The latest tool that I have discovered and added to my virtual portfolio [along with Wordle, Animoto, Visions, 23, and Voicethread] is the newly developed presentation software known as Prezi. Prezi is a new web tool with great potential, and has been discussed by many of the great bloggers in the community of Ed. Tech experts ['edubloggosphere'? 'edtechosphere'?]. I believe I first read about it on David Warlick’s blog, 2 Cents Worth.
Take a look at the short intro video by clicking the image above. I love the idea and potential of Prezi, however, I haven’t decided whether or not I actually love the app itself yet. Prezi promises to replace Powerpoint as a standard for presentations. Instead of creating slideshows that flip from one slide to the next, Prezi allows you to create a very large ‘canvas’ and move around the canvas to present information. It’s flashy, it’s interesting, and more captivating than a traditional presentation. However, I’ve had some trouble, and the application seems to still have some ‘bugs’. I’m sure it works just fine for straight text presentations, but I’ve had some trouble when inserting images. Although Prezi promises that the program is easy to learn [in ten minutes], I’ve spent hours trying to get things just right. In the end, I’ve got a presentation that runs great from my hard-drive, but when streamed on-line, it is quite choppy. See below for the example I’ve created.
There are a few things that I really like about Prezi. I love how the information is presented in a linear format as an interactive Flash video. All of the presentation editing can be done on-line, right at Prezi.com, or you can download an off-line editor to work on your own computer. If I manage to figure my way around some of the choppyness of the final video [perhaps my images are too large], I will likely use Prezi for all of my future presentations. I’m currently working on a presentation for my EC&I 874 project, and I think Prezi will work great if it can handle the large images.