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PowerPoint vs Other Presentation Tools: Which is Right for You?
When it comes to creating impactful presentations, there are numerous tools available in the market. However, one of the most popular and widely used applications is Microsoft PowerPoint. While PowerPoint has been the go-to choice for many professionals and educators, it’s important to consider other presentation tools as well. In this article, we will compare PowerPoint with other presentation tools to help you decide which one is right for you.
PowerPoint: The Classic Choice
Microsoft PowerPoint has been around since 1987 and continues to dominate the presentation software market. It offers a wide range of features and functionalities that make it ideal for creating visually appealing slideshows. With its user-friendly interface, anyone can quickly learn how to use it effectively.
One of the key advantages of PowerPoint is its compatibility with various operating systems, including Windows and Mac. This means you can easily create presentations on one device and present them on another without any compatibility issues.
PowerPoint also provides a vast library of templates, themes, and design elements that allow users to create professional-looking presentations in no time. It offers a plethora of customization options, allowing you to tailor your slides according to your specific needs.
Prezi: The Dynamic Alternative
Prezi is a cloud-based presentation software that takes a different approach than traditional slide-based tools like PowerPoint. Instead of using slides, Prezi allows users to create dynamic presentations on a virtual canvas where they can zoom in and out and navigate through content freely.
This unique feature makes Prezi an excellent choice for storytelling or when you want to present information in a nonlinear format. It enables presenters to create engaging visuals that captivate their audience’s attention from start to finish.
Additionally, Prezi offers seamless collaboration features that allow multiple users to work on the same presentation simultaneously. This makes it an excellent choice for teams or individuals who need real-time collaboration capabilities.
Google Slides: The Collaborative Solution
Google Slides is a web-based presentation tool that is part of the Google Workspace suite. Similar to PowerPoint, it offers a range of features to create visually appealing presentations. Its intuitive interface and easy-to-use tools make it accessible to users of all skill levels.
One of the standout features of Google Slides is its collaborative capabilities. Multiple users can work on a presentation simultaneously, making it ideal for team projects or remote collaboration. It also allows for real-time commenting and editing, ensuring seamless communication among team members.
Another advantage of Google Slides is its integration with other Google Workspace apps such as Google Docs and Sheets. This integration allows users to import data directly from these apps, saving time and effort when creating presentations.
Keynote: The Mac-Friendly Option
If you are an Apple user, Keynote is the presentation software designed specifically for you. Keynote offers a sleek and modern interface with powerful tools that allow users to create stunning presentations effortlessly.
One of the key advantages of Keynote is its seamless integration with other Apple devices and software. You can easily create presentations on your Mac and present them using your iPhone or iPad without any compatibility issues.
Keynote also provides a wide selection of pre-designed templates that cater to various presentation styles. Additionally, it offers advanced animation and transition effects that can enhance the visual appeal of your slideshows.
Choosing the right presentation tool depends on your specific needs and preferences. PowerPoint remains a solid choice for its versatility, while Prezi offers a dynamic alternative for nonlinear storytelling. Google Slides excels in collaborative capabilities, especially for remote teams, while Keynote provides an excellent option for Apple users seeking seamless integration across devices.
Consider the features, ease-of-use, collaboration options, and platform compatibility when deciding which presentation tool suits you best. Ultimately, selecting the right tool will empower you to create impactful presentations that engage and impress your audience.
This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.
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PowerPoint 2007 - Presentation Basics
Powerpoint 2007 -, presentation basics, powerpoint 2007 presentation basics.
PowerPoint 2007: Presentation Basics
Lesson 2: presentation basics.
Creating new presentations.
When you open PowerPoint from the Start menu or from an icon on your desktop, a new presentation with one slide appears by default. You can also create a new presentation while PowerPoint is already open .
- Click the Microsoft Office button , and choose New from the menu.
- The New Presentation dialog box will appear. Blank presentation is selected by default.
- Click Create , and a new presentation will open in the PowerPoint window.
The default slide that appears when you create a new presentation is a Title Slide layout.
About the slides.
Slides contain placeholders , or areas on a slide that are enclosed by dotted borders. Placeholders can contain many different items, including text, pictures, and charts. Some placeholders have placeholder text —or text you can replace—and thumbnail-sized icons that represent specific commands such as Insert Picture, Insert Chart, and Insert Clip Art. Hover over each icon to see the type of information you can insert.
About slide layouts
The placeholders are arranged in different layouts you can select when you insert a new slide or that can be applied to existing slides . In the example above, the layout is called Title and Content and includes title and content placeholders. A slide layout arranges your slide content. Layouts contain different types of placeholders you can use, depending on what information you want to include in your presentation. Each layout has a descriptive name, but the image of the layout shows you how the placeholders are arranged on the slide.
To insert text into a placeholder:
- Click inside the placeholder . The placeholder text will disappear, and the insertion point will appear.
- Type your text once the insertion point is visible.
- Click outside the placeholder when you have entered all of your text into the placeholder.
When you enter text or use the icons to insert items, the placeholder text and/or icons disappear as soon as you start typing.
To insert a new slide:
- Click the New Slide command in the Slides group on the Home tab. A menu will appear with your slide layout options.
- Click the slide you want to insert. A new slide with the chosen layout will appear in the center of the PowerPoint window and in the pane on the left.
To change the layout of an existing slide:
- Select the slide you want to change.
- Click the Layout command in the Slides group on the Home tab. A menu appears with your options.
- Click an option to select it. The slide will change in the presentation.
Working with slides
To copy and paste a slide:.
- Select the slide you want to copy.
- Click the Copy command on the Home tab.
- Click inside the Slides tab on the left task pane. A horizontal insertion point will appear.
- Move the insertion point to the location where you want the copy of the slide to appear.
- Click the Paste command on the Home tab. The copied slide will appear.
You can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + C to copy the slide and Ctrl + V to paste it.
To delete a slide:
- Select the slide you want to delete .
- Click the Delete command in the Slides group on the Home tab.
You can also delete a slide by pressing the Delete key on your keyboard.
To move a slide:
- Select the slide you want to move on the Slides tab in the left task pane.
- Click and drag the slide to a new location. The insertion point will appear.
- Release the mouse button. The slide will appear in the new location.
