First off, thank you to Read/Write Web for listing us as one of the “10 Must Have Online Office Apps” today. We promise we won’t let you down when we actually launch
Also, thanks to C|Net for the mention on August 17th.
In other news, InfoWorld had the following coverage of a report by the Burton Group last week:
Deploying Google Apps could be a “career-limiting move for enterprise architects” if they expect too much from the software-as-a-service collaboration suite and its “rudimentary” feature set, the Burton Group research and consulting firm says in a new report.
It’s for exactly this reason that we’ve refused to compromise features just because SlideRocket runs in a browser. SlideRocket was conceived as an enterprise application and we want our users to be able to run circles around people using PowerPoint. We want our presentations to look better and we want the extra features (sharing presentations online and tracking viewers, remote meeting functionality built in, version control, the ability to create and manage a library of slides that is shared between users, etc.) to make people who bring SlideRocket into the enterprise to look like heroes, not suckers.
It’s nice that SlideRocket will also work for individuals who want to create animations for blogs and Web sites, and we’re looking forward to seeing what people create.
We’re getting closer and closer to launching our private beta. We’re currently deep in the throes of bug testing, as well as deciding which features just won’t make it for the initial version. Stay tuned, and we’ll post more information soon.
First, thank you to Mashable.com for including us in their online presentation tools round-up. We’re getting some great attention and we haven’t even launched yet!
Next, let’s talk about remote meetings. I present over the Web all the time, and up to this point I’ve been using WebEx. It works, but it can take a long time to load (“Less than one minute remaining,” anyone?) and it doesn’t handle multimedia very well. I usually end up stripping all of the videos, transitions, and animations out of my presentations because they don’t play well at all on my audience’s computers.
From day one we wanted SlideRocket to solve this issue, so we built in our own remote meeting functionality.
SlideRocket lets me invite multiple attendees to view my presentation while I control it. There isn’t any client application or Java installation, instead SlideRocket works right from each audience member’s browser. Presentations load quickly and have full support for animations, transitions, videos, and even audio on each attendee’s computer.
As someone who hosts a lot of meetings, it’s a pleasure to present a rich media presentation online and know that everyone is having the same cinematic experience that I am.
Thank you to Michael Calore of Wired, who included us in an article on Adobe’s forthcoming AIR technology (we’re mentioned on page 2) For those of you who don’t know, Adobe AIR is what’s going to let SlideRocket run offline. We’re excited about the buzz that’s starting to build as we get closer to launch.
A new version of our site is up that includes a product tour with additional information about how SlideRocket is going to work. We’ve also opened our user forums (which must mean that we think we’re going to have users soon).
Stay tuned as we count down to launch.
One of the unexpected benefits of SlideRocket has been that I don’t need to take my computer to meetings anymore. This is a welcome change after more than a decade of dragging a laptop around with me wherever I go.
When I’m scheduling a meeting I simply call ahead and ask them to have a computer for me with a projector/monitor connected and the Adobe Flash 9 Player installed (it’s a simple download, but some companies have their computers locked and the IT department needs to be involved). That’s it.
When I walk into the room, I launch a browser, log into SlideRocket, play my presentation, and go into full screen mode. My slides look great and the videos and animations play smoothly. This does require a high-speed Internet connection in the conference room, but that’s common these days.
The nice thing about this approach is that it reduces time spent connecting cables and powering up at the beginning of the meeting, and the conference room computer is usually already connected to the Internet, a big-screen display/projector, and speakers.
The whole point of making a presentation is showing it to someone else, and SlideRocket gives you lots of different ways to share:
- In person with an Internet connection
- In person without an Internet connection
- Via a printed handout of the slides
- Via an online meeting (think WebEx, but better)
- By sending someone a link
The last one is not just a way to share a presentation, it’s also the ultimate leave-behind.
First, let’s see how it’s done. When you’re ready to send someone a link, simply select a presentation from the Library and press the “Share” button:
This will open the “Sharing Properties” dialog, which allows you to send links and host online meetings. Here you decide whether your presentation will be shared online or not. If it’s shared, you can decide if you want to make it available to everyone or only people you invite. You can also password-protect your presentation.
Sending a SlideRocket link gives you four important capabilities that other leave-behinds lack:
- The leave-behind looks as great as the original presentation because it is the original presentation
- You can update the presentation after you’ve sent the link to someone
- You can expire your presentation after you’ve sent it so that it may no longer be viewed
- SlideRocket tells you who viewed your presentation and how long they spent on each slide.