PowerPoint 2003 for Dummies

PowerPoint 2003 for Dummies

by Doug Lowe

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Do most slide show put you right to sleep? Do you want to put on a killer presentation that will blow your audience away, but you’re not quite sure how to compose one? With PowerPoint 2003 For Dummies, you can make your slides come alive with video, sound, and animations that will leave your audience cheering for more.

PowerPoint is one of the standard

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Do most slide show put you right to sleep? Do you want to put on a killer presentation that will blow your audience away, but you’re not quite sure how to compose one? With PowerPoint 2003 For Dummies, you can make your slides come alive with video, sound, and animations that will leave your audience cheering for more.

PowerPoint is one of the standard components of Microsoft Office. With over 120 million users worldwide, it is one of the most popular presentation programs available. It is highly versatile and can be used in many events including:

  • Conferences
  • Class lessons and lectures
  • Business meetings
  • Seminars

PowerPoint 2003 For Dummies lays down the basic functions to help you get started creating great slides, as well as some tips and tricks for improving your presentation. Chapters focus on useful topics like:

  • Inserting texts, visuals, and notes in your slides
  • Editing content and images
  • Importing data from other applications
  • Working with hyperlinks and action buttons
  • Creating Web pages from your slides
  • Presenting your slides online
  • Designing your own images for slides
  • Adding video, animation, and sound
  • Troubleshooting, such as using the Assistant, repairs, and online resources

This book also shows you how to run projectors, present shows with a mouse and computer, time your slides, and more! Penned by a leading expert in computers, this quick and easy guide is sure to not only familiarize you with PowerPoint but also have you taking command, designing beautiful and creative slides and effective presentations that everyone in your audience will love.

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PowerPoint 2003 for Dummies

By Doug Lowe

John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0-7645-3908-6

Chapter One

Opening Ceremonies

In This Chapter

* Introducing PowerPoint

* Starting PowerPoint

* Working with the AutoContent Wizard

* Making sense of the PowerPoint screen

* Viewing the whole slide

* Editing text

* Navigating from slide to slide

* Adding a new slide

* Viewing presentation outlines

* Printing that puppy

* Saving and closing your work

* Retrieving a presentation from disk

* Exiting PowerPoint

This chapter is a grand and gala welcoming ceremony for PowerPoint. In fact, this chapter is kind of like the opening ceremony for the Olympics, in which all the athletes march in and parade around the track waving their flags and famous people (who you've never heard of) make speeches in French. In this chapter, I parade the features of PowerPoint around the track so you can see what they look like. I may even make a few speeches. Let the games begin!

What in Sam Hill Is PowerPoint?

PowerPoint is a program that comes with Microsoft Office (although you can buy it separately, as well). Most people buy Microsoft Office because it's a great bargain: You get Word and Excel for less than it would cost to buy them separately. As an added bonus, you get a bunch of extra stuff thrown in: Outlook, Access, PowerPoint, a complete set of Ginsu knives, and a Binford VegaPneumatic Power Slicer and Dicer (always wear eyeprotection).

You know what Word is - it's the world's most loved and most hated word processor - perfect for concocting letters, term papers, and great American novels. Excel is a spreadsheet program used by bean counters the world over. But what the heck is PowerPoint? Does anybody know or care? (And as long as we're asking questions, who in Sam Hill was Sam Hill?)

PowerPoint is a presentation program, and it's one of the coolest programs I know. If you've ever flipped a flip chart, headed over to an overhead projector, or slipped on a slide, you're going to love PowerPoint. With just a few clicks of the mouse, you can create presentations that bedazzle your audience and instantly sway them to your point of view, even if you're selling real estate on Mars, season tickets for the Mets, or a new Medicare plan to Congress.

Here are some of the many uses of PowerPoint:

  •   Business presentations: PowerPoint is a great timesaver for anyone who makes business presentations, whether you've been asked to speak in front of hundreds of people at a shareholders' convention, a group of sales reps at a sales conference, or your own staff or coworkers at a business planning meeting.

  •   Sales presentations: If you're an insurance salesman, you can use PowerPoint to create a presentation about the perils of not owning life insurance, and then show it to hapless clients on your laptop computer.

  •   Lectures: PowerPoint is also great for teachers or conference speakers who want to back up their lectures with slides or overheads.

  •   Homework: PowerPoint is a great program to use for certain types of homework projects, such as big history reports that count for half your grade.