Using different views from the PowerPoint window
In the bottom-right corner of the PowerPoint window are three view commands. From here, you can change the view to Normal, Slide Sorter, or Slide Show view by clicking a command.
Normal is the default view and where you will create and edit your slides in the center slide pane, and all of the slides will appear on the Slides tab in the left task pane.
Slide Sorter is a view of your slides in thumbnail form. The slides are presented horizontally, which allows you to see more slides at the same time.
Slide Show view fills the computer screen with your presentation so you can see how the presentation will appear to an audience.
Saving your presentation
If you are saving a document for the first time, you will need to use the Save As command; however, if you have already saved a presentation, you can use the Save command.
To use the Save As command:
- Click the Microsoft Office button .
- Select Save As . A menu will appear.
- PowerPoint Presentation : This saves the presentation as a 2007 PowerPoint file. Only users with PowerPoint 2007 or the compatibility pack can view the file without possibly losing some of the formatting.
- PowerPoint 97-2003 Presentation : This saves the presentation so it is compatible with some previous versions of PowerPoint. If you will be sending the presentation to someone who does not have Office 2007, you should use this file type.
- Enter a name for the document.
- Click the Save button.
To use the Save command:
- Select Save from the menu.
Using the Save command saves the document in its current location using the same file name.
Sometimes you may need to work with presentations that were created in earlier versions of PowerPoint. When you open these types of presentations, they will appear in Compatibility mode .
Compatibility mode disables certain features, so you'll only be able to access commands found in the program that was used to create the presentation. For example, if you open a presentation created in PowerPoint 2003, you can only use tabs and commands found in PowerPoint 2003.
If you want access to all of the PowerPoint 2007 features, you can save the presentation in the PowerPoint 2007 file format.
To exit Compatibility mode:
- Open PowerPoint.
- Insert text on the default title slide.
- Insert a Title and Content slide.
- Insert a Two Content slide.
- Practice moving slides.
- Copy the title slide.
- Delete one of the slides.
- Save the presentation.
PowerPoint 2007: The Missing Manual by E. A. Vander Veer
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ChapterÂ 1.Â Creating a Basic Presentation
PowerPoint 2007 is the great equalizer. Even if youâre familiar with previous versions of PowerPoint, when it comes to PowerPoint 2007 youâre pretty much in the same boat as someone whoâs never even heard of presentation software. Thatâs because the entire PowerPoint interface has changed. As you saw in the Introduction, Microsoft has done away with toolbars, renamed and reorganized menu options, and even axed a couple of features.
Fortunately, the new interface makes quite a bit of sense once you get used to it. Thatâs what this chapter is for: to familiarize you with PowerPoint 2007 by walking you through the creation of a basic bullets-and-background slideshow presentation. Youâll learn how to create a new slideshow, choose a look and feel, add text and slides, print speaker notes and handouts, and finally, how to unveil your masterpiece.
Part 3 shows you how to jazz up your basic slideshow with diagrams, charts, sounds, animations, and more.
Beginning a New Presentation
Youâve got two basic choices when it comes to creating a new presentation:
You can start from scratch, using a blank canvas. If youâre familiar with earlier incarnations of the PowerPoint program, or if youâre interested in learning the ins and outs of PowerPoint quickly, then youâll probably want to choose this option. (As daunting as âfrom scratchâ sounds, you donât have to do all the work yourself; Section 1.2 shows you how to apply a canned look and feelâor theme âto your new presentation.)
You can create a new presentation based on an existing template, theme, or presentation. A template is a generic presentation file designed for you to reuse. Complete with themes (see the box ), background images, and even generic content (such as page numbers and placeholder text), templates let you jump-start your presentation by giving you everything you need except your specific content. If youâre creating a presentation for your local school board, for example, then youâll need to add the content that describes your findings, conclusions, and suggestions.
Templates are the better option when you need to crank out a presentation in a jiffy. PowerPoint comes with a handful of professionally designed templates and themes, but you can also create presentations based on a template, theme, or presentation that youâve previously created, or one that youâve found online and downloaded onto your computer.
PowerPoint divides these two basic choices into six specific options that are based on whether you want to piggyback your new presentation on an existing template, theme, or presentation. When you fire up PowerPoint and select Office button â New, you see the following six choices for creating a presentation, each of which is described in detail in the following sections:
Blank and recent. Lets you create either a blank presentation or a presentation based on one of the themes or templates you recently applied to a PowerPoint presentation.
Installed Templates. Lets you create a presentation based on one of the handful of generic templates that comes with PowerPoint, such as Classic Photo Album or Corporate Presentation.
Installed Themes. Lets you create a presentation based on one of the canned look and feel options that comes with PowerPoint, such as Apex, Metro, or Opulent.
My templates. Lets you create a presentation based on a template that you created, or that you downloaded from the Web.
New from existing. Lets you load an old presentation into PowerPoint 2007, make changes, and save the newly changed presentation using a new filename.
Microsoft Office Online. Lets you hunt for professionally designed templates and themes on Microsoftâs Web site.
Creating a New Presentation from Scratch
When you launch PowerPoint, the program starts you off with a brand-new presentation cleverly named Presentation1 ( Figure 1-1 ).
Typically, you dive right in, adding a look and feel ( Section 1.2 ), text, pictures, and so on to the blank presentation PowerPoint hands you. But if youâve closed or saved your freebie, hereâs how you create an additional blank presentation:
Clear back in 1994, as part of PowerPoint 4âspurred by reports that thousands of folks were firing up PowerPoint and then just sitting there sipping coffee while they stared at the screen, unsure of how to proceedâMicrosoft debuted a feature called the AutoContent wizard. The AutoContent wizard asked a series of questions, beginning with what type of presentation you wanted to create, such as âCommunicating Bad Newsâ or âProject Post-Mortemâ. Then, based on your answer, it suggested possible titles, bullet points, and so on. The result: a quick-and-dirty presentation for next to no effort.
Some folks loved the AutoContent wizard. Others blamed it for the fall of Western civilization, insisting it was responsible for millions of boring, cookie-cutter presentations devoid of meaning. Whether or not those accusations affected Microsoftâs decision to pull the AutoContent wizard from PowerPoint 2007 is anyoneâs guess. But pull it they did, leaving you just two options for creating a new presentation: from scratch, or from an existing template, theme, or presentation, as described in this chapter.
