Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using the Drag-and-Drop Feature
the term OLE is a little scary (it ranks right up there with SQL in my book!), the concept is
very elementary, and anyone can understand and use it.
You already understand the term object in the PowerPoint sense, and the term is similar to
that in the case of OLE. An object is any bit of data (or a whole fi le) that you want to use
in another program. You can paste it in with no connection to its source, or you can link or
embed it.
Two actions are involved in OLE: linking and embedding. Here are quick defi nitions of each:
Linking creates a connection between the original fi le and the copy in your pre-
sentation, so the copy is always updated.
Embedding creates a connection between the object in the presentation and the
application that originally created it, so you can edit the object in that original
application at any time from within PowerPoint.
The key difference is that linking connects to the source data fi le whereas embedding con-
nects to the source application .
For a link to be updatable, linked objects must already exist independently of the
PowerPoint presentation. For example, if you want to link an Excel chart, you must fi rst
create that chart in Excel and save your work in an Excel fi le. That way, PowerPoint has a
fi lename to refer to when updating the link.
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Links can slow down your presentation’s loading and editing performance. Therefore, you should create links last,
after you have i nished adding content and polishing the formatting.
Linking and embedding are not appropriate for every insertion. If you want to use content
(such as cells from an Excel worksheet or a picture from a graphics program) that will not
change, it’s best to copy it normally. For the Excel data cells or text from a Word document,
use regular Copy/Paste; for the graphic image, use Picture (on the Insert tab). Reserve
linking for objects that will change and will be used in a presentation that must always
have the most current data. Reserve embedding for objects that you plan to edit later and
require the native application’s editing tools to do so.
Here are some ideas of when linking or embedding might be useful:
If you have to give the same presentation every month that shows the monthly
sales statistics, link to the Excel worksheet where you track them during the
month. Your presentation will always contain the most current data.
If you want to draw a picture in Paint (a program that comes with Windows) or
some other graphics program, embed the picture in PowerPoint. That way, you don’t
have to open Paint (or the other program) separately every time you want to work
on the picture while you’re fi ne-tuning your presentation. You can just double-click
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