Will This Sway You?


With apologies to that store, I decided to write once and post twice.

Yesterday, it was “This Week in Ontario Edublogs” on this blog.

I’ve always wanted a chance to try out Sway from Microsoft to see what I could do.  I’ve seen Sways (?) from others and they kind of look like a newish version of a Prezi.  So, I decided to take to Sway to see what I could do with yesterday’s post.

I found that it was easy enough to put together.  If you’ve ever put together a presentation using any other piece of software, you’re all set.  If you’ve ever worked with HyperStudio, you’re familiar with the concept of cards and ideas flowing from one to another.  If you’ve ever worked with a story telling application, you’re familiar with the concept of sequencing.  The nice thing about porting the post to Sway is that I did have the natural opportunity to chop up the document via the various blog posts that were part of my original blog posts.  Some had text; some had images; I used emphasis, accents, and bullets without problem.  They all had links which carried forward.

I played around with a number of the themes that are included.  There is a search for images if you’re interested along with a warning about respecting copyright.

I tried to pull things together and make it true to the original point.  It was almost like Sway had read my mind in terms of the organization of the screen.  Or, I’ve been working with software long enough that it just falls into place.  Or, just dumb luck?

The Sway provides an embed code so I can add it to this post.  As you can see from below, that didn’t work.  WordPress stripped it out the raw code.  There’s only a certain number of media that will work and Sway is  not on the list?  If you want to see it outside this post, the link is here.  The claim is that it will appear the same way regardless of the device you’re using to view it.

(This is what was left after the stripping…)
https://sway.com/s/j7b7CpjR70OBK5iq/embed 

You can navigate using the buttons in the bottom right or by scrolling your mouse.  I elected to have the Sway go horizontally.  Actually, I was going to make another one with it going vertically which I think would make it look more like a blog post.  Sadly, when I tried to duplicate the original, I got an error message –

Duplicate

So, I’ll stick with the original.  It’s an interesting result.  I don’t know that it will be a replacement for a blogging tool but the result is kind of impressive.  If you’re looking for a combination presentation/storytelling interactive tool, give it a shot.

A quick tutorial to get you started appears here.

The resulting document is stored in the cloud which actually saved my bacon this time.  I was about half done and decided to take the dog for a walk.  I just left my computer open, figuring to get to it when we got back.  Well…I was doing the creation in Windows 10 and it decided that it needed to reboot itself.  Fortunately, I just went back to Sway when I returned and picked up where I’d left off.  There doesn’t appear to be a way to download the document so if you’re using this in a presentation, make sure you’ve got a good internet connection.  Ever the paranoid, I typically will have the document open and running before I set up so that I don’t have to rely on the internet.

Just remember that the content is important – the bells and whistles should be added for style and not be the driving reason to use the tool!

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OTR Links 08/22/2015


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.