Don's Freeware Corner articles are printed in the UTAH VALLEY TECHNOLOGY AND GENEALOGY GROUP (UVTAGG) Newsletter TAGGology each month and are posted on his Class Notes Page where there may be corrections and updates.


©2019 Donald R. Snow - Last updated 2019-10-15


Last month (Sep 2019) my Freeware Corner article was an introduction to using GOOGLE SLIDES to make slideshows ("Powerpoints") for family history. These could be about some aspect of your life or of an ancestor's life. GOOGLE SLIDES is free with a Google account and those accounts are set up when you apply for a free Gmail address. Last month we showed how to get started making a slideshow, how to select a theme for each slide, and how to add text and/or pictures. This month we will discuss a few further features including adding transitions (how the slides come on the screen), animations (parts of a slide moving into place or disappearing, etc.), and how to add sound (narration or background music).


Places you have lived
Houses you lived in
Schools you attended
About your parents and grandparents
Military service
Your surname line
Your wedding
Trips and/or vacations
Church service
Activities such as cultural and sports activities
Musical talents and studies
Cars you've owned
Chidren's stories
Pets you've had
Your ancestors who joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Cemetery tombstones
Short stories of activities
Fun things you and your family did
Adventures you have had
Christmas and holiday celebrations and traditions


Just below the slide you are working on is a place to write Speaker Notes. These are notes you see in the slideshow, but the audience does not. It sometimes helps to see the statement of what the next mouse click will do so you are not surprised when you click. These Speaker notes help you keep organized.


Transitions are the way the slides appear and disappear on the screen. The default is that when you click the mouse the old slide disappears and the next one is there instantly. For variety you can have slides fade in and/or out, slide in or out from top or bottom or either side. You set these by clicking on the word Transitions (near the upper right corner of the slide you are working on) and selecting what you want. It also has the option of how fast to have it fade or slide. There is an option to have each slide this way or just the current one. There are options to have paragraphs come in on the mouse click, as well. These are called Animations are are discussed in the next section of these notes.  All these transitions help keep people focused on what you are saying, since they can't see the next part until you click to show it. The links to two helpful tutorials for transitions and animations in GOOGLE SLIDES are
and (Blog article dated 18 Jul 2019)


Animations are like transitions, but are only the way items on a particular slide work. The previous links also have information about animations in GOOGLE SLIDES. As an example, you might want to have each bullet point appear as you click the mouse, instead of having them all appear at once. Or you can have an arrow appear and point to a particular individual on the screen when you click the mouse. There are at least two ways to do this. One is to make two slides, one without the arrow and one with the arrow, and show them sequentially. A second way is to include the arrow on the same slide, but have it come in when you click the mouse. This is animation. To set up the animation you highlight whatever it is you want to animate, e.g. the arrow, and then click Animate and select the options you want. Something to keep in mind about animations is that, if you export your slideshow and don't show it in GOOGLE SLIDES, e.g. you make a pdf of all the slides, those with animations will only show the final version so the animation won't show.  If you make two slides, each slide will show and the animation will still occur.  That's information for an additional Freeware Corner article. Here is a short tutorial article about animations in GOOGLE SLIDES -- .


Adding a narration and/or backgroupd music is not as easy in GOOGLE SLIDES as in Powerpoint, but can be done. The procedure involves recording your narrative, adding it to a video, and embedding the video in the slide. You attach the video to the slide, but place it so the video icon does not show on the screen. Then you set the video to "auto-play" so when you click to show that slide, the narration or music also starts. The narration or music is attached to a single slide and it starts playing as soon as that slide appears on screen. Since the narration goes with each slide and doesn't start until you show that eslide, you don't have to worry about the timing. Adding narration and/or music to GOOGLE SLIDES is not as easy as in Powerpoint, but does work. Here's the link to an article about the procedure -- .


GOOGLE SLIDES is a good, and free, program to make slideshows. It only requires having a free Google account to use it. It has many of the same features as Powerpoint, but is easier to use. There are many additional features that neither this article nor the first one has touched, so I will probably write more about it later.
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