impress.js may not help you if you have nothing interesting to say ;)"
Although said in jest, this struck me as poignant. I feel that many of us spend a disturbingly large amount of time researching, downloading and "hello world"ing all of these pretty well-marketed tools, but most of us still haven't figured out what we're going to build with them.
Opiate for the hackers. I plead guilty.
What you're doing is basically learning the tool, and its capabilities. Next time you need a CSS3 transformation plugin tailored for presentations, you'll be able to say "hey, I remember there's this impress thing that I tried once and it's exactly what we need".
Don't forget to use your skills to actually build stuff!
I'm torn by Prezi. It's the moral antipode to Tufte's philosophy of presentation. It seems like it should be objectively evil. But the infinite canvas aspect of it makes the slides so dense they actually kind of work for reading online; the transition animations, annoying as they are, add pacing and create a reading experience that somewhat mirrors the delivery of an actual talk.
I'd love to hear some success stories from people who have actually delivered Prezi talks in public.
I can imagine a history lecturer creating a timeline spanning the entire length of the course, marking major events on it. When he wants to discuss a topic, he zooms in on the timeline so that the students get both context and specificity.
I can imagine an elementary music teacher designing a presentation with instruments grouped by family, zooming in first on the woodwinds, then on the single reeds, then on the saxophones. When moving to a new family, it would zoom out first to remind the students of how the instruments relate to each other.
I can even imagine any routine three-point presentation could benefit from the added context that spatial reference can provide.
Animation for animation's sake would almost certainly be detrimental to a presentation. But I'm excited about tools like this because they give good presenters the opportunity to present information in a way that wasn't previously possible.
There is a reason why animation is used. It's not just to show off. It actually creates new opportunities to explain difficult concepts because you can show it in a continuum rather than as slides.
Look at what it did to Roslings presentation of stastistica data.
I agree with one poster above: for procedures a step by step approach is probably best.
Like - rather than a pdf of slides with space for notes, a user application for prezi where the user can enter notes for each transition?
The transitions themselves are fantastic and like others in the thread I don't find them fancy at all, in fact I think they add movies like continuity to presentations for cheap, which if used wisely can enable story-telling style of information delivery.
I can see myself using it for info-graphics and tutorials, other than presentations, by making it do non-linear (zooming in/out or using hrefs) flow of content.
Oh now I realize why I liked it so much, it also removes the single most annoying feature of reading content on the web - the constant scrolling and zooming, like readability it alleviates that pain for you, by zooming in to the content that matters the most at this instant.
There is a gigantic market for making stuff that makes other people look good. People are looking for something that is like Powerpoint, but a bit better because PP is considered boring. This, if refined and made easier to use for intermediary content creators, has enormous financial potential because it works on all devices.
What I'd love to see is a way for me to write relatively vanilla HTML, possibly run it through a parser (in a perfect world, I would just annotate it with css classes) and out comes a sexy presentation. Or maybe a wysiwyg UI, like how Prezi's interface works.
Anything that is on a step is custom HTML and CSS and author is expected to write it. Stylesheet given is not meant to be a part of a library - it's just a demo.
I know that it narrows the target users to people knowing HTML and CSS (on a quite good level) but it's just an experiment and a tool I use. If anyone finds it nice and helpful that's great. If not - it's not my fault.
But for sure some detailed docs for impress.js are needed and I hope to write them soon.
It could work with some custom markdown tags like
First sl[[i](transition=leftrotate target=second slide)]de
Personally, I dont have a presentation which I cant express through markdown.
Yoda is "hardcoded" because it's just a demo.
There's just a very fine line between over- and underdoing a presentation. It's never good just to dash off a presentation with lousy layout and design but it may not be beneficial to overdo a presentation as well. Too much FX and animations makes you at a certain point needy: "Look what I did to impress you", "Look, another animation!", "How nice, isn't it??", "And here another 3D effect, awesome isn't it? I spent the entire day to make the rotation perfect, just for you because I like you!". After the 5th animation the viewers think you are a needy guy, needing approval, spending to much time on design than content and having nothing to do.
Different with pure web presentations for a large audience, then such tools are nice, but I don't know if they convert better than a gold old landing page.
The description of slides looks close to what you are calling for:
* "First point"
* "Second point"
I'm just still a little bit skeptical about JS lib re-downloading, parsing and appending my CSS.
You can see an example at http://info.iet.unipi.it/~luigi/netmap/slides.html
That's the new 'optimized for IE 5 at 1024x768' it seems. Sad.
It run great on Firefox 10 on Win and Mac because they have hardware acceleration. Firefox 10 on my Ubuntu doesn't do hardware acceleration so even that it supports CSS 3D animations are slow as hell.
Microsoft also works hard on hardware acceleration in IE10, so it will probably run just fine there, whenever it will be released.
It's true, that being 'webkit-only' feels like good ol' IE-only sites. But that's a cost that you need pay to play with edge web technologies.
I really just don't like to see the next gap in browser support and hate to see 'support everything but IE 6' turn into 'support nothing but the latest chrome'.
This is nothing against your project, in fact I think for this particular experiment you _had_ to push the requirements up.
Bottom line: No offense intended.
Simply the interest about this project is far more bigger than I could expect and more and more people are confused about the browser support in it. And it really is confusing because today it's webkit-only. Firefox 10 is around the corner, but not just there yet, and Firefox 9 users may feel like they are excluded: "hey, I have latest Firefox, Y U NO WORK!?" ;)
The project already said what you suggest, in fact several times.
"It's a presentation framework based on the power of CSS3 transforms and transitions in modern browsers and inspired by the idea behind prezi.com."
More or less exactly what you said:
"Impress.js is developed with current webkit-based browsers in mind (Chrome, Safari), but should work also in other browsers supporting CSS3 3D transforms and transitions (Firefox, IE10)."
It even says it is tested with nightly builds of Firefox and _then_ came up with the previously quoted:
"I don't really expect it to run smoothly in non-webkit-based browser."
At this point the requirements are already defined, the tested browser setups are listed. This is just surprising insofar as that
- the text before says that Firefox Aurora is tested as well (I've to admit I missed that reading the explanation the first time)
- this (and that was my real point) becomes a ~standard~ disclaimer by now. Chrome it is, the rest be damned. I think that's sad and still stand by my comparison to 'IE optimization' for things like this.
Listing browsers (or with hardware acceleration browsers+systems) helps to know what configuration can be used to make it work.
I, for one, have long been looking for an easier way to prototype and test 3D interfaces for multidimensional data. It's hard to get meaningful feedback on a movie or a SketchUp model, and this tool may just fit the bill.
but I'd really like to see in running on iPad, maybe on Android tablets if possible, it's just not implemented yet
I actually don't have any words to say now :D
Love the work man.