Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 7: Inserting Shapes

This is Lesson 7 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to the Table of Contents at the end of this page. Previously, we started a new blank presentation, added a blank slide, and inserted a text box. We played with the fonts and backgrounds on the text box as well. Today, I would like to continue by showing you how to insert shapes and manipulate them in different ways.

Last week we inserted a text box and put a background in it. See mine, pictured below.

Text Box

Notice the green circle directly above my name. This is a rotation handle. You first have to have the text box selected to see this. If you put your mouse over it, the mouse turns into a circular arrow. If you click and hold that green dot, then move the mouse to the left and right, you should notice that the box rotates around. You can always hit the undo button if you don’t like the results. Go ahead and rotate your text box 90 degrees and place your name on the right side of the slide, see below.

Rotated Text

Notice the section on the ribbon labeled “Drawing”. There you will see a variety of shapes in a box with a downward pointing arrow to the right.

Drawing Toolbar

As shown below, click the arrow to drop down a selection of shapes you can add to a slide.


Notice that as you put your mouse over the various shapes that a little description pops up over the shape. The shapes are also categorized. Find the category called “Stars and Banners”. In that category select the shape called “Horizontal Scroll”. Your mouse will change into a cross. You can now click and drag across your slide and a shape will be created where you drag.


Notice in the picture above, the scroll is created and filled with a blue color. I am not real happy with the width so to change the width, I will position my mouse over the center dot on the right side of the scroll. Why the center dot? If I choose one of the corner dots, it will resize the entire shape. By clicking the center dot on the right side, and dragging to the right, I can lengthen the scroll.

Lengthened Scroll

Now I have the scroll covering most of my slide. With the scroll selected, as pictured above, start typing the words “Welcome to My Presentation”. Notice that the words are typed directly on the shape, but are very tiny. If you select the words on the shape, you will get a font box, as pictured below.


Go ahead and select the text and choose a different size, such as 40. Now the words are nice and large across the scroll. Now, let’s add some pizzazz to the words. With the words selected, click the “Text Effects” dropdown on the ribbon toolbar, as pictured below. Under the “Text Effects” menu, choose “Reflection”, then choose a reflection style.


Notice the subtle, yet effective contribution the reflection makes on your text. Let’s go ahead and save our presentation. Our next lesson will go more in depth with shapes. We’ll learn how to arrange and order shapes on a slide as well. As always, please feel free to comment on our tutorials or ask questions.

PowerPoint Basics Table of Contents

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 6: Working with Slides and Text Boxes

This is Lesson 6 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to the Table of Contents at the end of this page. In the previous 5 lessons we worked with a built-in template that comes with PowerPoint. Templates are an easy way to learn PowerPoint and usually have little pointers in them to help you along the way. Today, I would like to start a new presentation and work with slides and layouts.

Let’s open PowerPoint 2010. You should see a window similar to the one below. By default, PowerPoint has no theme applied and is kind of a simple black and white style. You should see one slide like the one below. This is called the “Title Slide” layout. In this layout there are two text placeholders, one for a title and the other for a subtitle.

Main PowerPoint Window

Slides are the fundamental element of the presentation. Just like old slide projectors, you can design slides in PowerPoint that can be clicked through in a certain order to present information. There are many predefined layouts for slides built into PowerPoint. We went over this a little in previous lessons. Let’s take a look at some of the different layouts available to us.

Slide Layouts

If you click the “New Slide” dropdown, you will see the different layouts, pictured above. Each of them are pretty self explanatory. I would like to choose the “Blank” slide layout just for fun. You should now have two slides in your presentation. One with the “Title Slide” layout and one with the “Blank” layout. Click between them and notice the differences. “Blank” pretty much is a clean slate where you can design the layout however you like.

To add content to this slide, let’s click on the “Insert” tab on the ribbon toolbar. There are tons of options here. For now, let’s click the “Text Box” option. Notice your mouse changes into a little cross, as pictured below.

Text Box

When you see this mouse, you can click and drag over the slide and it will create a text box. Go ahead and give it a try. You should now see a rectangular area surrounded by dots. If you click inside the rectangle, you can type text into the box. Go ahead and type your name. You can see what mine looks like below.

