I think the physical sciences might be a little different. I am in social sciences and have done the same kind of statistical study I have found that the pre-published slides depends more on the individual student. Yes, some students use them as a crutch and don't study as hard. I also tracked when the students download the lecture slides. The students that download them the night before class or earlier had the best scores. The students who downloaded right before class or later usually had lesser scores. The students who never downloaded the slides usually had the lowest scores. Of course, there are always outliers but I think this pattern shows that it is how the student chooses to use the slides. I tell my students this information on the first day of class and I include it as a note in the syllabus. I will also say that it seems statistically significant that a grandparent is more likely to die around the time of an exam than at any other time of the year.
Students do have to take responsibility for doing their work. My best students are the ones who like to have the information early. I like to give them what the want. I tell all my students to not wait until the last minute if they want to do well in my classes. I answers their emails quickly and am even available to chat online outside of office hours at times. One of the keys to using technology is to use it correctly. PowerPoint has one of the biggest upsides when used right and one of the biggest downsides when used wrong. I will admit that I have seen far more bad PowerPoint presentations than good ones. Every instructor should have a class on making good PowerPoint lectures. It is really just a supplement to class learning. If a student tries to go on only those, they will not do well.