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Tech Times | Goodbye, PowerPoint, hello, Prezi

Published:Saturday | June 3, 2017 | 12:00 AMDanielle Mullings
An example of how a slide can look.
Prezi allows you to zoom. Here I put a slide within the pencil.
All the content of your presentation is laid out on one big screen.

The first thing many persons think about when a presenter makes his or her way to the stage is, 'Oh great, here comes a PowerPoint.' It is, after all, the traditional means of delivering presentations. The question is, why don't more persons use Prezi, which has a wider range of functionality and compatibility?

To be clear, I am not saying that it is impossible to make a good presentation using PowerPoint. The main notion is that since the average audience member is overexposed to it, it has become somewhat outdated and overused.


What's the gist of Prezi?


Prezi's main idea is similar to that of a concept map. All the content of your presentation is laid out on one big screen, but different sections of it represents individual slides. Therefore, to move from one slide to another, the screen will zoom and glide in an aesthetically appealing manner.

This movement from slide to slide is called a path and you are able to edit it by placing slides in any position on the screen and changing the order in which they appear. This gives the audience a sense of cohesiveness by showing how the points relate. I believe this adds more organisation and structure to presentations.


Well, is it easy to use?


Initially, Prezi may scare a non-IT enthusiast with all its buttons and options, but when compared to PowerPoint, it is actually much easier to use. You are able to create a text box anywhere on the screen by simply double-clicking on your preferred area.

After doing so, you then select whether the text is for the title, subtitle or body, and select other formatting features like colour, font and size. All your slides, to the left of the screen, are laid out in chronological order while the big composition with all the slides takes up majority of the screen.


What types of media can I add to my Prezi?


You are able to:

- Add background music.

- Incorporate any YouTube or personal videos.

- Include pictures or gifs.

- Import PDFs. (Each page in a PDF is treated as an image, therefore, anything you can do with a picture can be done with a PDF.)

What if I have already made a PowerPoint and want to make a Prezi?

You are actually allowed to import a PowerPoint file straight into your Prezi and each page of the PowerPoint will become a slide in Prezi. You can then drag whichever slides you want to include into your Prezi presentation on to the big screen.


What else should I know?


1. When you are done creating your Prezi, you can then download it as a zip file (NB: This may take long if you include many graphics). When unzipped, this file will contain your presentation in two formats: one compatible with Mac computers and the other compatible with Windows computers. The significant point to note here is that your presentation is fully portable, so you are free to share your presentation and allow others to have access to it.

2. The portable download does not allow anyone, including you, to change the contents of the file, so you are the sole author.

3. Remember those YouTube videos you put in your Prezi? After downloading the Prezi file, you do not need any Internet to play this or any other content in your presentation.

4. There is an app for iOS and Android systems if you wish to edit your Prezi on your mobile device.