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Public speaking (and slide design especially) is an art. When you get the people's attention for some time, it's on you to get the most out of their time. Public speaking is about stellar content as well as a thought-through storyline with well-supporting slides. It's your job to get the best of your audience's time.

Good Slides Reduce Complexity – Avoid slide-crimes with these 5 concepts for more effective presentations

I agree with many of the points included in Tom Critchlow's post "Good Slides Reduce Complexity". Tom describes his experience of giving presentations at Google. And while the purpose of his presentations was mainly to convince C-levels to make decisions, much of his advice applies to public presentations, too.

Presentations are all about storytelling, driving attention while reducing distraction. My favourite points of the article are:

A good litmus test for images on slides: can you add a meaningful caption to the image - i.e., is there a point to the image? If you can’t write a caption for the image, you likely don’t need it there.

Once you are in the habit of ensuring that each slide title conveys the point, you can start to think of slide titles as an outline - where each slide title actually leads from the last to tell a story.

If you give presentations (or want to get into public speaking), I recommend checking out the article!

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About Stefan Judis

Frontend nerd with over ten years of experience, freelance dev, "Today I Learned" blogger, conference speaker, and Open Source maintainer.

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