Tuesday, July 28, 2015

(Updated) Sending a Link to Google Slides in Presentation Mode

Update 9/12/17 - It seems that Google has disabled this functionality. But, here's another method that I found while searching for solutions. 

Copy the share url (click on the Share button and click 'get shareable link') and update like shown in the sample below: 

Original link: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1234567890/edit?usp=sharing
Update to: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1234567890/present?usp=sharing

When deploying changes to Salesforce, part of my process involves creating documentation and tutorials to explain the changes to users.

I've found Google Slides to be very useful for this purpose. I create a short slide deck with an overview of the changes, along with screen captures so they'll know exactly what to expect.

I generally send a link to the shared slide deck, but I realized recently that my recipients might not be sure what to do with that link, or how to view the presentation in an easily navigable format.

My previous method involved sending a link to the presentation, which opened in this preview mode.

So, to make the process easier, I've started sending a link to the slides in presentation mode.

To do this, I click on 'Present in new window' under the Present button dropdown, and then copy the url in the new window that opens.

Now, when I share the link, the slide deck will open in presentation mode and the viewer can use the arrows on the keyboard to navigate.

I'm always looking for ways to streamline and improve how I support end users. Have suggestions or ideas to improve the process I've described above? I'd love to hear them in the comments!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Back to BASICS: A Paper Notebook for Modern Life

I rely heavily on digital tools for keeping my life organized. Google Calendar reminds me of plans with friends, alerts me to life goal benchmarks that I've set up and prompts me to pay my bills in a timely fashion.

When expressing the benefits of using a digital calendar to family and friends, I've summarized the benefits this way: "It frees up space in my brain." Space that I can allocate to learning new things and seeking creative inspiration.

But sometimes I wonder if allowing digital tools to remember things for me has actually hampered my memory. I find myself wistfully recalling the paper calendar I used to carry with me everywhere, full of ideas for stories, quotes from friends and half-written poems. I used to flip through the pages, comforted by my lists of tasks and highlighted reminders. No battery required.

With those thoughts in mind, my interest in the blend of digital and paper organization was piqued by a new campaign on Kickstarter from BASICS: the BASICS Notebook.

  • Six month planner
  • Week planner
  • Lined paper
  • Blank pages
  • Goal tracking
  • Checklists
  • Whiteboard paper (a feature I love about my Wipebook!)
  • Pen holder
  • Elastic bands (for holding both sides open and bookmarking)
  • Side pocket

I like that it includes planners, but they aren't date specific. I don't like being tied down to specific start and end dates. The dual elastic bands are a great idea too, especially for jotting down ideas outside. And of course the whiteboard paper - such a great idea!

While I still love my digital calendar, there's something very appealing about this notebook. I can imagine incorporating it quite easily into my existing primarily-digital workflow.

The Kickstarter campaign was funded within 12 hours after launch! But, there's still time to become a backer. The campaign ends August 29th.

You can also download a PDF copy of their weekly/monthly sheets here.

PS - A representative from BASICS contacted me to after noting my interest in Wipebook. The thoughts expressed here are entirely my own, and I haven't been compensated in any way. Not that, for future reference, I'm opposed to being compensated for sharing my honest opinion about tech tools! :)

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