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Why I cannot recommend PowerPoint

Submitted by the admin on 19 November, 2007 - 02:10

For my computer competencies class at SLIS-Indy, I was required to create a PowerPoint presentation. Since I prefer working in OpenOffice for word processing and spreadsheet applications, I started by creating the presentation in Impress, assuming I could just export the presentation. If I had not had Formulas in my presentation, it would have worked.

However, Microsoft Office doesn't know what to do with many of the features of Formulas, such as + or ( ) . In order to get these to work, I had to create equation objects. PowerPoint had no idea what size to make these equations. I would create an equation and it would turn out 513% of normal size, or 836%, or 1071%, or maybe 36%, and nowhere near where I had put it. I would resize it to the 400% of normal size I wanted. I would then go to create another equation and the background text would change from white to black, the width of that text box would change, and the first equation would revert to 100% of normal. In OpenOffice, the way you get part of an equation in a different color is

color blue { x left( x+2 right) } color red {+3 left( x+2 right)}

In PowerPoint, you have to

  • create x(x+2) as one equation,
  • color it blue,
  • create +3(x+2) as another equation,
  • color it red,
  • make sure the equations are the same size,
  • align them, and
  • group them.

Unlike in Word, you cannot just hit <Esc> to exit the equation, either.

And my latest problem: Two equations created entirely within PowerPoint using Microsoft Equation, cannot be grouped because first they must be ungrouped. But in order to ungroup them, they must be converted into images first.

Before trying to open the document in PowerPoint, I noticed that my 210 KB file became a 344 KB file just from the conversion. The Adobe .pdf version is only 136 KB.

For this Microsoft expects us to spend good money?