Select Office button â New.
The New Presentation window ( Figure 1-2 ) appears.
On the left side of the New Presentation window, make sure the âBlank and recentâ option is selected.
If itâs not, click it to select it.
In the New Presentation window, double-click Blank Presentation (see Figure 1-2 ). Or you can click Blank Presentation and then click Create.
Either way, a new blank presentation named Presentation2 (or Presentation3, or Presentation4 depending on how many new presentations youâve created since you launched the program) appears in your PowerPoint workspace.
To create a new blank presentation without going through the New Presentation window, press Ctrl+N.
To find out how to add content and design elements to your newly created presentation, zip down to Section 1.3 . Section 1.8 shows you how to save your new presentation.
Creating a Presentation from an Existing Template, Theme, or Presentation
PowerPoint lets you get a jump on your new presentation by starting with an existing template, theme, or presentation and then filling in your content. You can choose from the many templates and themes that come with PowerPoint, or you can go online and search for a specific template or theme that matches your needs. You can also reuse any of the templates, themes, or presentations that you (or your co-workers) have previously created. The following sections describe each of your options.
From an existing template
A template is a generic presentation designed (by Microsoft, by a third-party vendor, by you, or by whoever created the template) to be used again and again. Templates help you crank out presentations quickly, because all the design work has been done for you. All you have to do is add your content: the text, charts, graphics, and other elements that convey your particular message.
Templates vary widely, but all contain predefined themes (color schemes, background images, title and bullet point layouts, and text fonts). Some templates contain additional format and design elements and even some generic or placeholder content. Some templates are businesslike, with sober colors and artwork; some are whimsical, with wacky fonts and brightly colored balloons all over the place. The template motifs you can find are nearly endless, which makes it relatively easy to choose a template that fits the mood and structure you want to create for your presentation.
The downside to using PowerPointâs pre-built templates is that you can end up with a presentation that looks exactly like the one Bob in Accounting presented last week. If that happens, then not only do you look bad, but your audience may tune out, assuming theyâve heard the same message before.
Another potential downside to using templates is that you may be tempted to shoehorn your presentation into the templateâwhich is almost never a good idea.
On the other hand, tons of graphic designers sell PowerPoint templates on the Web, so if you look hard enoughâor spend the time to create your own templateâyou should be able to come up with something both original and appropriate.
Just keep in mind that to create an effective presentation, you need to focus first and foremost on your message, and then choose a template (or a theme, which are described on Section 22.214.171.124 ) that supports your message. You may also want to consider tweaking the templateâadjusting the font or replacing the background image with a tasteful gradient, for exampleâboth to fit your message and to help ensure your presentation is as original and memorable as you are.
PowerPoint gives you four different options for creating a new presentation using an existing template: Recently used templates, Installed Templates, âMy templatesâ (templates youâve created yourself), and Microsoft Office Online. The option you choose depends on where you want PowerPoint to hunt for the template, as described in the following sections.
Recently used templates
PowerPoint keeps track of the templates you apply to your presentations and displays the last few in a list. So if you tend to use the same two or three templates to create all your presentations, chances are youâll find this option the easiest.
Hereâs how to create a new presentation using a template you recently applied to another presentation:
The New Presentation window appears.
In the left side of the New Presentation window, make sure the âBlank and recentâ option is selected. (If itâs not, click to select it.)
In the middle of the New Presentation window, scroll through the template thumbnails.
Mousing over a template briefly displays the location of the template (for example, C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Templates\QuizShow.potx for a built-in template stored on your computer, or âOffice Websiteâ for a template located on Microsoftâs Web server). You might find this information useful if, for example, youâre hunting for a template you remember finding online.
Click to select the template you want to base your new presentation on.
In the right side of the New Presentation window, a preview appears (see Figure 1-3 ). Depending on whether the selected template is stored on your computer or on Microsoftâs Web server, PowerPoint displays a Create or Download button, respectively, at the bottom of the New Presentation window.
Click Create (or Download).
The New Presentation window disappears. (If you clicked Download, then a Downloading Template message flashes briefly on the screen.) PowerPoint then loads the selected template into a new presentation it names Presentation1 (or Presentation2, or Presentation3, depending on how many presentations youâve created since you launched PowerPoint).
When you installed PowerPoint, you automatically installed a handful of professionally designed templates, including templates that let you set up photo albums (Classic Photo Album and Contemporary Photo Album), corporate-style slideshows (Corporate Presentation), layouts for print publications (Pitchbook), animated question-and-answer tutorials (Quiz Show), and big-screen slideshows (Wide Screen Presentation 16Ã9).
To use one of these built-in templates to create a new presentation, follow these steps:
In the left side of the New Presentation window, click Installed Templates.
Several template thumbnails appear in the middle of the New Presentation window.
Click a template to select it.
A larger version of the template appears in the preview area (the right side) of the New Presentation window.
The New Presentation window disappears, and you see a new presentation file based on the template you selected. Figure 1-4 shows you an example.
Instead of clicking a template and then clicking Create, you can save a step by simply double-clicking the template.
Each time you create your own template ( Section 1.9 ) or download a template from Microsoftâs Web site ( Section 126.96.36.199 ), PowerPoint automatically stores the template in a special directory on your computer similar to this one: C:\Documents and Settings\[Your Name]\Application Date\Microsoft\Templates .
PowerPoint controls where you store the templates you download from Microsoftâs Office Online Web site, and it suggests where to store the templates you create from scratch. But if you bypass Microsoftâs Office Online Web site and download a template from another Web siteâor if you override PowerPointâs suggestion of where to store a template you create from scratchâthen you wonât be able to reuse these rogue templates using the steps described in this section. Instead, you want to follow the steps you find on Section 188.8.131.52 for creating a new presentation from an existing presentation file.
To use one of these templates to create a new presentation, follow these steps:
On the left side of the New Presentation window, click âMy templates.â
The New Presentation window vanishes, and the New Presentation dialog box shown in Figure 1-5 appears.
In the New Presentation dialog box, select the template you want to use and click OK.
The New Presentation dialog box disappears, and PowerPoint displays a new presentation file based on the template you selected.
Although lots of Web sites offer PowerPoint templates for download, you should check Microsoftâs Office Online Web site first for a couple of reasons. One, Microsoftâs templates are free; and two, checking Microsoftâs site is one-click easy, as described next.
