Juggling with Excel, Omnigraffle, Numbers, Keynote, and Powerpoint

You want to compile a presentation using graphics from across different applications like Excel, OmniGraffle, and Numbers? Apple Keynote turns out to be the most flexible tool in order to bring everything together.

  1. Write and structure your presentation in an outliner tool (e.g OmniOutliner).
  2. Create Keynote document. Choose or create appropriate master sheets. Avoid decorative bullets for lists – they might cause problems to export as Powerpoint.
  3. Copy and paste text (“match style”) from outliner into Keynote – section by section in order to avoid formatting confusion in Keynote.
  4. After having completed one or two pages, export a test .ppt document to review in Powerpoint. If there are export-problems, delete master sheet(s) that cause the rouble (most likely tose with fancy bullet points). The same applies, if the exported .ppt version does not look exactly the same as in Keynote.
  5. You can easily copy and paste charts from Excel and (individual or multi-selcted) graphics from Omnigraffle into Keynote. Both charts and graphics are vector-based and fully scalable in Keynote.
  6. I found Keynote to be the only application that allows placing formated data-tables from Apple Numbers (when it comes to presenting tables, I prefer Numbers to Excel, it is so much quicker to produce presentable data!). Copying and pasting a data-table into Keynote will transfer the object into a fully editable Keynote table.
  7. Export final presentation to Powerpoint. Why? In order to make it editable for proof-readers, project-managers or other non-Mac users (e.g. clients)! If all-too fancy styles and features have been avoided (see 2.), the presentation will look exactly the same and re-touching is not necessary. Tables placed from Numbers into Keynote will appear as formated table in Powerpoint and can be edited.
  8. Before printing out from Powerpoint, check ‘Page Set Up’ to reflect correct settings for the printer

Interestingly, graphics imported from OmniGraffle into Powerpoint will remain scalable (unless it is already a bitmap graphic), whereas if you directly import them into Powerpoint, they are transformed into a non-scalable (and somewhat blurry) bitmap image.

Note: If you have copied and pasted a complex table from Omnigraffle into Keynote, you might find it pixelated in the final Powerpoint document. In that case, export the Omnigraffle document as a Visio file,. open Visio on the PC, copy the table and paste it into Powerpoint.

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Web copy

    Some rules about how to write for the Web:

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Content audit

A content audit is a boiled-down version of a content inventory and captures all pages in a site with their relevant titles and URLs. Content audits can be generated automatically or manually.

    Benefits in a nutshell

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Content inventory

A content inventory is a comprehensive document that lists every piece of content in a website along with information describing the content, such as its holding page and category, an abstract, the type of media (text, graphic, widget etc.), target audience, and the URL. Although there are some tools at hand to facilitate compiling a content inventory, its quality relies on human editing.
A content-inventory is indispensable when restructuring a website. It serves as content reference throughout the development process and it will be used to ensure that all relevant content is going to move into the new site.

    Benefits in a nutshell

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Task analysis

Task analysis is used to develop a thorough understanding of a process and its underlying tasks. Task analysis employs a wide range of methods such as interviews, on-site observation, or diary studies. It looks into what people are doing, what they are trying to achieve, and in what way they are going about it. Observed processes are broken down in tasks and subtasks, compiled in a task report. The information gleaned from task analysis establishes a foundation of existing practices and is used to define the requirements and the technical architecture of a new system.

    Benefits in a nutshell

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Benchmarking

Benchmarking is an exercise to determine the performance of a website in comparison with competitor sites. Performance is measured against a set of user experience requirements (disciplines). The score that a website achieves in a discipline is either based on the outcome of specific tasks carried out by users, or on expert opinion, or on a combination of both. The final benchmark report presents the results in a matrix view and graphic charts along with the rationale for the ratings and relevant examples across all disciplines.

    Benefits in a nutshell:

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Heuristic Review

A heuristic review is a systematic inspection of a web-site or application. Usability experts check it against a number of usability standards (‘heuristics’) and determine challenges for successful user-interaction and a rich user experience. A heuristic review can discover up to 70% of user experience problems and is an efficient way of establishing the status quo at the beginning of a project.

    Benefits in a nutshell:

  • Cost effective, quick, and very flexible way to establish user experience challenges
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