Microsoft Office 2010 First Impressions – Day 1

At this point, I have about a day’s worth of Office 2010 experience under my belt and my favorite new feature so far is in PowerPoint. I typically use a third party product to convert narrated PowerPoint presentations to streamable media. PowerPoint 2010 natively supports saving to a “Windows Media Video” (wmv) file format:

The only issue I have found is that PowerPoint does not have any advanced options to compress the video. The only option I have found for compression is in what Microsoft calls the “BackStage” view. BackStage is the view you receive when clicking on the “File” menu:

This seems to compress the images and audio inserted into your presentation regardless of what format you chose to save it in. Once a presentation is saved as a wmv, if the file size is too large, it can easily be re-encoded with “Windows Media Encoder”. On a sample presentation that was about 90Mb, PowerPoint saved it as a 182Mb wmv file. After re-encoding it with Windows Media Encoder 9, I ended up with a 55Mb wmv file and the quality of the video was excellent.

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