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How to use Prezi

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Kathryn Bradley

on 11 November 2013

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Transcript of How to use Prezi


What is Prezi?
Prezi is a dynamic presentation tool that allows you to present your information any way you want. Zooming in and out, jumping from one place to another, adding pictures, documents, and even PowerPoint presentations are all some of the possibilities available to you in Prezi.
How does it work?
There's an initial learning curve, but once you understand the basics, it soon becomes easier to make a nice Prezi than a nice PowerPoint.

Zoom is one feature which is very helpful in displaying text and highlighting key points...
You can zoom in
To type
Click anywhere on the canvas to start typing. You can edit the colour of any given block of text using the little colour block.

You can also justify right, left, center or use bullet points.

Frames and arrows
The frames and arrows button is very important. Frames (and invisible frames) form the structure of a Prezi.
You can also highlight text to make key points clear.

The insert button is what you use to give your presentation some visual flair. You can add images or videos, or add symbols and shapes.
Path section
This is where you can reorder the sequence your Prezi follows.
The Themes button is used to decide the overall look and feel of your Prezi. Its best to decide this at the start than changing it later. The 'Customize current theme' option at the bottom is where you get a blank canvas. This is usually used when you have an exact idea of how you want your Prezi to look.
The share button is useful as it allows you can share your Prezi with friends, such as by email or on social networking sites. You can also download your Prezi which will then allow you to work on it and present it offline (not connected to the internet).
In addition to the basics, you can move around in edit mode in order to get the objects you want to edit:
To zoom in and out this is easily done using the mouse wheel, although there are plus and minus icons on the right of the screen in edit mode which do the same thing.
Clicking and holding anywhere where there isn't an object will allow you to move the canvas around using your mouse.

Tips on how to make a good Prezi before you begin...
1) Create your structure first
Structure your Prezi first, don't start it and go on with 'the make it up as you go vibe'. If you keep adding more and more things it can sometimes just spiral out of control and becomes obvious it hasn't been planned.
It's easy to avoid this by planning in advance, and then arranging where you would like to structure everything beforehand.
To do this you should take into consideration what you want your overall canvas to look like. Although you don't have to show the overall canvas its nice to let people see the whole canvas so then you can zoom in and tell different parts of your presentation and how it all links together.
As well as this, Prezi is non-linear unlike PowerPoint therefore you can either go through the presentation or you can move into different parts depending on where your audience want to go.

2) Choose your theme
Prezi allows you to set themes, which dictate the colour scheme, fonts and style, or you can set your own. However, once you set your theme you can't mix and match throughout the presentation.

It's important that you try not to change your theme as if you structure all your text and then decide to change your theme your aligned sections may not fit together.
3) Position your sections appropriately
Once you get used to using Prezi, you need to ensure you don't make your audience feel 'sea- sick'. To avoid this, make sure you make a sensible path to position your different sections.
To understand what I mean...
Don't make fast changes
Or move wildly around the canvas
There's often no need to do this, so try to move through in a coherent fashion, only making a few changes in a different angle. Finally...
Do not go upside down without a good reason!!!
Prezi has a lot of features, but that doesn't mean you have to use them all in one presentation. Often different presentations will use different features, such as you may want to insert a diagram when you want to display how different information follows on from another, or use a timeline to show different stages in time.
4) Understand Scale
The Prezi canvas is limited in size, however especially with images, when you zoom in on them, they will take up the screen and can become grainy. An example is the picture on the right. At the moment it looks fine because it is not on full screen, however when you zoom in it looses quality. Obviously this does actually depend on the image itself so if you want to include an image which you want to zoom in on, I would suggest to have a high quality one.
5) Frames and invisible frames
Frames are a way that you control what the viewer sees, and how close up they see it.
You can use visible frames, which will look different according to the theme you have selected. In this presentation I have made my own theme therefore I have decided on this blue frame.
There are three types of visible frames, which will look different according to the theme you have selected.
Square brackets
Filled rectangle
Invisible Frames are also used. These can control how far you zoom in on an object. It can be used to focus the attention on certain objects, or group items together. For example this text is around an invisible frame so that I can zoom in on it.
6) Aim for a uniform style
Because the size and location of objects is controlled by sliding the mouse, its harder to achieve uniformity in style, than with a set of slides, say in PowerPoint, where you can decide that the header font size will be 24 and the body font size will be 12.
Instead of this, Prezi helps you align things. The 'graph paper' effect on Edit mode should be useful for this, but also Prezi will show you when other objects are locked with other objects nearby, by way of a dotted blue line.
7) Make a good path
The 'path' of your Prezi is very important to the user experience. You can have a totally free- form Prezi where users just click on frames or hidden frames, but most Prezis will provide a path to guide the user through the presentation.
You can create the path by clicking 'edit path or animation' from the left hand side of the edit screen, and then just clicking on the objects you want to navigate to, in the order in which to get to them.
When you click in the edit mode you can see the path you have already made, you can then add to this path, delete or change the order of your path.

