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Passion, People and Principles

Edward Tufte on Powerpoint

post # 353 — April 13, 2007 — a Client Relations post

Shawn Callahan, a regular participant on this blog, sent me a fabulous link to a discussion of Powerpoint’s abysmal contribution to obfuscation, especially as it affected NASA’s decsiion-making ability. The ensuimg discussion is serious and heavy, but worth reading. Like me, Tufte is on a campaign to stamp out Powerpoint.

For those of you who don’t know his work, Tufte is the world’s expert on the visual display of quantitative information. His books are works of art. Look for them!


Luis Villa said:

Before completely throwing the baby out with the bathwater, David, you might want to take a look at Presentation Zen, which is an excellent site on giving good presentations. In particular, the recent post on ‘Is it finally time to ditch powerpoint?‘ may be of interest. I agree with you that powerpoint is often a distraction and a crutch, but having seen it done well, I think it can also be (in the right hands) a powerful tool.

posted on April 13, 2007

Steve Shu said:

Thanks for the interesting link. In addition to Tuft’s works, I find that lots of consultants also reference Gene Zelazny’s book, “Say It With Charts”. http://www.amazon.com/Say-Charts-Executives-Visual-Communication/dp/007136997X/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-2039482-3811219?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1176476962&sr=1-1

posted on April 13, 2007

kiki said:

Powerpoint is a prog for school children and secretarys, IMHO.

But sometimes it is really useful.

posted on May 3, 2007