Follow Along With Me

I had a question posed to me at the RCAC Symposium last week.  It was actually from a presenter after the fact.  She pointed out the frustration of trying to get people to follow her motions on an iPad being used for her presentation.  Life is a bit easier when you’re presenting from a laptop or a computer because you have a cursor.  People just follow the cursor around the screen as you present/demonstrate.  In this case, she was torn between either describing where she was tapping or doing the unforgiveable – pointing at the presentation screen.

Here are a couple of options…

An App
Your first look for solutions should always send you to the app store to see if there’s a solution there.  In fact, there is.  It’s called, oddly enough, “Pointer” and it’s free for the download and offers in-app additional features purchase.  First thing you need to do is customise the colour.  Of course, the best presenters will go with green!  Then connect to your display device and you’re ready to go.

There are two settings for use with the application – one as a pointer and the other for drawing.  Or, you can draw a pointer!

The goal, of course, is to guide the audience’s eye.  If you’re looking for an app solution, check this one out.

Things I Learned from a Broken iPad

If you’re looking for a quicker solution, you don’t even need to load an application.  Remember this post from a couple of years ago? – “Things I Learned from a Broken iPad

By turning on the accessibility options, things are controlled by a “dot” on your screen.  It can be dragged around to point at and draw your audience’s attention to a portion of the screen.

But it gets even better.  We know that we’re living in an increasingly gesturistic world.  (just made that word up…)  How to demo 2 finger gestures, 3 finger gestures, … you’re covered here.


I find that both of these offer nice features to further illustrate what you’re demonstrating. And, it’s much safer for your iPad to demonstrate what shaking does by tapping the screen rather than actually physically shaking it.

Plus, you end up looking very high techy and you’ll be guaranteed to have people come up after your presentation and ask “How’d you do that?”

8 thoughts on “Follow Along With Me

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  3. Great post, Doug – I love that our mobile devices (and less mobile devices, and browsers) are becoming increasingly accessible.
    And although I love “gesturistic”, I think you mean “gestural”. You know, since we’re talking about language. Feel free to gesture at me about that one 😉


  4. …and i won’t tell either you or Brandon the “gestures” my husband used to suggest when i first told him I was switching over the the “gesture” approach to teach Core French (you can guess).

    I love the “how’d you do that?” question – it tends to be my favourite part of any presentation – sharing what works is a heck of a lot of fun!


  5. Thank you for the language lesson, Brandon. I had no idea of the word “gestural”. So, I will wave thank you to you and use all my hand to do it. Lisa, I think your husband and I must have had the same thought when I first heard of AIM. And, I totally agree with the “how’d you do that?” part. Sometimes, it’s like watching an expert magician. You can figure out 95% of it but it’s the last 5% that keeps you going.


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