Microsoft PowerPoint is the name of a proprietary commercial presentation program developed by Microsoft. It was officially launched on May 22, 1990 as a part of the Microsoft Office suite, and runs on Microsoft Windows and Apples Mac OS X operating system. The current versions are Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2010 for Windows and Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2011 for Mac.
Versions for Microsoft Windows include: 1990 PowerPoint 2.0 for Windows 3.0 1992 PowerPoint 3.0 for Windows 3.1 1993 PowerPoint 4.0 (Office 4.x) 1995 PowerPoint for Windows 95 (version 7.0; Office 95) 1997 PowerPoint 97 (version 8.0; Office 97) 1999 PowerPoint 2000 (version 9.0; Office 2000) 2001 PowerPoint 2002 (version 10; Office XP) 2003 Office PowerPoint 2003 (version 11; Office 2003) 2007 Office PowerPoint 2007 (version 12; Office 2007) 2010 PowerPoint 2010 (version 14; Office 2010) 2013 PowerPoint 2013 (version 15; Office 2013) Note: There is no PowerPoint version 5.0 or 6.0, because the Windows 95 version was launched with Word 7.0. All Office 95 products have OLE 2 capacity—moving data automatically from various programs—and PowerPoint 7.0 shows that it was contemporary with Word 7.0.Note 2: Version number 13 was skipped due to superstition. Icon for PowerPoint for Mac 2008 Versions for the Mac OS include: 1987 PowerPoint 1.0 for Mac OS classic 1988 PowerPoint 2.0 for Mac OS classic 1992 PowerPoint 3.0 for Mac OS classic 1994 PowerPoint 4.0 for Mac OS classic 1998 PowerPoint 98 (8.0) for Mac OS classic (Office 1998 for Mac) 2000 PowerPoint 2001 (9.0) for Mac OS classic (Office 2001 for Mac) 2002 PowerPoint v. X (10.0) for Mac OS X (Office:Mac v. X) 2004 PowerPoint 2004 (11.0) for Mac OS X Office: Mac 2004 2008 PowerPoint 2008 (12.0) for Mac OS X Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac 2010 PowerPoint 2011 (14.0) for Mac OS X Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac 2013 PowerPoint 2014 (15.0) for Mac OS X (coming soon) Note: There is no PowerPoint 5.0, 6.0 or 7.0 for Mac. There is no version 5.0 or 6.0 because the Windows 95 version was launched with Word 7. All of the Office 95 products have OLE 2 capacity—moving data automatically from various programs—and PowerPoint 7 shows that it was contemporary with Word 7. There was no version 7.0 made for Mac to coincide with either version 7.0 for Windows or PowerPoint 97. Microsoft PowerPoint 2011 In PowerPoint 2011, several key features have been added. Screen Capturing allows for taking a screen capture and adding it into the document. It is now possible to remove background images, and there are additional special effects that can be used with pictures, such as Pencil effects. Additional transitions are also available. However, the ability to apply certain text effects directly onto existing text, as seen in Microsoft Word is not available; a separate WordArt text box is still required.
Microsofts PowerPoint presentation software is a great tool for professionals. Its used for the creation of effective digital presentations. By creating slides of information and pictures, business professionals can display a series of points that they wish to touch on during a presentation. However, creating an effective PowerPoint presentation is more than simply loading slides with pictures and fancy fonts. To impress an audience, users need to combine effective use of PowerPoints toolset with smart presentation techniques.
Preparation Proper preparation is as essential an ingredient of an effective PowerPoint presentation as the slides themselves. Practice your presentation multiple times before you present. Pay particular attention to the timing of each slide, as well as your verbal delivery and volume.
Slide Composition The slides of an effective PowerPoint presentation should be outlines of your main speaking points. Novices often write everything they are going to say on each slide, then simply read each slide aloud. This is a surefire way to put an audience to sleep. Instead, put the main points of your talk on the slides and elaborate on those concepts in your talk. Even the most complicated of presentations should never rely solely on slides to deliver information to an audience.
Style and Animation Each slide should have a consistent template, font type and style. Do not mix and match stylistic elements. Simple slide transitions or animations can be helpful in grabbing an audiences interest, but too many animations will distract from the slides themselves. Use these visual transitions and effects sparingly.
Pictures and Text Ensure that the text on each slide is readable and concise. Keep slide text under six lines or so and keep sentences short. Avoid putting words in all capital letters; these can be difficult for an audience to read. Pictures can be inserted into slides to enhance the point you are making, but use them sparingly.
1. Write a script. A little planning goes a long way. Most presentations are written in PowerPoint (or some other presentation package) without any sort of rhyme or reason. That‘s bass-ackwards. Since the point of your slides is to illustrate and expand what you are going to say to your audience. You should know what you intend to say and then figure out how to visualize it. Unless you are an expert at improvising, make sure you write out or at least outline your presentation before trying to put together slides. And make sure your script follows good storytelling conventions: give it a beginning, middle, and end; have a clear arc that builds towards some sort of climax; make your audience appreciate each slide but be anxious to find out what‘s next; and when possible, always leave ‗em wanting more.
