Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays

Wishing PowerPoint Info readers all the joy of the Holidays - filled with love, fun and blessed by peace.

Friday, December 2, 2011

How to embed, record, insert, edit audio in PowerPoint?

We all love and admire presentations jazzed up  with multimedia elements. Who would not love a custom PowerPoint greeting having audio message from someone you love or a PowerPoint photo album with right blend of sound and music?

Even a business presentation can have long lasting effect with right kind of music or sound appearing at right point.  However, many of us find it difficult when it comes to adding music, sound or record our own voice. PowerPoint has different ways and properties to handle audio files. Let us discuss them one by one. 

Recording your own voice in a PowerPoint slideshow (Narrations)
If you just want to record audio on one slide or when audio sync is not that important with animations or slides  this can be a good option:
  • Click on insert tab on PowerPoint 2010 ribbon and then click on audio drop down.
  •  Select "Record Audio" option. A dialog box with option to record will appear
  • Click record button to record audio. Recored audio will get embedded on current active slide
If you want to record narrations in 2010 synced with animations and slides (in slideshow mode): This video tutorial will help you understand the steps involved in recording narration:

Record narrations in 2007

Insert music
Inserting music or audio file in PowerPoint is quite easy.
  • Click on insert tab on PowerPoint 2010 ribbon and then click on audio drop down
  • Select "Insert from file"
  • Select the audio file from you system and click insert to add it to slide
  • You can set different properties for this audio file by double clicking the sound icon 
  • Click on playback tab and set the options as desired

Play across slides and loop small audio until last slide

If you want to play some music or sound continuously when slideshow is in progress, you can set the audio property to loop until last to play it across slides.

Edit audio inserted in slide
Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 lets you trim the audio files inserted so that you can set the start and end time for a audio file which is quite long and just a smart portion of it make sense for your audience:

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Google adds animations and transitions to presentations

Google today released an upgraded version of Google presentations. Google presentations now support most of the basic animation effects like fly, appear, zoom, spin  in addition to slide transitions. With this release Google has narrowed down the feature gap between Google presentations and other online or desktop presentation applications.

What's new in Google presentations?
Google has added more than 50 new features including real-time collaboration:
  • Transitions to move between slides with simple fades or spicier 3D effects
  • Animations to add emphasis or to make your slides more playful
  • New themes to create beautiful presentations with distinct visual styles
  • Drawings to build new designs, layouts, and flowcharts within a presentation
  • Rich tables with merged cells and more options for adding style to your data
Google presentations are now as good as Microsoft PowerPoint 
Since most of the people use just the basic animation effects like fly,appear, disappear this release will certainly eat the market share of other online presentation creation tools and my be PowerPoint too. Google presentations now has a option to download the presentations as PPTX. A presentation created with Google presentation work just fine in Microsoft PowerPoint along with animation effects.

The day, Google adds option to add audio and record narrations, the competition for Microsoft PowerPoint will really be tough considering the free versus paid scenario.

How to enable new presentation features?
Most probably you will see an alert to enable new presentation on Google docs home page but if you don't see that, you can enable it from Documents and settings.
  • Click the setting icon(Gear icon on top right). 
  • Select "Documents and Settings".
  • Click Editing tab.
  • Tic the check-box "Create new presentations using the latest version of the presentation editor" and save.
Newly added features will only work for new presentations you create.

A presentation created with Google presentations

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

PowerPoint presentations with animations on iPad with SlideShark app

Online presentation company Brainshark, Inc., today announced SlideShark app (, available for free in Apple’s App Store. Probably this is the first app available from any presentation sharing platform that can replicate all animations, fonts, graphics (etc.) used in your PowerPoint slides on iPad. Recently presentation and document  sharing platform SlideShare too released HTML5 version of their website along with a new mobile website targeted for iPad and other tablet users but that's mere a slide by slide drag of static images. 

Since most of you know that Apple iPad doesn't support flash and the only way to get the flash content is via AIR app, SlideShark will go a long way. Now, with Brainshark’s free SlideShark app, users can:

  • Preserve animations, fonts, graphics and colors in their presentations
  • Swipe or tap to advance animations and slides
  • Project their slides from an iPad 2 by connecting to a TV or VGA projector
  • Download presentations and play them locally – no Internet connection required

Some of the features which are not supported by this app are  hyperlinks on slides, embedded videos or animated gifs, slide transitions, triggers, and 3rd party components. There are also some advanced animations that may not be supported.

