There a few features inside PowerPoint 2007 that are extremely useful and often not advertised as key reasons to shell out money for a version upgrade of Microsoft Office.

Some of these comments might come across as a bit detailed, but believe me, they do make a big difference.

  • Much improved color management. Once you have defined your color schema, PowerPoint makes it very easy to apply intensity levels of the same color in your presentation
  • Adding a monochrome color overlay to images
  • Sophisticated drop shadows. There are many useless graphical effects in PowerPoint (Microsoft had a look at Adobe products), the drop shadow is the one I actually use
  • 3D text rotation. In a later post I will explain how to stick a 3D logo/text on an image (update: here it is), PowerPoint has a more basic function now that more or less does the same
  • PDF conversion plug, one that is free, and better than Adobe Acrobat (see this post)
  • Smaller file size
  • Much improved editing of data charts, fully compatible with Excel. Creating beautiful, simple and clean data charts used to require a lot of "hacks" in 2003. It's not perfect in PowerPoint 2007, but a lot better.
  • The proportion of tip of an arrow does not change anymore when you re-size the object
  • The selection pane tool that allows you to edit charts with many overlapping objects, without having to send them to the back all the time.
All these good things come in exchange for some dollars and a few days of getting used to the new interface.