Flash, Engage, or PowerPoint?

Hi everyone.  I just started wondering something yesterday.  I have used Flash to make my 'slides' for my presentations and then just imported the MP4 into the PowerPoint slide itself.  Well, that's great for more complex slides, but then I started thinking that maybe I should do something else for more basic slides.  Having an MP4 takes awhile to load, even if it's a smaller, shorter one.  If I could make my basic slides a different way and not have them be an MP4, it would speed up the load time for my overall presentation.  I hope I'm explaining this well.

For example, I have one video that has a lot of text in it, a few pictures, and an audio track imbedded in it.  Is there a way I could do this in PowerPoint?  Engage?  Not sure which is better.  I have PP (obviously), Quizmaker, and Presenter on my computer.  Not Engage, though.  But I don't know how or if it's good practice to build an interactive slide in PowerPoint or if Engage is better.  Or, maybe just stick with Flash.  The text fades in and then fades out for new text as do pictures.  An audio track plays over all of this.  I know how to use Flash and am very familiar with it.  I don't know if there's any way to do this kind of thing in PowerPoint, though.  I've been searching Google and eLearning blogs.  Still am.  But then I thought getting opinions and advice from others in this awesome forum would be good, too.

5 Replies
Tammy Smith

It's easy to add audio in PowerPoint with Articulate and sync it with your animations?  I tried that earlier but didn't get very far before I turned to looking for tutorials to make sure I was heading down the right path. lol.

If I create all this in PowerPoint, though, will it still load like a swf in the presentation?  I just want simple videos with text and pics to be played quickly before a big MP4 with real-time video comes up, you know?  I originally did everything in Flash, converted all clips to MP4s, and treated Presenter just like a player with a quiz from Quizmaker at the end (love Quizmaker!!).  Now I'm wondering if I should have made the simpler ones in PowerPoint.  But I didn't know if Engage would have been better or not.  You say I could do this in PowerPoint?

Phil Mayor

If you are planning on synching animation with your audio then set them to on click.

It should work in powerpoint and should load quickly, I guessed you were using articulate as a scorm wrapper.

I normally do the simple things in ppt and where I need more interactivity use a swf, engage is a bit of a halfway house it allow you to build form based interactions

Phil

Kim Hannan

I think it all boils down to personal preference.  Engage is super easy to use, and you have a lot of options when it comes to presenting information.  Engage allows the learner to "drive" how they're getting the information, and it allows you, as a developer, to create very quickly.  I use Engage quite frequently for things like presenting labeled images, showing a series of photos with a short caption, or a million other things, really.  It's definitely worth downloading the 30-day free trial and you can see if you like it. 

Tammy Smith

Thanks Phil and Kim.   Phil, I'll definitely try making the easier parts of the presentation in PowerPoint this time to see how it goes since you said I could sync up the audio.  I'll have to convert my MP3 into a WAV format first, but that's not a big deal.  I'll let you know how it goes! :)

Kim, I'm kind of wanting to steer clear of a swf for the simple videos.  Otherwise, I'd be in the same loading time problem boat I'm in now with Flash and MP4s.  But, I'm glad there's another option I could check into if I ever want to do something other than Flash. :)  I just thought that in order to sync audio with animation, I had to use Engage for that.  Didn't know I could do that with PowerPoint.  But thank you so much for the info on Engage. :)  I might try that out in the future.

Any more tips and advice would greatly be appreciated!  I love hearing from other users on what they do. :)