Here is how you can convert and view presentations on iPad with animations and other effects:

  1. Upload your PowerPoint files to your account at
  2. The files will automatically get converted to an iPad-optimized viewing format
  3. Using the SlideShark app, download and view your presentations on your iPad or project them on TV or projector.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Add special effects to your videos in PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 offers great deal of features related to images and videos which were otherwise available only in adobe Photoshop or Adobe premium. You can edit the videos and define the start and end of the video file, recolor the video, add special effects, give a shape to video and can set triggers on video timeline.

Recolor a Video inserted in slide
Just like an image, videos inserted in PowerPoint slides can have different shapes, color and effects. By using these advance effects you can show the video in oval shape or can apply a transparent green layer, set the video border to be grey and much more. See video below to learn more about recoloring a video:

A recolored video:

Add special effects to videos inserted
Effects like shadow, relection, glow can also be applied to videos inserted. Just double click the video and select the desired effect from the video tools under video effects drop down.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

SlideShare on HTML5: more devices, more views for your presentations

Presentation sharing platform SlideShare is now using HTML5 tags to deliver the content. SlideShare presentations on  HTML5  will now work on any device; be it any iOS (iPad,iPhone) Andriod or any other device which does/doesn't support Flash. As per SlideShare, presentations will now load 30% faster as compared to flash version. All this should result in more and more views for your presentations on SlideShare.

Slideshare is html5 now
View more presentations from Amit Ranjan

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Record and share synchronized presentations online with is another product which lets you create synchronized multimedia presentations and share it online. Using you can create presentations with audio/video of presenter playing along with slides. There are already products like Articulate Presenter, authorPOINT from authorSTREAM and Microsoft Producer which lets you record and share synchronized presentations.

The major difference between and other products is that lets you do all the recording, synchronization and editing online on website. The whole process from uploading the PowerPoint presentation, recording, synchronizing the video or audio to sharing is quite simple.

Few shortcomings:
  • You can't synchronize pre-recorded audio or video with PowerPoint slides
  • You can't download the output and share it via DVD
  • Maximum 90 minute limit to recording even in paid account which costs $100 /month

    Though the idea of creating synchronized presentations online is superb, yet  it seems to bit costly as far as monthly subscription is concerned. You can get life time access of Articulate Presenter for $699 or authorPOINT for just $299 with an option of $99 for education use. should also come up with pay as you go payment model say $3 per such  recording.

    By and large authorSTREAM + authorPOINT seems to be a better option since it allows you to create synchronized presentations with live or pre-recorded media both and also lets you share the synchronized  output via DVD, email or through You should give a try to and decide yourself depending upon your own user experience.

    Thursday, August 25, 2011

    Convert PowerPoint presentations to video

    Converting your PowerPoint presentation to video format will add wings to your content. Not only you would be able to share your presentations online but also on the devices which have no PowerPoint software to play slideshows (TV).

    PowerPoint presentation along with audio and animation effects can easily be converted in video formats like WMV, AVI, FLV, MP4 with the tools available in the market. The video version of slideshow is almost similar to the slideshow mode of the presentation.

    Why convert PPT to video?

    Converting PowerPoint presentations in video has numerous benefits
    • PPT to video softwares have made the task of creating those videos with photos, music and effects so easy that was once so cumbersome to be done using windows movie maker or via other means.
    • Video version of PowerPoint slideshow can be played on  devices like iPhone, iPad and any of those  which can play video but not the presentation.
    • Video of a PowerPoint presentation will get your content more audience since it can be shared on video sharing websites like YouTube or Vimeo.
    • Video of a PowerPoint presentation can be played on a TV/LCD via DVD player whereas it's not easy to play a presentation on such devices.
    •  It's not easy to temper video version of your PowerPoint slideshow
    A PowerPoint Slideshow in video format:

    How to convert PowerPoint slideshows to videos?

    There are lots of free and paid PPT to video conversion tools available in the market. Some of the PPT to video conversion softwares are available online while some are  available as desktop applications.

    Free PowerPoint to video solutions

    authorSTREAM.comOnline PowerPoint sharing platform authorSTREAM allows you to convert PowerPoint files to video formats like WMV, AVI, MP4 or FLV. You can convert PowerPoint presentations below 5 minutes duration for free but only in MP4 format. To convert your presentation in file type other than MP4 or to convert a presentation above 5 minutes duration you have spend $2 per PowerPoint to video conversion. Learn more about authorSTREAM's PowerPoint to video feature.

    BrainsharkThe on-demand presentations service and content marketplace also lets you convert PowerPoint presentations in video with  “Brainshark for YouTube”. 

