Feeling better

I feel a little better today, and whilst occasionally having a coughing fit, and worried about a headache which is niggling me behind the eyes, I’ve been able to return to ‘light duties’.

One of these duties has been to get used to the iWork applications, and particularly Keynote, which was one of the the main reasons which I purchased the package.

It’s good.

Loading almost instantly, so quickly that a few times I wasn’t sure that it had loaded.  This pattern is the same throughout all of the iWork apps (Pages and Numbers), and really is a time saver.  I guess if Apple can’t produce applications which load quickly on their own hardware, then no-one can.

Keynote appears to cope with all of my PowerPoints from the 2003 version of the software.  I had a scare when it appeared not to be able to read files off my pen drive, but this was tracked to corrupt files on the drive – this has happened a few times now and I guess you get what you pay for when you pay less than £10 for an 8 gig pen drive from eBay – lesson learned.

The software is clear and intuitive, even the ‘Inspector’ window which I’ve seen in some other Apple apps makes sense once you consider it as an ‘intelligent properties’ window.  I’ve worked on three PowerPoints today, adopting a standard Keynote template to each one, and they do look good (even better with animation!).

Exporting the Keynote file formal (.key) into PowerPoint (.ppt), then opening it in NeoOffice works – the only thing which is lost is some of the more impressive transition effects.  The plan, certainly for the modules which I’m teaching on my own anyhow, is to use the dual-screen mode with the MacBook directly connected to the PC projector.  There’s no reason why this shouldn’t work.

As an added bonus, my Apple Remote can act as a ‘clicker’ – meaning I can be more flexible with my delivery, and be a little more ‘animated’.

I have taken it steady though, and did get a little distracted by trying to work out how to embed the following YouTube video into a slide (rather than just a hyperlink).

The final ‘very nice’ is that it’s a doddle to export the presentation as a ShockWave file, making for the ultimate in portability, and great for e-learning environments such as moodle, but not, alas into WordPress as .swf’s are ‘banned’.

And I haven’t even managed to start looking at Pages and Numbers yet!

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