Because Microsoft lets its customers upload templates willy-nilly, the quantity and quality of the templates you find on its site can vary widely. Figure 1-6 shows how to weed out customer-submitted templates, leaving only those designed by official Microsofties.
On the left side of the New Presentation window, under Microsoft Office Online, choose the type of template youâre looking for, such as Brochures or Content Slides.
Template thumbnails appear in the center of the New Presentation window ( Figure 1-6 ).
Click a template thumbnail to select it; then click Download.
A validation message box appears, letting you know that Microsoft is gearing up to check your copy of PowerPoint to make sure itâs not bootlegged. (If Microsoft doesnât find a legitimately purchased copy of PowerPoint on your computer, then you wonât be able to download templates.)
In the validation message box, click Continue.
Microsoft checks out your copy of PowerPoint. If it passes muster, a Downloading Template message appears briefly, after which PowerPoint displays a new presentation file based on the template you selected.
The rest of this chapter shows you how to add text and change the look of your newly created presentation.
Earlier versions of PowerPoint let you customize your presentations using design templates and color schemes .
But in PowerPoint 2007, your customization choices have changed: now youâre working with templates and themes .
Templates in PowerPoint 2007 are similar to the design templates found in pre-2007 versions. A template is any presentation you plan to reuse. You tell PowerPointâand remind yourself and your coworkersâthat you plan to reuse it by saving it in the special template file format, .potx. Templates typically define custom slide layouts and, in some cases, generic content. Every template has a theme.
Themes in PowerPoint 2007 are more accurately referred to as Office Themes, since you can use the same .thmx theme files in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel as you can in PowerPoint. A theme tells PowerPoint what color to use for your slidesâ titles, subtitles, body text, background, and so forth. It also describes which fonts and graphic effects to use; for example, some themes automatically add shadows to title text and blurring to the shapes you add to your slides.
From an existing (built-in) theme
If you know which theme you want to apply to the new presentation youâre creating, then you can save a click or two by applying it when you create the presentation file. (The alternative is to create the presentation file and then apply the theme, as described on Section 1.2 .)
PowerPoint only lets you apply PowerPoint-supplied themes when you create a presentation. If youâve created your own theme or downloaded one from the Web, then you need to create your presentation first and then apply the theme (see Section 1.2 ).
To create a new presentation based on one of the themes that comes with PowerPoint:
On the left side of the New Presentation window, click Installed Themes.
Several theme thumbnails appear in the middle of the New Presentation window.
Click a theme to select it.
A larger version of the theme appears in the preview area (the right side) of the New Presentation window.
The New Presentation window disappears and you see a new presentation based on the theme you selected. Figure 1-7 shows you an example.
Instead of clicking a theme and then clicking Create, you can save a step by simply double-clicking the theme.
From an existing presentation
If youâve already got a presentation on your computerâcreated in any version of PowerPointâthen you can load that presentation into PowerPoint 2007 and use it as the basis of a new presentation.
Youâve got two options for loading an existing presentation: the Existing Presentation window, which is a good choice if youâve never used PowerPoint before; and the Open window, which is handy if youâre familiar with PowerPoint.
A third, quickie alternative exists for creating a new presentation from an existing oneâbut this alternative works only if youâve recently edited the existing presentation. To try it out, click the Office button and then, from the list of Recent Documents that appears, choose an existing document. After PowerPoint opens the document, immediately save it (Office button â Save As) with a different name.
The New from Existing Presentation window
If youâre new to PowerPoint, then youâll appreciate the New from Existing Presentation window, which simplifies the process of opening an existing presentation. And unlike using the Open window, using the New from Existing Presentation window automatically generates a new file name, so you donât have to worry about accidentally overwriting your original presentation.
To create a presentation using the New from Existing Presentation window:
Click âNew from existing.â
The New from Existing Presentation window appears.
Select the file you want to open, as described in Figure 1-8 , and then click Create New.
The New from Existing Presentation window disappears, and the presentation you selected appears in your PowerPoint workspace. PowerPoint gives the presentation a new, generic name (PowerPoint2, PowerPoint3, and so on) to remind you to rename the file before you save it. ( Section 1.8 shows you how to rename files.)
Creating a new presentation from an old one is very similar to creating a new presentation from a template, as you saw on Section 1.1.2 .
The Open window
The Open window gives you more options for opening an existing presentation than the New from Existing window does. Youâll find these options useful in certain situations, such as when you want to protect an existing presentation by opening it in read-only mode, read through all the slides to make sure itâs the one you want, and then save a copy.
To open an existing presentation using the Open window:
Choose Office button â Open (or press Ctrl+O).
The Open window shown in Figure 1-9 appears.
Select the file you want to open, either by clicking the folder icons you see on the left side of the window, or by clicking the âLook inâ drop-down menu. When the PowerPoint file youâre looking for appears in the list, click it to select it.
To see a preview of each file on the right side of the Open window as you select it, click the Open windowâs Views icon ( Figure 1-9 ) and select Preview.
Choose one of the following options:
Open. Opens the selected file.
Open â Open Read-Only . Opens a protected version of the file that lets you make changes to the presentation, but doesnât let you save them unless you specify a new filename.
Open â Open as Copy. Opens the presentation file, but renames it Copy(1)filename.pptx .
Open â Open in Browser. Opens the selected HTML file in Internet Explorer (or your default browser).
Open â Open and Repair. Tells PowerPoint to fix a corrupted file before it tries to open it.
The file you selected appears in your PowerPoint workspace.
Choosing a Theme for Your Presentation
No matter which approach you use to create a presentationâfrom scratch, from an existing presentation, from a template, or from a built-in themeâonce you have a presentation, you can change how it looks in one fell swoop by changing its theme .
A theme is a collection of characteristics including colors, fonts, and graphic effects (such as whether the shapes you add to your slides have drop shadows). For example, applying the built-in Deluxe theme turns your background a tasteful shade of blue and displays your title text (which appears in the Corbel font) in an attractively contrasting, gently shadowed shade of yellowâall thanks to the theme.
You can change all of these characteristics individually, of course, as youâll see in Chapter 3 . But applying themes gives you more bang for your buck in several important ways:
Using themes is quicker than changing individual settings one at a time. Applying a theme is a two-click proposition. Changing the dozen-plus settings controlled by a theme would exercise your click finger a lot more than that. And themes save you time youâd otherwise spend figuring out which colors look good together.
