Sunday, April 1, 2012

What can we learn about public speaking from a cartoon about Easter candy?

We can see from this March 28th xkcd cartoon (click to enlarge it) that comparing something unfamiliar (invisible sugar dissolved in a container of soda) with something currently on our minds (Cadbury Easter eggs) makes it real to our audience. However, not everyone may view that comparison the way we intended. Other comparisons showing a stack of sugar cubes in front of a container are less effective.

Daily calories from that dissolved sugar add up to produce weight gain. Last August the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) posted an article suggesting you Rethink Your Drink that also showed there are lots of calories in liquids like fruit juces, coffee drinks, and sweetened iced tea.

I really enjoy Randall Munroe’s xkcd cartoons. Some other recent examples are So it has come to this, Error code 41, Plastic bags, and Drinking fountains. Sometimes he has amazing graphics, like for Money and Movie narrative charts.

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