nWhat do you get when you combine the elegance of haiku with the addictiveness of sudoku? A brand new Asian import that is sweeping the corporate world known as Pecha Kucha. Tired of really bad PowerPoint presentations, two architects in Tokyo created a new PowerPoint format defined as 20 slides, displayed for 20 seconds each, for a total presentation time of 6 minutes, 40 seconds. As Seth Godin points out: “If you are really and truly having a meeting to discuss something, thennthe Pecha Kucha approach is brilliant.” Or, as Dan Pink suggests in Wired magazine, Get to the PowerPoint in 20 Slides Then Sit the Hell Down:
“Let us now bullet-point our praise for Mark Dythamnand Astrid Klein, two Tokyo-based architects who have turnednPowerPoint, that fixture of cubicle life, into both art form andncompetitive sport. Their innovation, dubbed pecha-kucha (Japanese forn”chatter”), applies a simple set of rules to presentations: exactly 20nslides displayed for 20 seconds each. That’s it. Say what you need tonsay in six minutes and 40 seconds of exquisitely matched words andnimages and then sit the hell down. The result, in the hands of mastersnof the form, combines business meeting and poetry slam to transformncorporate cliché into surprisingly compelling beat-the-clocknperformance art.”
Anyway, the first presentations were such a hit that Dytham and Klein began hostingnmonthly pecha-kucha events for hundreds of Tokyo-based architects andndesigners. Now there are pecha kucha nights in 80 cities all over the world.
ASIDE: According to Wikipedia, Pecha Kucha is pronounced as “peh-chak-cha,” which in Japanese loosely translates to “the sound of conversation.”