Text Box

What happens when you click outside the box? Notice that the little dots disappear and you only see your name. If you click your name, the dots will reappear. Let’s add a border to our text box. With the text box selected click “Shape Outline” on the ribbon toolbar as pictured below. Notice in the picture below, there is a variety of colors as well as, line styles and thicknesses that you can apply. Choose a color you like.

Shape Outline

Now, click outside of your text box and you should see that you have a nice border around your name. Let’s center our name in the box. Click the “Home” tab and choose the “Center” button located in the “Paragraph” group on the ribbon. Once you have your name centered, double-click your text box and notice that it takes you to the “Format Tab”. In the same area that we added the “Shape Outline” we will also find “Shape Fill”. Let’s add a fill color, or background, to the text box. Click the “Shape Fill” dropdown arrow and select a color. Now you will see your box has a background color. Note that if you pick one that is dark, you may need to change your font color to make your name visible. For this example, it might be a good idea to pick a light background.

If you double-click your name in the box, you will get a little font menu box pop up, as pictured below. I highlighted it with a green box.Font Menu

Here you can adjust the font type, size, color, alignment, and much more. Let’s change the font size to something large. Notice in the picture above, the number 18. If you click the arrow beside that you will get a dropdown of numbers. I chose 44. Notice how much bigger your box is now.

Let’s go ahead and save this presentation. Name it “Fun with Slides” or something and we will continue working with these text boxes later on. For now, thanks for reading Techie Buzz, and if you have questions please feel free to email me at [email protected]

PowerPoint Basics Table of Contents

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 5: Viewing the Presentation

This is Lesson 5 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to Lesson 1(Table of Contents at the end). In Lesson 4 we added a new slide layout that let us put two pictures side by side. We inserted a picture and added a frame and effects to it. If you haven’t already, go ahead and add a picture to the second picture placeholder and put captions underneath both of the pictures. If you haven’t gone through the previous lessons, you might want to do so or some of what I am telling you to do may not make sense. Below, you can what my slide looks like. Of course, you won’t have the same pictures that I do, but no worries about that. Just pick from the pictures you have available and we’ll go from there.

Main Slide

Since PowerPoint is primarily a presentation software, I thought now might be a good time to show you how you can put this new presentation in presentation, or “Slide Show” mode. Pictured below, you can see the ribbon toolbar with the “Slide Show” tab selected.

Slide Show

You will notice that I have circled the button labeled “From Beginning”. This is what you select when you are ready to present your presentation. The “From Current Slide” button basically will let you look at the particular slide you are editing at the moment. This comes in pretty handy when you’re not sure how a particular slide will look in a “Slide Show”. So far in these tutorials, we have used a real simple format. We chose a template to work from and added a couple of slides with pictures. When you click the “From Beginning” button, you will notice that your presentation will start in full screen mode. To progress to the next slide, click the left mouse button and it will move to the next slide. Continue doing this until all the slides have shown. At this point you should see a screen that says “End Show”. If you click this screen then your “Slide Show” will end and you will be back to where you can edit your presentation. Also note that any time during the presentation, if you hit the “Esc” key on your keyboard your presentation will end. Go ahead and give your presentation a try. When you are finished make sure you hit save.

This concludes Lesson 5. Make sure to keep coming back as we will continue to show more features of PowerPoint. As always, please feel free to ask questions. Thanks for reading Techie Buzz!

PowerPoint Basics Table of Contents

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 4: Fun with Pictures

This is Lesson 4 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to Lesson 1 (Table of Contents at the bottom of this article). In Lesson 3, we deleted all of the sample slides from the template and added our own “Album Cover” slide. We also typed text into placeholders and added our own picture. Today, I would like to take the picture concept a little further and see what kind of fun we can have with them.

Let’s take a moment to add a new slide to our photo album. In the image below, you will see where I have clicked the “New Slide” menu and selected the “2-Up Portrait with Captions” layout.

