Issue #82 April 19, 2005

1. PPT – Control Audio Playing

When you insert an audio clip on a PowerPoint slide, it will ask you if you want the clip to play automatically or not. If you click YES, it will start playing the clip when the slide is first displayed. This may be exactly what you want. But in other situations, you want the audio clip to play at a certain time as you explain something on the slide. I do this in my Compelling PowerPoint seminar when I play an audio clip example after I have explained how it was recorded. I want to give my audience some context before they hear the clip. In order to control the playing of the audio clip, you need to click NO when PowerPoint asks you if you want to automatically play the clip. By default, PowerPoint will then play the clip only if you move your mouse over the clip on the slide and click on it to start the clip playing. This is awkward during the presentation and distracting for your audience. But there is a better way. It is to set the clip to play as an animated item, like the next bullet point comes on when you advance using the keyboard, mouse or presentation remote. To set the clip up to play as an item in the animation sequence, open the Custom Animation task pane by clicking Slide Show->Custom Animation. Find the audio clip in the list of animated items and right click on it to bring up a sub-menu. Click on the Effect Options item in that sub-menu. This will open the Effect Options dialog box. Click on the Timing tab in this dialog box. At the bottom of the tab, you will see two options selectable by radio buttons. Click the radio button that says “Animate as part of click sequence”. Then click the OK button to close the dialog box. Now your audio clip is just another item that can be animated in whatever sequence you want. You can now use the Custom Animation task pane to move it to the correct animation spot in the list and set any other options you need.

2. Earth Week article

This is Earth Week for many, a time for all of us to reflect on our environment and what we can do to improve the environmental conditions for our fellow planet dwellers. I have written an article on reducing paper usage from computers that is now posted to the web site (here is the link: Computers were supposed to create the “paperless” office, but statistics show that paper usage has increased as computer usage has risen. I share in the article three tips for reducing paper usage: 1) preview before we print, 2) print only the pages necessary and 3) use print options that can literally cut paper usage in half. Not only will you save money with these tips, but you will help the environment. Because this is such an important topic, I am giving every subscriber permission to share this article with others in your office and in corporate or association newsletters. Just make sure to copy the entire article, including the copyright and author details at the bottom when you do so. Enjoy the week and help make our planet a nicer place to live.

3. Useful Resource – Computer Security from US Government

Another issue that seems to always be at the top of our lists is computer security. The U.S. government is keenly aware of this and has set up the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team, referred to as US-CERT. Their web site provides a great deal of information on how to protect your computer from attach and how to respond if your computer does come under attack. I suggest you read their information and make sure you have updated virus protection and spyware protection in place. Here’s the site: