quick tips


Presentation Pointers

  1. 1.Practice your presentation. Yes - in front of a mirror. Do NOT turn your back on your audience and talk to the screen! Get comfortable with your show before you give it.

  2. 2.I use one of these Kensington presentation pointers - either the K33374US or the newer K72427. The 72427 has a built-in MicroSD card reader and 2GB memory inside the USB dongle. Ideally, you could store your presentation on the USB dongle, and simply hand that to your venue’s a/v person, stating, “This is my presentation, as well as the receiver for my pointer.” But for the real world, I just use the internal memory as my “Plan B.” Either of these are Mac- and Windows-compatible.

  3. 3.Do NOT run your presentation from a USB stick or CD/DVD. Those are the slowest data transfer items in anyone’s computer. SAVE the presentation to the local hard drive - and then run it from that copy.

  4. 4.Got the absolute latest version of PowerPoint and/or Keynote? Good for you - but DON’T USE ‘EM. At least, do not SAVE your project in the “newest” version of software - if there is ANY chance of you using someone else’s projection system. Chances are that your venue won’t have the latest and greatest - which could wreak havoc with your presentation. And what if your “current” computer somehow fails at the venue - and all you have is that “really current version” copy of your presentation? Make sure you save your file in “backwards-compatible” formats. (See Number 9 below.)

  5. 5.Stick with standard fonts, too - for compatibility’s sake.

  6. 6.I had this occur to a presenter at a public relations group meeting last year: Her presentation was PERFECT at her office. But when she tried to show it to our lunch audience, all those embedded videos and some graphics were - you guessed it - AT THE OFFICE on her system there. Couple that with the fact that you might not have ‘Net access at every venue - so you really need to run your presentation on a standalone system to make sure everything is at your disposal.

  7. 7.If you are using someone else’s system, load and run the presentation before your show. Click through all the slides ... make sure it all looks like you want it to. This also sometimes gets larger (memory-wise) items into the computer’s cache - might make it all run more smoothly at show time.

  8. 8.Make sure (especially if you are using PowerPoint) that you take with you your entire presentation. PowerPoint sometimes creates a sub-DIRectory with video, graphics, and other stuff. Leave home with only the “ppt” file, and you might not have your entire presentation with you.

  9. 9.Before I leave the house, my “slideshow” has been saved as ... (1) a Keynote presentation (for running on my MacBook Pro), (2) a PowerPoint 2004-2007 presentation, (3) a high-quality .pdf document, and (4) a high-quality QuickTime .mov file. And all four copies files are saved on my MacBook Pro, on a USB stick in my pocket, as well as saved in “the cloud” for me to be able to access from anywhere there’s ‘Net access - in case my computer fails and I need to use someone else’s system. Some might call that being “anally retentive.” Personally, that IS a little over-kill, I’ll admit. But if Plan A and Plan B fail - I am prepared ... (grin)

  10. 10. I also carry my own WiFi hotspot - iPhones on the Verizon network. Great overall coverage in most of North America.

  11. 11. I have the capability to use my Apple iPhone as my presentation controller: The computer with the Keynote and the iPhone are connected to the WiFi device, and I can swipe my finger on the iPhone’s screen to go to the next slide. ALL VERY COOL - but I found myself looking at the iPhone way too much - instead of watching my audience. I rarely use that VERY COOL capability any more. (Did I mention that it is VERY COOL to have all the devices connected via WiFi and be able to do that???)

  12. 12. More to come ...

Got a presentation pointer to share? Send me an email message.

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Last edited 2:39 AM PST 04/16/2018