I was reading through issue 33 of the MacStories newsletter (to which I'm a paid subscriber) and I spotted an interesting request from one of the readers to do with efficiently creating presentations to have multiple outputs for a small variety of uses. The reader was hoping to find a way to maintain multiple versions automatically when updating source material. The MacStories team called out to other readers for suggestions on addressing this. In this post I'm going to outline my approach to the issue.
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Entries in PowerPoint (9)
Happy new year everyone. We've passed another year's end so once again it's time to take a look back at what's been most popular on thoughtasylum.com in the past twelve months and what's I've been up to.
If you work with computer aided presentations on Windows, then you probably know PowerPoint has options to show blank screens. Pressing "B" will give you a black screen and "W" will give you a white screen. These are useful options when you want to focus people's attention on what you're saying and away from any slides you might have up. For example if you need to discuss a point for which you don't have a slide or if you want to tease something.
But have you ever considered situations where you are doing something other than a presentation application aided presentation? For example an application demonstration, working though a document, etc. Wouldn't it be great if you could blank your screen on these occasions too? Or maybe you want to blank the screen with a different colour. Well that's what I wanted to be able to do so I put together something to do it.
For some time now there have been techniques around for having a set of slides that loop at the start of your PowerPoint presentation. These generally involve hiding your main presentation slides, adding an invisible button to each of the visible slides (that allows you to jump to your first hidden slide), setting those slides to auto advance and then setting your presentation to loop continuously. But what if you want to add more loops and/or want to control everything from a presentation remote?
Last year I was working on a webinar where we wanted to have a couple of looped sets of slides and I needed an alternative - ideally one that didn't involve having to break out and run a separate presentation. Fortunately it wasn't too hard to come up with a solution.
PowerPoint is a term used to strike fear into the hearts of office workers the world over, but much like a firearm it is more about whose hands it is in that makes the difference. I may not be a PowerPoint guru, but on many occasions over the years I've found myself needing to wrestle with its functions and features to produce the effect I (or more frequently someone else) want(s). One effect that keeps cropping up is that of a jigsaw. The analogy of the complete picture and how pieces fit together (or are missing) lends itself well to many aspects of business and life in general. Since it has been such a popular request I thought I'd share some techniques and some templates that I use to produce jigsaws in PowerPoint.
Many people who have to give presentations ask that questions be saved until the end. This lets them maintain the flow of the presentation and gives a nice interactive way to round off the session. This approach then mean that in order to reference back to a slide the presenter then has to page back and forth through the presentation. This is mentally cumbersome for the presenter to remember where in the slide deck the relevant slide is. For presentations with a large number of slides this can also be time consuming. But there is a better way....
Some time ago I came upon an add-on for Microsoft PowerPoint that allowed me to do some really nifty transitions that made presentations just that little bit different. Based on a canvas layout of the slide deck, the add-in allows you to create pan and zoom effects between groups and individual slides. But what use is it if you just have one slide? Well for me it can be really useful.
Prior to Microsoft Office 2007 (MSO2007), office provided a quick and simple way to find out just how big your file was. This was done by selecting the properties option from the file menu which then displayed the same file properties dialog box that you could select from the file in Windows Explorer.
In MSO2007 the information is still available, but has been annoyingly 'hidden' somewhat deeper in the application. In fact it is so awkwardly hidden that I know many people have not come across how to access it ... so I thought I'd share.
Every presentation these days involves Microsoft PowerPoint. After a while no matter how much multimedia you add to it, your presentation can still look a bit dull and boring. In order to make your next presentation a bit different why not try pptPlex - a PowerPoint plugin that rebuilds a set of slides into a single 'zoomable canvas'.