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Gaskins says that he thought of "PowerPoint", based on the product's goal of "empowering" individual presenters, and sent that name to the lawyers for clearance, while all the documentation was hastily revised.
I said, "Bill, I think we really ought to do this;" and Bill said, "No, no, no, no, no, that's just a feature of Microsoft Word, just put it into Word. And I kept saying, "Bill, no, it's not just a feature of Microsoft Word, it's a whole genre of how people do these presentations.
When PowerPoint was released by Forethought, its initial press was favorable; the Wall Street Journal reported on early reactions: The New York Times reported: Forethought makes a program called PowerPoint that allows users of Apple Macintosh computers to make overhead transparencies or flip charts.
Forethought would remain in Sunnyvale, giving Microsoft a Silicon Valley presence. The unit will be headed by Robert Gaskins, Forethought's vice president of product development. Microsoft's president Jon Shirley offered Microsoft's motivation for the acquisition: Forethought was first to market with a product in this category.
This was at first an alternative to overhead transparencies and 35mm slides, but over time would come to replace them.
PowerPoint 2. Please assume that we stay ahead in integrating our family together in evaluating our future strategies—the product teams WILL deliver on this. The move from bundling separate products to integrated development began with PowerPoint 4.
Word 6. The integration is so good, you'll have to look twice to make sure you're running PowerPoint and not Word or Excel. Succeeding versions of PowerPoint introduced important changes, particularly version New development techniques shared across Office for PowerPoint have made it possible to ship versions of PowerPoint for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and web access nearly simultaneously,[ citation needed ] and to release new features on an almost monthly schedule.
Jeff Raikes, who had bought PowerPoint for Microsoft, later recalled: PowerPoint was used for planning and preparing a presentation, but not for delivering it apart from previewing it on a computer screen, or distributing printed paper copies. Robert Gaskins, one of the creators of PowerPoint, says he publicly demonstrated that use for the first time at a large Microsoft meeting held in Paris on February 25, , by using an unreleased development build of PowerPoint 3.
Although the PowerPoint software had been used to generate transparencies for over a decade, this usage was not typically encompassed by common understanding of the term. In contemporary operation, PowerPoint is used to create a file called a "presentation" or "deck" containing a sequence of pages called "slides" in the app which usually have a consistent style from template masters , and which may contain information imported from other apps or created in PowerPoint, including text, bullet lists, tables, charts, drawn shapes, images, audio clips, video clips, animations of elements, and animated transitions between slides, plus attached notes for each slide.
A smartphone remote control built in to PowerPoint for iOS optionally controlled from Apple Watch  and for Android  allows the presenter to control the show from elsewhere in the room.
In addition to a computer slide show projected to a live audience by a speaker, PowerPoint can be used to deliver a presentation in a number of other ways: In practice, however, presentations are not always delivered in this mode. In our studies, we often found that the presenter sat at a table with a small group of people and walked them through a "deck", composed of paper copies of the slides.
In some cases, decks were simply distributed to individuals, without even a walk-through or discussion. Other variations in form included sending the PowerPoint file electronically to another site and talking through the slides over an audio or video channel e. Another common variation was placing a PowerPoint file on a web site for people to view at different times. They found that some of these ways of using PowerPoint could influence the content of presentations, for example when "the slides themselves have to carry more of the substance of the presentation, and thus need considerably more content than they would have if they were intended for projection by a speaker who would orally provide additional details and nuance about content and context.
In an analyst summed up: That's the real question. How come PowerPoint is everywhere? Robert Gaskins, who was responsible for its design, has written about his intended customers: I did not target other existing large groups of users of presentations, such as school teachers or military officers. I also did not plan to target people who were not existing users of presentations Our focus was purely on business users, in small and large companies, from one person to the largest multinationals.
The result has been the rise of presentation culture. In an information society, nearly everyone presents. Lucky could already write about broader uses: A new language is in the air, and it is codified in PowerPoint.
In a family discussion about what to do on a given evening, for example, I feel like pulling out my laptop and giving a Vugraph presentation In church I am surprised that the preachers haven't caught on yet.
How have we gotten on so long without PowerPoint? Over a decade or so, beginning in the mid s, PowerPoint began to be used in many communication situations, well beyond its original business presentation uses, to include teaching in schools  and in universities,  lecturing in scientific meetings  and preparing their related poster sessions  , worshipping in churches,  making legal arguments in courtrooms,  displaying supertitles in theaters,  driving helmet-mounted displays in spacesuits for NASA astronauts,  giving military briefings,  issuing governmental reports,  undertaking diplomatic negotiations,   writing novels,  giving architectural demonstrations,  prototyping website designs,  creating animated video games,  creating art projects,  and even as a substitute for writing engineering technical reports,  and as an organizing tool for writing general business documents.