Using themes helps ensure a decent-looking, readable slide . Consistency is an important design principle: it sets the tone for your presentation and lets your audience focus on your message. When you change settings manually, you can end up with a distracting mishmash of colors and fonts on a single slide or across slides. Not so with themes. Once you apply a theme, the theme takes control of your settings. If you change the background color of your slides, then the theme automatically changes the title and subtitle fonts to compatible colorsâcolors that arenât just readable against your new background, but attractive, too.
You can change the color scheme, fonts, effects, background, and layering order for any given theme without âbreakingâ the theme. For example, if you change the subtitle color from white to black, then PowerPoint automatically adjusts the background color and other settings so that your subtitle text is still readable. But you can also override theme settings. Section 3.2.4 shows you how.
Using themes lets you create a consistent look and feel across Microsoft Office-produced materials. You can use the same themes you use in PowerPoint in Word and Excel, too. Thatâs handy if you use Microsoft Office to produce multimedia presentations: no more Arial 12 spreadsheets paired with Baskerville 10 reports and purple Helvetica PowerPoint slides. When you apply the same theme to your Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint slides, you end up with a consistently presented, harmonious whole.
Hereâs how to apply a theme to a PowerPoint presentation:
Click the Design tab.
The Design ribbon appears, complete with a Theme gallery ( Figure 1-10 ). (For more on PowerPoint 2007âs new ribbons, check out Section 3.2 .)
Click the More icon at the bottom-right corner of the Themes section ( Figure 1-10 ).
Additional themes appear in the gallery, as shown in Figure 1-11 .
Mouse over the themes in the gallery one by one.
PowerPoint previews each theme as you mouse over it ( Figure 1-12 ) so you can get an idea of how each will look applied to your presentationâs content and layout.
If you mouse over a theme and PowerPoint doesnât immediately preview it on your slide, wait a few seconds: the process is quick, but itâs not instantaneous.
PowerPoint applies the selected theme to all of the existing slides in your presentation, as well as all the new slides you create.
In addition to letting you apply a theme to all the slides in your slideshowâwhich is normally what you want to do, and whatâs described in this sectionâPowerPoint lets you apply a theme to only selected slides. Applying more than one theme to a slideshow is useful when youâre creating a distinct before-and-after presentation or other multi-section slideshow and want each section to look distinct. For details, check out Chapter 4 .
Youâll want to add at least some text to most, if not all, PowerPoint presentations you create. (See the box for advice on how much prose to add to your presentation.) Knowing that, the PowerPoint designers made it easy for you to add text to your slides. The following sections show you how.
Adding Text to an Existing Text Box
When you start to work with a new presentation, the ribbon displays the Home tab, which should look somewhat familiar if youâve used PowerPoint 2003 ( Figure 1-13 ).
Blank presentations come complete with title and subtitle placeholder text boxes. To replace the placeholder text in either of these two text boxes with your own text, simply click inside the placeholder and begin typing. When you do, two things happen:
PowerPoint displays the Drawing Tools | Format tab and, on the Home ribbon, activates many of the text formatting options ( Figure 1-14 ). You can use these options to change the font, size, and color of your text, turn your text into a right-justified paragraph or a bullet point, and much more. ( Chapter 3 describes your options in detail.)
Resize and transform handles appear at the corners and edges of the text box ( Figure 1-14 ). Tiny white resize handles , which are square on the edges of the text box and circular on the corners, let you stretch or shrink your text box by dragging them. The circular green transform handle appears above the top of your text box and lets you tilt it. Drag the handles to tilt or resize your text box.
Adding a New Text Box
Youâre not limited to the placeholder text boxes PowerPoint starts you off with: you can add as many additional text boxes to your slides as you like.
Chapter 3 shows you how to format text boxes, as well as the text inside them. Chapter 5 shows you how to add placeholder text boxes to slide masters.
There are two schools of thought when it comes to using text in PowerPoint presentations. One says text is king; the other advises PowerPointers to use as little text as possible. Hereâs the rationale for each approach:
Text rulesâalways has, always will. According to the more-bullets-the-better crowd, a presentation is text. Period. Itâs how we think, itâs what weâre used to, and it helps us organize our thoughts, reactions, and questions. Folks who subscribe to this approach may quibble about the number of words an effective bullet point should be limited to (the number five comes up a lot), and whether to put the most important bullets at the beginning of the presentation or at the end; but the focus is always on howânot whetherâto use text.
Text distracts. The other school of thought is that it is nearly impossible for audiences to read more than a couple of words on a slide, even if theyâre sitting up front and wearing their glasses. And if your audience does read your slides, that means they are busy reading and forming opinions instead of paying attention to the actual presentation (which is you ). According to these folks, using a lot of text results in lazily constructed, ineffective, and boring brain-dumps-disguised-as-presentations. These folks believe the best use of PowerPoint is carefully chosen charts, graphs, and worth-a-thousand-word pictures. The theory is that pictures pique your audienceâs curiosity without satisfying it: your audience has to listen to you for explanation and clarification. (And you can always give them handouts containing those all-important bullet points after the show, if you must.)
So which approach should you take? It depends. In a perfect world, youâd have time to find or create super-compelling graphics and animations that beautifully complement your presentation. Youâd deliver the message of your presentation by engaging your audience with your wit, knowledge, body language, and persuasive powers. Youâd use text sparingly and appropriately: to pose questions (which youâd answer in your talk) and to hammer home main points.
But not everyoneâs comfortable with this freewheeling presentation style. Plus itâs a lot more work (which explains why most of the PowerPoint presentations youâve sat through in your life have been riddled with bullet points). And in some casesâacademic lectures, for exampleâusing text as a springboard for discussion and audience note-taking just makes more sense.
Ultimately, you get to make the call. As long as you choose an approach that supports your presentation goals, youâre golden.
To add a new text box to a slide:
Click the Insert tab.
The Insert ribbon ( Figure 1-15 ) appears.
On the Insert ribbon, click Text Box.
In the status bar at the bottom of the screen, PowerPoint displays a helpful hint (âClick and drag to insert a text boxâ). When you mouse over your slide, you notice that your cursor looks like a tiny down arrow.
