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Presentation Patterns: Techniques for Crafting Better Presentations
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Presentation Patterns: Techniques for Crafting Better Presentations

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  103 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Presentation Patterns is the first book on presentations that categorizes and organizes the building blocks (or patterns) that you'll need to communicate effectively using presentation tools like Keynote and PowerPoint. Patterns are like the lower-level steps found inside recipes; they are the techniques you must master to be considered a master chef or master presente ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published August 25th 2012 by Addison-Wesley Professional (first published August 15th 2012)
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Jul 19, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: gave-up-on
As a PhD student in computer science, I thought this would book would have a lot of helpful advice about giving technical presentations. Unfortunately, I disagree with nearly every point the authors make. They seem absolutely obsessed with using transitions and animations, for instance, while I personally find them distracting and irritating. The authors also contradict themselves. For example, one of their patterns is called the Infodeck: a slide deck that is meant to be emailed within a compan ...more
James Estes
Oct 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
I recently gave a presentation at a tech conference, and I felt it went pretty well. After reading this book, I may need to personally apologize to each attendee to my talk.

Being a technical person, my focus was just on delivering the technical information to whoever showed up. The slides just helped to follow along with bullets (a Bullet Ridden Corpse Anti-Pattern). The fact that the slides looked plain and boring only bothered me enough to try and "spice them up" with a few bits of clipart (P
Jan 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a fine book on presentations and I appreciated the application of the pattern idea to presentation (though, admittedly, this will find its greatest appeal in architecture or software development where the idea of patterns is more commonplace). The upsides of the pattern approach is that it is useful for reference and that it helps create name associations. The main downside would be that it can be a little harder to read straight through, as it gives a catalogue-like feel to the book as ...more
Rod Hilton
Aug 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I really love that there are so many books that are specifically geared toward programmers, like we're a totally different type of organism than normal people. Fitness for Geeks, Presentation Patterns, The Clean Coder, all of these books describe how to do a thing that everyone else has to do with a very specific slant toward programmers and technical people. I'm not sure what that says about me and my fellow programmers that we need our own special little books, but I'm sure it's something. Com ...more
Ravi Sinha
Sep 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What I love about patterns is the richness of information you can convey in a couple of sentences by referring to well-understood patterns by name. In the same spirit as Design Patterns (coding/ problem solving) and Apprenticeship Patterns (the software profession), this book is about patterns relating to preparing and delivering formal presentations to audiences. Covering the mechanics of creating slides, delivering, preparing yourself, and handling negative (anti) patterns, and detailing diffe ...more
Steven Morrison
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A very good guide to improving presentations. The mix of descriptive patterns and war stories helps to keep the content interesting.

One annoyance with the text is that there is no way to tell at-a-glance which patterns to apply for a particular presentation. For example: which patterns will take hours vs minutes to try? If I have a reasonable presentation already, which patterns can I use to improve it? A novice -> expert scale against each pattern might have been sufficient for this.
Dec 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Terrific. No question the focus is more on tech speakers than on the rest of us, but most of the concepts and advice here applies across the board. When you're thinking about how to craft a presentation – and especially if you're stuck and looking for inspiration – reach for this book for ideas (or a diagnosis if you sense something's not quite working).
Nilotpal Das
Jul 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
It is ok. The knowledge is rather fundamental in nature. Could have used more advanced a book.
Apr 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: work
Found some useful stuff in this book, but I've seen the philosophy before. The pattern idea is good and sticks with you.
Frederic Vandaele
Jul 22, 2015 rated it it was ok
not bad but as a lot of 'cookbook', it suffers of a lack of inspiration
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Neal Ford is Software Architect and Meme Wrangler at ThoughtWorks, a global IT consultancy with an exclusive focus on end-to-end software development and delivery. He is also the designer and developer of applications, instructional materials, magazine articles, courseware, video/DVD presentations, and author and/or editor of 5 books spanning a variety of technologies. He focuses on designing and ...more
“Some presentation authors justify this by saying, “The photographer already knew it was going to be an uncredited effort and it really isn’t that hard to take a good photograph.” 1 likes
“An Infodeck isn’t meant to be displayed as a slide show; rather, it is meant to be consumed by a single person—either at a computer, on a printout, or on an alternate display like a tablet computer—as a series of discrete narrative elements. An” 0 likes
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