A lot of presenters like to use remotes or clickers to advance their slides (and slide builds) as they present. It gives them the opportunity to unchain from the laptop, maybe walk around a bit to get their communicative juices flowing, and more importantly focus on engaging the audience with the story they’re telling.
Remotes come in different form factors and use technologies like Bluetooth, Wifi, IR (requires line of site) or RF to capture and transmit a keyboard command to your presentation software telling it what to do next. They generally all allow you to start, advance, rewind, blank the screen or end your presentation, and some have integrated laser pointers or timers that will let you pace your presentation appropriately.
A relatively new category of remotes will let you use your mobile phone to control your presentation. Apple has a Wifi iPhone client for Keynote and Salling Software has one for Mac OS and Windows that works with a good number of popular phones.
Remotes are made by such reputable brands as Logitech, Targus, Keyspan, Toshiba, Griffin and Kensington, offering a selection of models and prices to suit your needs. You can find many of them on Amazon.com. If you’re looking for a recommendation, we agree with Garr Reynolds, smaller and simpler is better, you want a remote to be virtually invisible and enhance your presentation delivery, not detract from it.
When using remotes with SlideRocket we’ve found the best results are achieved with the Offline Player (the SlideRocket AIR client that lets you synchronize presentations to your desktop) but we’ve also had good results using the online client in different browsers including FireFox, Chrome, Safari and IE.