Monday, 22 October 2012

Bring back the ker-chunk ker-chunk

A little flurry of tweets around new twitter/presentation slide techniques have got me thinking.

I want old presentation technology to make a comeback. I want to sit in a darkened room and re-experience the glow and soothing ker-chunk, ker-chunk of the slide carousel. I want someone to scribble on sheets of OHP as they excitedly explain something. I want blackboards and chalk - fingernails and all. I want someone to stand at a lecture for an hour and speak from memory with no props.

I can actually see a product in this for the hipster market. Imagine this.

You're sitting at home working on your Keynote slides. You finish up your glorious presentation, which is totally Zen. And then you log into a website - let's call it Carouselize  for now - and upload your digital file.

The next morning, a package lands on your doorstep. Inside it is a slide carousel pre-loaded with your deck, which has been converted into slide transparencies. You roll up to your presentation - where the horrified organisers have spent the past week trying to rustle up an old-school slide projector, calling in favours from all over town - push your hipster glasses up your nose and proceed to deliver that lecture like it's 1992. Children in the audience are enthralled by your mastery of dead technology. Grown-ups swoon over nostalgic recollections of lectures they slept through during the best years of their lives.

We can go further, of course. Why not print your deck as a broadsheet? What about having a telegrapher bashing out the salient points in Morse code and sending them through to Little Printer? What about a stenographer taking notes to be mimeographed? Why not send everyone a handwritten letter full of distilled wisdom at the end of the conference?

I'm not going to suggest slates instead of iPads though. That would just be silly.  


Robyn said...

This longing for the old slide carousel reminds me of the potent scene from the finale of the first series of Mad Men. Though my only experience with a slide carousel is my dad rehearsing some talk he gave when he was at Telecom. The slides were all quite dry but expertly designed. But yeah, it's about time there was a slide comeback.

Courtney Johnston said...

I've just realised that studying art history probably greatly lengthened my exposure to slide shows. I was part of their demise, actually - one of my student jobs at Vic was digitising the slide collection, so all the images could be searched in a database and then dropped into powerpoints, rather than pulled out of drawers and dropped into slide carousels ...