Tame your computer - the sound of silence


In her weekly series for Cambridge Network members, software training expert Karen Roem offers handy tips to help you 'Tame your computer'. This week she explains how to insert a "switch off mobile phones" sound clip slide into your presentation (Microsoft PowerPoint*) ...

Like clip art, sound clips can add interest to your presentations. PowerPoint comes with a variety of such clips, but it's one thing knowing where to find them and another thing entirely coming up with good ideas about how to use them.

Perhaps you remember the three lovely course participants who gave me lots of tip ideas such as the tantalising ticker?

Well, this is one of these tips ... a subtle reminder to stop the disturbing phenomenon of mobile phones going off during courses and presentations.  (Thanks again, Bridget, Hazel and Lisa!)

Here's how:

1. Choose the Insert, Movies and Sounds command, followed by Sound from Clip Organizer.
2. In the list of sound clips in the Clip Art task pane, click the Telephone option.
3. Click on the Automatically button.
4. Right-click the sound clip icon and select Edit Sound Object.
5. Tick the "Loop until stopped" and "Hide sound icon during slide show"  check boxes and click OK.
6. In the Clip Art task pane, type the word "phone" into the Search for box.
7. In the Results should be box select "Clip Art" and click on the Go button.
8. In the list of options, click on the desired clip art.

Simply add some appropriate words and hopefully they get the hint!

Speaking of mobile phones ... To cope with the modern day curse of the mobile phone I have a "no-mobiles" policy to make sure those irritating ring tones do not interrupt the training. OK, I don't go as far as to make course participants hand in their phones on arrival (now there's a thought). Instead, I ask them to switch their phone to silent. Obviously I do the same.

Saying that, last week I switched mine off completely. Not to set an example (after all, people  still lose concentration when they check their external phone displays) but to save the battery as I forgot to pack my British to European adaptor plug. So when I switched it back on after my morning session I found a voicemail message from somebody who told me he was interested in my Livelink training. Can I give him a bell, please. "I'll be here the rest of the day." he said. Well, so was I. But it would have been nice if he'd left his telephone number!

Finally, I've scheduled another half day Boost PowerPoint beyond bullet points seminar for the morning of 1 November (see http://www.roem.co.uk/beyond_bullet_points.html for full details).

So if  you want to create professional PowerPoint presentations that will keep your audience interested throughout the length of your talk, book now! Only GBP97 (+VAT).  (Places are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.)

* Unless stated otherwise, these tips were written for Microsoft Office 2003.
Most of what is covered however will also apply to earlier versions.

5 October 2007

Karen Roem offers software training and support through her company Roem Ltd.
Contact her by email (Karen@roem.co.uk) or visit her website at http://www.roem.co.uk


Karen Roem
Microsoft Office-ionado

Roem Ltd – software training and support