A senior faculty member offered me a set of power points for a class I'm not even teaching (for reasons explained below). Out of politeness/acceptance of rank, I thanked him and relieved him of the disc. Out of curiosity, I thought I'd look them over.
While looking them over, I had thoughts like "How do people delude themselves into thinking that if they put something on power point, they've worked hard and/or have something of value to bring into class/the department?" (this part takes a small turn near the end). There are 10's of MB of power point presentations and each is worse than the next. Each slide is full. Of WORDS. There are a few scant visual aides. One thing PPT is good for is things you can't draw on the board in an efficient or effective fashion. PPT was not used in this collection to solve such issues. There are slides that use five fonts in four colors with six or so special effects and various sizes. The fonts and sizes change from slide to slide. The system of designating hierarchy changes from slide to slide. At its best points, it's useless, for the most part, it's damagingly confusing.
Part of a faculty meeting was dedicated to praising the old man for making these available for anyone else teaching this course, or for anyone teaching another course who wants some ideas on how they can keep their course content "fresh". Because something an old man saves on his computer and uses semester after semester after semester is the new definition of "fresh". Here's the final kick... the old man didn't make them up. The company that published the textbook made them up. The PROFESSION of Educational Publishing put this slop together. (I need to hit the coffee pot before the next meeting because obviously I missed that part). I thought these were bad enough when an "amateur" made them up. But this is inexcusable.
Then I had to see what was on the discs and files I'd gotten from publishers with textbooks and proposed textbooks. It's all like this. It's all trash. There was one exception. One astronomy text came with useful visual aides. The seven other discs I pulled out of my trunk from texts I reviewed for use, but didn't use, were garbage. When I go back to my office I'll look at the stuff that came with the books I've chosen. (Am I the only one who doesn't look at this stuff when they get the book? Maybe that's bad, I'll admit that.) They are ENCOURAGING professors to suck. Is it a conspiracy? If they make enough of us worthless, are they going to take over the world with online education? WTF?