Don’t Be So Square Eyed!


When was the last time you bought one of those ‘square shape’ TVs? Back in the 90’s?

The RCN's International Nursing Research Conference at EICC, Edinburgh. Over 300 presentations in 3 days!

The RCN’s International Nursing Research Conference at EICC, Edinburgh. Over 300 presentations in 3 days!

I’ve just returned from a conference where we handled over 300 presentations in 3 days. Making sure everyone’s PowerPoint is glitch free and in the right place at the right time is a larger task than you may think. Especially with embedded videos, sound clips and media links. But I digress…

The point I’m coming to is that the fast majority of presentations were still in the old fashioned squarer shape and style – or 4:3 aspect ratio to give it its proper name. Only a select bunch of people seem to have embraced widescreen PowerPoint slides – 16:9 aspect ratio –  when they probably bought their first widescreen TV twenty years ago!

There were many reasons TV made the radical change to widescreen (16:9). One of the main reasons being that it’s just more comfortable for your eyes to look at, so why has there’s been such a slow uptake to design slides in 16:9 is beyond me.

At R&B Group we’ve been delivering presentations in 16:9 for quite some years. Our projectors are ‘native’ for this shape, we have an array of different size screens in 16:9 and I can’t remember the last time we produced a video in the vintage 4:3 ratio.

In their latest release of PowerPoint, Microsoft now ‘defaults’ their slide design templates to 16:9 when launching the programme, which I think will help take up of this more contemporary shape.

But I write this as a call to arms, a one man campaign to aspect ratio modernisation! It’s time to ditch those 4:3 slides, once and for all! All those legacy presentations you’ve been using for the last 10 years need an update. Convert them to widescreen! It’s easier than you think! If you like, our graphics folks can even design a new template for you!

So come on! Get with the programme, Grandad/Grandma! It’s not hip to be square!