On the slide, click where you want your new text box to appear.
A text box appears with the cursor handily positioned inside ( Figure 1-16 ). The Drawing Tools | Format tab pops up, and on the Home ribbon, PowerPoint activates most of the formatting options, ready for you to format your text.
Alternatively, you can click and drag to draw the outline of your text box before you begin typing. Itâs another step, but itâll help you get an idea of how much space your text will take up on your slide before you actually type it in.
Type your text.
The text box expands automatically to accommodate your text.
In addition to adding text directly to your slides, as shown here, you can also paste or type text onto shapes (for example, a Stop sign). Chapter 9 shows you how.
If you choose to include text in your presentation, then keep these tips in mind:
Distill. Your audienceâs eyes will glaze over if you hit them with a barrage of text on every slide, so you want to distill your message into as few words as possible. (Three to six bullets and a dozen or so words per slide is a good guideline.) In other words, reserve text for the few salient points you want your audience to take home with them. When you need back-up documentation, examples, supporting facts and figures, and so on, distribute hard-copy handoutsâdonât try to cram the information onto your slides.
Carefully consider word placement . The Space Shuttle Columbia disaster a few years back put PowerPoint in the limelight for a sobering reason: In a PowerPoint presentation delivered to NASA officials before the disaster, engineers mentioned the problem that, ultimately, contributed to the tragic breakup of the shuttle over Texas in 2003. But the crucial information was buried in an avalanche of bullet points near the end of a long presentation, and none of the decision-makers in the audience realized its significance. Your presentation may not address life-and-death issues, but you still want to reserve the first and last slides of your presentation for critical information.
Adding More Slides
When you create a new blank presentation, PowerPoint spots you one slide. But in most cases, youâll want your presentation to contain a lot more slides than that. Fortunately, adding a new slide is easy, as youâll see in the following sections.
PowerPoint gives you two options: adding a slide with layout identical to the current slide, and specifying a different slide layout. A slide layout is a description of what content appears where on a slide. For example, applying a Title Slide layout to a slide positions title and subtitle text placeholders near the middle of your slide, and nothing else. Applying a Title and Content layout positions a title text placeholder near the top of a slide, and an object placeholder beneath that.
To add a slide with a layout identical to the current slide:
Select any non-title slide.
PowerPoint doesnât automatically duplicate title slides for a pretty obvious reason: 99 percent of the time, you donât want two title slides in a single presentation.
For the one percent of the time when thatâs exactly what you want, add a slide, and then change the slideâs layout to Title Slide as shown on Section 4.1.1 .
Click the Home tab.
The ribbon you see in Figure 1-17 appears.
Click the New Slide button.
PowerPoint inserts a new slide after the current slide. If thatâs not what you want (for example, if you want to add a slide to the beginning of your presentation), then you can easily change the order of your slides. Section 5.2.3 shows you how.
PowerPoint gives you another way to add a new slide with a layout similar to the current slide. In the Slides pane (at the left side of your workspace, as shown in Figure 1-16 ), you can right-click the page after which you want to create a new slide. Then, from the menu that appears, select Duplicate.
To add a slide with a different layout:
On the Home ribbon, click the down-arrow next to New Slide.
A menu similar to the one you see in Figure 1-18 appears.
Click to select the slide layout you want. Your choices include Title Slide, Title and Content, Section Header, Two Content, Comparison, Title Only, Blank, Content with Caption, and Picture with Caption.
PowerPoint adds your new slide after the current slide.
To make an exact copy of the current slideâcontent and allâmake sure you have the slide selected in the Slides pane, and then press Ctrl+D.
Moving Around Inside a Presentation
Moving around your presentation when you only have one slide isnât much of an issue. But once you start adding slides, youâll want a way to hop quickly from your first slide to your last. Youâll also want to jump to specific slides in the middle of your presentation; for example, to tweak a particular slideâs layout, to add content, or to delete it.
PowerPoint gives you several ways to flip through your presentation. This section acquaints you with the easiest and most useful options: using your workspace scroll bar, using the View pane on the left side of the screen, and using the Home ribbonâs Find function.
Navigating with the Scroll Bar
In PowerPoint, you see a scroll bar on the right side of your workspace similar to the one in Figure 1-19 .
To scroll through your presentation, all you need to do is click the scroll bar and drag up (to scroll toward the beginning of your presentation) or down (to scroll toward the end). As you go, PowerPoint displays each slide in turn.
To flip forward (or back) through your presentation one slide at a time, click the Next Slide (or Previous Slide) arrow shown in Figure 1-19 .
Navigating with the Slides and Outline Tabs
Slides and Outline tabs are not views (they both appear in Normal view) but are tabs that let you see slide thumbnails or an outline of your slideshow, respectively, in the Slides ( Figure 1-20 ) or Outline ( Figure 1-21 ) pane.
PowerPoint assumes you want to use Slides view until you tell it otherwise. To change views, click the Outline tab shown in Figure 1-21 . To switch back to Slides view, click the Slides tab ( Figure 1-20 ).
If you donât see the View pane at all, select View â Normal (or click the Normal icon shown in Figure 1-20 ) to display it.
The View ribbon offers you a bunch of additional ways to view your presentation, including Slide Sorter ( Chapter 5 ) and Notes .
When youâve got a lot of slides and youâre looking for one containing a specific word or phrase, youâll want to bypass Views in favor of the Find function. Similar to the Find feature in other Windows programs, PowerPointâs Find function lets you search for specific words quickly and easily. Hereâs how to use it.
The Find dialog box appears ( Figure 1-22 ).
In the âFind whatâ box, type in the text you want to find (in Figure 1-22 , the text is marshmallow ).
If you like, you can click to turn on the âMatch caseâ checkbox (which tells PowerPoint to look for marshmallow but not Marshmallow, MARSHMALLOW , or MaRsHmAlLoW ) or the âFind whole words onlyâ checkbox (which tells PowerPoint to look for marshmallow but not chocolatemarshmallowgraham ). When you finish, click Find Next.
