First Signs of Google Presenter

I was going through my feeds and saw a little post over at TechCrunch that brought to light the fact that Gmail can now show browser based slideshows from attached PPT documents. So, I fired up PowerPoint (wow, that hurt my head) and created a quick little three frame slide show. I then sent it to myself at Gmail … when it arrived I saw this:


Notice that little, “View as slideshow” link? It opened up my PPT file in a new browser tab and it looked surprisingly like the original. It killed the transitions, but for letting someone view slides quickly and easily this is a big step forward. I guess if you have PPT installed and you are on a PC, this sort of thing is common. But to tell you the truth, I am hearing more and more people say they have abadonded the whole Office suite lately. Having this work in the browser w/o having the suite makes it all very nice. When I clicked the link this is what I got:


Looks like we are closer to an online presentation tool that works. I wonder if this will lead people to jump off the Office bandwagon?

8 thoughts on “First Signs of Google Presenter

  1. Hmm. Interesting. Of course, I am also intrigued by the people you are saying are leaving the Office environment. I toy with leaving the MS Office environment occasionally, but am now sucked back in.

    Everyone I listen to on podcasts (Laporte, Kevin Rose, Dvorak, Thurrott) talk about how great Office 2007 is. Well, I am here to tell you, they aren’t kidding! I recently bought a new Mac (okay, not really, an HP Notebook with VISTA…) and it comes with Office 2007. At first I was reluctant. It was new. It was different. But I HAD to use it. I HAD to write some chapters for a report. I HAD to track my billable hours in Excel.

    Yup. It grew on me. Quickly. It was almost scary, because my thoughts about it seemed to mirror those of others who at first weren’t sure about the new Office Ribbon, and such.

    Favorite feature? Not sure if it is new, or just more accessible, but I LOVE the citation and bibliography editor. Slick. Built in. What more could I want?

    What keeps me from moving to online is, quite simply, the online nature of online. What do I mean?

    * speed (even Jobs says onboard is faster than online)
    * Features (tied in with speed. Sure I don’t use all the features all the time, but I like having them there when I need them.)
    * security
    * access (sometimes I just don’t want to be connected. I just want to write, or excel, or create)


  2. In addition to Steve’s concerns, I’d like to add privacy. Do we really want Google holding so much of our information? Is it appropriate to use Google to store University material? How much protection does Google offer, and who is to be held accountable if a Google security flaw exposes your data to a malicious third-party? If documents are stored on your machine, you are responsible for all of these concerns. Should we be so eager to let Google assume this responsibility?

  3. I will say that I do use Google in it’s many forms as a back up from when I am working from home, if I know I am going to be out and about but without access to my laptop. It is also hard to beat the commonality Google offers for passing documents in whatever form (presentations -> Google Presenter; documents -> Google Docs) among disparate team members, especially if you aren’t all working on the same platform or have access to the same office suite.

  4. I can’t see us jumping into the Google thing blind … and who says we are jumping into the Google thing? Privacy is the thing that concerns everyone — just no way around the fact that when someone else has your data, someone else has your data.

    Steve, those I talk to who are bailing are mostly geeks — people who use the Microsoft apps in VERY different ways than you do. I would like to move to a browser based solution completely, but reality gets in the way. When Microsoft releases the Universal versions of Office I will be back in the fray. For now I love the collaborative aspects of the Google offerings. They work for the way I work with my teams. All I can say is all this is getting set to get very interesting!

  5. Cole–thanks for replying back!

    First, let me say that I have just proposed to a consulting group with which I am currently engaged that we look at Google Docs since we are doing most of our work spread around the globe. This comes based almost completely on your strong affirmation that google docs is perfect for collaborative document development.

    You have piqued my interest here. I am a bit curious what ways these “geeks” use Office products that is different than my use? I can certainly understand that many folks are not as concerned as faculty with proper citations, and thus the ease with which one can do that is perhaps not as critical. I would love to learn more about these uses.

    Also, I am curious why you would like to move solely to a browser based solution? What do you see as the benefits of such a solution that could/would/should outweigh the benefits of an “on board” solution? (Perhaps another blog entry? *smile*)


  6. Steve … good idea on another post. I will have to put that together. Here’s a quick example of how I based your use compared to mine or a whole bunch of other people I work with/around … I read your pose about buying a new car and saw how you had quickly created an Excel solution to help you make that decision. I know that you are a supply chain guy and that you can (and do) make Excel do things most of can only dream about. The google spreadsheet isn’t built for that kind of stuff … but it is built for great collaborative features.

    Why I want the browser solution? I live in the browser … I actually feel like I write better in the browser — just my thing. I will elaborate.

  7. well…. i HAVE left…

    been toying with slideshare, which supports openoffice just fine. will probably use it more for class next semester.
    not quite as elegant as googledocs for sharing… but, it has its uses!

    open office bibliography tool is ok, but leaves a bit to be desired.
    having said that a geek solution is available.
    : )

  8. Great catch, Cole. Just tried it out, then blogged it.

    I use Slideshare every week for my slides. I also like Thumbstacks, and would do more with it if they added an import feature (for now, you have to start from scratch inside).

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