Dual monitors in Windows 7

How to Setup Dual Monitors in PowerPoint for Windows 7


 Using dual display in PowerPoint for Windows 7. Two monitors are better than one!

Windows 7 has some neat little enhancements, one of them being how it lets you handle dual monitors. If you’re adding a second monitor or projector to your Windows 7 laptop PC- especially if using PowerPoint’s Presenter View, it’s a breeze to configure.

There are actually two ways you can currently setup multiple monitors in Windows 7, either by using a keyboard shortcut or via the traditional system properties.

I really like the first method since it’s new and is way easier than having to go into the Control Panel or anything else.

Simply press the Windows key and P (Windows + P) to bring up a quick menu of options.

Dual monitors in Windows 7

Pretty neat! You can pick to show only the computer, make the second monitor a duplicate of the first, extend the desktop to the second monitor or turn off the first monitor and activate the second.

The second way is to right-click on the desktop and choose Screen Resolution.

Select screen resolution

Now you’ll see the familiar 1 and 2 to distinguish which monitor is which. There are several options and under Multiple Displays, you can choose from the same options as when you pressed Win + P.

Change appearance of your displays

That’s it! You can also change the orientation of the displays and change the resolution of each display. It’s pretty straight-forward in Windows 7 and a lot easier! Enjoy!

Working with Bitmap and Vector Graphics

Your presentation content is solid and now you’re ready for the graphic sizzle. Adding pictures in PowerPoint is relatively easy. But which pictures? And what formats? There are two fundamental types of computer graphic images: Bitmap and Vector.

In Bitmap graphics, an image is displayed on the screen as a collection of tiny squares called pixels, which together form a pattern. Bitmap images- sometimes called Raster images- are the most commonly used graphic type. Nearly all photographs and images on the internet are Bitmaps. Here are some hallmarks of bitmap graphics:

  • File size is dependent on: Data x Resolution (pixel dimensions) x Bit Depth (number of colors per pixel)…as well as the compression technique used to squeeze data together.
  • All bitmaps are rectangular and respond relatively the same way.
  • Bitmap file formats include TIF, BMP, GIF, JPG. The difference in formats is usually seen in the file sizes.
  • Common Bitmap programs include: Photoshop, Corel Paint, Painter, Photo Impact, Windows Paint.

The second type of graphics- Vector graphics- are a way of representing pictures by designating coordinates and drawing lines or geometric shapes in relation to them. In vector graphics, the image is saved as a file containing instructions for drawing it, as opposed to Bitmap graphics in which an image is stored as a collection of pixels. One advantage of vector graphics over bitmap graphics is that a picture can be enlarged or reduced without losing quality. Vector graphics are most commonly seen in clip art, fonts and logos. Macromedia’s Flash is a program that extensively uses Vector format graphics on web sites. Other hallmarks of Vector graphics include:

  • Small file sizes.
  • Files are resolution and bit-depth independent.
  • They can be any shape, as opposed to the rectangular dimensions.
  • Vector file formats include WMF, EPS, AI.
  • Common Vector programs include: Freehand, Illustrator, Corel Draw.

Knowing the difference between these file formats can give your presentation a more professional look, reduce its file size, and enhance its playback efficiency.

Weller Pools - Before and After Slide

Winning a Big Contract with PowerPoint: Weller Pools


The inside story of how Weller Pools won a giant contract by transforming their basic PowerPoint presentation into a dynamic visual masterpiece.

Weller Pools - Before and After SlideLogo-Weller-PoolsWeller Pools has been in the aquatic construction industry for over 35 years, creating some of the country’s best known and loved swimming pools and water parks. However, their PowerPoint presentations didn’t match up to the standards of their pools!

So in February, 2010 the Orlando-based aquatic developer turned to The Presentation Team to help them improve their PowerPoint presentation to win the business of a Florida-based preparatory school. The key objective of the presentation was to effectively communicate the advantages of the Myrtha Pool Technology, a cutting-edge material that is being used in many new swimming pools.

