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To learn about presentations, you'll be working with Microsoft PowerPoint 2000, part of the Microsoft Office suite of products. In this first part of the chapter, we teach you the basics of launching PowerPoint and working with PowerPoint files.
To get started with PowerPoint, you need to understand these basic skills:
Opening and closing PowerPoint and presentations
Creating and saving presentations
Switching between presentations
Open (and close) a presentation application.
To launch PowerPoint, use the Windows Start menu by selecting Start, All Programs, Microsoft PowerPoint. If you have a desktop shortcut or a quick launch shortcut that refers to PowerPoint, you can also double-click on the shortcut to launch the application.
To close PowerPoint, click the Close button in the upper-right corner of the PowerPoint window, or select Exit from the File menu.
Open one, several presentations.
By default, PowerPoint starts by displaying the quick start dialog box shown in Figure 7.1. If you see this dialog box, click the Open an Existing Presentation radio button to open a presentation.
If you see the presentation that you want to open listed in the quick start dialog box, click the name of the presentation and then click OK to open that presentation. Otherwise, click on More Files and click OK to open the Open dialog box, shown in Figure 7.2.
You can use the Open dialog box to browse through folders on your hard drive to locate the presentation that you want to open. As you select presentations, the dialog box shows a small preview of the first slide in the presentation. When you find the presentation that you want to open, select it in the dialog box and click Open. To open multiple presentations at the same time, use Ctrl+click to select each presentation in the dialog box and then click Open.
If the quick start dialog box isn't visible, select Open from the File menu or click the Open toolbar button on the Standard toolbar to view the open dialog box. PowerPoint allows you to have many presentations open at the same time; just select Open each time you want to open a new presentation.
Create a new presentation (default template).
It's easy to create a new presentation in PowerPoint. PowerPoint presentations are based on templates special files that contain settings for the presentation. There's a special default template that's used when you don't specify another template.
If the quick start dialog box is visible, select the Blank Presentation radio button and click OK. This action creates a new presentation based on the default template.
If the quick start dialog box isn't visible, select New from the File menu or click the New toolbar button on the Standard toolbar to open the New Presentation dialog box. Select Blank Presentation on the General tab and click OK to create a new presentation based on the default template.
When you create a new presentation, PowerPoint displays the New Slide dialog box. Just click OK to start your presentation with a title slide.
Save a presentation to a location on a drive.
Save a presentation under another name.
Save a presentation in another file type such as: Rich Text Format, template, image file, software specific file extension, version number.
PowerPoint offers you flexibility in saving your presentations. To save your presentation, select Save from the File menu or click the Save toolbar button on the Standard toolbar to open the Save As dialog box. Browse to the location where you want to save the presentation, enter a filename, and click OK to save the presentation.
If you make changes to the presentation, you can update the copy that you've saved by selecting Save from the File menu or clicking the Save toolbar button on the Standard toolbar. You aren't prompted to enter a filename again.
You can save an existing presentation under a new name by selecting Save As from the File menu. This action opens the Save As dialog box, which allows you to enter a new name for the file.
You can also save presentations to formats other than PowerPoint's native format (which uses the file extension .ppt ). Use the Save As Type combo box on the Save As dialog box to select the file type. The choices here include Outline/RTF ( *.rtf ), Design Template ( *.pot ), and several different image file formats. Each format has its own file extension. For some formats, you can also select a version number. For example, you can choose to save in PowerPoint 95 format.
Switch between open presentations.
PowerPoint allows you to open many presentations at the same time. To switch between open presentations, you can use any of these techniques:
Click on the appropriate button on the Windows taskbar.
Use the Alt+Tab key combination to quickly navigate between all the open windows on your computer.
Select the presentation that you want to navigate to from the list on the Window menu inside PowerPoint.
Use available Help functions.
PowerPoint offers you several ways to get help if you get stuck. You'll find these choices on the Help menu within PowerPoint, or you can launch help by pressing the F1 key. Here are the major choices for Help:
Microsoft PowerPoint Help Includes a detailed help file with information on all aspects of the application. Depending on your settings, you might see this file in a Web-based window, or help might be presented by the animated Office Assistant.
What's This? Displays a screen tip for the specified option. Select an item, such as a control or a menu command, and press Shift+F1 to view a short explanation of the element.
Office on the Web Connects to Microsoft's online Office site, which gives you access to an extensive library of articles and useful hints.
Close a presentation.
When you're finished working, you might want to close an individual presentation while still keeping PowerPoint open. To do so, select Close from the File menu, or click the Close button in the upper-right corner of the presentation. Don't confuse this button with the Close button for PowerPoint itself.
PowerPoint, like most Windows applications, lets you adjust the program settings for your own convenience. To pass this part of the module, you should know about magnification tools, toolbars , and basic option customization.
Use magnification/zoom tools.
PowerPoint lets you control the display of text on your screen by magnifying or shrinking the entire presentation. You can use any of these techniques to change the zoom factor of the current presentation:
Select Zoom from the View menu. Choose a magnification, and then click OK.
Select a value from the Zoom drop-down box on the Formatting toolbar.
If you have a mouse with a mouse wheel, hold down the Ctrl key and scroll the wheel to change the magnification.
Display, hide built-in toolbars.
PowerPoint features a variety of toolbars to provide easy access to common functions. By default, PowerPoint displays the Standard toolbar, the Formatting toolbar, and the Drawing toolbar, but you can change this display easily. Right-click anywhere in the toolbar area (except on an existing toolbar button) to display the shortcut menu shown in Figure 7.3, which lists all the toolbars. You can also select Toolbars from the View menu to get a similar submenu. Click the name of a toolbar on this menu to display it if it's hidden or to hide it if it's already displayed.
Modify basic options/preferences in the application: username, default directory/folder to open, save spreadsheets.
PowerPoint also lets you customize many aspects of its operation to suit your own preferences. Here are just two examples:
To change the default username, select Options from the Tools menu. This action opens the Options dialog box. On the General tab, change the User Name and click OK.
To change the default directory for files, select Options from the Tools menu. Enter the new directory in the Default File Location box on the Save tab and click OK.
If you browse around the other tabs of the Options dialog box, you'll find many other aspects of PowerPoint that you can customize.
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