First experience of creating a Prezi

3 12 2010

Although I first blogged about Prezi back in February, I have so far resisted it. So today I decided to go for it, in preparation for the abstract I am submitting today to the University for the Creative Arts Learning and Teaching conference 2011.

Positives

  • Supports an iterative process.
  • Uses size of content and text to define hierarchy.
  • Ideally suited to brainstorming, mindmapping, and thought processes in which you want to gather content and then establish relationships between the content or ideas.
  • Supports collaborative working, and ‘Prezi Meetings’ (I think only up to 10 people can be co-editors though).
  • The layout of the whole Prezi IS the overview, i.e. no need for a summary slide that you may use in PowerPoint, however important to remind the audience of the overview by returning to this at key points.
  • Flexible navigation with the use of a mouse, arrow keys, remote clicker or their menu, however more practice required than with using PowerPoint!
  • You can embed Prezi in a blog or Web page, and this is something I am definitely interested in doing.
  • In the right hands this tool can be mind-blowing!

Negatives

  • When you present for the first time the navigation and bubble menu disappear, to get back you need to know that you are supposed to hover over the bottom right-hand corner of your screen. It would be better if there was an option to either hide or show the navigation so the user is in control.
  • Video, image, and other files have a maximum file size of 50MB.
  • If you wanted to zoom into an image, then the level of detail is restricted by a maximum image size of 2880 x 2880 pixels.
  • This tool could be used very badly with disastrous effects e.g. making the audience dizzy – training and practice is needed for proper use.
  • Relying on an Internet connection to present is not ideal, therefore even if you work in education you need to pay an annual charge in order to be able to download your presentations and run them offline. Or you could print your presentation as a PDF and use that with less functionality (they recommend a linear path to avoid multiple pages of the same view).
  • Currently you have to use their colour schemes and fonts.
  • The Prezi approach is to keep things simple, but it does mean that all your content needs to be prepared prior to import e.g. you can’t add borders to images or choose when a video starts playing etc.
  • There is no support for sound files, the way around this is to use Flash video files that include the sound, this is restrictive if you don’t own Flash.
  • You can present without using a path in order to foster discussion with the audience; however if you then make the Prezi available it won’t have a path for them to be able to click through the presentation by themselves, and no autoplay option.
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