Weller Pool’s existing 38-page PowerPoint was heavy on text/bullet points and lacked a consistent look-and-feel. Weller had a limited budget and short time-frame, so they enaged The Presentation Team using the “Enhanced Presentation Package”, a quick and easy approach to transform a basic PowerPoint into a get-noticed masterpiece.

Weller was presenting to a small audience of five people. The visual design needed to be bold, graphical, yet easy-to-read.Our design strategy focused on creating a look-and-feel that reflected Weller Pool’s brand and identity, while involving elements of aquatics and technology. The six hour project involved…

  1. Development of a custom professional template (title and body masters), that reflected Weller’s company brand, while integrating their existing PowerPoint content.
  2. Re-working the overall look-and-feel of the presentation (colors, fonts, layout) for a more polished look.
  3. Clean and professional imagery/graphics (portfolio, schematics, people, concept art, etc.).
  4. Clutter-reducing techniques and presentation strategies to create a “cleaner” look with greater effectiveness.
  5. Clean and conservative slide transition effects (fades and wipe effect).
  6. Professional fonts/typography to ensure consistent playback on different computer systems.
  7. Consulting and collaboration to help Weller Pools to further develop and present new ideas.
Before1 PowerPoint-Presentation-Concept-Weller-Pools-After1

Before:
The original title page featured a flat white background with navy blue titles in Arial Narrow font…functional but ordinary! Logos of partner companies crowded the page, competing for prominence and viewing.This presentation design was good for printouts… but not for projection!

After:
Our makeover included development of a new high-tech blue water-drop image background template image (developed in Photoshop) in 16×9 aspect ratio. This widescreen format has become increasingly popular on monitors and laptops and conference room projectors. The body master template featured a flowing bottom arc image integrating colorful and dynamic photos of two of Weller Pool’s projects. Their partner company logo were offset to the right of the page, and the project was prominently featured in left-justified vertically centered on the page in 40-point Gil Sans Font.
Before2 After2
Before:
This original showcased the four-step process of Backfilling. The rectangular images were inconsistently sized and did not integrate any elements (typeface, logo or graphics) from the master template. “Backfilling Process” placed on the bottom conveyed the concept of an afterthought rather than a bold title.
After:
The revised slide maintained the four graphics, with a rounded diagonal corner picture style, to add depth and professionalism. By simply shrinking the photos 10%, the slide gained a level of breathing space, allowing the title to be repositioned at the top in a bold bright orange Gil Sans font, and the logo in a consistent bottom right placement.
Before4

After3

After4

After5

Before:
The presenter spoke for nearly two minutes on thissingle slide, which featured two images and three separate blocks of text competing for space. Additionally, the details of the water activity park photo were small and difficult to see.

After:
To help the speaker express his message more graphically, we “spanned” the single slide across three slides, expanding the image size to fill the page, and giving the audience a more immersive and visual experience…all within the same two minutes. The three graphics were all the same size, perfectly positioned so they did not jump as the speaker flipped pages.

Before6 After6
Before:
The cost savings of Myrtha is clear and well-documented. But presenting the information in a green and red bar chart incurred images of Christmas! And all too often, red is information. The textwas overwhelming and small, and the costkey message was diffused.
After:
To more effectively communicate the cost savings of Myrtha, we reduced the scale of the bar chart, allowing more space on the top and bottom. The colors were revised to two shades of blue, and the cost savings were posted above the bars as separate text elements (not within the bar chart) more prominently at 28 points.

After just four days and three rounds of edits, the presentation looked great! Weller Pools executives rehearsed and refined their delivery with presentation skills coach David Greenberg….then presented to their audience…and won the job! Weller Pools now has a winning presentation and great presentation skills presentation thanks in part to the experts at The Presentation Team!

KM Plaza Logo

Winning a Construction Project through a Powerful Presentation


Dynamic PowerPoint presentation helps construction company KM/Plaza to win large construction contract. 

KM Plaza Logo

Clear and concise content, dynamic yet clean visuals, and powerful presentation coaching play role in success.

