Microsoft Previews Office Mix Interactive PowerPoint Technology
The company opens up a private preview program for the PowerPoint add-on that adds interactive, sharing and analytics features to presentations.Sitting through a boring PowerPoint presentation or two may be the right of passage into the corporate world, but Microsoft doesn't believe that it has to be that way. The company has rolled out a private preview of Office Mix, a free PowerPoint add-on that incorporates interactivity and sharing features into the popular presentation software. Although it has the potential to affect many types of businesses, Microsoft is initially targeting one type of professional that is more likely to benefit from the technology: teachers. "We've heard from teachers that it can be difficult and expensive to make online lessons," said Microsoft's Office Team in a company blog post. Their efforts to provide online lessons are often stymied by expensive software and a lack of specialized skills and video editing chops. Office Mix is Microsoft's answer. Microsoft asserts that the technology was created "to enable teachers (or anyone who presents) to take a PowerPoint document, and mix it into an interactive, playable document that can be viewed on almost any device, anywhere with an internet connection." The goal, according to the software giant, "is to make it easy to create an online lesson or presentation with something you already know how to use—PowerPoint."
The PowerPoint 2013 add-on, which requires Office 2013 SP1, blends screen capture, pen input and video recording to generate instructional presentations. Users can also embed online videos and insert interactive elements such as quizzes and polls.