PowerPoint 2010- New Features you probably don’t know about

1. SDI PowerPoint 2010 finally has a true Single Document Interface. That means that if you have more than one PPT file open, each one has its own window and Ribbon. This makes working on multiple monitors, for example, much, much easier – you can put one file on each monitor and the editing tools will be right there for each one.

2. Customize Ribbon We can now customize the Ribbon. Yay! You can add custom groups to the existing tabs on the Ribbon and then add commands to the custom groups. You can also make your own tabs. This is Office-wide, not just PowerPoint.

3. Sections These let you add sections to your files. You can name them, collapse them, move them around, etc. Sure makes collaboration much easier.

4. Smart Guides These look like little whiskers that appear when you’re dragging objects around on the slide to align them. Flash has had them for years – I’m excited that PPT finally does, too!

5. Lorem Ipsum Text If you make templates and sample slides like I do, this tip will be handy: type =lorem() in the placeholder, and you’ll get Lorem Ipsum text! (This is dummy text used to so the viewer can concentrate on the formatting and not be distracted by the text.)

I’m taking credit for this feature! Seriously, I asked for it a few times (since Word’s had it forever) and one of the developers must have finally taken pity on me.

6. Dynamic Paste with Live Preview Instead of getting a Paste button on the right-click menu (or on the Paste button dropdown from the Ribbon), you now get a variety of Paste options with Live Preview (so you can see what that paste option will do) as you hover over each. Problem is, they’re not labeled with text, and it takes a long time to start figuring out which icon represents what. This is an Office-wide feature, not just PowerPoint.

7. Reading View Plays presentation in a window. Easy way to check animations quickly. And because PowerPoint 2010 is SDI, Reading View gives you an easy way to run multiple slide shows in individual windows.

8. Automatic Automatic Layout If you have an empty content placeholder available when you Insert | Chart, the chart is automatically inserted into that placeholder. Actually, it’s not just charts, it’s almost anything – tables, charts, SmartArt, pictures, clipart, video and sound (media) – anything that has an icon in that content placeholder! I hate hate hate this, and I don’t know how to turn it off. (Actually, PPT 2007 has the same behavior.)

9. Backstage This is the name for the gazillions of options that appear when you click the File button. Lots of new stuff here, not all of it is easy to find.

10. Save Unsaved Documents PowerPoint 2010 saves your files even if you close the file without saving it. Manage Versions lets you recover these. Don’t be fooled – this is not a substitute for properly saving your files!

11. Accessibility Checker Found under File | Info | Check for Issues, this is a great tool that gives you advice for making your specific file easier for people with disabilities to read.

12. Dynamic Print Preview File | Print now has an awesome integrated print preview. Unfortunately the Print dialog itself sucks. All the various options (scale to fit paper, high quality, etc.) are buried in the dropdowns, and the Print button is at the top left.

13. Print Overflow Speaker Notes Ever have speaker notes that just go on and on for pages? Now those overflow notes will print! Seriously – just type a bunch of text in the notes area (first make sure to go to File | Options | Proofing | AutoCorrect Options and turn off Autofit Body Text to Placeholder) until it falls off the end of the page. Now choose File | Print and look at that slide and the next one in the preview on the right. (You can use the Lipsum text tip to get a bunch of text in there quickly!)

14. Send to Word in Black and White It’s back! Woohoo!

First go to View | Black and White (or Grayscale) so you’re in Black and White View.

Then go to File | Save & Send | Create Handouts | Create Handouts to perform what used to be called Send to Word.

In the Send to Word dialog box, choose Paste Link, and if you’re in Black and White View when you perform this task, the slide thumbnails will be in black and white in Word.

Break the links in Word to maintain the black-and-white images. To break the links, right-click a slide thumbnail in Word and choose Linked Slide Object | Links. Select all the links in the dialog and click the Break Link button.

This feature was available in PowerPoint 97 and 2000, but it did not work in PowerPoint 2002, 2003 and 2007. I’m very happy to have it back!

15. Save as Video Turn your presentation into a video with one click, complete with sounds, narration, animation, transitions, slide timings, etc. This is the feature we’ve been requesting for years!

16. Save to Web (SkyDrive) This lets you upload your file directly to SkyDrive, where you (or others who have access to your folder) can view it in a browser using the PowerPoint Web App. You can also do some minor editing in the Web App (or you can launch the file in PowerPoint itself and edit there).

