Thursday, July 07, 2011

hard to argue with the Swiss sometimes.....

hey everyone

when i first saw a headline stating that a political group in Switzerland wished to ban the PowerPoint application my reaction was one of those rare, very genuine "wtf?" moments. i mean, why would you want to ban an application that's designed to help people and doesn't appear to cause any harm to the world at large?

i then read their reasoning for wishing to see it banned, and i must say it is very difficult indeed to fault their logic and findings.

the APPP see PowerPoint as a means to waste time that could be spent on productivity, as in a waste of time and a big waste of money. they calculate a figure in the hundreds of billions lost thanks to the business hours wasted by giving PowerPoint presentation to people working across Europe. they base this calculation on the, according to them, verifiable assumption that some 85% of people who have been subjected to PowerPoint presentations consider them to be a "waste of time".

when you think about that figure, and any PowerPoint presentation you may have been "invited" to sit through, the thought that comes to mind is that 85% is way too low a figure, unless somehow the other 15% of European workers are employed in the field of giving the presentations using this software.

in fairness the problem is perhaps with people using (or if you will misusing) PowerPoint than it is the software itself, but the curse seems to be so widespread that perhaps the only way to rid the world of the annoyance it causes is via banning the thing.

all too often people get summoned to boardrooms and auditoriums to sit and watch someone stand and effectively read out a whole load of bullet points from a presentation. in more extreme, bizarre circumstances, there are cases where the speaker says things which have next to nothing to do with the PowerPoint presentation being given. Most meetings would be more fluent, and less tiring and time wasting, without the presence of a distraction like the PowerPoint slides.

of course, some people out there don't have the skills to present information to others but, by default or design, have found themselves in the position of needing to. PowerPoint does provide an exceptional crutch for them to rest this problem upon.

it's highly unlikely that this ban will ever get to be put in place, of course - the producers of the software do (ahem) have some form in regards of facing down Governments and laws in terms of what they do with their stuff. it is wonderful, however, to see someone motivated enough to take a stand against the seemingly perpetual attempts to dumb down the world.

don't get me wrong - i do not believe us workers should be slaving away around the clock. meetings, seminars, training and presentations can be both vital and useful, but at the moment the way of the world is to simply have someone drone on about a list of bulletpoints and graphs that don't mean quite as much as they could.

i shall just have to hope that, should they get this ban in place, they do not turn their attention to blogs next!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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