Artificial intelligence and the art of building presentations

Dmytro Spilka
Artificial intelligence and the art of building presentations

AI tools can help you get the message across without breaking a sweat

We’re living in a time of unprecedented convenience. Today, automation has brought unparalleled ease to how we conduct our business and studies online.

Although the art of giving presentations has remained largely unchanged since the early incarnations of Microsoft PowerPoint hit our computers back in 1987, the likes of AI and machine learning have begun to make their marks on the industry — empowering us to build engaging content along the way.

Here, we take a look at exactly how AI is beginning to bring convenience to the art of building presentations.

Dedicated tools

Occasionally, creating the right presentation for your audience requires solving a difficult question about perspective.

The problem is that as the presenter, you’re too close to the content to know if it’s striking the right chord with your audience or if it just manages to miss the mark.

Luckily, AI doesn’t suffer from such crises, and one tool in Beautiful.ai works wonders in picking up the slack of setting users up with a well-formed, engagingly crafted presentation that features the right blend of carefully selected images and bullet points.

Beautiful.ai utilises AI to learn about the subject you’re discussing in your slides and sets about automatically crafting your presentation as you enter the raw data. This means that the tool will automatically select a fitting smart template that caters for the level of information you’re looking to convey, as well as tapping into an extensive library of stock photos and media to further compliment your creation.

As you add further information, Beautiful.ai adapts the presentation it’s building to suit the subject in real-time. As a result, you just have to concentrate on the points you’re trying to get across.

This highly intuitive AI-based tool can also work with existing pre-formatted templates, meaning that you can also build a presentation up by using a specific design as a starting point. Numerous platforms like PoweredTemplate can help you with the task.

Test tube templates

Beautiful isn’t the only AI-based program to bring users their own intuitive PowerPoint presentations.

There are plenty of systems located in the cloud that is capable of building beautiful presentations without the user even having to click a button.

Programs like Zuru and SlideBot are able to look at the raw information in existing slides and automatically populate them with images based on the keywords they find within the content. The tools can also apply design rules to format each slide, leaving you with a well-crafted presentation that’s been intelligently built from the bottom up without the need for user input.

The AI technology embedded in both Zuru and SlideBot is intuitive enough to understand the golden rules of prominently positioning images while minimising the text that surrounds them.

These tools can make for a significant benefit when it comes to keeping your content on-message. A recurring problem when it comes to creating presentations is the risk of deviating from the initial points that you’re trying to make. With Zuru and SlideBot’s use of supporting the keywords that they find, you have a tangible reference point to ensure that you don’t shoot your presentation off on a tangent – the tools also make for a significant time saver should the worst occur and you get tasked with building a PowerPoint with little-to-no notice.

Also read: How artificial intelligence is disrupting education

Adaptive learning

Arguably the largest benefit of AI and machine learning technology is its capacity to learn as it adapts to your presenting style.

AI’s fundamental role in this field is to compliment and bring convenience to the user. The more that a presentation’s creator tweaks the slides that an AI program has churned out, the more it learns for future reference.

Think of it as a more robust form of predictive text. With the support of a program that’s adaptive enough to learn from the shortcomings of its service, the more it will bridge the gaps in its understanding.

If you’re regularly tasked with creating slideshows, the AI will soon learn the formats that you prefer and the scale of images and text boxes that work for you also. Convenience is at the forefront of technology’s future, and the world of PowerPoint is no exception.

PowerPoint assistants

The use of AI can stretch way beyond the aesthetics of presentations, too. Towards the end of 2018, Microsoft launched a nifty new feature called ‘Ideas.’ Microsoft Ideas has been designed to act as an AI infused personal assistant to Office users, and has the power to review your PowerPoint presentations as part of its broad-reaching range of services.

Also read: 3 ways to to instantly establish trust during your investor presentation

At the click of a button, Ideas will be able to take a look at your slides and suggest subtle, or more significant, changes based on your design, content and grammar. Significantly, Ideas is also capable of reviewing your charts, and offering ‘ideas’ for making them look more readable or exciting.

Of course, it’s worth saying that AI assistants aren’t currently flawless when it comes to advising users on improvements to their work, but given the significance of getting large-scale presentations right first time, sometimes that extra pair of digital eyes can make all the difference between harnessing a captivated audience instead of a room full of clock-watchers.

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