Steve Hards is Director of Sales and Operations for Perspector, the well-known 3D add-in for PowerPoint that’s been released in a new version. Version 3 adds to the many features and possibilities available in the earlier versions including 3D charting from PowerPoint and Excel data, support for international characters, and multiple light sources.
In this conversation, Steve talks about the new features and the Perspector community.
Geetesh: What do you think is the most significant new feature in this release?
Steve: The star feature of the new Professional Edition is its charting facility, but it would be an oversight not to mention that many valuable enhancements have been made to both the Professional and Standard editions. The most significant of these is the ability to use international character sets for users not producing presentations in English.
Back to the charting, it is very quick and easy to set up a chart from a PowerPoint table or Excel spreadsheet. After selecting the data you simply select a chart type from a series of thumbnail images in the Perspector Panel and the 3D chart appears on your slide! If you want to change part of the chart to highlight it – perhaps changing a color or adding a picture fill – you can do it directly. Alternatively, you can control the chart elements from a Chart Properties box. Together they give you easy, straightforward, and total control of the whole chart.
Geetesh: Tell us more about the Perspector community.
Steve: The Perspector community is building nicely. On the one hand, there are a number of particular people who have been incredibly helpful with questions and comments. We do enjoy the challenge of trying to help them and they have been the inspiration for a number of the developments. On the other hand, there are people who just write to tell us that by using Perspector they are creating great presentations and, in some cases, building themselves a good reputation within their company as a result.
But in terms of a two-way process, we are also seeking ways of giving more back to users. Making it easier, for example, for them to find answers to questions on the website, pointing the way to other helpful PowerPoint resources and, through a carefully constructed series of tip emails, to help them explore why they might want to use particular effects. That’s always the hard bit, isn’t it–you see a great effect, and then wonder about how you can use it in a communicative context. Well, we are trying to help with that too.
You can download a trial version of Perspector, and find more about the product at the Perspector site.