Slide Galler

This particular layout will give us a place for two pictures on our slide side by side with captions underneath.  See the picture below for an example.

Slide Layout

Let’s add a couple of pictures to our slide. Notice that square in the middle of the picture placeholder that looks like it has a mountain scene with a little sun over it. Click this square to open a dialog where you can choose a picture to add to the slide. I am going to pick one that is particularly wide so that I can show what can happen on these narrow picture placeholders. See the image below to see my problem.


Notice my poor little dove is aligned way over to the left of the picture and partially cut off. The problem here is the ratio of my picture doesn’t match the ratio of my picture place holder. What can I do? Well there is a lot that can be done but for now, I just want to show you a way to get it more centered. If you click the picture the “Picture Tools” tab shows with several options. On the far right side of the ribbon you will see the “Crop” button. Go ahead and hit the crop button. Notice in my image below, how the image changes. In this mode you can put your mouse in the middle of the picture and  click and drag the picture to position it exactly where you want it in the frame. Once you have the picture where you want it click the “Crop” button again and it will apply your change.

Crop Frame

Now that we have our picture positioned where we want it, let’s play around with some other features. Remember earlier when we clicked on the picture, the “Picture Tools” tab showed up with lots of options for us. We could literally spend days here. There are a lot of nifty features we can apply to this picture. Let’s take a look at the “Picture Tools” and discuss some of their functions.

Adjust Group

The first group in the “Picture Tools” is the “Adjust” group. Here you dramatically change the look of the picture. “Remove Background” will let you click areas of the picture you want to keep and remove. So if you have an ugly airplane flying in the sky behind your prize rose, you can use this tool to remove that part of the picture. “Corrections” will basically allow you to blur or sharpen as well as, change picture contrast. The “Color” button will let you tint the picture with color. “Artistic Effects” can be a lot of fun but try not to go to overboard here. “Compress Pictures” will help you lower the file size which is handy for emailing. “Change Picture” basically opens up a dialog so you can pick a different picture. “Reset Picture” will come in real handy if you royally screw up your picture with too many edits. It puts things back to its original state.

Picture Styles

The “Picture Styles” group will let you add frames, borders, reflections, highlights, shadows, and much more.

Arrange Group

The “Arrange” group will let you work with picture alignment and rotation. the “Bring Forward” and “Send Backward” buttons are for when you have more than one picture. If you overlap these pictures, these two buttons will let you determine which is in front of the other.

Size Group

The “Size Group” we’ve used already when we cropped. This basically lets you determine how big or small you want the picture to be.

Now that we’ve looked through this toolbar, take a moment to apply some of the different styles or color effects. I think I am going to add a frame to mine and sharpen it under corrections. Take a moment to play around a little and be sure to save your project for the next lesson.

Table of Contents – PowerPoint Basics

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 3: Editing a Template

This is Lesson 3 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to Lesson 1 (Table of Contents at the bottom of this article). In Lesson 2 I showed you how you could use PowerPoint’s built-in templates to create a new presentation. I also showed how to save a presentation for future editing. Today I will build upon the previous lessons and show you how to edit a template to make it yours.

Let’s open the “Contemporary Photo Album” template that we saved in Lesson 2. If you forgot to save it simply click the “File” tab on the ribbon toolbar, choose “New”, choose “Sample Templates”, then choose “Contemporary Photo Album”. You should see a screen similar to the one pictured below.

PowerPoint Window

Notice I have drawn a green rectangle down the left side of the screen where the slides are shown. Since we want to make this template our own, let’s delete all of these slides. There are several ways to do this. If you click on a slide, you will notice that it highlights similar to the way slide 1 is highlighted in the picture above. When you see this, hit the delete key on your keyboard. Notice that the slide disappears with no questions asked. Scary huh? Don’t worry. If you unintentionally delete a slide, you can undo this by hitting the undo button. The undo button is located on the quick access toolbar in the upper left corner of the screen and looks like a looped leftward pointing blue arrow. Now, let’s go ahead and delete all of the slides in the template.

