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If you have ever used Microsoft PowerPoint, then you are familiar with templates. A template is a preset layout for a presentation. The layout, graphics, and design are already done, and you have to put in your text and images. Open Office has this same capability. You need to go out on the Web and download templates, which are free. The following list, while certainly not exhaustive, will give you a place to start in finding and downloading Open Office templates. The directory you installed Open Office into will have a subdirectory, \share\template, where you should place all templates.
Some of these templates will be in compressed files, TAR for Linux, ZIP for Windows. You will need to uncompress them.
After you have downloaded these templates, you will need to use an Open Office utility to include them in your applications. If you look under Open Office in the Start menu, you will see an application named Global. We will discuss this application a bit more in Chapter 11, “Other Open Office Applications,” but for now you need to know that this is the appropriate utility for incorporating templates. Once you launch that utility, go to File, choose Templates, and select Organize. You will see a screen like the one shown in Figure 10.27.
Figure 10.27: Organizing templates.
Now click on the Default folder in the window on the left side of the screen. This will cause this folder to be selected. Then find the Command button on the right side of the screen and click it. You will see several options; choose Import Template. If you did not properly select the Default folder first, the Import option will be disabled. You can go through a standard dialog box and select any templates you want to include. Now you are ready to use templates.
If you return to Open Office Impress, on the beginning screen select the button marked From Template, and you will see all of the templates you imported, as shown in Figure 10.28. Just select the one you want to use and click the Next button.
Figure 10.28: Selecting a template.
Once you move to the next screen, you can select any design you like for your slides. As you click on each design, it will be previewed in a small window, as you see in Figure 10.29. This should help you to decide which template design is most appropriate for your presentation.
Figure 10.29: Selecting a design.
Now you should click the Next button again. On this screen you can choose what type of transitions should occur between slides in your presentation. You also can select the speed of the transitions and even whether or not to have the slides progress automatically. If you choose automatic progression, you can then select the time to wait between slides. The fourth screen asks for some company information; then you click the Create button on the last screen, and you have a basic presentation. Figure 10.30 shows the basic presentation we have created. Of course, yours might look different if you selected a different template.
Figure 10.30: Basic template presentation.
You can see that Impress offers you the use of templates, just like Microsoft PowerPoint, but it has a few disadvantages. PowerPoint comes with a lot of templates already loaded. Impress comes with none. You have to scour the Internet looking for templates. Also, Microsoft PowerPoint has even more templates on the Web.
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