Death by Powerpoint - an antidote

This presentation, given by Dick Hardt at Etech last week is worth taking a look at for a couple of reasons.


Firstly, if you’re interested in online identity management then his company, Sxip (obligatory clever Web2.0 name, pronounced ’skip’) is working on technology that aims to balance the conflicting demands of authentication and privacy.

But if you’re not even slightly interested in any of the technology or the issues, it’s worth taking a look at for the presentation itself. To say it’s one of the more unusual presentation styles I’ve seen is a bit of an understatement - but it works. As an antidote to the corporate death-by-powerpoint style that most of us have to deal with, but secretly dream of subverting, it’s very effective.

When I first saw it, my immediate reaction was ‘great, but I’d never get away with that’. Then I had second thoughts. I’m convinced that at least part of the reason that I landed my current project was as a result of the presentation I gave - not the content, necessarily, but the fact that I was using an Apple Powerbook (which stood out a mile in an otherwise dull corporate environment); and also that I controlled the show with a bluetooth mobile talking to Salling Clicker. Then the content was also deliberately as far from a bland corporate presentation as I could make it - lots of big typography and colour images on a white background.

If I’d gone in with a standardised agenda-driven corporate clone of a presentation, then I’d have merged into the crowd of everyone that went before me, but the fact that this was something different made me stand out. I’ll never know for sure if that was the clincher, but it can’t have hurt.

So - Dick Hardt’s style might not be everyone’s taste for every occasion, but it could be worth a try now and again.

One Response to “Death by Powerpoint - an antidote”

  1. Brad Says:

    This presentation style is very similar to the ‘Lessig Style’ of Lawrence Lessig. More on this and other presentation styles can be found at: