by Geetesh Bajaj, September 6th 2011

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Geetesh BajajSo Much Happening

Sometimes, so much happens in such a short time -- you seem surrounded by happenings and events! Maybe, it's just one of those times:

Dave Paradi's What Annoys You About Bad PowerPoint Presentations survey is now live -- go ahead and choose what makes you mad about bad slides. You may also want to read an exclusive interview Dave did for us at What Annoys You About Bad PowerPoint Presentations?: Conversation with Dave Paradi.

Ellen Finkelstein announced the second season of her Outstanding Presentations Workshop -- we are very happy to be the webinar series' Media Partner. The entire series comprises 7 webinars starting on September 7th. The registration page lets you find out the time in your part of the world too -- and even if you cannot attend all the sessions, recordings will be available to registered attendees. Did I mention that the entire series is free! Read our exclusive interview with Ellen at Outstanding Presentations Workshop 2011: Conversation with Ellen Finkelstein.

Finally, I am about to travel halfway around the world to be present at the next season of Rick Altman's Presentation Summit. Indezine is one of the event sponsors, and I'll be active at the Help Center too at this month's Presentation Summit being held in Austin from September 18 to 22. Also read Rick's exclusive interview at Presentation Summit, Looking Back and Beyond: Conversation with Rick Altman.

The winners of the Ppted Gun Club Plaids giveaway we announced in the last issue are Miladee N Azur, Helen, Randy Henderson, Susan Heiskell, and Eli -- congratulations to all of you. Also do check out the feedback we received for the giveaway -- thanks to all of you for your kind words.

If you enjoyed reading some content on, please do like them on Facebook and other social platforms, click the Google +1 buttons on all these pages, and tweet them all so that you can share these joys with others -- and keep your feedback coming!

Cookie Cutters in PowerPoint

Cookie Cutter ShapesDid you want a table that was not a rectangle? Maybe a triangle or a trapezoid? Or even a simple circle?

Or let's talk beyond tables -- and ask: do you want your movie clip to play within a speech bubble shape?

Whatever wild shape fantasy you want to bring true in PowerPoint -- chances are you may be headed in the right direction using our cookie cutter techniques! Look at our Cookie Cutter Shapes tutorial.

Conversations and Interviews

Dean LaffanPowerPoint Alternatives: Guest Post by Dean Laffan

Recently on the Indezine's PowerPoint and Presenting Stuff Linkedin community someone started a thread with the question "What are some alternates to using Microsoft PowerPoint?" Various people chipped in with suggestions. But the question got me thinking ... and what follows is a short article stimulated by that discussion. Read the guest post.

Hermann NarezPictures in Slides: Conversation with Hermann Narez

Hermann Narez is a graphic designer for PhotoSpin, Inc., a royalty-free stock photo company. He currently heads up the Design Services department, develops and designs print, web, and e-marketing campaigns, and maintains brand consistency across multiple print, web, and e-marketing channels. In this conversation, Hermann discusses the importance of using pictures in slides. Read the conversation here.

Ellen Finkelstein7 Steps to Great Images: Conversation with Ellen Finkelstein

Ellen Finkelstein is a Microsoft PowerPoint MVP and author of several PowerPoint, Flash, and AutoCAD books. Her articles have appeared in numerous magazines, newsletters, and blogs. As a best-selling author, her books have sold over 300,000 copies and been translated into over 14 languages. In this conversation, Ellen talks about 7 Steps to Great Images, her new ebook. Read the conversation here.

Shirley LewisJewelBeat: Conversation with Shirley Lewis

Shirley Lewis is the Licensing Director at With over 10 years of experience in the music industry, specifically in music licensing for retail, Shirley has worked to license music for numerous Fortune 500 companies. A lover of all music, social media shy yet a computer nerd, Shirley Lewis onboard with the JewelBeat team is looking to change the landscape of music licensing, one $0.99 track at a time. In this conversation, Shirley discusses why and how you can use JewelBeat's music clips. Read the conversation here.

Jamie GarrochCirclify: Conversation with Jamie Garroch

Jamie Garroch, CEO of GMARK Ltd., founded the company in 2009 to provide presentation professionals with PowerPoint software, content and training. Jamie conceived the idea for the company's first product, ActivePrez from a non-linear presenting need and has recently added several other add-in products; MapPrez, SwiftPrez, Circlify and interactive maps. In this conversation, Jamie talks about Circlify, a PowerPoint add-in that makes drawing multiple shapes in a repeated pattern seem easy. Read the conversation here.

Circlify: The Indezine Review

PowerPoint makes a great drawing program -- however it is not too easy to duplicate content such as shapes, especially in a repeated pattern without summoning too many dialog boxes. However, tasks such as these can be made super simple -- probably more simple than even doing it in a dedicated drawing program using Circlify, a third party add-in for PowerPoint. Circlify lets you quickly create circular graphics and intricate illustrations for icons, logos, illustrations, etc. Read the Indezine review of Circlify.

PixSwap: The Indezine Review

While PowerPoint 2003 and previous versions provided you with an option to recolor your pictures easily, this option was removed in PowerPoint 2007 and also did not make it to the subsequent PowerPoint 2010. This was indeed one of the very cool options in PowerPoint and many long-time users were not too amused with its absence. Yes, if you have a copy of PowerPoint 2003 or an older version installed, you can easily still recolor the pictures in that version -- and then bring that content to any of the newer PowerPoint versions -- but doing that often can be cumbersome and boring -- especially now that PixSwap, a third-party PowerPoint add-in brings back the Recolor option to PowerPoint 2007 and 2010. Read the Indezine review of PixSwap.

Learn PowerPoint 2010: Working with Text

Text is an important part of any presentation -- and although too much text can be boring, a little text never harmed anyone. Especially if you position and format your text well -- here are some tutorials that will help you work better with text in PowerPoint 2010:

Selecting and Changing Text
Missing Mini Toolbar
Format Text Attributes within the Mini Toolbar
Move Text Boxes on a Slide
Text Box Autofit Options
Resize Text Boxes on a Slide
Text Layout Options
Internal Margin Options
Columns within Text Boxes

Shape EffectsLearn PowerPoint 2011 for Mac: Shape Effects

PowerPoint 2011 for the Mac finally catches up with the Windows versions of PowerPoint as far as Shape Effects are concerned -- these tutorials will get you started:

Shape Effects
Apply Shadow Effects to Shapes
Advanced Shadow Effect Options
Apply Reflection Effects to Shapes
Advanced Reflection Effect Options
Apply Glow Effects to Shapes
Advanced Glow Effect Options
Apply Bevel Effects to Shapes
Bevel (3-D Format) Options for Shapes
Apply 3-D Rotation Effects to Shapes
3-D Rotation Options For Shapes

Presentation Summit

I'll be attending the Presentation Summit this September in Austin, TX -- if you are there, do drop in at the Help Center to say hello. Want to attend? More info at the Presentation Summit site

The Annoying PowerPoint Survey 2011

Get goodies such as PowerPoint templates and clip art for Summer.

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PowerPoint and Presenting Stuff group on LinkedIn - Knowledge Series

More Content

Learn PowerPoint: Pictures and Visuals

Learn Microsoft SmartArt Graphics for PowerPoint 2007 and 2010

Office 2011 All-in-One for Mac for Dummies

Free PowerPoint Templates

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