  •   Church: PowerPoint is also used at churches to display song lyrics on big screens at the front of the church so everyone can sing or to display sermon outlines so everyone can take notes. If your church still uses hymnals or prints the outline in the bulletin, tell the minister to join the twenty-first century.

  •   Information stations: You can use PowerPoint to set up a computerized information kiosk that people can walk up to and use. For example, you can create a museum exhibit about the history of your town or set up a trade-show presentation to provide information about your company and products.

  •   Internet presentations: PowerPoint can even help you to set up a presentation that you can broadcast over the Internet so people can join in on the fun without having to leave the comfort of their own homes or offices.

    Introducing PowerPoint Presentations

    PowerPoint is similar to a word processor like Word, except that it's geared toward creating presentations rather than documents. A presentation is kind of like those Kodak Carousel slide trays that your father used to load up with 35mm slides of your family trip to the Grand Canyon. The main difference is that you don't have to worry about dumping all the slides in your PowerPoint presentation out of the tray and onto the floor.

    Word documents consist of one or more pages, and PowerPoint presentations consist of one or more slides. Each slide can contain text, graphics, and other information. You can easily rearrange the slides in a presentation, delete slides that you don't need, add new slides, or modify the contents of existing slides.

    You can use PowerPoint both to create your presentations as well as to actually present them.

    You can use several different types of media to actually show your presentations:

  •   Computer monitor: Your computer monitor, either a tabletop CRT monitor or the LCD display on a laptop computer, is a suitable way to display your presentation when you are showing it to just one or two other people.

  •   Computer projector: A computer projector projects an image of your computer monitor onto a screen so larger audiences can view it.

  •   Web pages: Web pages on the Internet or on a company intranet can allow you to display your presentation to a larger audience.

  •   Overhead transparencies: Overhead transparencies can be used to show your presentation using an overhead projector.

  •   Printed pages: Printed pages allow you to distribute a printed copy of your entire presentation to each member of your audience. (When you print your presentation, you can print one slide per page, or you can print several slides on each page to save paper.)

  •   35mm slides: For a fee, you can have your presentation printed onto 35mm slides either by a local company or over the Internet. Then, your presentation really is like a Kodak Carousel slide tray! (For more information, refer to Chapter 27.)

    Presentation files

    A presentation is to PowerPoint what a document is to Word or a worksheet is to Excel. In other words, a presentation is a file that you create with PowerPoint. Each presentation that you create is saved on disk as a separate file.

    PowerPoint presentations have the special extension .ppt added to the end of their file names. For example, Sales Conference.ppt and History Day.ppt are both valid PowerPoint filenames. When you type the filename for a new PowerPoint file, you don't have to type the .ppt extension because PowerPoint automatically adds the extension for you. PowerPoint often hides the .ppt extension, so a presentation file named Conference.ppt often appears as just Conference.

    PowerPoint is set up initially to save your presentation files in the My Documents folder, but you can store PowerPoint files in any folder of your choice on your hard drive. You can store a presentation on a diskette if you want to take it home with you to work on it over the weekend or if you want to give the presentation to other people so they can use it on their computers. (If the presentation is too large to squeeze onto a diskette, you can store it on a CD-ROM if your computer has a CD-RW drive.)

    What's in a slide?

    PowerPoint presentations are comprised of one or more slides. Each slide can contain text, graphics, and other elements. A number of PowerPoint features work together to help you easily format attractive slides:

  •   Slide layouts: Every slide has a slide layout that controls how information is arranged on the slide. A slide layout is simply a collection of one or more placeholders, which set aside an area of the slide to hold information. Depending on the layout that you choose for a slide, the placeholders can hold text, graphics, clip art, sound or video files, tables, charts, graphs, diagrams, or other types of content.

  •   Background: Every slide has a background, which provides a backdrop for the slide's content. The background can be a solid color; a blend of two colors; a subtle texture, such as marble or parchment; a pattern, such as diagonal lines, bricks, or tiles; or an image file. Each slide can have a different background, but you usually want to use the same background for every slide in your presentation to provide a consistent look.
  •   Color scheme: PowerPoint has built-in color schemes that make it easy for anyone to create attractive slides that don't clash. You can stray from the color schemes if you want, but you should do so only if you have a better eye that the design gurus that work for Microsoft.