PowerPoint displays the slide containing your text. If it doesnât find a match, it shows this message: âPowerPoint has finished searching the presentation. The search item wasnât found.â
Adding Speaker Notes
Speaker notes are optional text notes you can type into PowerPoint. You can associate a separate speaker note with each slide of your presentation. Your audience canât see speaker notes, but you can. You may find speaker notes useful:
While youâre putting your presentation together. If you know you need to add a graphic to slide six and a couple of bullet points to slide 33, then you can jot down reminders to yourself in the Speaker Notes pane ( Figure 1-23 ). Then, before you put your presentation to bed, you can view your speaker notes and double-check that youâve caught everything.
While youâre delivering your presentation. You can set up your presentation so that your audience sees your slideshow on the screen while you see your notes (on your own computer monitor). Or, if youâre the tactile type, you may prefer to print out your speaker notes and keep them with you during your presentation.
Chapter 8 covers speaker notes in more detail.
To add speaker notes for a particular slide, click in the Speaker Notes pane ( Figure 1-23 ) and type away.
If you donât see the Speaker Notes pane, then click the Speaker Notes paneâs resize bar at the bottom of the workspace and drag upward, as shown in Figure 1-24 .
Creating and Printing Handouts
You donât have to do anything special to create handouts in PowerPoint. Thatâs because handouts in PowerPoint are nothing more than slides printed one or more to a page.
The value of handouts depends both on your presentation and your audience. If you think your audience will benefit from printouts of your slides, then by all means, go for it. Say, for example, that your presentation slides consist of graphic images accompanied by a few well-placed questions. What you want is a participatory, interactive presentation. Your audience should listen to you and jot down the answers to those questionsâand what better way to encourage this interaction than to pass out hard copies of each slide?
But for some presentations, slide printouts are pretty worthless. Instead, youâre going to want to give your audience printouts containing facts, figures, contact information, and other in-depth supporting information that you didnât have room for in your actual presentation.
One way to jump-start the process of creating truly useful handouts is to pull your PowerPoint presentation text into Word 2007 (assuming you have a copy installed on your computer). Using your presentation text as a starting point, you can add information until youâve built handouts your audience will actually take back to their homes and offices.
To pull your slides into a Word document, click Office button â Publish â Create Handouts in Microsoft Office Word.
To print handouts:
Select Office button â Print â Print Preview.
The Print Preview ribbon appears, and PowerPointâs best guess at how you want your handouts printed appears in the workspace.
You can change the way your handouts print on a presentation-by-presentation basis, as described in this section. But if you find yourself making the same changes time after time, then youâll want to customize PowerPointâs printing assumptions. Chapter 13 shows you how.
Click the âPrint whatâ drop-down box and then, from the menu that appears, choose how you want PowerPoint to print your handouts ( Figure 1-25 ).
PowerPoint redisplays the handouts preview based on your selection.
The familiar Print dialog box appears.
Chapter 8 , which shows you how to print your presentation, walks you through the Print dialog box step by step.
PowerPoint prints your handouts.
Click Close Print Preview ( Figure 1-25 ) to dismiss the Print Preview ribbon and return to your workspace.
Saving and Closing a Presentation
Lightning storms hit, coffee cups spill, and power cords work themselves out of walls (especially if you have a dog who likes to chase squeaky toys). After youâve created a new presentation file and spent some time working on it, youâll want to save it every so often so that when your system crashes, you can recover your work. And if youâre like most folks, youâll also want to save and close your presentation each time you wrap up a work session.
Saving and closing a PowerPoint presentation are both straightforward tasks. If youâre familiar with any other Windows programs, then youâll recognize most of the steps.
To save a newly created presentation:
Select Office button â Save.
The Save As dialog box appears ( Figure 1-26 ).
Alternatively, you can press Ctrl+S or click the Save button (the little diskette icon) that appears in the Quick Access toolbar.
Click the âSave inâ drop-down box to choose a directory to store your file in.
In the File name field, type a new name for your file.
Shoot for short, unique, and memorable; you donât want to have to spend a lot of time hunting for your file a week from now.
Click the âSave as Typeâ drop-down box to select a file format. (The box explains your options.) Most of the time, youâll choose the .pptx format.
The Save As dialog box disappears and PowerPoint saves the file in the format you specified.
You can set PowerPointâs AutoRecovery options so that the program saves your files automatically every few minutesâa boon for folks whose computers tend to crash frequently. Chapter 13 shows you how to customize PowerPointâs AutoRecovery options.
An easy way to save your presentation as a PowerPoint 2003 (or earlier) file is to select Office button â Save As â PowerPoint 97â2003 Format.
To close a presentation, simply select Office â Close. When you do, PowerPoint closes your presentation with no fanfare. If youâve never saved this particular file, however, a dialog box pops up asking you if you want to save the changes you made. Click Yes to display the Save As dialog box shown in Figure 1-26 and proceed as described above.
Running a Presentation
Chapter 7 shows you everything you need to know about setting up and running special types of presentations: for example, recording narration, hiding certain slides, and creating stand-alone presentations that run on kiosks.
But for running through a basic presentation on your very own computer, the process is simple:
Press F5 or click the Slideshow icon you see at the bottom of the screen, as shown in Figure 1-27 .
PowerPoint replaces your workspace with a full-screen version of your slideshow, beginning with the currently selected slide.
PowerPoint 2007 (and Office 2007 more generally) introduces a slew of new file types, complete with unfamiliar file extensions. The Introduction describes these file types in more detail, and Chapter 7 describes why youâd want to choose one over the other. But here they are, in a nutshell:
.pptx (PowerPoint 2007 presentation). Most of the time, you want to save your file in this format.
.potx (PowerPoint 2007 template). Lets you save a presentation as a reusable design template.
.potm (PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled design template). Lets programmers save a macro-filled presentation as a design template.
.ppsx (PowerPoint 2007 show). Lets you save this file as a PowerPoint show that folks can run using the PowerPoint viewer, as described in Chapter 7 .
.ppsm (PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled show). Lets programmers save a macro-filled presentation as a show.
.ppam (PowerPoint 2007 add-in). Lets programmers save presentations that actually add to PowerPointâs interface; see Chapter 13 .
.pptm (PowerPoint 2007 macro-enabled presentation). Lets programmers save presentations that contain VBA macros; see Chapter 14 .
.thmx (Microsoft Office Theme). Lets you save your presentation as a reusable collection of colors, fonts, and graphic effects so that you can apply it to another PowerPoint slideshow, Word document, or Excel spreadsheet.
