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1. Any utilities that will compress bitmaps in bulk in PowerPoint?

After creating a huge presentation because of many large bitmap images, you can can try compressing the images with PowerPoint's own tool. Select Save As, and then in the dialog look in the Tools menu for the Compress Pictures command. If that doesn't give you what you want, you might consider trying a third-party utility called NXPowelite. It is designed for precisely this purpose.

2. Any way"zoom in" on a picture in slide show?

There are two ways I know that you could do this; both are hacks. The most elegant, but also most time consuming would be to make more slides with the zoomed-in bitmaps on them. These could be hidden slides, which would allow you to gracefully skip over them if you didn't want to explore them, or just press the H key while in slide show to show the hidden slide. Alternatively, you can , when you need to zoom in, ALT-Tab to PowerPoint (regular view), zoom in to the picture as you like, then ALT-Tab back to slide showwhen you're done. Preferably, you would turn off as many toolbars as possible to make this less ugly.

3. ARE THERE ANY TEMPLATES FOR POWERPOINT PRESENTATIONS THAT I CAN USE?

Yes. If you click on the DESIGN tab, you will see a THEMES command group. Within this command group, you will see a row of boxes, which are templates. When you scroll your mouse pointer over them, you will see a live preview of what they will look like on your current slide. All you need to do to apply a template is click on it. If you look to the right side of the row of templates, you will notice up and down arrows which let you scroll through more templates. There is also an option to browse and download even more templates online.

4. Can I play QuickTime movies in PowerPoint?

Yes and no. You can play QuickTime movies in Macintosh PowerPoint 3, 4, and 98. Windows PowerPoint does not support QuickTime movies, only AVI files. The trick to know about is that the movies are referenced in the file, but do not become part of the file. Therefore, you need to make sure that when you play the PowerPoint slide show you 1) have the movie file and 2) the movie file is located in the same relative path as it was when you inserted it in the first place (best to just keep the movie in the same folder as the presentation). The answer to the next question about sounds applies to movies as well.

5. Can Power Point slides made into PDF files?

PowerPoint slides and entire presentations can be made into PDF files, but you'll need to purchase a copy of Adobe Acrobat in order to do it. PDF is a format owned and created by Adobe. Their Acrobat "Reader" is free, and can be downloaded from their web site at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep.html. However, to save a file to PDF, you need to buy a full copy of Acrobat. Once you've done that, you can save any document to PDF, which is very useful. Also, the reader that you get with the full product has more fun features than the free one.

6. Can the WMF format be converted to GIF?

Yes, but not in PowerPoint. The way I do it, is to insert the image you want to use in PowerPoint, Word, or any other product that accepts vector based graphics, size it to the size you want to see your GIF file display, then copy/paste it into PhotoShop or some other bitmap editing package, where you can now save it as a GIF file.

7. How can I go "back" in a slide show like I do in my browser?

The next slide/previous slide actions use the "slide show" (one slide after another) metaphor, not the web-space metaphor (where "back" means "the last slide I saw"). If you're doing a kiosk style or self-running presentation, the best thing to do is to put buttons on each slide that navigate directly to the places they may want to go. To make a BACK button:

Draw a button (or use Slide Show/Action Buttons and select the blank button, then draw it out on the screen like you would a box). Select this button or graphic, and then go to the Slide Show menu, select Action Settings, and click the radio box marked "Hyperlink to:" and set it to "Last Slide Viewed". This button will behave like the Back button on your web browser. If you want this on all of your slides, put the button on the Slide Master (View/Slide Master).

8. How do I add a slide?

1. Click on Insert 

2. Scroll down to New Slide 

3. Select a Layout and Click OK 

4. Add three more slides for practice

9. How do I animate objects?

1. Type the word Animation 

2. Notice that there is a box around the text 

3. Go up to the menu bar and click on Slide Show 

4. Select Custom Animation 

5. Under Timing 

6. Select object(s) needed to be animated 

7. Click on Effect 

8. Under Entry Animation and Sound, click on the drop down arrow and choose preferred animation 

9. Select any sound if needed 

10. Click Preview to see animation, when satisfied Click OK

10. How do I create additional pre-set color fills?

There is no way to create two or multi-colored fills that you can get to display in the fill menu. A lame workaround is to just make a shape with the fills you like (combine shapes to get multicolored fills) and then keep it around and copy/paste it into your pres.
PICTURES AND OTHER IMPORTED FILES

11. How do I get Animated GIF files to play in Slide Show?

In order to do this, you'll need to upgrade to the new PowerPoint 2000, which does support animated GIFfiles. You can even use them as bullets if you want.

12. How do I get graphs to look right when the file is transferred to the Mac?

Graphs that are created on the PC in PPT'97 (using PowerPoint's Graphs or Excel Charts) sometimes have translation problems when these files are opened on the Mac in PPT'98. There is a bug that shows up in build charts with blended fills. If you experience this bug, try taking the fills out, and the builds should then work properly. Other chart translation problems can be solved by double-clicking on the chart (in Mac PowerPoint '98), which opens them up in Graphing module, and then clicking "off" the chart to go back to PowerPoint. This will solve the problem for the Macintosh file, but alas, if it is a file that PC users want to share with Mac users here and there (and having two versions is impractical) you are out of luck. Microsoft is aware of these bugs.

