Presenting information to an expectant audience is always a challenge. Either to meet those expectations that your presentation is going to be engaging and enthusiastic, or trying to side-step the expectation the audience can go to sleep for 15 minutes whilst you read out a few bullet points from a screen. I'll admit I come from point of view where I'm happiest to give a presentation without using PowerPoint presentation - or only using it for 'opening' and 'closing' slides to provide information to my audience.
When used well, PowerPoint can help to communicate a message, and help your audience to visualise and understand your message. But it's suffered from over-use and a reputation for presenters using poor design. We've all had to sit through some common mistakes
- Presenters reading out every word from a slide
- Over use of bullet points
- Meaningless graphs, pointless pictures, motion - just because you can.
- Poor design and colour scheme making the information hard to interpret
Those that love adding countless transitions and moving graphics on slides are going to adore Prezi. The rest of us might want to hold tight whilst presenters get their head around designing a great Prezi presentation. It's a much more visual and engaging way to present idea's as a story.
My attempts at creating a Prezi aren't great. My mistakes are obvious. I'm not very visual and had difficulty thinking about a presentation on a '3d level'. I found it difficult to make text appear uniform. But like most things, this is a tool that needs to be explored and experimented with so idea's can flourish. I will give it a second go. In the meantime, feel free to learn from this awfulness. I'm brave enough to share!
SlideShare I use on a regular basis to find information. But I've never uploaded and shared something. My workplace wouldn't allow me to share something that was branded and available to an external audience. So I'll admit I threw this together from a 'guide' I've created previously. What I find interesting about tools like SlideShare, is how it seems to be changing the way that we view presentations. So the slides themselves are being used as documents to carry large amounts of text. Something that wouldn't be recommended if you're slide was being projected to an audience on a white wall.
What I liked about SlideShare was the ability to analyse how your uploaded content was viewed or shared by the audience. However, this functionality is only available with one of the 'professional' SlideShare packages that come with a monthly cost. It can also be added as a gadget to your LinkedIn profile. So it's great way of demonstrating your knowledge and expertise and sharing what you know with your professional community.