Friday, February 19, 2010

Self-Running PowerPoint Presentations – Part 2

This article continues from Part 1 (last issue), a description of how to create and share selfrunning PowerPointTM presentations (SRPP), and outlines how to convert presentations to video.

Conversion (the easiest way to share them on the Internet) is challenging and requires patience (or a friend with computer/video knowledge).

Converting the SRPP to Video and Uploading tothe Internet:
Several computer programs can convert a SRPP into a video file. PPT 2 VideoTM ($50 from is designed for this purpose and works well. Fast computer processing is necessary. Download the 30-day free trial to make sure it works on your computer. Another option is to use a screen capture program. As the SRPP plays on your computer, the program converts the visuals and audio into a video file. CamtasiaTM ($300 from is more expensive, but the program is quicker and more versatile (e.g., you can do a lot more than capture PowerPointTM presentations). A 15-minute presentation takes 15 minutes to record with a screen capture program; the same presentation would take about 2 hours with PPT 2 VideoTM. One of the challenges is deciding what codex to convert to (a topic beyond the scope of this article) and the resolution (i.e., the number of pixels in the width and height). High definition (1280 x 720 pixels) creates a sharper image but is difficult for anyone with a slow Internet connection to view.

There are several websites to which you can upload videos without charge (e.g., YouTubeTM and blip.TVTM). These are great choices if you want to reach a large audience as people search these websites. Many companies also offer video hosting services but the fees can be high. The videos can also be embedded into a website.

Video Editing Software for Creativity:
The SRPP video can be edited with a video editing software program. This works well for combining the SRPP with another video, and works better than trying to insert a video into a PowerPointTM presentation. The other video could be something recorded with a video camera or captured from a computer screen. For example, I incorporated videos demonstrating product use into an SRPP about specialty food products. My favourite video editing software program is Vegas Movie Studio 9TM ($90 US from

Converting an SRPP to video, editing, and uploading to the Internet is not a simple task. However, the effort and patience to develop the knowledge and skills to make this happen can by worthwhile. In addition to the professional possibilities, creating personal home videos is a fun and fulfilling hobby.


Wendy Busse, RD, MSc
Red Deer, AB
T: (403) 986-5267


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