Powerpoint Developer Dead At 76

Dennis Austin, who was a key software developer of Powerpoint, one of the most widely used programs of our time, passed away on September 1st at age 76.

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Dennis Austin was born on May 28, 1947, in Pittsburgh. Before developing Powerpoint, Dennis attended the University of Virginia, and did graduate work at Arizona State University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of California at Santa Barbara. In other words, he was a pretty smart guy.

After working for several big-name computer and engineering companies, Dennis was hired on by Forethought.

Powerpoint Developer, Dennis Austin, Dies At 76

As reported by the Washington Post, Dennis Austin set out to ‘create presentations- not slides,’ with his team at Forethought. One of the people on that team was Robert Gaskin who shared: “Dennis came up with at least half of the major design ideas,” adding that Dennis was: “completely responsible for the fluid performance and the polished finish of the implementation.”

Gaskin explained later that, if it were not for Dennis, no one may have ever heard of Powerpoint. It was Dennis who simplified the user experience and perfected the software.

Early on, Forethought had named the software “Presenter,” and were planning to team up with Macintosh computers. However, Microsoft bought Forethought for $14 million, and went with the name Powerpoint.

Now Powerpoint is reportedly used to make 30 million presentations a day. Many companies dislike Powerpoint for various reasons, but Dennis took all the criticism with a grain of salt.

Sadly, on September 1st, 2023, Dennis Austin passed away due to lung cancer that spread to his brain while at his Los Altos home in California.

Read More: Legendary Marvel Screenwriter Dead At 44

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