KM/Plaza is a Miami-based construction firm. Since 1995, KM/Plaza’s buildings have helped to shape the skyline of South Florida.  In October 2009 the firm was shortlisted as a presenter with the goal of winning the business of a Miami-based law firm for the interior design/construction of their 4-floor office complex. 

So KM/Plaza turned to The Presentation Team to create a dynamic presentation with a focus on clear and concise content, dynamic yet clean visuals, and powerful presentation coaching to ensure the message was well communicated.

Presentation Thumbnails for KM Plaza

We sharted the project by dividing our workload between Content and Graphics.  Our Content consulting focused on refining the message and writing a clear definied outline.   This collaborative content consulting helped KM Plaza and its team to further define and present new ideas…now in use in its website and other marketing material.  Key messages…short and succinct…supported by visuals.

Creating the supporting visuals started by developing a professional template (title and body masters) that reflected KM/Plaza’s professionalism and brand/identity, while integrating elements of construction, commerce, and community…all with the intention of getting noticed and standing out from the competition.  As part of our design, we worked to include…

  1. Clean and professional imagery/graphics (portfolio, schematics, people, concept art, etc.), eliminating white backgrounds on scanned art and charts to create a transparent and open look.
  2. Clutter-reducing techniques and presentation strategies to create a “cleaner” look with greater effectiveness.
  3. Clean and conservative slide transition effects (fades and wipe effect).
  4. High-impact stock graphics based on the presentation’s content to improve the presentation’s impact.
  5. A Gil Sans font in forest green and integrated other common professional fonts/typography to ensure consistent playback on different computer systems. 
Before After
BeforePowerPoint-Presentation-Sample-KM-Plaza-Before1 PowerPoint-Presentation-Sample-KM-Plaza-After1
KM/Plaza’s original PowerPoint presentation featured an emotionless stark black background with flat white text in all capitalized letters in Centruy Gothic font.  Our makeover involved the creation of a vibrant template (1920×1200 featuring a flowing arc of construction-related images set against a light textured/dimensional background.  The arc was created in Adobe Photoshop and imported as a PNG image.  On the title master, the arc appeared in full color; on many of the body slides (without graphics) the arc was green.
PowerPoint-Presentation-Sample-KM-Plaza-After2 To showcase the KM/Plaza’s financial strength, we imported a financial-themed photo with the key message short and succinct.  The takeaway point of “$1 Billion” was enlarged to 34 point Gil Sans Font, creating emphasis from the rest of the 26 point sentence.
KM Plaza interior design projects Google’s Picasa software helped us to create a full-screen montage of some of KM/Plaza’s projects easily and quickly. The graphic was exported at 1920×1200 and set as a background image for the slide (as opposed to importing it as a graphic).  This allowed the image to stay fixed on the page and the slide’s key message (showcasing their quantity of work) in a bold non-obtrusive font in PowerPoint.
PowerPoint-Presentation-Sample-KM-Plaza-After3 PowerPoint’s Smart Art helped to provide a simple high-level outline of the project’s key developers.  The org chart was developed in forest green with inverse type at 18 points, providing a sharp contrast and maximum impact.  By keeping the org chart under eight names (and 4 levels), the slide conveyed a subtle message of simplicity and working transparency…all benefits to the client.
PowerPoint-Presentation-Sample-Slide-KM-Plaza-After4

Reference letters are terrrific tools to add a level of credibility to your presentation.  To maximize the impact of this lengthy 3 paragraph reference letter to KM/Plaza, we typed in one powerful sentence in 48-point Gil Sans font with outline and glow effect in PowerPoint, and set it against a scan of the actual reference letter.  This showed the real letter…highlighted the client’s logo…and communicated the key point!

Thanks to the technology of PowerPoint supported by well-communicated strategies, quotes, and financials, the client recognized the superiority of KM/Plaza and selected them for the project.  Another presentation success story thanks to great graphics from The Presentation Team!