  •   Slide Master: The Slide Master controls the basic design and formatting options for slides in your presentation. The Slide Master includes the position and size of basic title and text placeholders; the background and color scheme used for the presentation; and font settings, such as typefaces, colors, and sizes. In addition, the Slide Master can contain graphic and text objects that you want to appear on every slide. You can edit the Slide Master to change the appearance of all the slides in your presentation at once. This helps to ensure that the slides in your presentation have a consistent appearance.

  •   Design template: A design template is simply a presentation file that contains a pre-designed Slide Master that you can use to create presentations that look like a professional graphic artist designed them. When you create a new presentation, you can base it on one of the presentations that comes with PowerPoint. PowerPoint comes with a collection of design templates that you can use, and you can get additional templates from the Microsoft Web site. You can also create your own design templates.

    All the features described in the previous list work together to control the appearance of your slides in much the same way that style sheets and templates control the appearance of Word documents. You can customize the appearance of individual slides by adding any of the following elements:

  •   Title and body text: Most slide layouts include placeholders for title and body text. You can type any text that you want into these placeholders. By default, PowerPoint formats the text according to the Slide Master, but you can easily override this formatting to use any font, size, style, or text color that you want.

  •   Text boxes: You can add text anywhere on a slide by drawing a text box and then typing text. Text boxes allow you to add text that doesn't fit conveniently in the title or body text placeholders.

  •   Shapes: You can use PowerPoint's drawing tools to add a variety of shapes on your slides. You can use predefined AutoShapes, such as rectangles, circles, stars, arrows, and flowchart symbols; or you can create your own shapes by using basic line, polygon, and freehand drawing tools.

  •   Pictures: You can insert pictures onto your slides that you have scanned into your computer or downloaded from the Internet. PowerPoint also comes with a large collection of clip art pictures that you can use.

  •   Diagrams: PowerPoint includes a diagramming feature that enables you to create several common types of diagrams: Organization Charts, Venn Diagrams, Stacked Pyramid Diagrams, and others.

  •   Media files: You can also add sound clips or video files to your slides.

    Starting PowerPoint

    Here's the procedure for starting PowerPoint:

    1. Get ready. Light some votive candles. Take two Tylenol. Put on a pot of coffee. If you're allergic to banana slugs, take an allergy pill. Sit in the lotus position facing Redmond, Washington, and recite the Windows creed three times:

    Bill Gates is my friend. Resistance is futile. No beer and no TV make Homer something something ...

    2. Click the Start button. The Start button is ordinarily found at the lower-left corner of the Windows display. When you click it, the famous Start menu appears. The Start menu works pretty much the same, no matter which version of Windows you're using.

    If you can't find the Start button, try moving the mouse pointer all the way to the bottom edge of the screen and holding it there a moment. With luck on your side, you see the Start button appear. If not, try moving the mouse pointer to the other three edges of the screen: top, left, and right. Sometimes the Start button hides behind these edges.

    3. Point to All Programs on the Start menu.

    After you click the Start button to reveal the Start menu, move the mouse pointer up to the word Programs and hold it there a moment. Yet another menu appears, revealing a bevy of commands. (On versions of Windows prior to Windows XP, All Programs is called simply "Programs.")

    4. Click Microsoft Office on the All Programs menu, and then click Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003.

    Your computer whirs and clicks and possibly makes other unmentionable noises while PowerPoint comes to life.

    If you use PowerPoint frequently, it may appear in the Frequently Used Program List directly on the Start menu so you don't have to choose All Programs [right arrow] Microsoft Office to get to it. If you want PowerPoint to always appear at the top of the Start menu, choose Start [right arrow] All Programs. Microsoft Office. Then, right-click Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003 and choose the Pin to Start Menu command.

    Customizing Your Settings

    Before you get too deep into PowerPoint, I suggest that you change a couple of settings. You can use PowerPoint just fine without making these changes, but your life will be easier if you make them now. Just follow these simple steps:

    1. Choose Tools [right arrow] Options and click the Save tab. This summons the Save options in the Options dialog box.

    2. Uncheck the Allow Fast Saves option.]


    Excerpted from PowerPoint 2003 for Dummies by Doug Lowe Excerpted by permission.
    All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
    Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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  • Meet the Author

    Doug Lowe is the author of more than 40 computer books, including the bestselling Networking For Dummies, now in its sixth edition.

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