Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 2nd Nov 2017 08:47 UTC
Features, Office

PowerPoint is so ingrained in modern life that the notion of it having a history at all may seem odd. But it does have a very definite lifetime as a commercial product that came onto the scene 30 years ago, in 1987. Remarkably, the founders of the Silicon Valley firm that created PowerPoint did not set out to make presentation software, let alone build a tool that would transform group communication throughout the world. Rather, PowerPoint was a recovery from dashed hopes that pulled a struggling startup back from the brink of failure - and succeeded beyond anything its creators could have imagined.

Fascinating story. I despise PowerPoint because PowerPoint presentations are difficult to translate (my actual job), but there's no denying it's used in meeting rooms all over the world - for better or worse.

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comments and clarifications
by brambi11a on Thu 2nd Nov 2017 16:33 UTC
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as everybody seems to hang on to the initial consideration that PowerPoint is inherently hard to translate I will add my own comment on that:

Since a presentation program most often is used to provide keywords for the speaker to elaborate upon, accordingly the keywords are just that. They are rarely even complete sentences and without a knowledge about the actual speech it can be very hard to guess what they are all about.

Some presentation programs, including PowerPoint, has a feature where the speaker gets support notes on his screen, while the audience only get the "points" on the beamer. If this feature was used on a regular basis translation would be much easier. Latex, html, whatever decent formatting language will support comments, but if the creator of the presentation only wrote a list of keywords making a translation is very hard.

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