The ultimate projector
This column originally ran in ComputorEdge on September 15, 2000
When talking about using your computer for making slide-show presentations, you can't find a screen bigger than the Web. In it's ability to reach viewers for your presentation, the Web is unrivaled limited only by the number of connections your Web server can handle.
All four of the major presentation packages Microsoft's PowerPoint, Corel's Presentations, StarOffice's Impress and Lotus' Freelance.programs include filters for saving your files as HTML (Web) pages, allowing you to put them on the Web. Using Java and plug-ins to handle the animations and other special effects (fading from one frame to the next, having text slide onto a page or fade in), these programs allow you to put your presentations online in much the same format as they appear in their native environment.
PUTTING YOUR PRESENTATIONS ONLINE
PowerPoint 2000 is the current Windows version, and includes the latest Web-translation filters for turning your PowerPoint slide shows into Web pages.
(The Macintosh version of PowerPoint is still PowerPoint 98, and runs $399 as a standalone or is included in the Office suite.)
Also unlike PowerPoint, Presentations is available for Linux as part of the WordPerfect Office 2000 suite for Linux which is only $99 and includes Corel's Linux OS.
Corel seems to be the only one of these companies whose site includes links to folks who have used their slide show program to create online pages. I also created a little (one-page) test slide show in Presentations, and saved it to my Web site. By going to my site, you can get the Presentations Show It! plug-in for either Netscape or Explorer and see the kind of animations you can bring to your own slide shows.
When exporting to the Web, Impress uses Active Server and Perl scripts rather than Java, but its Web site (above) claims to achieve animation just as smooth as what Corel and Microsoft offer. StarOffice is available for Windows, Linux and Solaris (both Sparc and Intel).
© Copyright Jim Trageser
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