The presentation blog test

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Here’s an easy test to assess the value of any slide in a presentation, if the presenter is using slideware:

The presentation blog test 1
Credit: Norvig’s Gettysburg Address in PowerPoint

Would this slide make a decent blog post?

Not the slide itself, per se, but whatever the content is that’s on it or that accompanies it. Would it make a decent blog post? Would it be interesting enough that you could write about whatever the topic is for a few hundred words?

Sometimes when I’m putting together a presentation, I’ll find that a slide is just vapor. It originally might have had a point, but time, practice, and refining has whittled that point down to a pale shadow of itself, not enough to make content for a reasonable blog post. The slide gets the axe.

Sometimes, the opposite a true. A slide tries to say too much, do too much, and would probably make about three blog posts. I’ll mentally draft out the three blog posts and then blow up that slide into three, as long as the blog posts I’ve written in my head about them are reasonably good.

Try this the next time you’re working on a presentation or reviewing one you’ve already made. See how many slides you end up blowing up and how many end up getting the axe entirely. When you’re done, you’ll have a much stronger presentation

… and a whole bunch of blogging to do.

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