This is a travel blog. Yes. But, this is also a travel blog run by a corporate slave.
The last two months have been about Powerpoint presentations more than anything else. And, I have done one presentation over and over and over again. So much that I don’t remember what was the story I was trying to tell in the first place. I don’t hate powerpoint. I hate it with all my life.
Don’t get me wrong. I really think it is probably a very cool invention. It looks quite beautiful – pictures, flying effects, transitions et all. But, in a nutshell, I think it is for people who lack the ability to communicate.
I still remember my Grandfather’s scribbles on my History textbook, drawing little maps of kingdoms and territories won over by kings. He was a super cool communicator. I remember my hockey coach showing game plays on sand. So on and so forth. They did not need Powerpoint to make a point.
All this got me thinking about why I hate it so much. Well, for starters, imagine I were to use Powerpoint as a tool to make my travel blogging or traveling better. What would happen?
Situation – My holiday to Egypt.
Step 1 – How I plan to take some cheap flights to Egypt. Show a slide with a faded world map with just your country and Egypt highlighted. Then, transition this to hundreds of colourful logos of various airlines around the world. They will slowly emerge from the map. Then, a bright colourful ugly chart pops up (graph ideally) showing the pricing of airlines. Then, out of all the logos, a few disappear (faded zoom) and the ones that are really cheap stay. Then, in a bright box, you type the key message – Such a long distance to go. But, very few cheap flights to get there. From that, you can switch slides and show a troubled backpacker with no money. That is me. Then, you switch pack to a the slide with minimal logos and knock them out one by one till the cheapest one stays on the screen. Point made.
Step 2 – Searching for hotels to stay. A creative presenter will go all visual and show images of the hotel rooms, facilities like swimming pools, sauna, beautiful balcony views, the food et all. The number cruncher will show the satisfaction graph on parameters like comfort, food, price, friendliness of staff, ratings. The combination presenter will merge graphs and pictures and highlight the key message with ugly bullet points. In my case, I would have probably shown one slide which shows the benefits of staying in a hotel and the benefits of staying with a family and quickly transitioned to a picture of a local family (very happy one with open arms welcoming me) and made the point – No hotels.
Step 3 – What to see in Cairo? Powerful images of Cairo zoom in from all corners showing the Islamic quarter, the Coptic area, the Pyramids of Giza… et all. They appear and turn transparent one by one, creating this crazy collage of faded pictures of a city. Then, in a psychedelic box, you have a key message about ‘So many places to see. So little time’. And, God forbid you want to run your idea past someone, it won’t be that easy afterall. They might have a say in the animation order or the fading effects. You get the drift.
What can make all this worse? If you write your story about Egypt, and someone changes it to look like it was a story about Venezuela.
It would take probably a couple of hours to put this presentation together and then many many variations before you can get the point across.
My readers would stop visiting my blog and if there was something on the internet available to block websites, they would do that as well. All this if they did not already fall victim to ‘death by powerpoint’.
In the end, I’ve made up my mind that Travel blogging cannot be enhanced by Powerpoint. This is compeletely my point of view. Infact, if you spend all day making powerpoint presentations, you can probably use the power of blogging to vent about it or travel somewhere to avoid it all together.
Please imagine the last paragraph is in font size 72.