Bugfixes for Humans



Bugfixes for Humans

Your slides suck (and it's not your fault)

Justin Hileman


I am not really a cow

Audience bugs

Humans can't help reading

Let's try it out a bit.

How did you do?

Humans have a small buffer

Humans group like things

Humans find patterns

Humans notice changes

Humans are distracted by shiny

Humans are lazy

Presenter bugs

Humans suck at abstraction

Humans are distracted by shiny

Humans can't help reading

Humans have a small buffer

Humans are lazy

Best practices = Bugfixes

Organize your thoughts

Rule of Four


Where to start

Style < Substance

Choose a title last

Don't open PowerPoint


Brain dump

Write the handout first

Extract your slides

Slides are guideposts

What can I remove?

PowerPoint doesn't help

If you must bullet…

• Four bullets per slide.
• Four words per bullet.
• One indent level.
• Or just don't.



6 objects

4 objects

200 slides

You're used to putting three or four bullet points on a slide. That's at least four distinct ideas, but more often, each of those ideas has three or four sub ideas to it. In other words, you're cramming 32 ideas on a slide, and you're sitting on that slide as you drone on and on.

— Seth Godin




👎 All caps

👎 Underline

👍 Italics, bold, color


👎 Make arbitrary changes

👎 Use all the fonts

👍 Make it bigger

👍 Contrast rocks



The future

But wait, there's more!

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