2. One thing at a time, please. At any given moment, what should be on the screen is the thing you‘re talking about. Our audience will almost instantly read every slide as soon as it‘s displayed; if you have the next four points you plan to make up there, they‘ll be three steps ahead of you, waiting for you to catch up rather than listening with interest to the point you‘re making. Plan your presentation so just one new point is displayed at any given moment. Bullet points can be revealed one at a time as you reach them. Charts can be put on the next slide to be referenced when you get to the data the chart displays. Your job as presenter is to control the flow of information so that you and your audience stay in sync.
3. No paragraphs. Where most presentations fail is that their authors, convinced they are producing some kind of stand-alone document, put everything they want to say onto their slides, in great big chunky blocks of text. Congratulations. You‘ve just killed a roomful of people. Cause of death: terminal boredom poisoning. Your slides are the illustrations for your presentation, not the presentation itself. They should underline and reinforce what you‘re saying as you give your presentation — save the paragraphs of text for your script. PowerPoint and other presentation software have functions to display notes onto the presenter‘s screen that do not get sent to the projector, or you can use notecards, a separate word processor document, or your memory. Just don‘t put it on the screen – and for goodness‘ sake, if you do for some reason put it on the screen, don‘t stand with your back to your audience and read it from the screen!
4. Pay attention to design. PowerPoint and other presentation packages offer all sorts of ways to add visual ―flash‖ to your slides: fades, swipes, flashing text, and other annoyances are all too easy to insert with a few mouse clicks. Avoid the temptation to dress up your pages with cheesy effects and focus instead on simple design basics: Use a sans serif font for body text. Sans serifs like Arial, Helvetica, or Calibri tend to be the easiest to read on screens. Use decorative fonts only for slide headers, and then only if they’re easy to read. Decorative fonts –calligraphy, German blackface, futuristic, psychotic handwriting, flowers, art nouveau, etc. – are hard to read and should be reserved only for large headlines at the top of the page. Better yet, stick to a classy serif font like Georgia or Baskerville. Put dark text on a light background. Again, this is easiest to read. If you must use a dark background – for instance, if your company uses a standard template with a dark background – make sure your text is quite light (white, cream, light grey, or pastels) and maybe bump the font size up two or three notches. Align text left or right. Centered text is harder to read and looks amateurish. Line up all your text to a right-hand or left-hand baseline – it will look better and be easier to follow. Avoid clutter. A headline, a few bullet points, maybe an image – anything more than that and you risk losing your audience as they sort it all out.
5. Use images sparingly There are two schools of thought about images in presentations. Some say they add visual interest and keep audiences engaged; others say images are an unnecessary distraction. Both arguments have some merit, so in this case the best option is to split the difference: use images only when they add important information or make an abstract point more concrete. While we‘re on the subject, absolutely do not use PowerPoint‘s built-in clipart. Anything from Office 2003 and earlier has been seen by everyone in your audience a thousand times – they‘ve become tired, used-up clichés, and I hopefully don‘t need to tell you to avoid tired, used-up clichés in your presentations. Office 2007 and non-Office programs have some clipart that isn‘t so familiar (though it will be, and soon) but by now, the entire concept of clipart has about run its course – it just doesn‘t feel fresh and new anymore.
6. Think outside the screen. Remember, the slides on the screen are only part of the presentation – and not the main part. Even though you‘re liable to be presenting in a darkened room, give some thought to your own presentation manner – how you hold yourself, what you wear, how you move around the room. You are the focus when you‘re presenting, no matter how interesting your slides are.
7. Have a hook. Like the best writing, the best presentation shook their audiences early and then reel them in. Open with something surprising or intriguing, something that will get your audience to sit up and take notice. The most powerful hooks are often those that appeal directly to your audience‘s emotions – offer them something awesome or, if it‘s appropriate, scare the pants off of them. The rest of your presentation, then, will be effectively your promise to make the awesome thing happen, or the scary thing not happen.
8. Ask questions. Questions arouse interest, pique curiosity, and engage audiences. So ask a lot of them. Build tension by posing a question and letting your audience stew a moment before moving to the next slide with the answer. Quiz their knowledge and then show them how little they know. If appropriate, engage in a little question- and-answer with your audience, with you asking the questions.
9. Modulate, modulate, modulate. Especially when you‘ve done a presentation before, it can be easy to fall into a drone, going on and on and on and on and on with only minimal changes to your inflection. Always speak as if you were speaking to a friend, not as if you are reading off of index cards (even if you are). If keeping up a lively and personable tone of voice is difficult for you when presenting, do a couple of practice run- throughs. If you still can‘t get it right and presentations are a big part of your job, take a public speaking course or join Toastmasters.
10. Break the rules. As with everything else, there are times when each of these rules – or any other rule you know – won‘t apply. If you know there‘s a good reason to break a rule, go ahead and do it. Rule breaking is perfectly acceptable behavior – it‘s ignoring the rules or breaking them because you just don‘t know any better that leads to shoddy boring presentations that lead to boredom, depression, psychopathic breaks, and eventually death. And you don‘t want that, do you?