Now that we have all of the sample slides out of the way, we can begin making our own photo presentation. Let’s add our first slide. On the ribbon toolbar you will see a button labeled “New Slide”. If you put your mouse over it you will notice that it kind of divides in half. The upper half has a little white rectangle and the lower half highlights the words “New Slide” with a downward pointing arrow. Two things can happen with this button. If you just click directly on the top part with the icon, PowerPoint assumes for you what type of slide layout you want. However, if you click the lower part with the downward pointing arrow, you get a slide gallery with several different layouts to choose from. See the picture below for an example.

New Slide

Let’s choose “Album Cover” from the “New Slide” gallery. You should see something similar to what is pictured below.

Album Cover

Notice the components of this slide. In the white space there is an icon that when clicked, will allow you to add a picture to that area. In the blue area at the bottom, there is a placeholder where you can add a title to your photo album. Placeholder’s are really simple to work with. Just click inside the area and begin typing. There is also another placeholder in the green area running along the right side of the slide.

Let’s click the icon in the middle of the slide to insert a picture. By default, it will take you to your “My Pictures” folder underneath “My Documents”. Since this is your photo album feel free to pick what ever picture you like from that location. If you don’t happen to have any pictures, most of the time there is a folder called “Sample Pictures” in the “My Pictures” folder that you can use. When you find a picture you like just double-click it to insert it into the slide. Now, you should see your inserted picture in the middle of the slide. Click the placeholder at the bottom labeled “Click to add photo album title”. Type “My Photos” in the placeholder. Click the placeholder on the right side and add today’s date. Notice it types sideways. This is because whoever designed this template rotated the placeholder to look that way. We’ll look at how to do that later. Go ahead and save your presentation.

In our next lesson, we will go more in depth into editing slides in the template. Remember all questions are welcome. Thanks for reading Techie Buzz.

Table of Contents – PowerPoint Basics

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 2: Starting a Presentation from a Template

This is Lesson 2 in a series of tutorials on Microsoft PowerPoint 2010. If you would like to start from the beginning of the series go to Lesson 1(Table of Contents at the bottom of the article). Today’s tutorial will show you how to use the templates that are built in to PowerPoint to start a new presentation.

If there is one thing that I try to instill in people that I teach is you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. When it comes to making good presentations, PowerPoint gives you a lot of sample material that more than likely will cover anything you would like to do in a presentation. They do this in the form of templates and it is one of the better advantages that PowerPoint has over other presentation tools.

To access templates, we click on the “File” tab on the ribbon toolbar. Click on the word “New” and you will see the screen pictured below. You will notice that the window is broken down into two sections. “Available Templates and Themes” are basically templates already downloaded with the default installation onto your computer. “Office.com Templates” are templates that are available to be downloaded to your computer via the web.

New Presentation Window

One thing you will notice is that there are numerous types of templates. PowerPoint has a lot of capabilities beyond the basic slideshow. Notice the “Diagrams” template. PowerPoint is one of the simplest ways to create an organization chart for your business. For the purpose of today’s lesson I want to use the “Sample templates” located in the top half of the page. When I double-click this I get the screen you see below.

Sample Templates

The reason I want to start with these sample templates is they represent some of the most common formats for a presentation and they also give you little cheat notes to help you learn more about using PowerPoint. Let’s choose the “Contemporary Photo Album” template. When you choose this template you will see a screen similar to the one below. Notice that it already comes with several ready made slides over on the left. We can delete these later but for now it would be a good idea to click each of the slides on the left and notice the instructions they give you regarding how to add your own photos and styles.

Contemporary Photo Album

Now, the first step in making a presentation be your own is to SAVE IT! The last thing you ever want to do is lose all those wonderful changes you make. The last part of this lesson I want to show you how to save this template into a folder that you can easily find later. On the ribbon toolbar, find the tab that says “File”. Click “File” and the first option you should see below it is “Save”. Click “Save”. This will open up a window, which if you use Windows XP, will be opened to your “My Documents” folder by default. If you use Windows 7 it will open to the “Documents” library. Either way this is a really good place to save your presentation because it is easy to find a file in this location.  At the bottome of the “Save As” window you will see two fields. One says “File Name”. This is where you can type a name for your presentation. Let’s just call it “My Photos” just for fun. Below that field you will see “Save as type”. We won’t get into this today but just so you know, this is where you can save the presentation into earlier versions of PowerPoint or into a different format altogether. For today’s purpose though let’s just click the “Save” button in the lower right corner.

