Create or Customize Templates
I've been meaning to write a tutorial on creating your own templates and/or customizing existing templates, but my friend Geetesh Bajaj has beaten me to it. Again.
But allow me to add a bit about templates and PPTs in general.
Think of a PowerPoint presentation as a kind of layer cake.
On the bottom, there's a formatting layer that holds all the formatting information from the template. That determines what the backgrounds look like, how each of the text and other placeholders is positioned and formatted ... in a word, the "look" of the presentation.
Then there's a kind of "miscellaneous" layer that contains things like VBA macros.
Finally, there's a "content" layer that contains the slides in the presentation.
A PowerPoint template (POT) file is very much like a regular PPT file. It can contain all the same layers I've just described.
Different layers from a template can end up in your presentations, depending on how you appy the template. That's where it gets confusing for most people. It's really pretty simple:
- If you create a new presentation based on a template, the presentation will contain everything that was in the template. Formatting, of course, but also any slides and even any VBA macros that were in the template when it was saved. But
- If you apply a template to an existing presentation, only the "formatting" layer is applied. Any VBA or slides in the template stay there ... PowerPoint doesn't bring them into your presentation when you apply the template.
Incidentally, it works the other way around too. Every presentation contains all the formatting information from the template it's based on. That means that if you have a presentation whose look you want to duplicate in other presentations later, all you have to do is choose File, Save As and choose Presentation Design (POT) to save it as a new template.
And -- little-known fact -- you can choose Format, Apply Design, choose Presentations and Shows in the Files of Type dropdown list box, and apply designs from existing presentations (PPT and PPS files) just as though they were templates.
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