13. How do I make a PowerPoint file into a self-running executable file?

You can't. For those of you who don't understand what this is, it would be a presentation that would "play" itself, regardless of if PowerPoint was installed or not. The only products that we know of that do this are Macromedia Director and Macromedia Flash.

14. How do I make bitmaps and captures screens display well in slide show?

The trick is that bitmapped graphics only look exactly correct at one particular size. This is most noticeable in screen dumps, where you want to see a proper pixel for pixel representation. What is happening, is that during slide show, PowerPoint scales the presentation to fit the size of your monitor, and that the scaling hoses your bitmaps. To fix this you can do the following. In PowerPoint 97, right-click on the bitmap, select "Format Picture...", go to the "Size" tab, from the Scale area check the box labeled "best for slide show", and set the resolution to match your system resolution (available from the Display area of the Windows Control Panel). For PowerPoint 95 and all other versions, click on the bitmap, and from the Draw menu (or other depending on your version), select the Scale command. You must then enter a percentage based on the screen resolution of the system on which you plan to deliver your electronic presentation, using the percentages as listed below: 

640x480 = 150% 

720x512 = 133% 

800x600 = 120% 

1024 x 768 = 94% 

1280 x 1024 = 75% 

This will scale the bitmap to a size that, when displayed in slide show, will appear at its original size.

15. How do I make my own PowerPoint backgrounds?

What you're talking about, is creating templates, or "POT" files. First of all, any file can be saved as a POT file--all you have to do is use the SAVE AS dialog and select POT as the file type, replacing PPT. This action automatically takes you to the location where the rest of the templates are stored, which is sometimes useful and sometimes not.

16. How do I move a slide?

1. While on the Slide Sorter, select slide one by clicking on it 

2. While holding the mouse button down, drag slide one so that it is positioned after slide three 

3. A vertical line will appear to the right of slide three. When this line appears, release the mouse button 

4. Slide one should now be the third slide

17. How do I print giant posters from PowerPoint?

Although PowerPoint allows a maximum page size of 56 x 56 inches, you need to find a printer that can print on that size paper. Some of the slide imaging places have these types of printers. PowerPoint itself has no ability to tile a page to a printer--it just things of a page as a page. If your printer has the ability to cut up or "tile" a large image onto many pages than you'd want to set that through the printer settings via the Print dialog. Our printers here don't do such a thing, but maybe there's one out there that does.

18. How do you populate List Boxes using VB in PowerPoint?

John is trying to use list boxes on a PowerPoint slide, but can't figure out how to get the info in the box. In Visual Basic you'd use the AddItem routine when the form loads, but there doesn't seem to be anything comparable with a slide.

19. Is it possible to use an Audio-CD soundtrack in my presentations?

Yes, but you'll need PowerPoint 97 (or higher) and there is a bit of a trick to it. Put your Audio-CD in your CD-ROM drive. For most computers running Windows 95, this automatically starts the Windows 95 CD player and you hear your music. It is very important to CLOSE the CD Player application before you try inserting the sound in PowerPoint. If you have the CD Player application running, it won't work properly, so just remember to close that puppy down! Meanwhile, back in PowerPoint 97: from the Insert menu, select "Movies and Sounds..." an then "Play CD Audio Track..." This brings up the Play Options dialog. Set things as you like, and then click OK. You should now see a little sound icon on your presentation. If you go to slide show, you can now click on this icon, and it will play the sound. If you want the sound to play automatically: 1) click on the sound icon (the one you just inserted) to select it. 2) From the Slide Show menu, select "Custom Animation..." This brings up the Custom Animation dialog, which has several tabs. On the "Play Settings" tab, click "Play Using Animation Order"; also click "hide while not playing" to hide the icon (if you want to, most people do). You can now choose to have the sound play just on one slide, or across multiple slides by playing with these settings. 3) From the "Timing" tab, click "Automatically". Otherwise, you have to click to get the sound to play. You can use the arrow buttons to the right of the animation order box to control the order in which objects "play" on the slide. For example, you might want your title to fly in first, then have the music play, and then have bullets fly in. To do this, you'd want to make sure your sound clip was second in the play list.

