Many a times, you need to export your PowerPoint presentations as web pages and put them out for the world to see. PowerPoint recognizes this need and provides you with fairly comprehensive export options, but they come with their own set of problems. In this post, we will take a look at how they work and the issues you will face. We will also take a look at a new approach to exporting slides – using oomfo. Yes, using oomfo you can export your slides to web pages, one at a time, whether they contain the oomfo charts or not.
Exporting slides to web pages using PowerPoint
We will take a look at the two options PowerPoint provides to export slides as web pages. I will be using PowerPoint 2007 to take you through the post. PowerPoint 2003 provides the same options as well but PowerPoint 2010 does not have the export options at all.
I have created a sample PPT using a readymade theme.
I know the title of the presentation is not the most ideal way to get started but then we have a different agenda here, don’t we?
To export the presentation, we will head to the Save As option in the Office button. Go to Save As > Other Formats.
Set Save As Type to Web Page from the drop-down and enter a name for the web page to be created. Click Save when you are done.
There is a navigation bar on the left to jump to slides. You will also see navigation on the bottom to go to the outline mode, slideshow or use the Next/Previous buttons to navigate through the slides. Pretty good for a start.
Now how about opening the web page in a different browser. Let’s try Mozilla Firefox, the world’s most popular browser.
Oops, so Firefox says it cannot support the presentation you just exported. Just to reiterate, Firefox is the world’s most widely used browser. The warning is caused by the proprietary objects that are present in the HTML output and will cause an issue in every browser except Internet Explorer. Proceed anyway.
You will see that Firefox displayed the warning with good reason. The presentation is pretty messed up when it finally opens. The navigation on the bottom is gone, as are the options to hit the Slideshow or outline mode.
Luckily PowerPoint provides another option to export the slides which can rid us of the warning, and enable the navigation in browsers other than IE. When you select Save as Type > Web page under the Save As option, you will get an option to publish the presentation. Click the button.
You will get a Publish as Web page dialog box with a number of options. Select publish the complete presentation and browser support for all browsers.
You will also see a button called Web Options. The dialog box that it opens gives you control over the slide navigation, animation, browser support and fonts to be used.
The most important tab in my opinion is the Pictures tab where you can set the screen size for the target monitor. Since the slides were occupying less than half the screen on my monitor in Firefox, I will choose a bigger screen size this time.
Going back to the Publish as Web Page dialog box, hit Publish. This will open the presentation in the browser. In Internet Explorer, it will look similar to what it looked with the Save As Web page option. Let’s head to Firefox where it was causing a lot of trouble and see how it looks there.
While the control over the resolution allows us to use a larger part of the screen and the navigation controls are present, the rest of it has gone for a toss. The background looks stretched and so does the text. And to top it all, a simple heading has been converted to an image.
It means that the presentation cannot be accessed using a text-based browser, a screen reader or a text-to-speech program. Also, there is no alternative text to describe the images for those who cannot see the images due to disability or technology.
Now that we have taken a detailed look at the issues PowerPoint’s export option has and its non-availability in PowerPoint 2010, let’s take a look at how oomfo comes to the rescue.
Exporting slides to web pages using oomfo’s export capabilities
To export a slide in PowerPoint with oomfo, go to Insert tab > oomfo ribbon > Export > Export slide as Web page.
As soon as you select the option, oomfo will export the slide and ask you whether you want to see it immediately in the browser. On clicking yes, here’s what the second slide will look like no matter what browser you are using:
All the content on the slides is in text itself and can be picked up by a screen reader.
Quick and neat, isn’t it? To be fair to PowerPoint, oomfo has a limitation too. As of now, you can export only the current slide as a web page and not the entire presentation that PowerPoint’s export allows you to do.
While at it, we forgot that oomfo is actually a charting plug-in for PowerPoint. So let’s take a look at how the export works with a slide having an oomfo chart in it. In a new presentation, click the Insert chart button in the oomfo ribbon to bring up the oomfo chart builder.
Create the chart and position it the way you want.
The chart is interactive as well. You can hover over the columns to see details about them in the tooltips. You can also hide an entire data series by clicking on its icon in the legend.
Like what you see? Download oomfo and give the export capabilites a spin.
And if you already have, do let us know if see yourself using it for exporting only charts or general PowerPoint slides, one at a time, as well? oomfo is still in beta and we are looking for all the feedback we can get.