Powerpoint as a protector of intellectual property

Once upon a time presenters at conferences submitted a written paper. The conference proceedings book was a valuable document. Then along came MS-Powerpoint.

Now all you get is a bunch of cryptic bullet points that has meaning only to those who were there. And only marginally so for those lucky few, because we remember less than a quarter of what we hear in a presentation anyway. It made great sense at the time but now your terse hieroglyphics scribbled in the margin mean even less than the slide they annotate.

For speakers this is wonderful: we can impress and get visibility, and attend the conference for free, without having to give away any of our IP. It is as if we submit our content in code.

Anyone who has real respect for their audience will submit a written paper as a handout and use Powerpoint for its intended purpose: to illustrate as you talk.

(Note: Powerpoint slides are not a mechanism for projecting your speaker notes so you and everyione can see them. Have speaker notes and have slides - they are not the same thing. You can use powerpoint notes facility attached to the slides, or you can use hidden slides mingled with the ones intended for the audience, or you can use entirely separate notes. But please don't project your notes then read them to the poor audience)

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