I just fell in love.
If you hook up a projector to your laptop, you can configure the projector to be a second screen rather than a copy of what’s on your laptop display. When you do, your presentation shows up on the projector, but your laptop display shows something else – Presenter View. This has been around for several versions of PowerPoint on both Windows and Mac, but the new Office 2011 for the Mac just kicked it up a notch.
Here’s what my laptop screen shows while I’m presenting:
At the top, there’s a bar showing how far into your presentation you’re currently at – giving you an at-a-glance idea of whether you’re on track. There’s buttons for Swap Displays (for easier dual-monitor setup), Tips (showing the keystroke shortcuts like B to black out the audience screen), and Exit Show.
On the left, “Step 3″ is the current slide that the audience is seeing.
To the right, “One Approach: Wait” is the next slide that the audience will see. This helps you build better segues.
At the bottom left, there’s my slide notes for the current slide.
At the bottom right, I can type in meeting notes live without exiting my presentation. This is great when someone asks me a question that I want to address later, or if there’s something I want to add to my presentation the next time I give it.
Move your mouse to the bottom of the screen, and PowerPoint pops up thumbnails for your slides, giving you a quick way to jump around from slide to slide without the audience getting dizzy:
Even if Office 2011 doesn’t bring any other improvements, that’s enough for me. This is the kind of tool that helps me be a better presenter. YAY!
If you’re an MSDN or TechNet subscriber, you can download Office 2011 for the Mac through your subscriptions downloads. Amazon’s selling Office 2011 for $175 today.