LibreOffice Impress

Impress is the presentation application for LibreOffice. A presentation program was available in LibreOffice’s predecessors, StarOffice and OpenOffice. When the Document Foundation forked the OpenOffice source code for the first version of LibreOffice, they made several improvements to Impress.

The open-source presentation application, like the other LibreOffice applications, is one of the most feature-rich presentation programs on the market. It has many of the same features that Microsoft PowerPoint has and many that it does not. For example, Impress documents can be exported to XHTML, HTML, and Flash. PowerPoint cannot export documents to these formats.

Also unlike PowerPoint, it has the same features and tools regardless of whether it is installed on Windows, Mac, or a Linux distro. There are key differences between the Windows and Mac versions of PowerPoint 2016.

History

A presentation program was introduced in StarOffice 4.0, which was released in 1997. Sun Microsystems purchased StarDivision , who first created the office suite, in 1999 and released version 5.1 in May of that year. That version contained StarOffice Impress.

Sun Microsystems first released OpenOffice.org suite, which included Impress, in 2000. In 2010, many of the OpenOffice.org developers started The Document Foundation, which purpose was to create and manage LibreOffice. Version 3.3 of LibreOffice, the first version, introduced several improvements to the OpenOffice version. These included a slide-show presenter console and the ability to import and work with SVG files.

About the Impress section

This section of the Website only has articles and videos about Impress. These include ones about features in the menus and toolbars. Impress has menus and toolbars in common with the other LibreOffice applications.

Features that it has in common with other applications, but that have unique attributes in Impress, will be covered in this section. For example, bullet and numbered lists are a feature of Writer, as well as Impress. This section of the Website would have information about how to use them in Impress. The Writer section would have an article and videos about there use in the word processor.

The different features of Impress are accessed through drop-down menus and toolbars. Most of them are common among the six applications, but each one also has unique menus and toolbars.

Menus

The menus that they have in common are as follows:

LibreOffice Impress drop-down menus in Windows
Here are the drop-down menus for Impress, shown running in Windows 10. The menu layout is the same, regardless of whether it is running on Windows, Mac, or a Linux distro.
  • File
  • Edit
  • View
  • Insert
  • Format

…………

  • Tools
  • Window
  • Help

The unique menus are Slide and Slide Show. They are in between Format and Tools, across the top of a document.

  • Slide: This menu allows you to add slides, duplicate slides, change slide properties, and do other things to slides.
  • Slide Show: This menu has items that allow you to control how a presentation is played.

In addition to the drop-down menus, many of the features and tools can be found in right-click menus. The items in one of these menus depends on what type of element (text, object, none, etc.) you have selected in a slide.

Toolbars

Impress, Calc, Writer, and Draw have many of them in common. There are also toolbars that only Impress and Draw have in common. There are two lists below: one with toolbars that are unique to Impress and one with toolbars that only Impress and Draw have.

Impress only

  • Outline: This is designed to work in Outline View. If you have an outline with bullets or numbers you have the following options
    • Demote: This moves a point from a higher level to a lower one. For example, clicking this button on an item that is at level 1, will move it to level 2.
    • Promote: This moves a point from a lower level to a higher one. For example, clicking this button on an item that is at level 2, will move it to level 1.
    • Move Down: This moves a point below the point it was originally above. Points that are a level lower than points directly below them will become nested under those points. For example, a level 2 point that was originally above a level 1 point will become a subpoint to this level 1 point after the button is clicked.
    • Move Up: This moves a point above the point it was originally below . Points that are a level lower than points above them will become nested under those points. For example, a level 2 point that was originally a sub-point of level 1 point, called B, will become a subpoint to level 1 point “A” the button is clicked.
    • Show Formatting: This icon becomes active when you are in Outline View. It gives you the option to see the formatting, such as font, font size, and highlights. Clicking the icon so this feature is off will make it so that you see the outline in plain text.
    • Black & White View: This also works in outline view. When it is off you can see the color of text, if it is not black. When it is on, the text will appear black.
  • Presentation: This toolbar allows you to add a new slide, duplicate a slide, delete a slide, and change the current slide’s layout. The icons are as follows
    • New Slide: This has a drop-down menu with a selection of 12 slides.
    • Duplicate Slide: This creates an identical slide to the one you are, including the layout, text, and images.
    • Delete Slide: This removes the slide you are on.
    • Slide Layout: This has a drop-down menu of 12 choices (the same that are in new Slide) that you can change the layout of the current slide to.
  • Slide Sorter: This has the selector arrow that lets you click on the desired slide in the Slides panel. The other button starts the slide show from the first slide.
  • Slide View: This has several icons.
    • Rehearse Timings: This records the display time for each slide, so the next time you play the show with automatic slide changes, the timing will be as recorded.
    • Show Slide: This reveals a hidden slide.
    • Hide Slide: This will hide the current slide.
    • Slides per row: Enter the number of slides to display on each row in the Slide Sorter.
  • Text: This toolbar has an icon to create a text box, fit text in text box, and one for callouts.

