Linear presentations

I have been thinking about what I wrote about improvisation a couple of weeks ago. While preparing for a presentation last week, I was thinking about how linear my presentation software (Apple’s Keynote) is. It is as bad as PowerPoint when it comes to locking you into a linear presentation style. This is fine if you have a clear idea of what you would like to say and which order you want to say things in, but I often find that I have several sections that could be organized differently dependent on the audience, the time constraints etc. I wish some of these presentation programs could allow for this. Yes, I could be creating a web page, and use Opera’s presentation mode, but I really like the simplicity of creating multimedia-savvy presentations in Keynote.

I have only briefly tried using OmniGraffle in presentation mode, where it is possible to move around non-linearly, but it lacks all the necessary presentation stuff (animations, media files, etc). Keynote seems to be the best option at the moment, and hopefully they add some more navigation features in a future version.

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Alexander Refsum Jensenius is a music researcher and research musician living in Oslo, Norway.

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