Don’t get me wrong.

The reason that most text based presentations suck is because science. It would be wrong to assume that this means text is banned from presentations, far from it. It is totally acceptable to use text in the supportive media (p2).

So, how should we square this circle of eliminating text and then suggesting its use? It is totally dependent upon the purpose of text within the media. The reasons text is used in standard “Death byPowerPoint,” presentations is of course complex. Its purpose lies amongst slideument, script, conformity and lack of alternative. None of these is an acceptable or reasonable purpose. If however text is utilized in the supportive media to highlight a point, as a theme, in annotation or as an illustration then it is fulfilling a justifiable purpose.

Jean Luc Doumont in his excellent book, “Maps, trees and theorems” suggests that text, or indeed an image, is only present within a presentation to add emphasis and that the presentation would work without this addition. Text can have a purpose in presentations; this is Effective Redundancy. 



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