When I think of software presentation tools PowerPoint is immediately what jumps to mind. I think this is because I grew up in an era where it was pretty much the go-to standard and only option available. It was also how the majority of my instructors or other presenters delivered their material to me. PowerPoint is a great piece of software and as described by Teachnology (1999), it can add new dimensions to learning and serve as powerful tool for delivering information. According to Hewitt (2008), “Unlike most of the other software products that have made their way into the Office suite, PowerPoint has never had significant market competition.” When I look around the web today however, there are so many exciting new presentation software tools available that PowerPoint finally does have strong competition in my opinion. Therefore I think it is really important for educators to explore all their options when it comes to crafting a presentation.

SlideRocket, Prezi, and Google Docs Presentations are all great alternatives to PowerPoint. They have all the modern features and tools necessary for meeting ones presentation needs, though each may have certain strong points depending on those needs. When using software presentation tools like those mentioned above it is important to remember that their true purpose is to highlight key points of our verbal presentation, not supplant it. These tools are also a great way to present visual representations of things that are difficult to adequately describe with words. A new tool, which I recently became aware of, seems to blur the lines by allowing you to combine voiceovers with animation to explain your ideas. This new tool is PowToon which is currently in public beta. While I don’t see PowToon as a replacement to any of the full-fledged slide based presentation software, I think it can be really powerful for expressing complex or “boring” ideas. Since PowToon exports what you create to YouTube that means once can also embed a PowToon into your Prezi or SlideRocket presentation.

I think that we are currently entering an exciting time where we will continuously see new software presentation tools entering the market. I feel these new tools will continue to expand the ways that we as educators can teach and present our content. This is a great thing in my opinion as we need keep pace with the ever changing needs and expectations of students born in the internet age.  


Hewitt, J. (2008, October 29). Ms powerpoint: From humble beginnings to business meeting standard. Retrieved from http://www.brighthub.com/office/collaboration/articles/13189.aspx

Teachnology. (1999). Retrieved from http://www.teach-nology.com/tutorials/powerpoint/

Mike Karlin
9/30/2012 02:52:47 am

Thank you for introducing me to PowToon! I've never heard of that web-based software before and it looks great! Well written post and good closing point about the constant expansion of new technologies. Thanks!

Angela Banks
9/30/2012 07:41:13 am

I really enjoyed your presentation, especially the checking/savings video!
You mentioned a good point - powerpoint has never really had competition until recently. Most of these software programs I had never heard of until this semester. PowToon sounds really interesting, I may have to try that one out. Well done!

Shelly Edmunson
9/30/2012 09:09:13 am

I have never heard of PowToon until now and I had also never heard of SlideRocket until this current assignment. You are right on target when you state that PowerPoint finally has competition out there. I am looking forward to checking out PowToon.


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