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PowerPoint Co-Creator Dennis Austin Dead at 76

Dennis Austin, the PowerPoint pioneer, dies at 76 in California home.

In a statement to the Washington Post, his son Michael Austin stated that the cause of Dennis Austin death was lung cancer that had spread to his brain.

Austin began his path to becoming a software pioneer by studying engineering at esteemed universities like MIT and UC Santa Barbara. When he joined Forethought as a software developer, he began playing a crucial part in the creation of PowerPoint.

Microsoft, a leading provider of technology, took notice of PowerPoint when it debuted in 1987 and bought Forethought for a sizable $14 million. Dennis Austin was PowerPoint key developer from 1985 to 1996, greatly enhancing its success.

PowerPoint’s revenue rocketed beyond $100 million in 1993, solidifying its position as the undisputed leader in the software sector. PowerPoint’s popularity increased as a result of Microsoft’s smooth integration of it into its lineup of Office applications.

According to his unpublished narrative of its development, Austin’s concept for PowerPoint was based on user accessibility and simplicity. He emphasized the value of a “direct-manipulation interface,” which made sure that the editing process reflected the finished display. His objective was to enable people to produce presentations rather than merely slides.

Dennis Austin played a key part in improving PowerPoint’s user-friendly interface by closely working with Robert Gaskins.

Austin made a significant contribution, which Gaskins acknowledged, noting that “Dennis came up with at least half of the major design ideas” and attributing to him the software’s remarkable performance and flawless finish. Gaskins continued by saying that if Austin hadn’t been involved, PowerPoint might not have become well known.

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