    WonderSlide: WonderSlide is another online web platform to convert PowerPoint presentations to FLV, AVI, WMV or MP4 for free. Maximum file size allowed is 50 MB.

    E.M. Free PowerPoint Video Converter: It's a desktop application which lets you convert PowerPoint presentations in video formats like WMV, Ms Mpeg4 AVI, MPEG. Output in few formats might have watermark in the video output.

    Xilisoft:  You can convert PPT in video formats like WMV, MPEG2,FLV,AVI and in 800*600 resolution only for free. For more video formats or resolutions more than 800*600 you need to buy personal or business version of the software.

    Paid PowerPoint to video solutions

    Microsoft PowerPoint 2010: PowerPoint 2010 lets you convert any presentation in WMV video format.
    Wondershare PPT to video

    The list of  PowerPoint to video conversion softwares is quite long. You can search for these tools in search engine and use the one that suits your needs.

    Monday, August 8, 2011

    PowerPoint quiz: Add audio in PowerPoint slides

    Test your PowerPoint knowledge by taking this test on audio in PowerPoint slides. Quiz is based on PowerPoint 2007 and few things might not be applicable to PowerPoint 2010.

    Thursday, July 21, 2011

    Insert Vimeo, Youtube videos in PowerPoint slides with authorSTERAM Desktop 2.0

    authorSTREAM the online presentation sharing platform has released the second version of their free PowerPoint add-in called authorSTREAM Desktop. As compared to authorSTREAM Desktop 1.0 which was launched almost two years back, the latest version lets you search and insert videos from Vimeo in addition to YouTube. It also lets you search images from Flickr and Bing right from within the PowerPoint.

    Most amazing thing which authorSTREAM has done is its advance search and filters. authorSTREAM not only allows you to search images on different parameters like color, size or type but also on the basis of  licensing information. You can search creative commons stuff from Flickr and that too without leaving the PowerPoint. authorSTREAM also inserts the attribution text in the slides along with the images to help users get rid of some of the copyright worries.You can also create a collection of selected images or videos to be used later in the slides.

    authorSTREAM Desktop with the addition of more video and image search APIs should help PowerPoint users create effective presentation with just few clicks.

    Friday, July 8, 2011

    Top 5 compelling reasons to share presentations online

    In last few years more and more people have started using online presentation sharing platforms like authorSTREAM, SlideShare to share their presentations with their friends, family  and colleagues. In this rapidly changing tech era where some use MAC, some are on iPads and mobile devices and rest on desktops and laptops, it make more sense to share a presentation the way it is easily accessible to everyone on all platforms.

    Top 5 compelling reasons to share presentations via online presentation sharing platforms

    1)No bulky email attachments:   You can share presentations of size up to 1GB via authorSTREAM and 100 MB via SlideShare as compared to 10 MB limit for most of the email services.

    2)Good tools to replicate the slideshow experience online: If you are very concerned about animation effects, in-slide audio/video or narrations used in PowerPoint and that's the reason you prefer sending PowerPoint files via emails, use authorSTREAM for sharing your presentations. authorSTREAM retains most of the animation effects along with other media elements inserted in slides. authorSTREAM has also created a free PowerPoint add-in named authorSTREAM desktop which lets you search and insert YouTube videos and images in your PowerPoint slides from within the PowerPoint software.

    3)Less dependence on client software: When you share your PowerPoint presentations via email, you are not sure whether the audience have the required software to view the PowerPoint presentation you shared. Since most of the presentation sharing websites convert your presentations in flash, so no MS office/MAC office or PPT viewer required at audience end to view the presentation. No fear of compatibility issues of file format (PPT, PPTX) with presentation software installed at audience's computer.

    4)Security and control: With online presentation sharing websites you get the privilege of allowing /disallowing download of raw PowerPoint file, you get the freedom of password protection of permalinks of the presentation, you get the freedom of granting or revoking access rights at any point of time.

    5)Additional benefits: Online presentation sharing websites apart from sharing offer lot more features  like Live broadcasting, PPT to video conversion, presentation embedding options on blogs, Facebook and track stats related to the views,  popularity etc. If the presentation was meant for public viewing, your presentation get mass audience, feedback and comments which is not possible when you circulate such presentations via emails.

    Do you still share presentations via old email way? Time to grow up :)

    Thursday, June 23, 2011

    How to share presentations on LinkedIn?

