Please, somebody make me Flickr for Powerpoints?

One of the things about working for a large organization is the incredible amount of Powerpoint that will amass throughout the company. I have gigabytes of .ppt:s in my hard drives; some of them still useful, some of them not. There are lots of search tools which peek into these and allow me to find decks that I remember seeing, but what I would really, really like to have is some sort of a way to collect all the corporate powerpoints lying around in the intranet under something else than a search engine. After all, copy-paste of useful slides is a common practice in the corporate world: you don't have to worry about copyright, since by default all slides you and everyone else did belong to the corporation. (Attribution is of course good to do; else you might piss off people.)

Finding information from an company intranet is usually quite a problem. The search engine trickery learned with Google does not necessarily work, since intranets tend to be strongly hierarchical and managed, and you can't rely on the usual "if it's linked to often, it's more important" -thang as much as you can in the internet. The content also tends to be a mix of HTML, Powerpoint and Word, which do not lend easily to free-form hyperlinking. Powerpoints can be notoriously difficult to find any context in, especially if you prefer the Steve Jobs one-word-per-slide-but-plenty-of-pictures -method, so the search engines cannot index them properly.

One such other media which is difficult to index are pictures. However, Flickr shows that even from this chaos you can get some sort of order. JC Hertz has found use for Flickr to store US Army satellite images.

Why wouldn't it work for Powerpoint and associated Office files as well? Having a central repository that you can just dump your powerpoints for someone else to find some use in, or at least keep your own slides organized through tags and sets, might be a nice little productivity increaser. Or just result in more powerpoint, who knows... I've personally started to prefer Word documents these days; the clipped, terse bullets of PPT tend to simplify and trivialise things too much.

(Free idea, now go and make something. And come back to me whenever you have it running. If you do good, I'll buy it... :)

(Credits to Stephen and Charlie and ~ChrisH for the idea.)


Ooooh Charlie stole my idea! This is one of my rants that I really should have just written up; instead I thought I should show it inside the company. It's a seriously good idea though.

--ChrisH, 24-Jan-2006

appy-polly-logies, chris. i had no interest to be labeled as the origin, but don't mind being characterized a catalyst.

but, i'd like to add one thing - it's the tags that are key and the separation of each slide.

--charlie, 24-Jan-2006

I added Chris as a contributor. :)

I figured I could use the ~LazyWeb approach to this; it's got far better chances of actually happening...

--JanneJalkanen, 24-Jan-2006

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"Main_blogentry_240106_3" last changed on 24-Jan-2006 16:19:08 EET by JanneJalkanen.