Off topic: "We Have Met the Enemy and He Is PowerPoint"
Thread poster: Kaiya J. Diannen

Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
Apr 27, 2010

NY Times Article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/27/world/27powerpoint.html

I thought this article was just oh so apropos for anyone out there like myself who has struggled through the translation of some poor company's PowerPoint presentation.

And as an incentive to at least skim through the whole article, here's the last sentence:

Those types of PowerPoint presentations, Dr. Hammes said, are known as “hypnotizing chickens.”


Now we know - we're not the only ones who think they're awful!



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Francisco Rocha  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 15:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes, it's amazing... Apr 27, 2010

how it is supposed to be a schematic tool to simplify ideas, and too many times I've asked for clients to explain some graphic and charts in a ppt archive, and they simply don't know what they are about.

Is ppt simplifying or encrypting so anyone is afraid to ask because of the fear of be seen as stupid?


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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Priceless! Apr 27, 2010

Francisco Rocha wrote:
Is ppt simplifying or encrypting so anyone is afraid to ask because of the fear of be seen as stupid?


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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:10
English to Arabic
+ ...
It should come with a warning... Apr 27, 2010

I hate to think of the number of PPT presentations I've had to sit through in the last years, where the presenters were obviously told that giving a talk accompanied by PowerPoint is THE thing to do if you want to impress - and the more effects you use, the better.

The most nightmarish presentation I remember was one in which the presenter "summed up" his points, in complete, looong sentences in a barely legible small font, while at the same time talking about them in his own words. How multitasking did he think his audience was!?? Not only that, but he chose the impressive effect of having the letters drop one at a time from the top. It was just painful...

That said, PPT is just a tool that actually CAN impress if used cleverly, so I wouldn't dismiss it altogether.


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Isabelle Derson  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:10
English to French
+ ...
"Powerpoint makes us stupid"--these bullets can kill (Seth Godin) Apr 27, 2010

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2010/04/powerpoint-makes-us-stupidthese-bullets-can-kill.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:%20typepad/sethsmainblog%20(Seth's+Blog)&utm_content=Google+International

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oxygen4u
Portugal
Local time: 17:10
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Great article! Apr 27, 2010

Thank you so much Janet for sharing!

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Andrei Yefimov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 19:10
English to Russian
+ ...
my favourite one Apr 27, 2010

Richard C. Holbrooke, the Obama administration’s special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, was given PowerPoint briefings during a trip to Afghanistan last summer at each of three stops — Kandahar, Mazar-i-Sharif and Bagram Air Base. At a fourth stop, Herat, the Italian forces there not only provided Mr. Holbrooke with a PowerPoint briefing, but accompanied it with swelling orchestral music.

He most likely knew he had been in for the forth ppt presentation but what he didn't know is it would be on a large scale. I don't envy him:)

Great article, Janet! Thanks for sharing!


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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
I am rather fond of this one Apr 27, 2010

“death by PowerPoint,” the phrase used to describe the numbing sensation that accompanies a 30-slide briefing




[Edited to remove the New York Times' own spelling mistake! Copy editing, people!]

[Edited at 2010-04-28 05:47 GMT]


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Rebekka Groß  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:10
English to German
great! Apr 27, 2010

I'm going to share this on my Facebook wall, if you don't mind.

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juvera  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:10
English to Hungarian
+ ...
I wish... May 1, 2010

“death by PowerPoint,” the phrase used to describe the numbing sensation that accompanies a 30-slide briefing


As conference interpreters, sometimes we have to endure the interpretation of up to 200 slides a day, and the accompanying patter "filling in the gaps", and it may go on for 2-3 days.

To read the slides, a laptop is necessary, because we don't necessarily see them on the screen; the speaker is standing in front of the screen, or the column in front of us obstructs the view, or we are sitting at right angle to the screen at a distance, the letters are too small, the screen is too far and the late arrivals congregate in front of the interpreters' booth.

Apart from that, they also love to scramble the order of presentations and slides, showing "updates" instead of the ones we received the previous day and skip slides at random.

Indeed, the seemingly helpful presentation slides become the enemy.
The saving grace is that after a while the chickens are indeed, well and truly hypnotized.


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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Conference interpreting May 2, 2010

Juvera, that is an "angle" I never even thought about - what a nightmare!

You have my deepest sympathies!!


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Kadri Põlluveer
Estonia
Local time: 19:10
Estonian to French
+ ...
And then there's English... May 2, 2010

Everyone seems to think that no matter what language the oral presentation is in, the slides have to be in English. I admit that it does make sense to a certain extent as that way people in the room might be able to follow (kind of) even if English is not their mother tongue. However, it can be a total nightmare for the interpreter. More than once I've had to interpret from Spanish into Estonian while reading English on my screen! By the end of the day one might feel a little confused...

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