.ppt (PowerPoint 2003âand earlierâpresentation). Lets you save your presentation in a form that folks running PowerPoint 2003 can edit.
In addition to .ppt, earlier versions of PowerPoint handled the following file types (PowerPoint 2007 handles them, too):
.pot (PowerPoint 2003âand earlierâdesign template). Lets programmers save a macro-filled presentation as a design template that folks running PowerPoint 2003 can edit and apply.
.pps (PowerPoint 2003âand earlierâshow). Lets you save a presentation as a show that folks can run using the PowerPoint viewer.
.ppa (PowerPoint 2003âand earlierâadd-in). Lets programmers save a macro-filled presentation as a design template that folks running PowerPoint 2003 can edit and apply.
.mht/.mhtml/.htm/.html (Web pages). Lets you save your slides as a series of Web pages.
.gif, .jpg, .png, .tif, .bmp, .wmf, .emf (Image files). Lets you save your slides as a series of image files.
rtf (Rich text format [word processing file]). Lets you save your slides as editable text.
Pressing Shift+F5 and clicking the Slideshow icon both tell PowerPoint to run your slideshow beginning at the current slide (not necessarily the first slide). To run your slideshow from the beginning, you have three choices: press F5, click the Slideshow icon, or select Slide Show â Start Slide Show â From Beginning.
Click the forward and backward arrows that appear at the bottom of the screen ( Figure 1-28 ) to step through your presentation. ( Figure 1-28 describes how to end the presentation before the last slide.)
After the last slide, PowerPoint displays a black screen containing the words âEnd of slide show, click to exit.â
Click anywhere on the screen (or press the Space bar or Enter).
PowerPoint returns you to your workspace.
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(Legacy) Microsoft PowerPoint 2007: Making your Presentation
Last updated Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, at 11:09 a.m.
This article is based on legacy software.
PowerPoint has many features that will help you give a smooth and professional presentation. This document will help you prepare your presentation by providing useful information and making you feel comfortable with your presentation.
Rehearsing is just as important as the work you put into creating your presentation. It is especially important if you have applied builds, transitions and/or other elements, and are working in the automatic advance mode because you will need to keep control of the timing of all these elements to prevent mistakes.
PowerPoint has a rehearsing feature that can time you while you practice your presentation. Each slide displays the number of seconds that elapses while that specific slide is displayed during the presentation.
Setting Up the Slide Show
Under Show type , select Presented by a speaker (full screen)
To rehearse using all of the slides in your presentation, in the Show slides section, select All To rehearse using only a range of slides, in the Show slides section, select From and specify the range
To manually advance the slides, in the Advance slides section, select Manually To have the slides advance automatically, under Advance slides , select Use timings , if present The Use timings option will automatically advance your slides according to the times you have preset.
Rehearsing the Slide Show
When you are rehearsing your slide show, the Rehearse Timings option allows you to rehearse your PowerPoint slide and/or record timings.
Rehearse your presentation
When you want to change slides click the mouse NOTES: After clicking to the next slide, PowerPoint automatically records the time spent on that slide. If you know the time you want to spend on each slide, in the Rehearsal dialog box, type the times. When you are finished, an alert box appears asking if you would like to record timing.
Working with Slide Timing
PowerPoint offers a number of options in regard to the timing of the slides in your presentation. You can assign timing manually, suppress it during a presentation, or remove it.
Assigning Slide Times Manually
Select the slide to which you want to manually assign a time
From the Animations tab, in the Transitions to This Slide group, under Advance Slide , select Automatically After NOTE: The option is selected if a checkmark appears before it.
In the Automatically after text box, type the amount of time that the slide should stay on the screen OR Use the nudge buttons to select the desired time
OPTIONAL: In order to have the option to manually advance your slides while the time recording is running, under Advance Slide , select On Mouse Click NOTES: The option is selected if a checkmark appears before it. Both Automatically after and On mouse click can be selected at once. This allows you to advance to the next slide before the pre-selected time is up.
Repeat steps 2-6 for each additional slide OR To apply this timing to all slides in the current presentation, click APPLY TO ALL
Suppressing Slide Timing During a Presentation
Depending on when and where you are giving your presentation, the timing you have set for your slides may not be appropriate. You can suppress the timing that you have set up without removing the timing.
In the Advance slides section, select Manually
Removing Slide Timing from Individual Slides
If you find that the timing you have set for a slide(s) is no longer appropriate, you can remove it.
Select the slide from which you want the time removed
From the Animations tab, in the Transitions to This Slide group, under Advance Slide , deselect Automatically After
Repeat steps 2-4 for each additional slide OR To apply this removal of timing to all slides, click APPLY TO ALL
When you create your presentation, it is best to embed the fonts in case the computer with which you actually present does not have all of the fonts you used. Embedding fonts will also enable you to avoid problems with bullet shape and helps make your presentation more portable. This can be done after your slides are already written. For more information, refer to Making Presentations Portable .
From the Tools pull-down list, select Save Options... The PowerPoint Options dialog box appears with the Save options displayed.
Select the desired option NOTES: Embed only the characters used in the presentation (best for reducing file size) is selected by default. To share the file or present on an unfamiliar computer, select Embed all characters (best for editing by other people).
Click OK The Save As dialog box reappears.
Using the Save in pull-down list, navigate to the desired save location
In the File name text box, type the presentation name
Showing Your Presentation
When you present your slide show, the slides will fill the entire computer screen. To start the show, follow the steps below:
Open the presentation
Verify that your presentation is set up to present as desired
Top Contributors in PowerPoint: John Korchok - Steve Rindsberg - Jim_ Gordon 👏 👏
October 9, 2023
Top Contributors in PowerPoint:
John Korchok - Steve Rindsberg - Jim_ Gordon 👏 👏
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Presentation mode in PowerPoint 2007
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As John mentions, a more detailed explanation than "can't be configured" would be helpful.
But to start, you can't use Presenter view (what you're after here) unless there's a projector or external monitor attached to the computer.
Then on the Slide Show tab, choose Set Up Slide show.
Put a checkmark next to "Show Presenter View".
If that's not available and/or if PPT doesn't give you the option of choosing which monitor to use, PPT doesn't think you have multiple monitors.
To fix that, it may be enough to press the Windows key + P then choose Extend.
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