SlideFab 2 is a software to automatically create Powerpoint slides from Excel. Consequently, the decision was to integrate its functionality into Powerpoint. Because this was the most natural position. From the Powerpoint ribbon SlideFab 2 is ideally located for making all settings and for connecting with the Excel workbook. Accordingly, the user will find access to all parts of the SlideFab 2 user interface in one single location.
The user interface of SlideFab 2 is located in the Powerpoint ribbon. It consists of one tab with four groups. Each of these groups holds related function.
The Intro button leads to a quick overview on how to SlideFab 2 works.
The control area is the main part of the SlideFab 2 ribbon tab. So, it holds everything relevant for the automation. Accordingly, this is where the user will interact with most.
- The Open Excel dropdown button is used to connect the current Powerpoint presentation to an Excel workbook. It holds three buttons and a checkbox:
- With Select an Open Excel File a file system dialog shows up. Then the user selects an Excel workbook. Afterwards, SlideFab will be open up the selected workbook automatically.
- SlideFab memorizes the most recently used Excel file for each Powerpoint presentation. With the Open Excel file button the user can open this memorized workbook. SlideFab memorizes the full path in the file system. If the workbook will not be found there it tries to find the workbook in the folder of the Powerpoint presentation.
- When the desired workbook is already opened and active the user can press the button Try to use currently open Excel workbook to open it
- If checked, the checkbox Open automatically when SlideFab is activated will open a previously memorized workbook when a SlideFab is actively used (cf. above)
- The Iteration Loop button opens up the Powerpoint side pane from where the automation can be steered.
- The Slide Linking button opens up the Powerpoint side pane. From this pane the user connects Powerpoint shapes to Excel cells, ranges, charts, etc.
- The Advanced Settings button opens up the Powerpoint side pane. From this pane the user manages additional settings such as file decomposition, sorting, etc.
- The Logical Audit button opens up the Powerpoint side pane. From this pane the user can run the check to find potential issues with the SlideFab automation settings for the current presentation
- The Make Slides button will open up the window from where the slide generation process can be started and observed
The two buttons in this tab will arrange the windows of Excel and Powerpoint side by side. Excel on the left and Powerpoint on the right or vice versa.
This tab holds further settings which are not specific to the currently opened presentation. These settings are relevant for Powerpoint in general.
- The Preferences button will lead to further settings on how SlideFab 2 behaves, e.g. whether multiple side panes may be shown at the same time
- The License Key button lets the user enter a license key to unleash SlideFab 2 full functionality
- The Help button leads to this online help
- The About button leads to slidefab.com
- Finally the Choose language button lets the user choose between (at this time) English and German language for all SlideFab 2 dialogues
SlideFab 2 Manual Outline
- Think twice before coding VBA from Excel to PowerPoint
- Quickstart to SlideFab 2
- How SlideFab 2 works
- Requirements for SlideFab 2
- The SlideFab 2 ribbon
- Linking PowerPoint presentations with Excel workbooks
- The Iteration Loop tab
- The Slide Linking tab
- The Advanced settings tab
- The Logical Audit tab
- Making slides
- General Preferences
- Creating think-cell charts with SlideFab 2 automatically
- Invoking slide automation from your own code using VBA and the SlideFab 2 API
- Best practice