DailyPost 813


Contrary to popular belief the now iconic powerpoint presentation has not been a Microsoft creation. It was developed by Forethought Inc. and initially was for only Macintosh computers. Bought within three months of its creation by Microsoft in 1987 for $14 million, happens to be it’s first significant acquisition. It made a grand entry to the MS Office Suite and remained a part of it till now. It changed the pedagogy of the world in variety of settings educational, professional, scientific etc. It literally fits in anywhere.

MS Office unified the criticals of office ecosystem around the world. PowerPoint gave a new format and a ready-made template to get across. The audience could be anybody. Our teachers had already had enough of white chalk technology. OHP and projecting pics by a similar gadget did not create any breakthrough. The professional world has never been truly comfortable with either writing or speaking convincingly to prove a point and their worth. The PPT turned out to be ideal. Short points with a dash of color could really do the job of writing and became an ultimate support for fledgling speaker right there. No other format of writing has been adopted with such an ease even a limited area, leave aside globally. Today the product called PPT controls 95% of the market. There has not been even a feeble competition in over 25 years of it’s existence.

The universality of this mode is that every single document or event is transformed into this mode for easy understanding. Lots of documents are created and consumed in PPT mode only. The briefing /talk / speech have all been transliterated into presentation. The PPT should be the first document to reach in any conference, workshop and similar events. The verbose document can follow and most of times it’s even avoided. The conventional formats acceptability; proposals, report, summary, tender document or whatever is because of it’s mandated nature, the PPT has been a matter of choice. The near total global adoption speakes volumes about the product.

Unsigned, without a patent so far, it is freely traded. A life saver when you are in crisis and have to hit the stage. A via media for books, it has become the sine quo non of mediocre education. Its an add on / value add, it cannot the only document for any professional / educational requirement.


Sanjay Sahay

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