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“The” Afghan powerpoint 31, May 2010

Posted by thegulfblog.com in American ME Relations.
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This is the (in)famous Afghan PowerPoint slide of which Stanley McCrystal said “when we understand this, we’ll have won the war.”

There is a growing backlash against Microsoft’s PowerPoint. This slide is a – or perhaps “the” – perfect example of PowerPoint’s problem. Unless the sole goal of this slide was to highlight that Afghanistan is nigh-on impossibly complex to the point of incomprehension, then this was a terrible slide, for it cannot really be used in any instructional capacity.

Various articles in recent years, the NYT highlights, have come out attacking PowerPoint. The NYT article even has quotes from an Army platoon commander in Iraq saying that he – literally – spends “most of his time” making PowerPoint slides.

There’s an interesting quick debate on PowerPoint over at Intelligence Squared which neatly and eloquently highlights both sides of the argument.