Understanding Online Broadcasts and Meetings

You've thoroughly polished your presentation. It's clear, organized, and to the point. Your visuals are coordinated, your script is down pat, and maybe you've even added background sound to make the presentation really move. Now it's time to deliver ”online. This chapter shows you how to use PowerPoint's presentation broadcast and online meeting tools to do exactly that.

PowerPoint can run a live, simultaneous broadcast of your presentation from your PC to tens, hundreds, or even thousands of other PCs tuned in to hear what you have to say. You can also add live audio or video content to the presentation as you make it. Using PowerPoint to do a presentation broadcast is much more convenient than physically gathering your audience into one room and getting the necessary facilities, large-screen computer projectors, and sound equipment organized.

By itself, PowerPoint can transmit a presentation broadcast to as many as 10 other people. Your audience needs Internet Explorer 5.1 or later to view this broadcast. For broadcasts to 11 or more people, you need to have access to a Microsoft Windows Media Server. This is a digital media platform that supports streaming media in your presentation (such as audio and video). If you don't have access to a Windows Media Server, you can sign up for an account with a third-party service provider to handle these technicalities. If your company or organization has an IS department, contact its staff for advice on using Windows Media Server in your network environment.


Broadcasting to a large audience and using Windows Media Server can be complex. To learn more about broadcasting PowerPoint presentations to large audiences, refer to the Microsoft Office Resource Kit (http://www.microsoft.com/office/ork/).

PowerPoint also offers online meetings, which are a nice complement to presentation broadcasts. A broadcast is a one-way connection between you and your audience, whereas an online meeting is a two-way channel. In an online meeting, everyone can communicate with everyone else to brainstorm, hash out a tough decision, or even create a presentation together.

Choosing a Broadcast or Meeting

To use online meetings, you need Microsoft's NetMeeting group collaboration software installed on your computer, and so will everyone else who takes part in the meeting. NetMeeting comes with the versions of Windows required to run Office 2003.

Here are some guidelines to help you decide which online presentation approach is right for you.

Choose a presentation broadcast when

  • You want to reach a large number of people at once.

  • You want to save your presentation broadcast so that people can watch it later.

  • You want your presentation to be one way.

  • Your audience doesn't have very powerful computers or fast network connections. (All they need is Internet Explorer 5.1 or later to see your broadcast.)

Presentation broadcasts can be used in corporate training sessions, general company announcements, and online presentations to business partners or clients .

Choose an online meeting when

  • You want to interact with the people to whom you are presenting.

  • You don't need to reach many people (say, 10 or fewer).

  • Your audience has powerful enough computers with fast enough network connections to handle Microsoft NetMeeting (and the computers have the NetMeeting software installed). You shouldn't try this unless your computer runs on a Pentium III processor, has at least 128 MB of RAM, and has a broadband Internet connection.

Online meetings can be used for group brainstorming sessions ( especially those now done with videoconferencing equipment), online staff meetings, and one-on-one planning meetings with a colleague.

Later, we'll cover a third online collaboration tool ”Web discussions.

Special Edition Using Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003
Special Edition Using Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003
ISBN: 0789729571
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 261

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