    Image representing LinkedIn as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
    There are two ways to share your presentations on Linkedin; 1) Using SlideShare 2) Google Presentations. In order to share presentations either via SlideShare or Google presentations you need to install SlideShare or Google presentations application. To add a presentation  to your Linkedin profile, follow the steps below:
    1. First sign in to your Linkedin account
    2. Either go to' Edit My Profile' and add an application from there or click 'Add an
        Application' box on the right.
    3. In the Applications section, click Add an
        Application and select Google or Slideshare

    You need to have a SlideShare or Google account to use respective applications. Login to your SlideShare/Google account to link your SlideShare/Google account with your Linkedin profile.These Linkedin applications not only let you share your presentations with your connections but also let you see what people in your network are sharing, viewing and commenting.

    Google presentations Linkedin App
    Though you can upload and share a new presentation from your desktop or share an existing presentation in your Google account  yet you still have to go to Google docs to create a new presentations.

    SlideShare Linkedin App
    Slideshare app lets you share all presentations from your Linkedin account or upload and share new presentations from within LinkedinSlideShare has recently released Linkedin share button as well which means now you can share any SlideShare presentation on LinkedIn with a press of button.

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    Wednesday, June 1, 2011

    Compare two versions of a PPT file with PowerPoint 2010

    There are situations in organisations when more than one person has to work on same presentation. Company CEO or VP sales  might have to add details to their respective slides for an upcoming meeting with stakeholders. In such scenario two version of same presentation get created; one having the information added by CEO and other version having details added by VP sales. Now if you are the one who has the responsibility to create the final version out of these two PowerPoint files, it might take too much of your time to manually figure out the new information added or other changes done to different slides and chances are that you end up creating a presentation having either critical sales information missing or a major typo included which was corrected by CEO in his version of PowerPoint file.

    Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 comes in handy in such situations. PowerPoint 2010 has a nifty 'Compare and merge' feature which lets you compare two versions of same PowerPoint file and let you accept or reject the changes.

    Here are steps to compare and merge two versions of a PowerPoint file:

    1) Open the first version of PowerPoint file
    2) Click on Review tab on Ribbon
    3)Click on Compare
    4)Open the version 2 of PowerPoint file

    You will see a 'Revisions' pane on right side which will display the text changes and any slide additions done to the presentation.

    While moving across the slides, you can accept or reject text or slide changes and create a final updated presentation.

    Here is a nice video from Microsoft explaining "Compare and merge" feature:

    Thursday, May 19, 2011

    Free PowerPoint 2007 tutorials

    There are numerous free resources available for PowerPoint 2007on the internet using which not only you can learn the basics like  "How to create your first presentation?" but also the advance things like "How to use advance animation effects?".

    Here are some of the presentations which cover some of these topics and may help you in big way in the use of PowerPoint 2007.

    Also see "How to switch from 2003 to PowerPoint 2007?" and "PowerPoint 2010 free learning resources".

    Friday, April 8, 2011

    Create cool presentations with VisualBee

    VisualBee is a Microsoft PowerPoint plugin (add-in) which helps you create awesome presentations with cool graphics and stunning templates with much ease and in less time.The plugin not only lets you select style and templates for free but also smart enough to analyze the text of slides and automatically enhances it with relevant graphics. The biggest advantage is that you need not to go outside of PowerPoint software to search for pictures, templates etc.

    Once you are done with your presentation, just click the VisualBee addin in PowerPoint ribbon and click 'Enhance Presentation'. After this step, "Enhance presentation' wizard will just take few seconds to enhance your presentation. See demo below for details:

    Though visualBee takes care of most of the things a  presenter would need, yet of late audio and video has also become an integral part of the presentations. As of now, VisualBee has no video or audio library available. There is a workaround for this problem too. For image and video search you can use authorSTREAM desktop- a free add-in for PowerPoint. authorSTREAM desktop lets you search and insert images from Bing and videos from YouTube from within the PowerPoint.

    VisualBee do have a premium plan which allows users access to wide range of exclusive templates and graphics. Download VisualBee here and start creating great content.

    Tuesday, March 29, 2011

    authorSTREAM re-launches premium plans

    The presentation sharing platform, authorSTREAM has re-launched its premium plans. New plans known as Pro and Business are priced at $29.95 /Year and $299 /Year respectively.

