Colby Devitt is the president and co-founder of Wildform, a multimedia software company based out of Los Angeles, USA. In this conversation, Colby discusses the advantages of converting from PowerPoint to Flash, and how Wildform’s Flair performs the conversion in a more efficient way.
Geetesh: What are the ways in which converting a PowerPoint presentation to Flash can complement its message, distribution, and impact?
Colby: The Flash format provides many advantages for distributing multimedia presentations. To view PowerPoint files you either need the full PowerPoint authoring tool or the PowerPoint viewer installed. Neither of these comes standard on any computer. They are also Windows-based products. When you convert your PowerPoint to Flash it becomes viewable by anyone with an Internet connection. The Flash player works on all browsers used on Windows, Mac, and Linux and Flash files even play on some popular mobile platforms like Android. So when you put your presentation into the Flash format you dramatically increase the size of your potential audience.
The converted Flash files are also almost always substantially smaller than the PowerPoint source file which makes them much friendlier to display on the Web or to email. You also gain access to the many features of Flash such as the ability to add links, ActionScript, SCORM tracking for e-learning, etc.
Geetesh: Wildform products don’t do a one-click PowerPoint to Flash conversion with respect to the distinct features and capabilities of both the PowerPoint and Flash file formats — how does this result in a more faithful and cleaner output.
Colby: There are two basic ways to convert PowerPoint to Flash.
One is to record a movie of the PowerPoint playing. This can yield a very faithful result. However, the file size is usually very large. It is also impossible to change any element of the file after you have made your conversion. This means that to make any change you have to go back to your source file and then convert it all over again. Flair allows you to convert the PowerPoint into an editable Flash file. This allows you to make changes even after the conversion process to adjust elements, add new elements, enhance your presentation with Flash only features, and so on. In addition, all the elements that can be turned into vectors, such as shapes, callouts, background, etc. are transformed this way which greatly reduces file sizes.
See Also: The Benefits of Converting PowerPoint to Flash by Colby Devitt