17. Package for CD This is different than it used to be. Package for CD still gathers your presentations and linked files and lets you add more files to the CD, but it doesn’t include a Viewer any more. This is because the Viewer that supports 2010 PPTX-format files won’t run from a CD – it must actually be installed on the computer. The new HTML splash screen has a link so the recipient can easily download and install the Viewer.

18. Edit Links The Edit Links to Files option that shows up in File | Info when you have linked files in your presentation also includes multimedia links now. (You have to save the file before you’ll see the Edit Links option.)

19. Optimize Media Compatibility This tool adapts the encoding of embedded media to help improve playback quality on other machines. You will see File | Optimize Media Compatibility enabled only when there are non-optimized media objects embedded in the file. (It won’t be enabled for WMA, WMV or MIDI because those are already optimized. It also won’t be enabled for SWF files or Online Video because those cannot be embedded.)

20. Insert Screenshot Lets you insert a screenshot of an open Window or a screen clipping (where you select a portion of the window to copy).

21. Equation Editor has been improved. We’re now using the same one as Word.

22. New Themes There are a bunch of new themes, which also means we have a bunch of new color sets, font sets and effects sets to choose from on the Design tab.

23. New Transitions Tons of new transitions: Reveal, Flash, Ripple, Honeycomb, Glitter, Vortex, Shred, Switch, Flip, Gallery, Cube, Doors, Box, Pan, Ferris Wheel, Conveyor, Rotate, Window, Orbit, Fly Through.

24. Old Transitions Improved Even the old transitions look much better than they used to: Cut, Fade, Push, Wipe, Split, Random Bars, Shape, Uncover, Cover, Dissolve, Checkerboard, Blinds, Clock (Wheel).

25. Transition Duration We can now control transition duration by inputting a specific number of seconds duration – we’re no longer limited to slow, medium and fast.

26. Animation Painter Finally! We can apply animations from one object to another using the Animation Painter tool. (It works like the Format Painter, but for animations.)

27. Animation Effect Enhancements When you add an animation and then double-click it in the Animation Pane to access more Effect Options, well, these Effect Options are now more granular. We can now specify timings for a smooth start, smooth end and a bounce end on a Motion Path or a Fly In animation, for example.

28. Trigger to Bookmark This is actually very cool, but it’s not obvious. You can add a bookmark to video or sound on your slide. Then you can animate an object and set it to Trigger to Bookmark. This makes the animation occur when you come to that point in the video. Finally we can synch animations to the multimedia! It’s perfect for adding captions to video, for example. Find this on the Animations tab.

29. Insert Video from Online Site Easily insert online video from sites such as YouTube. (Note: this video is not embedded in the PowerPoint file. You must have an Internet connection during the presentation.)

30. Embedded Video Video can now be embedded! This includes WMV, MOV (yes, MOV!), AVI, MPEG, almost any video file type you can think of. (Note: SWF files can be inserted, but they cannot be embedded — they are linked. Online video is not embedded. MOV and SWF cannot be inserted into 64-bit PowerPoint because there is no 64-bit Flash Player.)

31. Embedded Audio Audio can now be embedded! This includes WAV, MP3, MIDI, WMA, MP4, M4a, almost any sound file type you can think of. (PowerPoint 2007 and prior would only embed WAV files.)

32. Show Media Controls Multimedia files now have a media control slider that appears when you move your mouse toward the video. This lets you move around easily in the video during your presentation. Turn this off or on on the Slide Show tab. The bad: this is a presentation-wide setting, so the media controls are either on or off for all videos in your file; you can’t set this for each individual video.

33. Bookmarks You can add bookmarks to the videos, further helping you jump around in the video using the Media Controls. See also Trigger to Bookmark.

34. Trim Video and Audio In-place editing: trim time off the beginning and end of a video or sound file.

35. Multimedia Fade In / Fade Out Tell PowerPoint to fade the audio or video file in or out. You no longer have to take the file to an outside editing program to do this.

36. Video Respects Z-Order This means video doesn’t always play on top anymore! You can put stuff on top of the video now – callouts, arrows, thought bubbles, slide content, whatever. This (coupled with Trigger to Bookmark) is perfect for captions.

37. Video Corrections, Brightness and Contrast Correct the brightness and contrast of the video right there on the slide.

