See PowerPoint Through Abraham Lincoln's Eyes

Last Updated May 13, 2010 11:08 PM EDT

Last week, we had some serious discussions about PowerPoint. Some senior members of the military are dissatisfied with the way PowerPoint homogenizes their communication, and I cataloged some PowerPoint myths that get in the way of creating effective presentations. Today is Friday, though, so perhaps it's time to take a lighter look at PowerPoint. What, for example, would the Gettysburg Address have looked like had Lincoln had access to the world's favorite presentation software?

You know this is how it would have started:

Good morning. Just a second while I get this connection to work. Do I press this button here? Function-F7? No, that's not right. Hmmm. Maybe I'll have to reboot. Hold on a minute. Um, my name is Abe Lincoln and I'm your president. While we're waiting, I want to thank Judge David Wills, chairman of the committee supervising the dedication of the Gettysburg cemetery.


Lincoln had a little more to say at Peter Norvig's Web site. And then dive right into his deck (it's only six slides long -- Lincoln showed Herculean levels of restraint, apparently). Trust me -- it's worth a few minutes of your Friday.