20. Is there a way to make my own animations and play them in PowerPoint?

PowerPoint 2000 allows you to place animated GIF files (like the ones that you see on web pages) into your pages; the animations will play in slide show. This does not work in PowerPoint 97. If you want to create "movies" that play in PowerPoint, you'll have to use something that saves as AVI files: two products I know of are Macromedia Flash and Adobe Premier. I believe Flash to be a better (easier) product. But beware that AVI files will always have an opaque background--they play "in a box" so to speak. For true animation, Flash might be a good product for you, in that you can create self-running animated files that require no player. It's a great product, but not particularly easy to learn. The on-line tutorial is a must.
SOUND AND VIDEO

21. Is there some way to prepare photos so they display well in PowerPoint?

There are two things that make bitmaps look bad in PowerPoint. One has to do with the reduction and enlargement, and the other has to do with colors. To find out about the size issues, look at the question on bitmaps and screen captures above. As for the color issue, if your computer is set up for more than 256 colors, you shouldn't have any problems. If not, read on. If you're displaying more than one photo per slide, or a color photo against a multi-color shaded background, you may experience some color degradation in your photograph. This is due to the fact that some PC systems are configured for displaying only 256 colors at a time, and photographs and shaded backgrounds require many colors to be properly rendered. One option is to change your video settings to allow more colors (you must have a graphics card with 2 or more MB of video ram to do this) by using the Display area of the Windows 95 Control Panel. Another option is to use a product like PhotoShop to lower the number of colors in the photograph. Use PhotoShop's Indexed Color feature, and select Adaptive Palette, then keep setting the number of colors lower and lower until you get a small number that still looks good. Numbers that are powers of 2 (2,4,8,16,32,64,128, 256) will also reduce your overall file size. When you save the file, save as a GIF file, which will give you the best compression, while preserving the correct palette adjustments. JPEG format has better compression, but will always save the photo with millions of colors, thus leading to pretty harsh display problems on 256-color systems.

22. Know where to get a copy of PowerPoint to run on Windows 3.1?

First of all, check our versions table on our Tips page to find out what version you're looking for. In this case, you'd want either Version 3 or 4 for Windows.

23. WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT WAYS THAT I CAN VIEW MY SLIDES?

Your slides can be viewed one of three ways. The Normal view is the main editing view where you write and design your presentation. The Slide Sorterview displays your slides in thumbnail form to allow you to move or reorder the slides. The Slide Show view takes up the full computer screen like an actual presentation. This is how your audience will view your presentation. When you click the Slide Show view button, your presentation starts at the active slide rather than from the beginning of the presentation. Press the F5 key to start your presentation from the beginning.

24. What happened to Recolor Picture?

It's there, it's just hard to find. The recolor picture command is no longer a menu command, but is now a button on the "picture" toolbar. From the View menu, select "Toolbars..." and then "Picture". You will need to select a picture object in order for the recolor picture command to become available.

25. What is a slide transition and how can I create transitions?

Slide transition is the action in which a slide appears on the screen as one slide is removed is the transition. 

1. Go to the slide for which you want to create a transition. In the main menu, click Slide Show and select Slide Transmission 

2. Under Effect, click the down arrow next to where it says No Transmission 

3. Click Fade through Black. You may have to scroll down to find it 

4. Under Speed, select Slow 

5. Click Apply to All

26. What is PowerPoint?

PowerPoint is used to create a slide presentation which you can include clip art, photographs, sound, and video clips. PowerPoint also lets you enhance and move text, making your presentations very attractive to watch.

27. What is the maximum for PowerPoint?

There is no maximum file size either in file size or number of slides. The system will barf on the file when you run out of memory, so buy lots of memory, particularly if you like to use pictures, sounds, and/or video.

28. WHAT IS THE RIBBON?

The Ribbon runs along the top of the application window. The Ribbon has several tabs and each tab has its own groups of commands. The HOME tab is where the most common PowerPoint formatting takes place, such as changing fonts, paragraph alignment, and line spacing. But if, for example, you wanted to insert a graphic or table into your document, you would click on the INSERTtab.

29. What resolution should I scan an image at in order for it to present well in PowerPoint?

If you want an image to look good on the screen in PowerPoint, scan it at the screen resolution: 72. dpi. Higher does you no good--it only makes the files bigger. HOWEVER, you may find that 72 dpi images are a bit too low-res for printed output, so you might want to scan at 150, which makes a nice compromise. THEN AGAIN, if you are outputting to 35mm slides, you're talking a whole 'nother ball game. 35 mm slide output devices are very high resolution, and you'll want 300 dpi scans. These will make your presentation gigantic, but anything lower resolution will look really bad. Some people keep multiple versions going to solve this problem, but that's a pain too. such is life.

30. Which versions of PowerPoint can open/save which other versions?

PowerPoint 97, 98, and 2000 all use the same file format. All versions of PowerPoint can open the previous version's files from the same platform. Some versions allow you to down-rev save (lines in red), some allow you to open directly from a different platform (as shown in lines in blue). See the diagram below for the complete matrix of what does what. When opening Mac files from a PC, make sure to copy the file on to PC floppy from the Macintosh.

31. Why is my file still big, even after deleting things?

For some mysterious reason, PowerPoint 97 and 2000 store lots of information in the file that does not get removed when the files are saved and closed. However, if you save the file as a new name, using the SAVE AS command, you will almost always find your files reduce in size, sometimes quite dramatically. 
UNSOLVED MYSTERIES

32. Why is my slide show playing in a window?

It looks like some how the presentation was set to play in a window, as opposed to the full screen. This property is set on a presentation basis, so you might see it on one presentation and not others. From the Slide Show menu, pick "Set Up Show". In the Show Type box, make sure that the option "presented by a speaker (full screen)" is checked. Most likely this has been changed to "browsed by an individual (in a window)".