Impress and Draw

  • Edit Points: The Edit Points Bar appears when you select a polygon object and click Edit Points. This works when converting 2D Objects to Curves, Polygons, and 3D Objects.
    • Edit Points: The Edit Points icon allows you to activate or deactivate the edit mode for Bézier objects. In the edit mode, individual points of the drawing object can be selected.
    • Move Points: Activates a mode in which you can move points. The mouse pointer displays a small empty square when resting on a point. Drag that point to another location. The curve on both sides of the point follows the movement; the section of the curve between the next points changes shape. Point at the curve between two points or within a closed curve and drag the mouse to shift the entire curve without distorting the form.
    • Insert Points: Activates the insert mode. This mode allows you to insert points. You can also move points, just as in the move mode. If, however, you click at the curve between two points and move the mouse a little while holding down the mouse button you insert a new point. The point is a smooth point, and the lines to the control points are parallel and remain so when moved.If you wish to create a corner point you must first insert either a smooth or a symmetrical point which is then converted to a corner point by using Corner Point.
    • Delete Points: Use the Delete Points icon to delete one or several selected points. If you wish to select several points click the appropriate points while holding down the Shift key.First select the points to be deleted, and then click this icon, or press Del
    • Split Curve: The Split Curve icon splits a curve. Select the point or points where you want to split the curve, then click the icon.
    • Convert to Curve: Converts a curve into a straight line or converts a straight line into a curve. If you select a single point, the curve before the point will be converted. If two points are selected, the curve between both points will be converted. If you select more than two points, each time you click this icon, a different portion of the curve will be converted. If necessary, round points are converted into corner points and corner points are converted into round points.If a certain section of the curve is straight, the end points of the line have a maximum of one control point each. They cannot be modified to round points unless the straight line is converted back to a curve.
    • Corner Points: Converts the selected point or points into corner points. Corner points have two movable control points, which are independent from each other. A curved line, therefore, does not go straight through a corner point, but forms a corner.
    • Smooth Transition: Converts a corner point or symmetrical point into a smooth point. Both control points of the corner point are aligned in parallel, and can only be moved simultaneously. The control points may differentiate in length, allowing you to vary the degree of curvature.
    • Symmetric Transition: This icon converts a corner point or a smooth point into a symmetrical point. Both control points of the corner point are aligned in parallel and have the same length. They can only be moved simultaneously and the degree of curvature is the same in both directions.
    • Close Bezier: Closes a line or a curve. A line is closed by connecting the last point with the first point, indicated by an enlarged square.
    • Eliminate Points: Marks the current point or the selected points for deletion. This happens in the event that the point is located on a straight line. If you convert a curve or a polygon with the Convert to Curve icon into a straight line or you change a curve with the mouse so that a point lies on the straight line, it is removed. The angle from which the point reduction is to take place. When in Draw: can be set by choosing LibreOffice Draw – Grid in the Options dialog box. When in Impress: can be set by choosing LibreOffice Impress – Grid in the Options dialog boxis 15° by default.
  • Gluepoints: Gluepoints are points that you can insert inside shapes and other objects in Impress and Draw. You can draw connectors from a gluepoint in one object to a gluepoint in another object. When you move or resize one object, the connector remains connected to that glupoint.
    • Insert Glue Point: Inserts a gluepoint where you click in an object.
    • Exit Direction Left: Connector attaches to the left edge of the selected gluepoint.
    • Exit Direction Top: Connector attaches to the top edge of the selected gluepoint.
    • Exit Direction Right: Connector attaches to the right edge of the selected gluepoint.
    • Exit Direction Bottom: Connector attaches to the bottom edge of the selected gluepoint.
    • Glue Point Relative: Maintains the relative position of a selected gluepoint when you resize an object.
    • Glue Point Horizontal Left: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the left edge of the object.
    • Glue Point Horizontal Center: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the center of the object.
    • Glue Point Horizontal Right: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the right edge of the object.
    • Glue Point Vertical Top: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the top edge of the object.
    • Glue Point Vertical Center: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the vertical center of the object.
    • Glue Point Vertical Bottom: This icon becomes active when the Glue Point Relative becomes deselected. When the object is resized, the current gluepoint remains fixed to the bottom edge of the object.
  • Legacy Circles and Ovals: This toolbar has several ovals, ellipses, and arcs that you can insert into a document.
  • Line and Filling: This toolbar allows you to insert a line into a document, set its color, thickness, and style. It also allows you add arrows at the end of lines.
  • Text Formatting: This toolbar allows you to adjust the font, font size, and other features of the selected text. It also allows you to put text into bulleted and numbered list styles.
  • Zoom: This toolbar has various icons that allow you to zoom in and out on a document.
  • Color Bar: This is a toolbar that gives you quick access to various colors for shapes and text.
  • Legacy Rectangles: This toolbar has several rectangles that you insert into a document.
  • Conclusion

    The articles and videos in this section will give you an overview of the open-source presentation application and show you how to the various menus and toolbars. Some articles also may make comparisons between Impress and other presentation applications, such as Microsoft PowerPoint.