Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Creating detour loops in powerpoint

Often when giving a presentation i use visual aids.  Since there's nothing like powerpoint out there, i've tried to learn as much as i can about it.  One tip i can give is how to create what i call detour loops.  Detour loops allow the presenter to detour onto another topic temporarily then return to the main topic without losing the flow of the presentation.
This technique essentially uses links that the presenter can use to jump to another position within the presentation and jump back.  So, let's say i'm describing the functionality of a certain piece of software.  I'll give an overview with a slide that has some explanatory text on it.  Normally, when i'm done with this slide, i'll switch over to the software itself and show the student how to do what i'm doing by using the actual software (no powerpoint slides needed for that part).  However, sometimes it can be useful to not show the software itself but rather a screenshot of the software (think large groups or buggy software).  In that case, i want to show some powerpoint slides then resume the show.
Well, on the preceding slide that has the explanatory text, i'll put a link to the slide containing the screenshot.  This slide is actually the next slide in sequential order, but i've hidden it so it normally doesn't show up.  That's the first slide of my detour.  All of the slides in the detour are hidden.  That way they don't show up unless i click the link.  The nice thing is that once you navigate to a slide that's hidden, all the slides after that will show up even if they were hidden.