By @mhawksey

Enabling micro-discussion in PowerPoint using Wiffiti

It’s rare for me to have an idea of my own, instead I rely on mashing up ideas of others. A case in point is taking a post on Pontydysgu 20 things to do in the classroom with Wiffiti and David Hopkins PowerPoint: Embedding YouTube Video, which equals ‘Enabling micro-discussion in PowerPoint using Wiffiti’.

Some background – Wiffiti is a free web service which allows to to upload an image, users can then publish messages in real time which are overlaid. Message can be submitted via SMS, twitter, flickr or via the web. Below I’ve embedded the example Jenny Hughes used (if you don’t see swirly messages it is probably because your network goes through a proxy server. Potentially a big issue if using it on campus – I’ve let the developer know):

In Jenny’s post she list some educational uses of Wiffiti. The obvious application for me is to stimulate in-class discussion. Like EVS removing the stigma of putting your hand up with an anonymous communication channel. You could of course just like to the Wiffiti page from your presentation but having read David Hopkins how-to on embedding YouTube in PowerPoint I was inspired to look at Wiffitifying PowerPoint. 

Basically all you need to do is:

  1. Create your page on Wiffiti
  2. Copy the ‘Share this Screen – Movie url’
    [The next part is an edit of David’s instructions]
  3. Go to the point in your presentation where you want the Wiffiti to be placed.
  4. Make sure you can see the ‘Control Toolbox’ toolbar. [For Office 2007 users if you can’t find the ‘Control Toolbox’ toolbar you might need to enable it by opening PowerPoint -> clicking on the Office icon (top left) -> click ‘PowerPoint Options’ and within the popular tab make sure the ‘Show Developer tab in the Ribbon’ is checked]
  5. Select the ‘hammer / spanner’ looking icon and then select ‘Shockwave Flash object’ from the subsequent menu list.
  6. Then drag the cross-hairs into a square area you want the video to be shown in. You’ll end up with a white box on the screen with two diagonal lines from corner to corner.
  7. Right mouse-click in this box and select ‘Properties’ from the list.
  8. In the empty ox next to the heading ‘Movie’ paste the URL of your Wiffiti.

Here is a PowerPoint file with the Wiffiti embedded. To see it work you need to be in presentation mode. You may also need to enable Active X Macros.

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