The Non-Designer’s Presentation Book
By Robin Williams*
Yay! This is a good book. The streak of unpleasant books has ended! This book is current, it has good advice, and, I admit, it’s also pretty (lot’s of sharp pictures illustrating the various principles.)
Like the other books I’ve read recently, this covered a lot of basic foundational concepts, but this time I felt they were covered in a way that respected me as the reader.
I’m now a bit daunted by the thought of actually trying to give a good presentation and a bit retroactively embarrassed by some of my previous presentations. I think the main argument to this book is that it’s important to learn how to actually use a presentation program (like PowerPoint or Keynote or a couple of the other program) and to not ever depend on their templates. You can create really excellent and elegant presentations with these programs if you know what you’re doing and what to pay attention to.
It’s a challenge; I’m going to have to spend some serious time with a PowerPoint tutorial before putting together my next set of presentation slides. But I think my next presentation will be a lot better than my various previous ones.
I imagine this book will go out of date relatively quickly, by say 2015 or 2020 at the latest, as the norms of presentations change again and the technologies described here get replaced by something newer and fancier. But for now, it’s current and lovely. I definitely recommend it.
* This is a woman, and not an actor.
Robin Williams has actually written a lot of well-respected books for designers, too; I like her a lot, and would give this a read if my hatred of powerpoint wouldn’t eclipse everything she said about it. (You’re wrong, too; powerpoint will never die – it will exist forever, making us all miserable.)
She really is excellent. And do you hate PowerPoint in particular or all of those types of presentation slide programs? Because she also talks about some of PowerPoints competition.
But regardless, I disagree with you: PowerPoint and all related programs will eventually die, the question is: what will be so appallingly ghastly that it will manage to replace it?
Hmm, I don’t love Keynote, either, but my only experience with it was transferring Powerpoint presentations into Keynote, so it might have been tainted from the get-go. I haven’t tried any others. Like most designers, I think, I like to create things in a design program and then make a pdf presentation out of them, so no one can get their sticky little fingers into the content.