…and he is PowerPoint. Oh my goodness, hahaha!
WASHINGTON — Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the leader of American and NATO forces in Afghanistan, was shown a PowerPoint slide in Kabul last summer that was meant to portray the complexity of American military strategy, but looked more like a bowl of spaghetti.
“When we understand that slide, we’ll have won the war,” General McChrystal dryly remarked, one of his advisers recalled, as the room erupted in laughter.
The slide has since bounced around the Internet as an example of a military tool that has spun out of control. Like an insurgency, PowerPoint has crept into the daily lives of military commanders and reached the level of near obsession. The amount of time expended on PowerPoint, the Microsoft presentation program of computer-generated charts, graphs and bullet points, has made it a running joke in the Pentagon and in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“PowerPoint makes us stupid,” Gen. James N. Mattis of the Marine Corps, the Joint Forces commander, said this month at a military conference in North Carolina. (He spoke without PowerPoint.) Brig. Gen. H. R. McMaster, who banned PowerPoint presentations when he led the successful effort to secure the northern Iraqi city of Tal Afar in 2005, followed up at the same conference by likening PowerPoint to an internal threat.
“It’s dangerous because it can create the illusion of understanding and the illusion of control,” General McMaster said in a telephone interview afterward. “Some problems in the world are not bullet-izable.”
In General McMaster’s view, PowerPoint’s worst offense is not a chart like the spaghetti graphic, which was first uncovered by NBC’s Richard Engel, but rigid lists of bullet points (in, say, a presentation on a conflict’s causes) that take no account of interconnected political, economic and ethnic forces. “If you divorce war from all of that, it becomes a targeting exercise,” General McMaster said.
Commanders say that behind all the PowerPoint jokes are serious concerns that the program stifles discussion, critical thinking and thoughtful decision-making. Not least, it ties up junior officers — referred to as PowerPoint Rangers — in the daily preparation of slides, be it for a Joint Staff meeting in Washington or for a platoon leader’s pre-mission combat briefing in a remote pocket of Afghanistan.
Last year when a military Web site, Company Command, asked an Army platoon leader in Iraq, Lt. Sam Nuxoll, how he spent most of his time, he responded, “Making PowerPoint slides.” When pressed, he said he was serious.
Continue reading at nytimes
Old: The off-center oval is too large and
New: Adding Franklin’s shoulders and removing
the background avoids the unbalanced look.
Old: The green is elegantly traditional.
New: The shifting-colored hues gives the bill a
BACKGROUND AND WATERMARKS
New: Too many and they look like smudges.
Old: Comparatively simple, yet the seals, type and other
graphic elements seem disjointed and appear random.
New: Many obtrusive graphic elements, including the
security bars and watermarks, yet curiously the overall
design is more unified.
SECURITY RIBBON AND THREAD
Old: Not there.
New: Necessarily obtrusive. Gives the
impression of a credit card or money order.
FILIGREE (THE BORDER AROUND THE BILL)
Old: Classic application gives the note an
official banknote aesthetic.
New: Reductivist and minimal application
lightens the note and implies modernity but
could unwittingly suggest deflation.
Old: Well positioned in relation to filigree.
New: Smaller is better, but the numbers are not
well integrated into the filigree, making them
look like an afterthought.
BELL IN INKWELL (IN ORANGE)
Old: Not there.
New: Playful and unnecessary.
DENOMINATION IN WORDS
Old: Elegantly composed as part of the filigree.
New: Squeezed too close to Franklin’s forehead.
Old: Clear and unencumbered.
New: Harder to read against watermarks and
somewhat less legible for players of liar’s poker.
I don’t watch Dancing with the Stars, but I saw Nicole Scherzinger & Derek Hough do the Jive on Ellen and I have a crush on them! I love the fusion of the 50s jive + dance/pop – super sizzlin’