Haiku Deck

Have just been looking at Jeroen Hendrick’s blog mediaatelier. Jeroen is one of the Taccle team but also has his own website and there are some great posts on there. It’s in Dutch but it took me about ten minutes to run his category list through Google translate, click on a category I fancied, find a post with an interesting video then Google translate the text, tidy up the worst bits of the translation and try out the software.  Why not give it a go?

So thanks Jeroen for this post!

Presentations in a new, sleek jacket : Haiku Deck
The phrase ” Death by PowerPoint” has long been commonplace and there are few software applications that are so often received with ostentatious sighing and yawning . If you want to know what opponents find so terrible, then take a look at the video of comedian Don McMillan (in English) .

Proponents argue that the accusations are unjust. According to them, you cannot blame PowerPoint for people’s improper use . They have a point, but that does not mean that the learning curve of PowerPoint developers has been rapid (especially if you want to make something beautiful ) and the application is not suitable for mobile learning . It also remains a commercial product .

This explains why new presentation tools appear regularly and many other products like Haiku Deck have filled this gap in the market. Prezi is now the best-known alternative and has undoubtedly some strengths but not the simplicity that we are looking for in this post . Thus we come to Haiku Deck .

The templates , themes, filters and simple text interface of Haiku Deck enable anyone to create a professional looking presentation within a quarter of an hour.  In order to ensure sufficient variety, Haiku Deck gives you direct access to over 3.5 million photos with a Creative Commons licence . You can also upload your own photos. An example of a presentation can be found here .


You can share presentations via social media , embedded on your website or downloaded as a pdf.  Moreover, the application is written in HTML5 which means that the presentations work well on mobile devices .  Incidentally, the original Haiku Deck was just an iPad app , the web version which we are discussing here, is only a few weeks old .  Versions for Android and Windows will be coming.

As always, in keeping it simple there are constraints.  So you can not directly add audio and video to your presentation. Bullets and numbered lists are possible but a maximum of 5 per slide ( but maybe that’s good ? ). It is not so simple to add charts outside the template . Another downside – Haiku Deck needs your students to have an account, although e- mail address and password are sufficient to register .

But if you or your students are looking for an easy to use , powerful application to support a presentation or speech , then this is a must . It works fast , makes visually appealing slides and it stops you using excessive bullet points . For more ideas you can take a look at the educational Pinterest boards Haiku Deck .

Does this mean that the days of PowerPoint are over?  Not really, but we must learn to use the program effectively. Or, as the columnist of The Guardian half-jokingly remarked about the Prism scandal :

“The shock of the NSA revelations is less in the content of their slides than in quite how badly they have been designed.”

PS When I looked at the example presentation Jeroen had used I found it was created by Catherine Carr.  Quite a shock because Catherine and I used to work together and were close friends – we shared an office for many years!  She was a great teacher and teacher trainer and was showing teachers how to use IT before I could switch a computer on…

This post is also available in: Dutch


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