The old horse and buggy rule

I posted on LinkedIn about how one should feel free to use as many slides as necessary in one’s presentation – as opposed to jamming 10 bullet points in one single slide.

One person replied that “But doing that, with one point per slide will increase the total number of slides into hundred. We’re supposed to keep it within twenty.”

Where do you suppose that “keep it within 20 slides” rule come from?

From the horse and buggy days when people were using 35mm carousels at conferences. Since a carousel could only take 80 slides and if there were 4 presenters, the organizer would have to limit each speaker to ‘NO MORE THAN 20 SLIDES”!

But now most computers that I am aware of can accommodate more than 20 slides, I suggest that the old 20-slide-limit rule be thrown out – together with the old horse whip and buggy.

You may have been doing it (cramming 5 bullet points into one slide) for 40 years. That means you have been doing it wrong for 40 years.

The time it takes to talk about 100 points is the same if you present them in 20 slides or 100 slides. You know – 100 pounds of steel weights the same as 100 pounds of cotton.

Go to my website and order a booklet on how to make great presentations.


One response to “The old horse and buggy rule

  1. Elena…thank you for your comment. Why does it not help to do one bullet point per slide? The time it takes to go through 10 sides with 10 bullet points each is EXACTLY the same as it would take to go through 100 slides with one bullet point each. It is the age old question: “which is heavier? One ton of cotton or one ton of steel?” The answer is “they weight the SAME”.

    The 20 slides (limit) are not physical 35mm slides. They are slides on a computer.

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