In Lesson 3 we will look at adding slides into the presentation and doing more to make our own. Keep checking back as new content will be continually added. Thanks for reading Techie Buzz!

Table of Contents – PowerPoint Basics

Tutorial – PowerPoint 2010 Basics Lesson 1: Getting to Know the PowerPoint Window

This is the first in a series of tutorials aimed at familiarizing our readers with one of Microsoft Office’s most popular applications, PowerPoint 2010. Admittedly, I am starting this tutorial in a very basic manner, but I believe that even the common PowerPoint user will find some things they weren’t familiar with along the way.

We begin our PowerPoint 2010 series simply by familiarizing ourselves with the basic aspects of the main window. When you open PowerPoint, you will see a window similar to that pictured below minus all of the pretty colored rectangles. I have placed those rectangles there to sort of break up the main PowerPoint window into its different components.

PowerPoint Main Window

The area above highlighted by a small red rectangle is called the quick access toolbar. You can see a closer view below. Notice that I have clicked the small downward pointing arrow which brings up a menu to customize the quick access toolbar. This toolbar lives up to its name. You have the ability to add buttons to this toolbar which provide quick access to commands you commonly use. For instance, in earlier versions of Office, the print button was easy to find. This isn’t the case in Office 2010. If you want a quick button that you can click to hit print, then choose the “Quick Print” option from the customize menu, as pictured below.

Quick Access Toolbar

Let’s take a look at the area highlighted by a blue rectangle in the main image above. This area is called the ribbon toolbar. For folks used to using Office 2003, the ribbon toolbar is a pretty dramatic change. As a matter of fact, probably the only thing that will look familiar to you is the placement of the file menu. The ribbon is broken into tabs and underneath each tab are sections. For instance, in the picture below, you can see that the “Home” tab is highlighted. Below it are several sections like “Clipboard”, “Slides”, “Font”, etc… Some of the sections have more options. You can know this by noting a small arrow in the lower right hand side of the section. Pictured below, I have circled the arrow in red. When I put my mouse over the arrow, you will notice I got a little box labeled “Font” with the words “Show the Font dialog box.” You will also note that the section labeled “Slides” is all inclusive and doesn’t have more options.

Ribbon Toolbar

Highlighted in orange in the main image above is the Slides and Outline tabs area. If the Slides tab is selected, then you will see a miniature version of all the slides that you have created in the presentation. If the Outline tab is selected, then you will see the outline view of the presentation. As a matter of fact, this is a great way to organize a presentation. I have previously done a tutorial located at this link http://techie-buzz.com/how-to/using-the-outline-view-in-powerpoint.html which will show you how you can utilize the Outline view to build the basic shell of your presentation.

Slides and Outline Tabs

The next area of focus is highlighted in bright green above and it is the slide content area. This is where the rubber meets the road. It is here that you put the content of the presentation that will be viewed by the audience. Since it is large enough to be seen in the main image above I will not separate it as its own image. However, I will point out the two little boxes that are placed there by default. Those are called placeholders. When you click in a placeholder, it will allow you to type in the text you want. These particular placeholders are labeled as Title and Subtitle which basically means they are formatted differently for emphasis. All of this can be changed.

The last area I want point out, but that is often overlooked, is highlighted in purple and is called the Notes area. The notes area allows you to types notes to yourself and is not visible to the audience. This is a very handy place to write down little reminders to yourself and make sure you get out the intended message.

This concludes Lesson 1. Be sure to return to Techie Buzz for Lesson 2 will soon be on its way. Please feel free to ask questions and give feedback on this and all tutorials. I would enjoy hearing from you and helping you any way I can.


How To Delete Posts on Facebook Timeline or Wall/Feed?

