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Deliver presentations better with pptPlex
Applies to: Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007
By Nancy Buchanan, for Office at Work
In this article
Define and demo pptPlex Create a virtual canvas Organize slides into sections Customize the canvas Deliver your presentation Guess what happens next
Get pptPlex here Everyone wants their presentations to stand out, and I’m no exception. That’s why I have become a big fan of a new plug-in for Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 from Microsoft Office Labs called pptPlex. Office Labs is a group within Microsoft developing working prototypes, and pptPlex is one of the early examples of their work. pptPlex adds functionality to PowerPoint 2007 allowing you to deliver slides from a virtual canvas instead of oneafter-the-other. Imagine that you were going over a presentation with a colleague and had all of your slides printed out and spread on a large table. With all of the slides visible at once you could easily pick up a slide so you could discuss its points, then put it down and grab another, or even hold 2 slides side-by-side so you could easily compare them. pptPlex gives PowerPoint this flexibility; you can move to and from slides easily with transitions so smooth that you can jump all over your presentation without ever getting lost. Learn more about pptPlex in this article, including where to get it and how I created a presentation about the planets in the solar system using it. Top of Page
Define and demo pptPlex
Bill Gates used Plex technology at the CEO Summit in May of 2008 on a huge touch screen computer. I’m not a CEO so wasn’t there in person, but have viewed the keynote online and can honestly say that with the exception of the huge touch screen, I was able to produce a very similar presentation with the same bells and whistles. You can too if you download the free pptPlex add-on, which was created by the same team that created the Plex technology used in Bill Gates’ presentation, but was modified for PowerPoint and is available for you to try out. After you install pptPlex it adds a new tab to the Office ribbon.
aspx http://office.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033.Office at home .microsoft. Original page: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 .Microsoft Office Online Page 2 of 7 The pptPlex tab on the Office ribbon.Deliver presentations better with pptPlex .
I return to the solar system map to point out a planet’s location and then double-click to go directly to slides about a particular planet.microsoft.Microsoft Office Online Page 3 of 7 The presentation I created delivers a map of the solar system and has 2 slides for each of the 8 planets.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 . View this short video of the actual presentation of the slides to see what I mean. Watch this http://office.Deliver presentations better with pptPlex . In a traditional PowerPoint presentation I would show the solar system map and then talk about each planet in succession.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033. the map of the solar system is the launch pad (no pun intended) for each of the slides. But with pptPlex.Office at home .
microsoft.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033. Zooming. Focusing in on content has never been easier.Microsoft Office Online Page 4 of 7 Problems watching the video? Try our troubleshooting tips. Next let me give you an overview of how I created my presentation about the solar system using pptPlex. There are 3 striking features that pptPlex brought to my presentation: 1.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 . 2. 3. to the viewer your presentation ends up looking like an application and not a traditional PowerPoint presentation. Swiping. pptPlex adds the ability to swipe an area with your mouse to change focus to a different slide or area of a slide. and it feels just as cool as the new cell phone touch screens (but with a mouse). Top of Page Create a virtual canvas The canvas is a PowerPoint slide that launches the slides in your presentation. The canvas in my finished presentation http://office. Although the areas you click on are supporting slides. I have a new cell phone with a touch screen that allows me to swipe my finger left or right to spin a menu of options left or right.Office at home . Launching. You can zoom in and out of the canvas and individual slides with just double-clicks (zoom in) and right-clicks (zoom out).Deliver presentations better with pptPlex . You launch slides from a virtual canvas.
com/en-us/home/HA103378451033.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 . http://office.Microsoft Office Online Page 5 of 7 Because I knew that pptPlex would place a section title and a small thumbnail images of each slide set for each planet. My solar system map with no labels to be used for the pptPlex canvas.Office at home .microsoft.wmf) graphic that just had the solar system map (with no labels) . I created a Windows Metafile (.Deliver presentations better with pptPlex .
so I created 8 pptPlex Section Dividers: 1 for each planet. NOTE While technically you can use graphic files like jpeg images. or even insert Microsoft clip art (not pictures.Office at home . For example. Then I saved that slide as a Windows Metafile. the results are not great for zooming. For my presentation I wanted to have a title next to each planet. but clip art) you will get good results even when you zoom in on an item. in an early draft I used pictures of the planets on the solar system map instead of round balls created with PowerPoint drawing tools.Microsoft Office Online Page 6 of 7 I created this file in PowerPoint 2007 by using a design background and the standard drawing tools. Section Dividers titles become titles on the canvas. http://office. If you create vector graphics with a program like PowerPoint or Microsoft Office Visio.Deliver presentations better with pptPlex . and slides become clickable thumbnail images.microsoft. When zooming in the pictures looked really grainy. Top of Page Organize slides into sections pptPlex attaches section titles and thumbnail images of the slides in each section to the canvas.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 .
and each slide in the section becomes a clickable thumbnail image. and type Escape to exit the slide show. the pptPlex Section Divider labeled “Mars” becomes the “Mars” title on the solar system map.aspx?mode=print 3/5/2010 . This puts your image behind the section placeholders. Right-click the image and then choose Send to Back. Insert your canvas Windows Metafile by clicking Picture on the Insert menu.Deliver presentations better with pptPlex . NOTE The first time your presentation runs it will take a few seconds longer than subsequent plays because the presentation is being published.microsoft. Resize the boxes so that they do not overlap. Double-click to zoom in. Just click From Overview on the pptPlex tab. Be sure to rearrange the slides so that the pptPlex Section Divider comes before the slides in that section. Here is how: Click and drag the section divider placeholders to the desired position. zooming. All rights reserved. The presentation slide show opens to the canvas you set up. Top of Page © 2010 Microsoft Corporation. Add a pptPlex Section Divider to your presentation by clicking Insert New Section on the pptPlex tab. Top of Page Deliver your presentation Now that you have your canvas. click Custom Advanced on the Canvas Background option.com/en-us/home/HA103378451033. pptPlex created a section divider placeholder for each planet. http://office.Microsoft Office Online Page 7 of 7 In the illustration above.Office at home . While the pptPlex plug-in is available from Microsoft Office Labs I would encourage you to go ahead and start using it yourself to deliver exceptional presentations with attention-getting launching. and swiping. other than the feedback for it has been very positive. right-click to zoom out. Top of Page Guess what happens next No one is saying what will happen next with pptPlex. Just click a section divider placeholder and then drag a corner to resize it. pptPlex Section Dividers. Because I had a section for each planet. Top of Page Customize the canvas Now that my blank canvas graphic was ready to use and I had my slides and the pptPlex Section Dividers created I could customize the canvas. and slides set up you can publish your presentation. On the pptPlex tab. I just clicked and dragged the placeholder to be next to the appropriate planet.
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