Better presentations without Powerpoint

Better presentations without Powerpoint

Powerpoint is the powerhouse of presentation software.  Everyone uses it because for a long time it was the best, most portable tool available to make professional presentations.  In the recent years, several competitors have emerged which produce equivalent or even improved presentations without the hassle of large ppt files or the cost of Microsoft Office.  Here are just 2 free options for clean, powerful presentations without Powerpoint:


Anyone who has used LaTex for their documents knows it’s advantages.  Equations in LaTex are about as easy and pretty as they could be.  Formatting is a snap compared to Microsoft Word.  Citations number themselves (now, if only they would search my database for themselves as well).  Beamer is the presentation class of LaTex.  You can use all of the same procedures as in a LaTex document and end up with a presentable PDF that you can flip through like a presentation.  The format is portable to any computer with a PDF reader.

2. Prezi

If you haven’t heard of Prezi yet, you’re missing out.  Prezi is an online presentation builder with all of the bells and whistles.  Presentations are set up on a map of sorts with elements that toggle in and out as you progess the presentation.  The available templates are stunning and include graphics that don’t make you cringe (remember Powerpoint’s starburst transition coupled with the sound of glass breaking? Yeah, not that).  You simply log into the Prezi website and can present straight from the web, no need to bring an extra flash drive or worry about downloading the latest copy of your work.  If you have a .edu email, Prezi is free in the basic capacity including a 4GB private cloud account for your presentations.  If you don’t have a .edu, the software and cloud storage is still free with the caveat that your presentations will be searchable on the web.

What is your favorite presentation tool?

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