I've been thinking a lot (perhaps obviously) about my beef with slide decks, and came up with a list of tentative rules that I want to hold myself to. Many of these could be generalized for communication writ large, but for now they're tailored for decks.
- No stock images, anywhere.
- No transition slides.
- Charts are for displaying data.
- No slide projection of text.*
- List format & headings should be meaningful (no single bullet points, etc).
These are in service of two things:
- Signal > Noise
- Nuanced > Watered down (where applicable; nuance is in the service of other benefits - not a feature in itself)
If my audience doesn't have the time or attention to hear an appropriately nuanced argument, they don't really want to work with me.
There's probably more work to be done on these, but they're a start - and in many circles, they're pretty radical.
* Translation: Don't write an essay and then chop it up into pieces to display on a page. Paginated prose is an idiosyncrasy of an outdated delivery medium (printed paper). If you're writing prose today, do like the web does, and use infinite scroll.