PowerPoint is everywhere. So are poor presentations. Does that mean that these poor presentations could have been better if they’d just used a different tool? After all, if you use the right tool your presentation should be awesome, right?
There are some who believe this is true. They believe that the solution to avoiding a boring power point presentation is to use a tool with unique features, and there are some interesting new tools out there for users to consider, like Prezi, SlideIdea, and Bunkr, to name just a few. Could the PowerPoint presentation be on the way out?
Prezi is a popular new twist on an old theme. It allows you to view your presentation as a group of interrelated topics, zooming in to explore details and then zooming back out to find the next topic. This is a cloud-based application requiring internet access when presenting, unless you purchase the option to run it locally. There are claims that too much zooming makes some people nauseous, so this feature should probably be used sparingly. It’s interesting to note that presentation design is critical to creating an effective Prezi, and PowerPoint is a helpful tool to use when designing your Prezi content. Prezi conveniently imports PowerPoint files.
SlideIdea, highlighted in the Techorati.com article “PowerPoint Meets Mobile, Google Hangout with SlideIdea” incorporates interactivity into a presentation with polls, questions, and comment opportunities, all via the smart phones and tablets of the audience. SlideIdea also requires internet access during the presentation because it’s designed to be used with mobile devices, and is not unlike an interactive webinar…except you have to physically attend the presentation.
French startup Bunkr is attempting to “kill PowerPoint” by collecting images and text off the internet and storing them in a Bunkr account to create a Pinterest-like database for later use to create slides. Bunkr, described in TechCrunch.com article “Bunkr Is The PowerPoint Killer We’ve All Been Waiting For” doesn’t reinvent the traditional slide structure, stating ”PowerPoint users won’t feel lost” and consequently presentation design is still a consideration for users. Licensing considerations for the intellectual property collected by Bunkr is not mentioned in the article.
Each of these applications offer unique features; Prezi adds mobility and perspective to presentation content, SlideIdea incorporates the audience’s mobile devices and invites their participation, and Bunkr facilitates content collection. So is the PowerPoint presentation on the way out? No. While there are good applications with unique features to explore, PowerPoint continues to be a benchmark for presentation software; and good presentation design is the best way to make your presentation awesome.