Microsoft has unveiled a beta of the latest version of its Producer for Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003 presentation toolkit.
Producer 2003 is a free add-on for PowerPoint, and makes it quicker and easier to create complex presentations that synchronise audio and video with PowerPoint slides and images.
Its multimedia capabilities are built around the Windows Media 9 Series player.
The update also introduces cross-platform compatibility with support for Mac and Netscape users, and complies with the basic requirements for the Information Management System and Shareable Content Object Reference Model e-learning standards.
Microsoft explained that Producer 2003 includes a drag-and-drop interface, compatibility with a widely distributed set of viewers, and an interface that eliminates the need for specialised knowledge of HTML coding and scripting.
"By creating rich-media presentations with Producer 2003, you can deliver PowerPoint 2003 presentations in a whole new way with audio, video and more," said Dave Fester, general manager of the Windows digital media division at Microsoft.
"As more organisations turn to digital media as a way to save money and improve marketing communications, online learning and executive broadcasts, they will find that the new features of Producer 2003 are a powerful complement to Microsoft Office 2003."
The beta version of Producer 2003 is available for download here.
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