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PowerPoint 2003 for Dummies
By Doug Lowe
John Wiley & SonsISBN: 0-7645-3908-6
Chapter OneOpening 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:
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:
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:
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:
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.
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