I have been working with PowerPoint 2010 for a few days now, here are some of my first impressions. I am discussing the upgrade from PowerPoint 2007 to 2010. (2003 users: see my earlier post on upgrading to 2007.)

For heavy PowerPoint users, I recommend upgrading to PowerPoint 2010 not so much about the advertised "big" new features, but amount a number of minor changes that make a big difference. Here are a few that I have discovered so far:
  • Finally the "hanging bullet" issue does not require complicated ruler manipulations: you click a bullet style, and the 2nd line of your paragraph gets aligned properly without a need for manual intervention.
  • Like in PowerPoint 2008 for the Mac, when you drag around objects lines appear that make it easier to snap objects together or align them
  • PowerPoint 2007 used to crash a lot when editing complex data charts (in Excel): no longer (fingers crossed)
  • You can now customize the ribbon without having to rely solely on this hack.
  • Apparently, PowerPoint 2010 saves a backup file somewhere even if you say "don't save", which can be a life saver.
  • The user interface is a bit calmer and more "Zen"
  • Finally, PowerPoint can now join and subtract shapes.
  • The tool to take the background color out of an image got a lot more sophisticated
Should 2003 users upgrade: definitely, 2007 users, probably only the heavy users. An (affiliate) link to everything Microsoft Office 2010 on Amazon.

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