Presentation Director Helps You Present

Editor's Note:Guest blogger Tim Supples got Matt's permission to hijack his blog for this post. Matt is not liable for any and all content herein ;) I came across a helpful blog post the other day, entitled "How not to suck at your presentation." The author covers some technical tips for those who have to step up to the podium and use a PC to present. If you have a ThinkPad by your side, chances are you've got a great tool you may not even realize is there.

Presentation Director is a handy tool that makes managing displays, whether single or multiple, a piece of cake. I don't intend for this post to be a tutorial on all of its features, but wanted to point out how Presentation Director can help avoid small technical blunders like those which the blog author describes.

A screen resolution of 1024×768 is usually safe. Higher resolutions may or may not work, depending on the projector, so know how to change your resolution quickly if you need to. Seriously: practice changing your resolution at home.

One of the first things you set in a Presentation Director profile is which displays you output to and what resolution each of those displays should be.

Disabling screensavers and screen blanking will improve your chances of a successful presentation.

The second screen when configuring a new profile has three check boxes, for disabling standby & LCD timers, disabling screen saver and creating a "clean desktop" which hides all of those pesky windows, icons, pop-ups and other nuances that may disrupt your presentation.

Start all programs (web browsers, editors, live demos, etc.) and open all windows you need before you start, and then switch to them as you need them. Murphy’s law clearly states that trying to launch a program during your presentation will fail in the worst possible way.

There is also an option to run a selected file when that particular Presentation Director profile is launched. Unfortunately you can only select ONE file to launch, but the more industrious users might use a batch file or other automated solution to launch a single file which in turn opens the other necessary ones. Perhaps this is a feature we should add in the future? However by far my favorite feature of Presentation Director is the On-Screen Display. Press Fn+F7 and you get an immediate pop-up which allows you to select your display profile, and of course you can configure what happens when you press Fn+F7 if you don't like the OSD. The blog author makes a number of other great points to help you prepare for a presentation, I highly recommend you check them out. And now hopefully you learned a few things about how our ThinkVantage Technologies can make technology easier to use. Megginson Technologies: Quoderat » Blog Archive » How not to suck at your presentationTim Supples