One of my readers sent me an e-mail with the following question -
"I found your blog through Google, I was wondering if you knew how to use a powerpoint download on typepad w/narration. I upload the presentation onto my blog. The powerpoint starts upon download, the slides change at the correct intervals, but the narration does not come through.
Can you help me out?"
Carla in TypePad Customer service responded to my ticket asking about the problem with the following:
"There is not a way to display the presentation from within TypePad, the system is just being used to host the actual file. With that said, the system does not modify the file in any way so it would be a good idea for your reader to take a closer look at this file and troubleshoot it."
This isn't a functionality that I've tested, so I thought I'd post it on here to see if any other readers had experienced this problem and found a solution to it.
I'm on my second generation of presentation remote controls for managing and accessing PowerPoint while speaking. My first remote control was a Logitech Trackman. It worked pretty well, but was equipped with a PS 2 connection and didn't include a laser pointer. When I upgraded my laptop, I found that I no longer had a port for this connection, so I decided to upgrade to a new remote presenter control with a laser pointer. My new mouse was a Targus PAUM 30 purchased at Circuit City last year.
Using the mouse over the past year I've found some pluses and minuses that will impact future purchases of a remote control/laserpoint mouse.
Includes a laser pointer
Operates on 2 AAA batteries
Comes with a carrying pouch
Laser pointer isn't very powerful
Operation has been erratic
the USB "dongle" transmitter does not store inside the remote, creating opportunities for loss
While preparing to present at a recent speaking engagement, the 3rd negative above was confirmed, when I found that the USB transmitter in my Targus carrying pouch, was actually from another mouse that I have that wasn't compatible with the Targus. Luckily the conference organizer had a nice new Logitech mouse where the USB transmitter (dongle) slides into a housing within the mouse itself. This seems like a far better design to me and will probably be the type of remote control presenter I purchase next.
Dawn Buzbee published an article on Ezineaticles.com about "Choosing a Presentation Remote Control". She provides some good tips on things to consider when selecting a remote control including looking at ergonomics, ease of use, transmission distance, mouse capabilities and laser pointer range. I'd add the several items to the list of evaluatiion criteria including - size, carrying case, integrated USB dongle, price, overall aesthetics and construction quality.
In her article she references three presentation remotes with the following comments:
"RemotePoint Navigator from Interlink Electronics which is easy to use, fits comfortably in my hand, and gives me up to 50' of movement from my laptop. Another top model by the same company is the RemotePoint Presenter, with up to 100' of movement, a mouse button, and 32 MB of storage for your presentation; it is priced at about $150. The Phaser Mouse from IOGear is a budget-minded model for as little as $60."
Some other remotes I've come across include the following:
If you have others to add to the list or have used any of these remotes let us know how they have worked for you and what the positives and negatives have been while using them in your presentations. I'd like to be able to create and share a dcoument comparing the features and benefits of available remotes at some point in the future.
UPDATE - 12/19/06 PresentationZen author Garr says that he loves the Keyspan Remote Control.
Alice Marwick at her blog tiara.org has a step-by-step set of instructions for downloading, converting and embedding YouTube video clips into a PowerPoint presentation. I haven't tried her technique or downloaded the tools she suggests using for this process, some of you might find her ideas worth pursuing.
One comment she makes struck a chord with me " All this rigamarole should be completely unnecessary soon, as I’m sure Google’s PowerPoint clone will include YouTube video embedding as standard." If it does it could be yet another reason for some transition away from PPT to other presentation tools.
The New York Times has an interesting article talking about the change in continuing medical education where hospital-based grand rounds have been replaced by didactic lectures. The article interestingly titled "Socratic Dialogue Gives Way to PowerPoint" bemoans the lack of direct patient evaluation and interactive discourse in the grand rounds process.
The article title would make you think that there would be some discussion of PowerPoint, but other than in the title, this presentation tool in use by many, isn't referenced at all. There seems to be rather an implied substitution of "lecture" with PowerPoint throughout the article.
Masterviews International has an interesting post on what to do with your hands during a presentation. With some novice presenters displaying their nervousness by putting their hands in their pockets and others keeping them fixed in place, their suggestion and embedded video tip to move your hands naturally makes lots of sense if you're looking to refine your presentation techniques.
I have seen a professional presenter who intrigued me with her overly deliberative hand gestures. For some reason I found it a bit disconcerting since it led me to focus on her hands rather than on her message or presentation. She used very exagerated motions that at least for the close-in viewer distracted me.