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Rick AltmanRick Altman is all set to host the sixth annual PowerPoint Live conference this year (2008) in San Diego from September 21st to 24th. In this exclusive Indezine interview, Rick talks about something never exposed to the media -- about the PowerPoint Live template contest, and the entries in the past few years.

Creating a Winning Template

Here's some input from the team that decides the winning template:

Julie Terberg"I look for a template that offers a variety of layouts, built around a solid design foundation. I appreciate a fresh color palette to work with. And I always like to be surprised with something unique and original."
- Julie Terberg

Dave Paradi"I look for a design that the attendees will be able to take ideas from to use in their own presentations. Many corporate presenters are forced to use the company's template but are looking for ideas to make it original when they present."
- Dave Paradi


PowerPoint Live Template Contest

by Geetesh Bajaj

Date Created:
Last Updated: March 16th 2009

Product Showcase

As yet another PowerPoint Live conference makes itself visible on the horizon, I think it's a good idea to look ahead at what's going to be visible on the slides at the conference this year -- especially the new template design that will be provided to all speakers.

And being part of the team that decides how the template looks every year, I thought it would be nice to share with all of you how this whole process of deciding upon a design works. And did you know that you could design a template, and end up attending the entire PowerPoint Live conference free if your template gets chosen as a winner in the contest! Now that last sentence brings up more questions than it answers -- so I approached Rick Altman, the host of the conference to tell us more.

And do scroll down this page to see contest winning templates over the years!

Geetesh: How can you get a free pass to PowerPoint Live by creating a template?

Rick: By being more clever than most! <g>

This is our fourth year holding this contest, where we seek community participation in creating the standard template for the conference.

It's a tricky assignment: the contest invites people to create work that stands out, and yet one of the criteria is that the design not be too energetic.

After all, it would be used across four days and over 40 seminars. It would have to wear well. Also, in our design track, it would be used to frame some really brilliant work by our resident artists. If our template competed with their work, that could be a disconnect!

So it's not just as easy as design something cool and send it in.

Geetesh: Over the past few years, does one template stand out - and why?

Rick: In 2006, one entrant took the time to gather photos of every member of the conference team, design them like an old-style 35mm slide, and display each one in a carefully-timed animation sequence, integrated with creative treatment of the person's name. After this took place, each photo then shrunk and moved to the bottom of the slide in one nicely-formed line. It was very impressive, but seeing how it took almost 60 seconds to complete, it was not exactly plausible as an intro to 40 seminars across four days.

I also recall one in 2005 which used seminar topics from the year before as sample text. This is pretty common, and this entry used our session entitled "Don't Annoy with your Animation". And guess how the title was displayed? With a spin animation!

Another one used a series of three symbols in the Wingding 2 typeface, but if that typeface was not present on your computer, you would see regular letters. And the three letters spelled SEX.

So it's never a dull moment over here during the contest...


PowerPoint Live 2008 Template -- Uploaded on authorSTREAM by Indezine

Other Finalists for 2008 - Uploaded on authorSTREAM by Indezine

PowerPoint Live 2007 Template -- Uploaded on authorSTREAM by Indezine

PowerPoint Live 2006 Template -- Uploaded on authorSTREAM by Indezine

PowerPoint Live 2005 Template -- Uploaded on authorSTREAM by Indezine

Design a Template - PowerPoint Live

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    since November 02, 2000