Tuesday, September 15, 2009

YouTube Videos in PowerPoint

A question I frequently get from people outside of the University is, "My company blocks internet sites such as YouTube. How can I embed a YouTube video into my PowerPoint Presentation?"

There have been a variety of options to use for free and some nice ones to purchase. But I'm all about the "free." When one of my favorite presentations sharing sites, authorSTREAM, announced the authorSTREAM Desktop plugin for PowerPoint, I jumped on it.

It's a simple download and installation to add an authorSTREAM ribbon into PowerPoint 2007. It's so easy to use, you don't even need to read the instructions. There is a button to upload your active presentation into your authorSTREAM account. There is a search box for images and video. It opens a task pane to select from the search results. If you don't find it via the search box, there is a button to insert the video by URL.

I had a presentation I wanted a video in and decided to try it out. authorSTREAM found the YouTube video I wanted from the search. When I clicked to add the video, I got a white box with a black "X" in the middle. It doesn't look like much, but when I ran the presentation, the video appeared in the player window, just as it would as if you embedded it into a website. You can play, pause and view full size. Very seamless.

Personally, I had a small issue after the first time I used it and repairs suggested by the website didn't help. But after I repaired Microsoft Office, it worked again. I attribute the problem to me having Office 2007 and 2010 Technical Preview loaded on my computer at the same time which can cause problems with addins. So, I'm not faulting authorSTREAM for this.

To recap, if you want a simple and FREE way to embed YouTube video into a PowerPoint presentation, I'd suggest the authorSTREAM Desktop.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Backstage with Office 2010

Terry Crowley, Technical Fellow in Office, describes some of the thoughts and principles that went into the development of the Office Web Applications.

5 Reasons Microsoft Will Buy Blackboard

It's an interesting thought. Imagine what that could mean for us at UNL. But is it a good thing? I love Microsoft and the thought of it being integrated into Blackboard would be fantastic. But could it be done or should it be done? You can read the full article and provide your own comments to the discussion at Inside Higher Ed's Blog U.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Word 2007: Rearrange Paragraphs in Word

Swapping paragraphs in Microsoft Office Word can be complicated. As well as having to cut and paste, you often have to reformat line breaks afterward to make the paragraph line up properly. You can use the mouse to drag and drop paragraphs to a new location or, you can use the SHIFT+ALT keyboard shortcut.

Click the paragraph that you want to move, hold down SHIFT+ALT, and move the paragraph up or down by using the arrow keys. Each press of an arrow key causes your selected paragraph to jump over one adjacent paragraph.