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In Adobe Connect Essential Training, author Tim Plumer, Jr. explains how to deliver and host interactive web meetings, webinars, and e-learning tutorials using Adobe Connect. The course covers the software's many tools for streamlining communication and engaging participants, such as the screen sharing, full-screen, and whiteboard features. Also included are tutorials on recording presentations, video conferencing, and using Connect with an iPhone or Android-based smartphone. Exercise files accompany the course.
One of the more common types of content that you're going to share on the Share Pod is a PowerPoint file. So what I want to do is take a look at the ins and outs of working with PowerPoint within the Share Pod. The first thing that I want to say about that is, that you should never plan to upload your file while your meeting is in progress. I am going to do that here because I want to talk about why you shouldn't do this. This is a very small presentation. It's only three slides. So it's a very small file size. And it still takes a few seconds to upload and convert.
You don't want to do that in front of your audience, especially if you have a 25 or 50 slide deck, because it may take 10 minutes to upload and it may take another 5 to 10 minutes to convert. Because what Connect actually does is, first off, it uploads the PowerPoint file, and then on the backend it actually converts it over to Flash, and that gives you the capability of working with it within Connect, because Connect is a Flash-based product. Once you have it uploaded though, it's on the system and it is something that you can access later on. So for example, if you should accidentally hide this pod, you can always select from the Pods menu, Share and Annual Report Presentation.ppt is the Share Pod that contained that presentation.
So you can just select it and it'll take just a few moments, but then it will bring it back much more quickly. The good news about this is that once it's on the system, it's there for you from then on in. Now I want to add a little bit of a polish to this. So instead of calling this pod, the Annual Report Presentation.ppt with the extension for PowerPoint, I am just going to double-click on this and rename it. And that makes it look like I've specifically renamed the pod for the purpose that the pod has, which is actually what I've done. It just gives your presentation a little bit more of a professional appeal.
Now once the PowerPoint file is in the Share Pod, you can begin working with it almost as if you were working with it in PowerPoint. So for example, if I want to move from one slide to the other, I'll just click down here in the lower-left on the Next and Previous Arrows. In fact, if I've built transitions into my PowerPoint, Connect does a pretty good job of maintaining them for my presentation. So it works pretty much the exact same way that it would in PowerPoint. I have my transitions. Present my information, and there's even another tool that I can use to go a step further.
Right here, right next to the Left and Right Arrows, I have a little sidebar. We'll click on that, and that allows me to see some information about my presentation as I am presenting. It's sort of like having two screens in PowerPoint where one gives you a hint about what's coming up, and tells you information about the slide that you're on. Well, right here in Connect, we have it inside the Share Pod. So as I'm presenting, I might want to look, for example, at the Notes for the slide, or I may want to jump back-and- forth in my presentation, and I can do that with the click of the mouse.
It will open up the Notes Pod and I can see that I'm supposed to mention the company's long climb from obscurity. As I move through the presentation, I've got my animations, and I can see the agenda or the rest of the agenda items that are coming up because they are built in to the notes for the PowerPoint slide. Now this was all information that was in the PowerPoint slide and I used PowerPoint to create it. All Connect is doing is reproducing that for you so that you can use it during the meeting. Now there is another thing that's pretty neat that you can do with this as well.
If I want my customers who are in the middle of the presentation to be looking at this information along with me, I can simply show the sidebar to participants. Now, anyone who's in the room in the same Share Pod that they're seeing the presentation will also see this sidebar information. So for example, if they look at the outline, they can actually see what the outline of the presentation is. If they click on Notes, they can read the notes to themselves and that might be handy so that they can read ahead or they can catch up with information that they may have missed or whatever. And then finally over here, I can actually select Search and let's say that I want to find a particular slide.
Well as I'm presenting I know that I want to say something about the website, and the only thing I can remember is that the website is likely to have www on it. And I'll click on that, and it will show me the slide that contains that. If there's more than one it will list them all. I can click on that and jump right to that slide as well. Now there's another hidden advantage to the fact that this is a web-based tool. We are on the web right now. If in the middle of the presentation, I see a website address that's built in the PowerPoint slide, it might be useful to be able to check that website out.
Well, if you've actually build a hyperlink into your PowerPoint slide, then that hyperlink is a hot link right here inside Connect. So I can just click on it, it will take me to the web, and take me to the Two Trees website. It's something that you want to consider whether you want to do or if you're going to do it in the middle of a presentation, because half of your audience is likely to go check out your website, while you're trying to present the rest of the information. But if used purposefully, it's actually a great tool to take the presentation beyond just the slides, and use something like the World Wide Web to augment the presentation and give your audience more information than the slides can convey.
Now I am going to go ahead and close up the sidebar, because it's not only the case that I can show you information. I'm going to backup to the beginning here, of the Agenda, and as I am working through the agenda, I might actually want to mark the slides up to put a checkmark next to things, or draw your attention to things, or whatever. As with the whiteboard, I can actually mark on top of these slides, while I'm presenting them. All I need to do is click on the Draw button here, and as a presenter or a host, I can take the Pencil tool and I can come in here and put a checkmark, or I can take the Highlighter tool, move to the next Agenda item, and I can put a mark on top of it.
If that's not wide enough, maybe I can increase the size of the marker and put a wider mark on top of it. So as you're working through the presentation, instead of just talking to the slides that you have, use Connect as a way to draw your audience's attention to certain aspects of the slides, because it makes the presentation, which is being delivered remotely, feel a lot more engaging. It draws your attention to the screen. It makes the information scene a little bit more exciting, so that instead of kind of tuning out after a few slides, the audience is going to start to look at the slides and see what you are presenting there, a little bit more carefully.
And that actually becomes a reason to use Connect, even if you're not necessarily in a remote meeting. Because all of the stuff that you're doing in the slide set right now, first off gives you an ability to mark up the slide set, makes it more engaging. You can add things like Hyperlinks so that your audience can take advantage of that, but I am going to go ahead and close this presentation, and then I'm going to reveal this presentation. And notice that when I do, it's going to jump me right back to that slide and it's going to leave my markups in place.
Now that's a good thing if I have a presentation that I am delivering over time but it's also the kind of thing that if you're going to deliver the same presentation, and you want a clean slate, make sure that you go in afterwards and delete your markups because if you don't do them, then they'll be there for you even if you don't want them the next time you go to present. So that's using PowerPoint with Connect. It's not just a way to show some slides and tell some information about some slides, but to allow you to engage your audience more deeply in those slides, so that you can get your point across more effectively.
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