It is ironic that a network visual "portraying the complexity of American military strategy" in Afghanistan, appearing on the front page of the NY Times on-line today is used to bemoan the use of PowerPoint. We have met the enemy, and he is PowerPoint.
If anyone ever wanted to use PP to visualize and make a point, the relationships in a network are it. The military has been a strong proponent of understanding and using network analysis by elucidating in The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual with 35 plus pages in the appendix.
Sure "death by PP" (read Edward Tufte) can all too often be the case, but the point was missed by using the network map. Dismissing what is not familiar, not linear and complex - network mapping, will only keep too many people from accessing an understanding of how so much of what takes place in the world today is interconnected beyond imagination.
Verna Alee's group, Valuenetworks might easily have produced the military strategy map with their approach used by countless organizations to understand the dynamic relationships among people and value flows.
The more we encourage people to pay attention to visualizing systems, connections, patterns, and relationships - networks, the faster we will be able to move from the real death by PowerPoint, disconnected endless text.~ Victoria G. Axelrod