Julia Keller reported for the Chicago Tribune: In less than a decade, it has revolutionized the worlds of business, education, science and communications, swiftly becoming the standard for just about anybody who wants to explain just about anything to just about anybody else.
From corporate middle managers reporting on production goals to 4th-graders fashioning a show-and-tell on the French and Indian War to church pastors explicating the seven deadly sins PowerPoint seems poised for world domination. Cultural reactions[ edit ] As uses broadened, cultural awareness of PowerPoint grew and commentary about it began to appear.
Edward Tufte An early reaction was that the broader use of PowerPoint was a mistake, and should be reversed. These costs arise from the cognitive style characteristics of the standard default PP presentation: Tufte particularly advised against using PowerPoint for reporting scientific analyses, using as a dramatic example some slides made during the flight of the space shuttle Columbia after it had been damaged by an accident at liftoff, slides which poorly communicated the engineers' limited understanding of what had happened.
While his approach was not rigorous from a research perspective, his articles received wide resonance with the public at large Steven Pinker , professor of psychology at MIT and later Harvard, had earlier argued that "If anything, PowerPoint, if used well, would ideally reflect the way we think.
It's like denouncing lectures—before there were awful PowerPoint presentations, there were awful scripted lectures, unscripted lectures, slide shows, chalk talks, and so on. Richard E. Mayer and Steve Jobs Keynotes A second reaction to PowerPoint use was to say that PowerPoint can be used well, but only by substantially changing its style of use.
This reaction is exemplified by Richard E. Mayer , a professor of psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who has studied cognition and learning, particularly the design of educational multimedia, and who has published more than publications, including over 30 books.
Instead, we have to change our PowerPoint habits to align with the way people learn. Mayer's ideas are claimed by Carmine Gallo to have been reflected in Steve Jobs's presentations: Steve Jobs's slides adhere to each of Mayer's principles Although most presentation designers who are familiar with both formats prefer to work in the more elegant Keynote system, those same designers will tell you that the majority of their client work is done in PowerPoint. Stephen Kosslyn A third reaction to PowerPoint use was to conclude that the standard style is capable of being used well, but that many small points need to be executed carefully, to avoid impeding understanding.
This kind of analysis is particularly associated with Stephen Kosslyn , a cognitive neuroscientist who specializes in the psychology of learning and visual communication, and who has been head of the department of psychology at Harvard, has been Director of Stanford's Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, and has published some papers and 14 books.
For this reason, Kosslyn says, users need specific education to be able to identify best ways to avoid "flaws and failures": These studies converge in painting the following picture: PowerPoint presentations are commonly flawed; some types of flaws are more common than others; flaws are not isolated to one domain or context; and, although some types of flaws annoy the audience, flaws at the level of slide design are not always obvious to an untrained observer The many "flaws and failures" identified were those "likely to disrupt the comprehension or memory of the material.
In fact, this medium is a remarkably versatile tool that can be extraordinarily effective. For many purposes, PowerPoint presentations are a superior medium of communication, which is why they have become standard in so many fields.
In , an online poll of social media users in the UK was reported to show that PowerPoint "remains as popular with young tech-savvy users as it is with the Baby Boomers," with about four out of five saying that "PowerPoint was a great tool for making presentations," in part because "PowerPoint, with its capacity to be highly visual, bridges the wordy world of yesterday with the visual future of tomorrow.
Two-thirds report that they present on a daily or weekly basis—so it's no surprise that in-person presentations is the top skill they hope to improve. The trend is toward presentations and slides, and we don't see any sign of that slowing down. But in only a few short years PowerPoint has altered the landscape. Just as word processing made it easier to produce long, meandering memos, the spread of PowerPoint has unleashed a blizzard of jazzy but often incoherent visuals.
Instead of drawing up a dozen slides on a legal pad and running them over to the graphics department, captains and colonels now can create hundreds of slides in a few hours without ever leaving their desks. If the spirit moves them they can build in gunfire sound effects and images that explode like land mines. PowerPoint has become such an ingrained part of the defense culture that it has seeped into the military lexicon. The amount of time expended on PowerPoint, the Microsoft presentation program of computer-generated charts, graphs and bullet points, has made it a running joke in the Pentagon and in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Commanders say that behind all the PowerPoint jokes are serious concerns that the program stifles discussion, critical thinking and thoughtful decision-making. Not least, it ties up junior officers The New York Times account went on to say that as a result some U.
James N. He spoke without PowerPoint. McMaster , who banned PowerPoint presentations when he led the successful effort to secure the northern Iraqi city of Tal Afar in , followed up at the same conference by likening PowerPoint to an internal threat. Several incidents, about the same time, gave wide currency to discussions by serving military officers describing excessive PowerPoint use and the organizational culture that encouraged it.
Kosslyn sent a joint letter to the editor stressing the institutional culture of the military: The problem is not in the tool itself, but in the way that people use it—which is partly a result of how institutions promote misuse.
Mattis became U. Secretary of Defense,  and.