiosis is the flip side where something gets understated. We all do it when we tell stories every day. To borrow from Mr. Watts, if you cut your finger and you’re telling someone you don’t want to worry you might say you nicked your finger but if you…

In an article called “Auxesis and meiosis. Because size matters,” Peter Watts introduces his reader to two words they likely have not encountered before. Auxesis is a figure of speech in which one overstates something, think hyperbole, and meiosis is the flip side where something gets understated. We all do it when we tell stories every day. To borrow from Mr. Watts, if you cut your finger and you’re telling someone you don’t want to worry you might say you nicked your finger but if you…

I often get a question about how many slides to use or how much content is too much for a slide or for a presentation. The answer is use enough to get your message across. After the publication of one of his works, Oscar Wilde grew curious about its reception with the public and he sent a telegram to his publisher with a single character, a question mark. Fully comprehending the message the publisher replied with the equally brief reply, an exclamation point. A dollar sign would also have…

I often get a question about how many slides to use or how much content is too much for a slide or for a presentation. The answer is use enough to get your message across. After the publication of one of his works, Oscar Wilde grew curious about its reception with the public and he sent a telegram to his publisher with a single character, a question mark. Fully comprehending the message the publisher replied with the equally brief reply, an exclamation point. A dollar sign would also have…

I recently finishing reading Robert Gaskins's Sweating Bullets: Notes About Inventing PowerPoint. It is a fascinating read I would recommend to anyone who has an interest in getting behind the scenes of a tech story. It may have too many details about who met with who and budgets and vendors and facilities negotiations for some but there is a lot of great insight about the thought process that resulted in an application that is used (well and badly) by countless people around the world each…

I recently finishing reading Robert Gaskins's Sweating Bullets: Notes About Inventing PowerPoint. It is a fascinating read I would recommend to anyone who has an interest in getting behind the scenes of a tech story. It may have too many details about who met with who and budgets and vendors and facilities negotiations for some but there is a lot of great insight about the thought process that resulted in an application that is used (well and badly) by countless people around the world each…

Using quotations in presentations and e-learning and such can be very effective. Today I want to remind you about two little tricks that will improve the design of slides that contain quotations. The first thing to notice on this slide is that the opening quotation mark is hanging out to the left. There should not be text on the second line falling immediately beneath the quotation mark. I have seen some people put the opening quotation mark in its own text box but you can put a tab…

Using quotations in presentations and e-learning and such can be very effective. Today I want to remind you about two little tricks that will improve the design of slides that contain quotations. The first thing to notice on this slide is that the opening quotation mark is hanging out to the left. There should not be text on the second line falling immediately beneath the quotation mark. I have seen some people put the opening quotation mark in its own text box but you can put a tab…

Average Hour-Long TV Show is 36% Commercials - What does this have to do with presentations you ask. Well, it’s a good reminder that if you have an hour to give a presentation, whether it is in person, a webinar, a sales pitch, a class lesson, or whatever, that doesn’t mean you should be speaking for an hour. Commercials may serve a different function than breaks in presentations, but there are some similarities. And by breaks, I just mean pauses to shift gears, not necessary the...

Average Hour-Long TV Show is 36% Commercials - What does this have to do with presentations you ask. Well, it’s a good reminder that if you have an hour to give a presentation, whether it is in person, a webinar, a sales pitch, a class lesson, or whatever, that doesn’t mean you should be speaking for an hour. Commercials may serve a different function than breaks in presentations, but there are some similarities. And by breaks, I just mean pauses to shift gears, not necessary the...

“There are three big things in life that we rarely get trained for – relationships, parenting and PowerPoint.” This is a quote from Lee Jackson’s book PowerPoint Surgery: How to create presentation slides that make your message stick. It is a no nonsense book that practices good presentation practices. It is short and to the point. It is personable and authentic. It respects the audience. It is a quick read during which I found myself thinking, hey, this is the kind o...

“There are three big things in life that we rarely get trained for – relationships, parenting and PowerPoint.” This is a quote from Lee Jackson’s book PowerPoint Surgery: How to create presentation slides that make your message stick. It is a no nonsense book that practices good presentation practices. It is short and to the point. It is personable and authentic. It respects the audience. It is a quick read during which I found myself thinking, hey, this is the kind o...

Experiment with the combining features It may not be obvious that PowerPoint has a number of features that let you combine shapes to create new shapes. Sometimes the perfect shape is only a few clicks away. Add the Combine shapes button to your Quick Access Toolbar (QAT) to open up a whole range of shape possibilities. So create various shapes and experiment with shapes you can create by combining them in unusual ways.

Experiment with the combining features It may not be obvious that PowerPoint has a number of features that let you combine shapes to create new shapes. Sometimes the perfect shape is only a few clicks away. Add the Combine shapes button to your Quick Access Toolbar (QAT) to open up a whole range of shape possibilities. So create various shapes and experiment with shapes you can create by combining them in unusual ways.

valarywithawhy:  “Breathe,” I say. It’s one of the most common phrases I have to use when working with speakers. They forget to breathe. But air is free. Use as much as you need. And as much as your audience needs. They need you to find the breaths and pauses too. In Power to the Pause Keith Bailey does a nice job of comparing how punctuation is vital with both the written and spoken word. Think about how hard it would be to read this text if there were no periods or commas. Words just…

valarywithawhy: “Breathe,” I say. It’s one of the most common phrases I have to use when working with speakers. They forget to breathe. But air is free. Use as much as you need. And as much as your audience needs. They need you to find the breaths and pauses too. In Power to the Pause Keith Bailey does a nice job of comparing how punctuation is vital with both the written and spoken word. Think about how hard it would be to read this text if there were no periods or commas. Words just…

What’s worse than peer pressure? Well maybe peer pressure that is not really there. David J. Brier and Vickery Kaye Lebbin reported on a survey of 200 librarians and found that:  “Half of the respondents said that their colleagues would judge hem as unprofessional if they did not use PowerPoint. On the flip side, 85 percent of the respondents revealed that they seldom or never believe a presenter is unprofessional if they did not use PowerPoint.”  Brier, D. and Lebbin, V. (...

What’s worse than peer pressure? Well maybe peer pressure that is not really there. David J. Brier and Vickery Kaye Lebbin reported on a survey of 200 librarians and found that: “Half of the respondents said that their colleagues would judge hem as unprofessional if they did not use PowerPoint. On the flip side, 85 percent of the respondents revealed that they seldom or never believe a presenter is unprofessional if they did not use PowerPoint.” Brier, D. and Lebbin, V. (...

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