Slideshows for beginners. Absolute beginners.
December 14, 2006 1:19 PM   Subscribe

Creating a podcast with synchronized images that will pop up at irregular intervals during the podcast. I'll also be showing some very unsophisticated users how to do this in a few months. Which tool is best for the job...

Both for Mac and Windows, by the way. I know for Mac, iPhoto or Garage Band will let me do this pretty easily. That's fine. For Windows, I could go with Microsoft Photo Story or even Movie Maker. But what's simplest?

But I know there must be even easier (and that's the key here--simple to use, simple to teach) solutions-- the target demographic is people who require SERIOUSLY easy instructions.

Is it possible to even do this in PowerPoint? I thought it was, but I can't figure out how to create a persistent audio player that will remain onscreen and playing the podcast throughout the duration of the slideshow. When I try embedding one, the audio stops the second the slide switches.
posted by LGCNo6 to Computers & Internet (7 answers total)
Do you need it to be a "podcast" (syndicated audio via RSS that is automatically downloaded by newsreaders, iTunes, etc?) or just a slideshow with audio?
posted by neustile at 1:31 PM on December 14, 2006

Yeah, if you want it to play on iPods, and you want it to be an audio file with pictures, you need to do it in AAC with Garageband. Which is annoying to anyone who doesn't use an iPod and/or iTunes.
posted by YoungAmerican at 1:43 PM on December 14, 2006

Response by poster: The audio is just a long-form narrative MP3 file (voice and some music, but the voice is key). Around 10-30 minutes long.

And yes, I know what a podcast is-- the audio file alone is available for download and via RSS. But the audio + images will be for a different purpose.
posted by LGCNo6 at 2:04 PM on December 14, 2006

It's a confusing question because there are podcast tools that let you link images to the audio at certain times and get distributed wholly as a podcast-- images + audio. The only way to make those currently, as YoungAmerican said, is within GB or using Apple's ChapterTool (or the number of Mac apps that automate ChapterTool.)

So perhaps you mean to reframe your question: what's the easiest way to make a slideshow with audio where the images happen at specific times? Removing the word 'podcast' altogether.

To answer that question, have you tried PowerPoint's "Record narration" feature? It allows you to record audio as you page through the slides. It then saves the audio and the slide timings and plays them automatically.
posted by neustile at 2:13 PM on December 14, 2006

Response by poster: Hi neustile. That's not an option, as the podcast (truly a podcast, I assure you) is pre-recorded and available separately as an audio track. It can't be re-recorded, since some of the audio in it is taken from audio diaries and on-site discussions with people who won't be there to record new narration.

Nothing like a sticky, persistent audio player in PP?
posted by LGCNo6 at 3:02 PM on December 14, 2006

I'm not saying that your source audio is not a podcast. I am merely telling you that your question will confuse people-- as it did to both the responders of your question so far-- because there are ways to make a podcast encapsulate both audio and image. It sounds like you don't want that: you want to have a audio only podcast play with *separate, non-podcasted* images, using a separate program and not syndicating the images back using the Enhanced Podcast spec.

To answer your PP question, I don't think there is a persistent audio player in PP other than the narration feature. However, you can use a routing audio driver in windows to "record" the sound of another audio player (WMP, Winamp, iTunes ) in Narration mode while your users advance the slides manually.
posted by neustile at 3:15 PM on December 14, 2006

Virtual audio drivers like Total Recorder should work for the narration recording.

Also, have you tried setting up the multiple images as an animation for a single slide and keeping the audio on a single slide as well? Then the side won't change but the pictures will. Untested.
posted by neustile at 3:23 PM on December 14, 2006

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