Improved Presentation Thoughts

This week is our church’s 22nd annual Missions Conference. We have many missionaries from around the world, including Indonesia, Uruguay, Belize and Vanuatu. We were planning on a big opening night and I was going to be running our projectors and audio recording. I typically do the video switching or camera work, but since I had been working with the projection for the opening ceremony, I was needed  for that job instead.

We had plans for doing a live Skype call, a favorite amongst us, plus playing videos and DVDs, lighting changes, video IMAG, and much much more! We had some “limitations” for our presentation software, EasyWorship 2009. The software is “powerful” (I use quotes because of course it would be ‘powerful,’ every piece of software is ‘powerful.’ Who wants to use an ‘average’ product? Seriously!) and has a lot of potential for different types of churches. You can have nursery numbers shown on the screens, show hymns and choruses with looping BGs, show .pptx slides, plus video and DVDs.

test Skype call

As for the “limitations,” we just had problems now and then with it. We found that our version of 2009 had an update we never applied, version 1.9, we were on 1.4. That would be a lot of fixes made which we didn’t have. Plus, if someone had a PowerPoint to show, and we found an error in it, we had an expired trial version of Office 2007 and could make zero corrections. This was the perfect time for some upgrades to software.

Scott, our networking guy, and I started with a new full version of Office 2010, we installed it and removed all the previous versions of Office. We also upgraded EasyWorship to version 1.9. But then we ran into some problems.

Right away I tried to play a .pptx from EasyWorship, and it said .pptx was not a PowerPoint file. I was not pleased. We discovered that EasyWorship needs to have Office PowerPoint Viewer installed to run it in their software. Who knew? So we download the newest 2010 version. No good; same problem. But I knew that the 2007 version worked. Once we did that, bingo! (If we had only gone to the EasyWorship site to see the criteria beforehand and not just jumped into upgrading, we would have known all this sooner, so I mean no disrespect to the makers of EasyWorship). Scott and I high-fived each other in victory!

One last bit for EasyWorship, I followed some directions from their FAQs and found it would play .mp4 and .mov files, which are not native for Windows software. This helps us because we make our videos on Macs, and it can sometimes be a pain converting them to clunky .avi’s.

Moral of the story, when you’re thinking of upgrading your software, always read FAQs or their Knowledge Base to find information regarding complications or bugs that you may encounter.

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2 thoughts on “Improved Presentation Thoughts

  1. I was doing a search for SKYPE and EasyWorship and found your blog. Did you run SKYPE video conference through EW? I work in the media booth and am trying to set up a missions video conference.

    • Paul,
      Good morning. You have a very good question and idea about running the Skype call through EZW! But, unfortunately we did not run our Skype call in that fashion. I believe in my other blog posts about using Skype for a church service I describe all the technical things about setting it up, as well as how to practice your call in advance. I do not believe that using Skype in EZW is possible without some sort of “hacking,” but I will look into it. The best way, we have found, is to have Skype running simultaneously with EZW and then minimize one to show the other. We kept in communication with our missionary via instant message until we were ready to start the actual video call. I hope this information can be a help to you, and please do not hesitate if you have any more questions for me about this! God bless your weekend and your upcoming service!

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