    With this launch authorSTREAM has gone very aggressive against Slideshare. authorSTREAM is offering more features and better presentation output (authorSTREAM retains animations, sound etc)  for a price which is 80% less than that of SlideShare's.
    • authorSTREAM Pro ($2.5/month compared to SlideShare's Silver plan at $19.95/month)
    • authorSTREAM Business ($39.95/month as compared to SlideShare's Platinum plan at $249.95/month)
    authorSTREAM has done very nice job by creating a authorSTREAM Vs. SlideShare comparison page which provides full insight into the features and pricing being offered by two PowerPoint sharing giants.

    authorSTREAM Pro vs. SlideShare Silver
    Feature authorSTREAM SlideShare
    Unlimited Private uploads Yes Yes
    Analytics Yes Yes
    Webinars (Conferencing tool) Yes Yes
    Convert PPT to Video Yes --
    Download presentation as Flash Yes --
    Price $2.50/month $19/month

    authorSTREAM Business vs. SlideShare Platinum
    Feature authorSTREAM SlideShare
    Unlimited Private Uploads Yes Yes
    Presentation Analytics Yes Yes
    Branded channels Yes, (5 Channels) Yes, (1 Channel)
    Ad free Yes Yes
    Webinars (Conferencing tool) Yes Yes
    Turn off commenting and Transcript Yes Yes
    Full Branding Yes Yes
    Secure embeds (Allow on selected domains) Yes --
    Own branding in embeds Yes --
    Private sharing with selected people Yes --
    Download presentation as flash Yes --
    Unlimited PowerPoint to video Yes --
    30 day free Trial Yes --
    Price $39.95/month $249/month

    Thursday, February 17, 2011

    Presentation meeting solution from SlideShare

    Image representing SlideShare as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase
    SlideShare the presentation and document sharing platform today announced the launch of their web conferencing tool- Zipcast. It's a presentation meeting solution where you can chat, control navigation of slides and stream live video.

    Slideshare has been testing this feature for quite sometime in the form of Meet Now and has been strengthening the webinar keyword. Below are the features available to free members:
    • Personalized meeting rooms
    • Use any presentation: yours or someone else's
    • Streaming live video
    • Group chat
    • No downloads
    • Unlimited meetings & participants
    • Facebook & Twitter integration
    • Private or Public
    As a pro member you can password protect the Zipcast session or dial in a conference number. Presentation players like authorSTREAM, Zoho, Google, MightyMeeting along with others like WebEx, GoTo meeting and WiZiQ also offer similar conferencing tools. authorSTREAM's Present Live and WiZiQ's Virtual Classroom are also free to use and require no download at user end to start a web meeting. It's will be interesting to see how SlideShare makes its presence as a webinar service?

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    Thursday, January 27, 2011

    Brainshark released App for the iPhone and iPad

    Brainshark, Inc., the on-demand presentations service and content marketplace has released App for the iPhone and iPad, downloadable for free from Apple’s App Store. With this new application, Brainshark users will be able to view Brainshark presentations on iPhone and iPad. The Brainshark App provides an enhanced mobile viewing experience for users of these devices.

    “Being ‘reachable by cell phone’ while out of the office is no longer enough. Today’s information workers need to remain connected, productive and in-the-know at all times,” said Ira Weinstein, senior analyst and partner, Wainhouse Research. “The new Brainshark App for the iPhone and iPad brings the power of the Brainshark platform, and more importantly, access to their company’s library of on-demand rich media presentations, to iOS users around the world without sacrificing manageability or the user experience.”

    After installing the free app, users can take advantage of capabilities designed to optimize viewing, sharing, learning from and accessing mobile presentations:

    Enhanced Viewing – Brainshark App users can:
    ·         Use the table of contents – containing thumbnails, titles and the duration of each slide – to easily and efficiently navigate presentations. By clicking on different areas, users can skip directly to the portions of greatest interest.
    ·         Access presentation attributes, including the description, length, author information and more.
    ·         Download any attachments associated with a presentation onto their mobile device.
    Instant Sharing – Viewers can:
    ·         Click to share links to presentations via e-mail.
    ·         Post links to presentations on social media sites, including Facebook, Twitter and Delicious.
    On-the-go Learning – Users have:
    ·         Instant access to a searchable and growing library of free eLearning content, created by the myBrainshark community of subject matter experts.
    ·         The ability to browse more than 1,000 titles on a diverse set of topics relevant to businesspeople.

    To download the Brainshark App for the iPhone and iPad, visit

    Monday, January 24, 2011

    Now pay for private uploads on SlideShare

    SlideShare, world's largest presentation sharing platform which adopted fermium model with the launch of  premium pro plans couple of months back has been experimenting different things to monetize SlideShare. Latest in the list is private upload and sharing. Now one has to go pro in order to share presentations privately. Private sharing was launched by SlideShare in 2007 declaring it absolutely free. In past SlideShare experimented with Job broad as well.

    To pitch Pro accounts, SlideShare now has two different upload buttons for private and public uploads.

    authorSTREAM, SlideShare's competitor still offers 50 private uploads to free members.

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