Producer for PowerPoint
Producer for PowerPoint from Microsoft has been around for a number of years. It's a stand-alone tool that gives you extra presentation options for your PowerPoint slide shows. You can download Producer for PowerPoint for free. You will need to complete your PowerPoint presentation before importing it into Producer for PowerPoint, because the tool has no features for working with a PowerPoint slide show as such.
To use it, run Producer for PowerPoint and import the slides from your completed PowerPoint presentation. You can then also import other files such as videos, still images and audio and arrange them into a multi-panel presentation. Using Producer for PowerPoint you can, for example, play the slide show in one panel and alongside it play a video of you or someone else speaking about the slides.
Producer for PowerPoint is particularly useful for presentations you want played when you aren't there. The viewer can see not only the slides but also your face as you speak -- much as they would if you were making the presentation face-to-face.
Closed-caption Videos in PowerPoint
Figure 4: Use STAMP to add closed-captioning to videos and audio tracks in your PowerPoint presentation.
You can make your PowerPoint presentations more accessible by using STAMP (Subtitling Text Add-in for Microsoft PowerPoint) to add subtitles or closed captions to the videos and audio streams in your PowerPoint presentations. You can download STAMP for free and, once installed, the add-in appears on the Video and Audio tabs in PowerPoint when you have a media file selected. You can either create the captions using STAMP from within PowerPoint 2010, or you can use it to import an existing caption file.
There are plenty of places that you can find and download PowerPoint templates on the web. The Microsoft Office website is a good source of PowerPoint templates. Visit the site and click PowerPoint to view the range of templates including some with bold designs and other textured ones. Click on any template to view it in more detail.
Figure 5: Microsoft Office website offers a good range of free PowerPoint templates.
A 5-star rating system gives you a good sense of what other people think about the quality of a particular template. When you find one you like, click Download to send it direct into PowerPoint.
Another site I like is PowerPointStyles. Here you can search for presentation templates by color, style and theme. When you find a presentation you like, click on it to download it. It will download as a PPT file that you can then open in PowerPoint. You may need to enable editing for the template. When you do, save it to disk so you can access it any time in the future.
If you're making PowerPoint presentations on a regular basis, then these tools will be a valuable addition to your PowerPoint toolkit.
Helen Bradley is a respected international journalist writing regularly for small business and computer publications in the USA, Canada, South Africa, UK and Australia. You can learn more about her at her website, HelenBradley.com.
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