38. Video Color Add a duotone color wash to your video.

39. Poster Frame Specify the video’s preview image.

40. Video Styles These are like the picture styles, but for video.

41. Video Shape Changes the shape of the video. Need the video to play inside a circular frame? No problem.

42. Video Effects Add effects like reflections and bevels and soft edges to your videos.

43. Video Crop Crop the video on the slide.

44. Compress Media The various editing options (trim, crop, etc.) are non-destructive. That is, the entire media clip is still there in the file. Use the Compress Media options to permanently delete the trimmed and cropped media information and make the PowerPoint file smaller. (Find Compress Media on the File menu.)

45. New SmartArt Diagrams There are a number of new SmartArt diagrams.

46. Convert SmartArt to Shapes You can ungroup SmartArt diagrams in PPT 2007 after applying SP2, but converting to shapes in 2010 is actually better because it retains the adjustment handles and “shape-ness.”

47. Convert SmartArt to Text We’ve always been able to convert text to SmartArt, but now we can go the other way.

48. Resize Individual SmartArt Shapes We’re no longer limited to sizing the entire SmartArt diagram using the size chunk on the Ribbon.

49. Remove Background New tool for pictures, lets you drop out the background of an image. You don’t need an outside image editing program to do this!

50. Picture Corrections Adjust brightness and contrast, sharpen and soften images.

51. Artistic Effects Using these filters, add effects to your images to make them look like pencil sketches or plastic or paintings or textured objects.

52. Improved Crop The crop tool now shows the entire image behind the crop marks even while you’re cropping it, which makes it much easier to crop precisely. There’s also a “crop to aspect ratio” option which makes it easy to crop a picture to a specific dimension. (We can’t set the dimension – PPT gives us these to choose from: 1:1, 2:3, 3:4, 3:5, 4:5, 3:2, 4:3, 5:3, 5:4, 16:9, 16:10)

53. Edit Points Improvements Edit Points are so so so much better behaved now. The adjustment handles behave like I expect, the points themselves are easy to select and move. Press Shift while grabbing an adjustment handle and the point becomes a Smooth Point. Press Ctrl while grabbing and dragging an adjustment handle and the point becomes a Straight Point. Press Alt and the point becomes a Corner point.

54. Direct Edit Points Right-click a shape and choose Edit Points. No need to convert it to a freeform first.

55. Translation Translate words or paragraphs using machine translation or dictionaries.

56. Compare Presentations It’s not Track Changes, but it’s a very nice tool that lets you compare two versions of a presentation to see (and accept or reject) changes. This is much better behaved than the old Compare and Merge, too, because it doesn’t keep all the information buried somewhere in the bowels of the file.

57. Broadcast Slide Show This is so perfect for internal conference calls and on-the-fly slide reviews. Start the broadcast, and your audience can view the presentation in a web browser. You control the presentation. You need a Windows Live ID to initiate a Broadcast. Video and sound in your presentation don’t play in the broadcasted file.

58. Rehearse Timings, Record Slide Show (Record Narrations) These have been improved. They’re easier to use and don’t seem to fight with each other quite so much.

59. Pattern Fills Pattern Fills are back!

60. Nudge

61. Laser Pointer In Slide Show View, press CTRL then press the left mouse button. Behold the big fat pointer!

62. Combine Shapes These work like the Pathfinder tools in Illustrator, allowing you to build your own shapes. Unfortunately, they’re not anywhere in the PowerPoint 2010 interface, so you have to add them to the QAT or Ribbon. Right-click and choose Customize QAT (or Ribbon). Choose commands from Commands Not in the Ribbon, and add Shape Combine, Shape Intersect, Shape Subtract and Shape Union. Now draw two overlapping shapes and use one of those tools.

63. Save as Picture Presentation This saves your slides as a series of images and puts them into a new, blank presentation. It’s a quick and dirty way to “protect” slides from editing but still allow someone to use the slide itself. Choose File | Save As and select PowerPoint Picture Presentation near the bottom of the Save as Type dropdown list. It’s also found under File | Save & Send | Change File Type.

64. Co-Authoring Two (or more) people can edit a presentation simultaneously. Requires SkyDrive or Sharepoint Foundation 2010.

65. Shift + Freeform Pressing Shift while creating a freeform object now constrains you to vertical and horizontal lines. It’s about time they got this fixed. (Thanks, Eileen!)