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How your presentations have to change

Death by 1,000 PowerPoint slides just doesn't cut it anymore. Here are some tips for the new rules of presentations for work and school.

The new worlds of remote work and education require nuanced audio visual skills, but most of us are happy to just get our camera working and mic unmuted. Now what?

Prezi is known as a cloud-based presentation slide platform, but its latest iteration largely does away with typical slides. Prezi Video is what the video industry would call a "keying" platform, allowing you to fly in pictures, text boxes and other visual elements that appear to hang in midair around your face during a Zoom or other teleconference. 

Prezi Video

Prezi CEO Jim Szafranski shows the features of Prezi Video.

Brian Cooley/CNET

"It's the ability to interact with your content," says Prezi CEO Jim Szafranski. "Bring your content into the conversation so you're not having to choose between it" and your camera image. Prezi Video does allow you to import PowerPoint or other slides and integrate them with your camera image as well. 

Surprisingly, the search for a new way to do presentations was not triggered by COVID-19 and its demand for remote presence. "Almost three years ago the light bulb went on for us," says Szafranski. "Where people do presentations was starting to change ... instead of being in a big room, presentations started going more virtual." 

Online presentations have become a major new component in education which, like work, Szafranski has little doubt will swing back toward the real world. "Certainly we'll head back into the office, but I do believe that communications will be forever changed." Among those changes, he sees remote presence platforms becoming a concern for CEOs, not just the CIOs. "Technical communication is going to be a strategic issue from here on."

Szafranski shared many other insights with CNET's Brian Cooley, including the underestimated importance of recorded presentations as opposed to live ones. Hear the full conversation in the video above.


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Now What is a video interview series with industry leaders, celebrities and influencers that covers trends impacting businesses and consumers amid the "new normal." There will always be change in our world, and we'll be here to discuss how to navigate it all.