Is PowerPoint a waste of time? plus Dragons in Bath


Wednesday 7 September 1664

..Lay long to-day, pleasantly discoursing with my wife about the dinner we are to have for the Joyces, a day or two hence…

An account of our recent guest experience follows but before that an account of a radio programme that I caught by chance while driving.

PowerPoint was developed in the 1980’s when the originators Robert Gaskins and Dennis Austin realised in the potential of creating an easy to use, intuitive system for presentation of ideas. The first version was written for Apple Macs in 1987. Microsoft bought it for $14m

BBC Radio Four is really worth a listen between 11am and 1 pm. This half hour programme was on ‘the History of PowerPoint’. His slow start was due to the fact that you had to buy a new computer to accommodate the requirements of PP but now, billions of pages are created. Although it is here to stay, there are many detractors including Jeff Bezos of Wikipedia if I recall.  They say that PP induces a passive state and that moment and status is given to facts that may not necessarily be true. The whole idea of such exposures should be to encourage dialogue whereas one experienced attendee confessed that when someone turned on a PP presentation he found himself starting to fall asleep, and too many people shuffling through their emails. My view – it is all to easy to string together some slides but the challenge is to engage the audience to think, to observe, to note inconsistencies, to see a way forward and a model which enchances passivity may not be the ideal.

To the dentist for another fitting this time of a tiny pin. It did not sit properly due to a minute amount of varnish on one of my teeth. That’s precision workmanship for you. I started the treatment in March 2016 and will probably finish in November 2017. Don’t ask the cost.

Our own guest has just departed by coach from Bath Bus Station after a five days visit. Advance £11 return vs £57.50 (GWR) by the train is a bargain indeed. National Express will take an extra 1h 30m so I guess it depends how valuable your time is whether it is worth the price difference.  It is very pleasant to have a new personality in our humble abode and I notice it provides a catalyst of topics which are not always raised but linger in the background. The guest was in a way the ideal guest. She was generous in paying her way by means of wine purchase (not asked for) and was happy to fit in with our simple food tastes. There was a good exchange of energies and everyone was ‘up’ at the end of the day so to speak. I think intimate quality meetings are the way to go. Football crowds / noisy parties do nothing for me except getting a headache and a desire to run away.

Anyway, Bath has something new to offer no matter how many times you visit it and today was no exception.

Very attractive use of artificial turf for making a paved area sittable on. They put out deck chairs in the good weather.
were worms and bugs trying to escape? Shot round the tree in the middle (above)

Sunny periods and showers they say and indeed Bath got it in spade fulls. We took refuge in Witherspoons for a delicious and well cooked Friday Fish for £8 and something including an alcoholic drink. Yum yum.

Off to the Victoria Art Gallery where there is a themed exhibition of ‘Dragons‘. The attendant said that the event had been an outstanding success with over 30,000 people since the opening.

Here follow a few of the best.

a land of the imagination
dragons are mythical creatures so you can draw what you like
benevolent dragons with a heart of gold
St George is not going to fight this dragon for some reason.
an after burner you might say
an artist hard at work – still from a video

We ventured out to a lovely bright sunny afternoon with a blue sky.

An excellent descriptor of an indoor market adjacent to the Town Hall of Bath. I have rarely seen such pictorial power. Lists of stalls do not do it for me.
the same scene above with the pigeons but with sun
a special present for myself – a sponge


I very seldom treat myself to anything apart from food. Clothes I regard as a necessary evil, present are a self indulgence (Lidl feeds my desire for must-haves, sad but true). Today however I decided to make an exception. Sea sponges are luxurious. They mould in to the contours of the face in a most gentle way. NB They can be harvested from Florida’s Gulf coast, the Bahamas, the Mediterranean Sea and the South Pacific Ocean.

Good Q and A here.

The natural sea sponge is one of the world’s simplest multi-cellular living organisms. The sponge’s scientific classification is “Porifera,” which literally means “pore-bearing,” and refers to the countless tiny openings or holes visible on all sponges. Sponges grow in all different shapes, sizes, colors, and textures.

There is no better feel than washing the face first thing in the morning. Sponges lack the abrasiveness of flannels. You are supposed to avoid the build up of calcification which can eventually tear the structure apart from within. You do this by soaking in a vinegar solution for two hours then rinsing and allowing to dry. My dad had a huge sponge but it smelled and this was probably because he did not maintain it.

An Auf Wiedersehen (good bye – groan) for £18


good buy at £18.



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