Brendan Busch, the Group Program Manager for the PowerPoint and Office graphics group (my group) started up a blog. His first post is a nice overview of our focus areas for PowerPoint "12".
Office and PowerPoint have become almost universally known for ugly, dated graphics. How many times have you seen that rainbow WordArt in some sleazy restaurant?
One of the reasons I've been psyched about PowerPoint "12" ever since we started work on it in mid-2003 is the breathtaking visuals. Just scan through the visuals in Brendan's post above and you can see what a dramatic improvement that is. Though stuff like this has been possible in Photoshop and other products, Our goal in Office to make it easy for anyone to make stuff like this without much hassle.
It's likely in 5 years everyone will be ragging on these new visuals, but in the meantime, they look awesome and it's a huge improvement over previous versions of Office.