You can also click on the star next to the number for your path if you want to apply 'the fade-in effect'.
This is an example of the fade-in effect where the information isn't revealed at first.
8) Finally always think about the audience
When creating your Prezi always think about the audience and whether your Prezi actually gets the message across in a clear way! Even if you use loads of features to make your presentation all 'flash' if the message you are trying to convey doesn't get to your audience it would be completely pointless!
Prezi Vs PowerPoint
User friendly-Technically PowerPoint is very simple to use. Microsoft office programs (PowerPoint, Word, and Excel) are taught in school, so most people have at least some familiarity of how the software works.
Control- PowerPoint provides seemingly endless possibilities when it comes to slide design. You can choose from an endless amount of colors, fonts, graphics, and backgrounds.
Zoom-Prezi’s unique zoom function. This allows the presenter to simply click the background with the mouse and the presentation zooms out to an overview, then the presenter can zoom into the area they please. This allows you to explore ideas smoothly and naturally. In other words, if you want to “zoom in” for emphasis you can. If you want more detail you can zoom in again and then once you’re in a specific area you can “pan” to expand on that idea or gain more detail.
Linear format- some people complain how PowerPoint follows a script (linear) format, and is not easily adaptable to an audience when needed. Getting to a specific slide, once the presentation has begun, can sometimes be difficult.
Large file size- PowerPoint can create really large files, especially when images, audio, and video are added. This can sometimes make emailing a pain. However, users can easily use cloud storage websites such as Dropbox to share larger file sizes.
Limited design options- Limited backgrounds to choose from and each has pre-chosen fonts and colors that can’t be changed
Cost-for an offline version to use on a desktop can be very expensive,while there is a student discount version provided online, it still offers limited file space and storage.
Dizziness- Often times Prezi users can over use the zoom function which can ultimately take away from the message of the presentation. Too much zooming and too much panning can ultimately make users feel sick.
Learning Curve- While Prezi is fairly simple in nature, it does take some time getting used to. Many people like to stay within their comfort zone, and Prezi is outside that zone for many non-designers. However, the software is fairly easy to learn if you’re willing to put in the practice.
Disadvantages of Prezi
Disadvantages of PowerPoint
Advantages of Prezi
Sharing- Allows the presenter to share his/her Prezi by email and on social networking sites such as Facebook. You can also download your Prezi and work on it when you may not be connected to the internet.
Non-Linear-allows the presenter to choose his/her own paths. In other words, users can jump in and out ideas and are given more flexibility when presenting ideas.
Advantages of PowerPoint
Builds transitions and animations-You can use these visual enhancements to add to the explanatory power of the presentation and also enhance your visuals.
Hyperlinks- Allows you to click on a link and be taken directly to the links location on the web or somewhere else in the presentation.
Syncs with slide share- Lets you upload your presentation to the web so anyone can view your presentation online.
Can print handouts of the slide- Allows people to follow along without having to focus on writing notes on the presentation.
Although Prezi may take a while to get used to, it creates a fun,interactive experience for your audience and offers a lot more features than PowerPoint!! Once you learn the basics you will find it a lot more interesting than being limited to slides! Finally, Prezi is completely free, and can be accessed from any web-enabled computer, whereas PowerPoint is both a paid application and can't be accessed everywhere.
The End.
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