Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Google Docs (Office) - Presentation Tool

On Sept 17th, the Google people released the long awaited for Presentation tool for Google Docs. We have been waiting for this for a while to make the complete Google Office suite.

I have been using Google Docs as an alternative to MS Office and Open Office. Although the tools still lack many features, I find that I have the features I need and the power to collaborate on editing and have the documents saved on the website where I can access them from any where, makes it worth using. I am also very tired of how I can copy and paste text from MS Word documents without a lot of formating tags coming with it that mess up the text I am copying. With Google Docs this is all taken care of.

The Presenter tool in Google Docs has the essentials for building a PowerPoint like slideshow but lacks many of the fancy features, like animations; although that may be a good thing. You can upload a PowerPoint file into Google Docs now and use this tool to post your slides online either for your students or as a supplement to a conference presentation you may have given. This makes it very easy to add your presentations to your e-portfolio. This tool will come in really handy for students that are tasked with group work assignments where they need to collaboratively build a presentation for the class. It can then be delivered either online or f2f.

A unique feature is included that allows you to delivery your presentation live online, with a live chat tool to dialogue with your audience.

So far there is no support for audio narrations but I am hoping that will be added later.

Oh, and it is free to use, no advertising. You just need a Google Account. Check it out at http://docs.google.com/ and add a comment on what you think of it.

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