Monday, June 20, 2005

More Presentations sans PowerPoint

For those intrigued by Jenny's presentations that I mentioned in the original Presentations sans PowerPoint post, Eric and Katherine Meyer have a similar, though more complex, version at S5 produces gorgeous slides that are nearly indistinguishable from full fledged presentation software, and are available in a variety of themes (I love the nautilus shell in the Introductory Slide Show.) When you click on the zero-slash icon on the lower right, you get a text based version suitable for printing or screen-reading. (And even better, when you click Print, you automatically get the easy-print version in most browsers. No more page by page printouts!)

You can forward through the slides by clicking on the arrows or anywhere on the page, or by using the arrow keys on the keyboard. If you are using the Opera browser, it will display in the Opera Show format. All in a file that will actually fit on a floppy disk (the 11 slide intro is 95Kb zipped--so you could put several presentations on a floppy and unzip them on the computer you are using to display.) S5 is released under a Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike license (essentially, the code free to use and modify as long as you allow others to do the same and credit the Meyers with the original work.)

They have a primer (and more) on the website, which shows the details of modifying the HTML and CSS for your own presentations. If you don't know anything about CSS, this will seem a challenge, but it's much simpler when you don't have to create it from scratch. Really, if you just replace their materials with your content and stay within the div.slide sections (
, you can easily create your own 11 slide presentation without a fuss. Just add another section (copy and paste from a previous slide section) to add another slide. You can do it within web software like Dreamweaver, as well (just make sure you stay within the div sections to add your content).

Try Jenny's presentations to start, as the CSS is simpler, but if you are feeling confident, definitely try the Meyer's S5.


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