Monday, December 10, 2007

sermon slides, keynote and ProPresenter

Tried something new this weekend that seem to work out great. One of my pet peeves with keynote was the lack of user friendliness when you need to use it in conjunction with several other programs in order to make a professional looking show. The screens flash when you go into a show, tab out of a running show or escape when done with a show; How annoying. Now We have been finding that when we produce keynote in the wide screen formats and have to shrink them to a slightly smaller size so that the show displays correctly on our not quite standard wide screen screens, that the formatting of the slides and the others stuff in them seem to not translate into the dimension that look the best on the screens something ends up either looking a bit squashed or in worst case scenarios, stretched. So they have been creating the show, and then exporting the entire show in the 720 letterbox dimensions as .jpgs, and then remaking the show using the .jpgs and then when the show using the inspector function gets re-sized into the 680 dimension, the images keep their intended shape and Poof! a good looking show, but still needing to be run in Keynote... or is it? That popped into my noodle Saturday while I was running the show. The slides are all converted into .jpgs already, why not just dump them into a special image playlist in ProPresenter? we have to use it for the pre sermon bumper, and the mid sermon interview movie that we have to jump out of keynote for anyway, this way the slides can be put into the order of appearance and keynote is not needed during presentation at all. So I set up a play list and dropped the .jpg images into it and put the movies where they belong and ....Yes it worked just great, and not just great, but easier for the operator to navigate because he can see more than just the next slide. If the speaker needs to jump ahead because of time restraints or if he decides to reiterated on a point that was used already, the slides are there for the clicking and the movies also were ready for the clicking and all went well and smooth. Now we can't use any fancy pants transition this way, but technically, we weren't using any anyway. The cheesy stuff we don't use because it just doesn't add to the message but actually can be a distraction to it. So we now have a great way of doing the slides and the flash from dropping out of key note is gone because we don't use it, and all looks a whole lot better than it did and the operators are happy because it is now easier to run a presentation. Cool.
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