With all the scams going on these days, one of our readers asked us a simple question on how to delete a post on her Facebook timeline which was incidentally a Facebook scam post. While deleting any post on your Facebook Timeline should be easy, not many people are aware of the steps involved in it.

If you are someone who is not aware of deleting posts on their Facebook Timeline or wall, you can follow the steps listed below to find out how you can do it.

How To Delete Post from Facebook Timeline

Step 1: To delete any posts, you will first have to visit your profile page or your Timeline as it is called now and find the post you want to delete.

Facebook Remove Post in Timeline Option

Step 2: Once you find the post, just hover over the post area in the right and side hover your mouse and you will see a button to “Edit or Remove” the post. Click on this button to view the options.

Delete Facebook Timeline Post

Step 3: From the available options in the drop down menu, click on the “Delete” option to delete the post. You will be shown a popup confirmation dialog asking you whether you “Are you sure you want to delete this?”. Click on the “Delete” button in the dialog to delete that post from your wall.

How To Delete Post from Facebook Feed/Wall

If you want to delete any post on your Facebook feed or Facebook wall, you can do it by hovering over the post in the right hand side corner and then clicking on the “x” button provided to you.

Delete Facebook Feed Post

Clicking on the “x” button will once again pop up a dialog which says “Are you sure you want to delete this?”. Click on the “Delete” button in the dialog to delete that post from your feed or wall.

Access Banned Torrent and Video Sites in India

The Indian governments Department of Telecom (DOT) recently notified ISPs to block several torrent and video websites such as Pirate Bay, ExtraTorrent, KickAss Torrent, Vimeo, Pastebin and more to curb piracy. ISPs like Reliance and Airtel have already started blocking those websites.

In reply to those blocks, the famous group Anonymous has attacked several Indian government websites and taken them down. While the attacks continue, several users in India are still looking to access the websites but are seeing a message “This site has been blocked as per instructions from Department of Telecom (DOT)”.

If you are someone who is looking to access those torrent and video sites in India, you can still do it through several means. As I had stated earlier you can easily access blocked websites using proxy servers, you will find several proxy servers in our earlier guide on how to access blocked website.

Additionally, you can also access those websites using services like OpenDNS and Google DNS. See our guide on How to use Google Public DNS on Windows 7 and Windows XP or use a Google DNS helper to automatically change to Google DNS. If you are in India, you can use a DNS proxy website like http://dnetproxy.appspot.com/ as well.

If you are still not able to access those torrent websites, you could always try and use the site operator in Google search to directly search those websites and view their cached copies.

If you have any other means to access those websites, please feel free to leave a comment.

Access isoHunt, Pirate Bay, ExtraTorrent and Kick Ass Torrents in India

Several ISPs in India have started blocking popular torrent sites like ISO Hunt, Vimeo, Pastebin, The Pirate Bay and Extra Torrent on various ISPs including those of Airtel and Reliance. Users who visit these website on those ISPs will see a message as shown in the image below.


The message reads:

This site has been blocked as per instructions from Department of Telecom (DOT).

The reason for the ban is still unknown and users are flooding with tweets opposing the ban. If your ISP has blocked ISO Hunt, Pirate Bay or Extra Torrent for you, you might still be able to access those sites albeit using some workarounds.

If you are looking to access those websites, you can try out several of the proxies we had listed in our earlier article on how to access blocked websites. Additionally, you can also try out some other failsafe methods to access blocked websites.

Additional Reads:

Some of the blocks are DNS based (h/t @anantshri) . To overcome this issue you can try out services like Google DNS or Open DNS to access those websites. Read our earlier guide on How to use Google Public DNS on Windows 7 and Windows XP or use a Google DNS helper to automatically change to Google DNS. You can also use a Public Proxy DNS site like http://dnetproxy.appspot.com/.

You can also visit Pirate Bay using proxies which you can find at http://about.piratereverse.info/proxy/list.html and http://tpb.fl.ax/. You might also want to switch to magnet links if your tracker is being blocked. Learn more about what magnet links are.

Last but not the least you can also use Google’s site operator to search those sites directly without visiting them and then view the cached version of the page through Google search.