Chapter 1

Getting Started in PowerPoint

IN THIS CHAPTER

Bullet Finding your way around the screen

Bullet Creating a presentation

Bullet Changing views of the screen

Bullet Manipulating slides

It’s impossible to sit through a conference, seminar, or trade show without seeing at least one PowerPoint presentation. PowerPoint has found its way into nearly every office and boardroom. I’ve heard of a man (a very unromantic man) who proposed to his wife by way of a PowerPoint presentation.

As nice as PowerPoint can be, it has its detractors. If the software isn’t used properly, it can come between the speaker and the audience. In a New Yorker article titled “Absolute PowerPoint: Can a Software Package Edit Our Thoughts?” Ian Parker argued that PowerPoint may actually be more of a hindrance than a help in communicating. PowerPoint, Parker wrote, is “a social instrument, turning middle managers into bullet-point dandies.” The software, he added, “has a private, interior influence. It edits ideas … . It helps you make a case, but also makes its own case about how to organize information, how to look at the world.”

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