Please help me show off my professional portfolio!
July 19, 2011 1:06 PM   Subscribe

Please help me create awesome digital presentations for my professional portfolio! Am looking to create a series of slideshows for presentation on a tablet, and need some hardware/software recommendations.

I need to create a portfolio of my work (brochures / writing samples / magazine /newspaper / online clips / television segments / mp3 radio spots) that can be carried on a tablet display and shown during meetings and interviews. Ideally, I'd like to use a tablet that can be easily passed around a room.

To date, I've done this the old fashioned way: portfolio binders with everything in laminated sheet protectors, or by creating powerpoint documents with slides containing jpg or pdf images. But it's time for a digital upgrade.

I'm looking to create 6-8 presentations. Each might have up to 50 slides/images.

What I'm looking for: Hardware / Software recommendations.
* Can what I'm describing be created and run on an iPad or Android tablet?
* If so, using which software? (For the sake of argument, please assume money is no object. I am currently creating similar online presentations with Adobe Lightroom.) Also, what is the best file format? Currently I'm working with jpgs and pdfs, but am open to suggestions.
* If you're recommending an android tablet, which one do you think would be the best to purchase? (If it matters, my computers run Mac OS X, Windows Vista and Ubuntu 10, so connectivity isn't a problem.)
posted by zarq to Technology (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Is there a reason why Powerpoint isn't appropriate for this?
posted by Jairus at 1:25 PM on July 19, 2011

I'd be fine using Powerpoint, but I honestly have no idea if it runs either on an iPad or an Android OS tablet, or if there are special requirements I'd have to meet for the media being saved within the presentation.

I guess I'm a bit of a luddite. Have never used either an iPad or Android-based tablet before -- just iOS and Android smartphones.
posted by zarq at 1:29 PM on July 19, 2011

I know a bunch of HTML5 frameworks exist which should be fine on a tablet, but I'm not sure how non-programmer friendly they are but from a quick google it seems a few sites will try to do the powerpoint to HTML5 conversion for you.

Onm the Android side of things the eee Pad transformer at least comes with Polaris Office which does Power Point presentations natively so that's another option.

Also is slideshare something you thought about, they allow embedded in your linkedin profile.
posted by Z303 at 1:31 PM on July 19, 2011

Well, if you go iPad, you've got Keynote, and it is slick looking as long as you don't overuse the effects. That would likely be my first choice, if I had a Mac. Otherwise, I'd stick with PPT, and get whatever tablet is likely to best display them.
posted by Jairus at 1:32 PM on July 19, 2011

If you're looking for something creative/different, check out prezi . It has desktop and ipad apps, or you can just upload them and view them online. It's a little rough around the edges, but definitely a change from the usual slide-based presentation.
posted by jhs at 1:48 PM on July 19, 2011

If you have some of the later versions of Indesign (4 and up), a pdf with some fancy page turning effects might be the way to go.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:30 PM on July 19, 2011

Seconding jairus and Keynote. A client came to the office last week and everything was so seamless in Keynote on the tablet. and better than fighting with our finnicky projector and external mouse. That said, I do miss one piece of being able to put something up on a projector and have everyone see it at the same time. This can sometimes be eliminated by having someone hold up the tablet to the desired slide. Depending on how big the group it can still be hard to see a small tablet.
posted by TravellingCari at 5:16 PM on July 19, 2011

If you do your presentation in HTML, and use relative local addressing throughout, you can burn it to CD-Rs, or even business card mini-discs, and pass out copies everyone can run locally on their laptop or other CD equipped device, or that you can offer as a "leave behind," or mail/email to colleagues in remote offices you personally might never visit. Using local filesystem relative addressing in an HTML presentation, you don't need any kind of Web server to view the presentation - the browser does all the work.
posted by paulsc at 5:33 PM on July 19, 2011

Keynote is the easiest for this; you don't even have to use a Mac, as you can create the presentation right from the iPad. However, Keynote has a pretty linear narrative, which may or may not be what you're looking's harder to flip back and forth in a Keynote or PDT than it is to do so in a binder.

If you want to be able to organize your samples and allow your interviewers to go through them in whatever order they want, you're probably better off finding a good portfolio Wordpress theme on Themeforest and putting your stuff online.

I would be wary of prezi. Depending on the audience the kind of flash that prezi presentations tend to be dominated by can be a total turnoff. At my college it was trendy a few years ago to use prezi, but the teams that used them never seemed to get more than groans for their effort.
posted by Phire at 7:34 PM on July 19, 2011

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