Using slide builds to convey complex information

Have you ever looked at a presentation and just felt…overwhelmed? So much stuff all crammed into a tiny little screen! Don’t get scared! Get constructive…with slide builds. Electronic presentations- including PowerPoint- give presenters the ability to bring in key pieces of information one bit at a time. More than just making the slide easier on the eyes, studies show that audiences remember information better when it is introduced progressively.

Creating a slide build is like working backwards. It can be done very quickly in just a few steps:

  1. To start, you should have your final build image completed.
  2. Copy and paste your final build slide for each step of the build. This way, all the items remain fixed in the same location and do not jump on screen when you’re moving through the build.
  3. Working backwards from the final image, delete the elements that you do not want to appear, or that will be appearing on future slides. Each progressively earlier slide will have fewer and fewer items (more deleted elements).
  4. Add slide transitions to each of the slides for a more professional entry. Wipes and dissolves work better than other flashy transitions, which can often interfere with the illusion of the slide build.

Slide Build

There are more advanced techniques within PowerPoint (custom animation) to bring individual elements on screen one at a time, eliminating the need for full page duplication  but this method is a surefire way to quickly and easily enhance your complex information.

You can achieve the same effect using full screen Photoshop images (above), by saving each step of the build as separate images and importing them into PowerPoint. Or, conversely, you can duplicate the image several times and crop out the part that you don’t want to see on the early build slides.

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  • “We engaged The Presentation Team to do a Presentation training for our team and he did a great job. He spent time understanding our requirements and the skill level of our team members and created a course which met our expectations and goals. I highly recommend The Presentation Team as a Presentation (PowerPoint) trainer.”

    Navdeep Sidhu
    Senior Director, Software AG

  • “Kevin Lerner provided best-in-class services when hired to work on promotional materials for the launch of a key product at Motorola. The expertise and quality that he brought to the project were second to none and as a result, he delivered a top-notch presentation that was quickly adopted throughout the organization. Kevin is great to work with, delivers on time, is a great team player and is always willing to go the extra mile.”

    Maria Cardoso
    Motorola

  • “Kevin has been a working with Cox Communications to deliver world-class PowerPoint presentation visuals since 2009. His ability to meet our specific needs, timeframe, and budgets has been exceptional. His professional interaction with our team reflects his deep expertise in the industry, superior presentation design skills, and commitment to superior service.”

    Jonathan Freeland
    VP, Video Marketing at Cox Communications

  • “Kevin is an enthusiastic, creative, and passionate presentation guru. Our company was impressed and felt the value of his training in 2013 that he was invited again recently to again share his knowledge. Both times he has been energetic and addressed many areas for presentation development. From planning to follow-up Kevin is personable and easygoing, motivating our teams to take their presentations to the next level.”

    Yoshimi Kawashima
    Project Coordinator, Nissin International

  • “Kevin helped me immensely improve my presentation slides development, from tips & tricks to aesthetics, all with the intent of getting the message across crisply and creatively. I’ve already received praise for decks that incorporate the skills obtained from his training. I highly recommend Kevin’s services.”

    Era Prakash
    General Electric

  • “Kevin helped me immensely improve my presentation slides development, from “The PowerPresentations seminar opened my eyes to all the limitless possibilities in presenting.”

    Leah Gordillo
    Saint Francis Medical Center

  • “Kevin helped me immensely improve my presentation slides development, from “[Kevin and The Presentation Team have] always delivered 110% in terms of meeting our objectives for finished product and budget”

    Paul Price
    Watsco Corp.

  • “I had more people come up to me after I spoke, commenting on the visuals you created, than I did on the subject matter!”

    Andy Smith
    Smith & Robb Advertising

  • “As a Fortune 1000 company, we sought to produce a classy, yet conservative presentation for our shareholders. It was evident that you and your team listened to our thoughts as you developed the presentation…”

    Will Flower
    Republic Services

  • “Your expertise in the filed of PowerPoint and general presentation techniques helped elevate us to the level necessary to beat the competition.”

    Mike Geary
    James Pirtle Construction

  • “Kevin brought a high level of creativity, enthusiasm, and deep multmedia experience to our team. He worked dillegently with the team to produce an outstanding proposal which we subsequently won.

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