What Happened to the Prezi Path?

For many long-time Prezi users, getting used to the new Prezi Next has been difficult. Prezi Next is a new application, so it isn’t as full-featured as the original Prezi Classic. This is the first of a series of articles to provide workarounds for getting Prezi Next to work more like Prezi Classic.

Prezi Classic: The Prezi Classic path determines the sequence of all of its frames. The path gives the Prezi designer complete freedom of movement. The size, orientation, and position of the frames within the path controls how the prezi moves.

Prezi Next: You cannot change the path in Prezi Next. There is a fixed sequence that goes from Overview to Topic to Subtopic. The only control you have over movement in Prezi Next is to adjust the location and sequence of the frames. You can’t change their rotation, and you have very little control over their size and frame type.

Workaround: None. There are things that Prezi Classic does that Prezi Next just can’t do. My advice is to gain a good understanding of how Prezi Next is structured so you can get it to do what you want it to do.

In place of a path that connects all of the frames, Prezi Next uses smart structures to control the layout and movement. Smart structures are made up of the Overview, Topics, and Subtopics.

The Overview

The first frame in every Prezi Next prezi is the Overview. It’s an invisible frame that surrounds the entire prezi. The Overview holds Topics. There are two different types: planets and stacks. Both of them look like circle frames in the overview. The difference is in the degree of zoom. When you zoom to a planet, you can still see the outline of the circle. When you zoom to a stack, it zooms further so that the circle is no longer visible.

Topics

Topics always look like circles on the canvas, but you can disguise the circle by customizing the topic cover. The default topic cover is a solid circle with a title taken from the largest text box in the topic. To change this, right-click on the topic and select edit topic cover, then choose Topic Cover. In this mode, you can change or delete the text and add any other elements like a shape or image. You can’t remove the circle, but you can change the fill and border colors to transparent.

Moving topics around on the canvas, might change their sequence in the path. There are no path step numbers, so this can be confusing for the Prezi Classic user. Topics are linked together by connectors. Depending on the Prezi Next template, the connectors might be transparent. It’s useful to adjust the opacity of the connectors so you can see them while you are editing. To change the location of a topic, drag it into the new location. This will adjust both the topic and its connectors. To change the sequence, click the topic thumbnail in the path sidebar and drag it into position.

Subtopics

Topics can be resized independently. Subtopics must all be the same size.  If the subtopic is a stack, it is rectangular and must overlay the next page in the stack. If it is a planet, it is the same size as all the others. Planets are aligned on an invisible arc that can be moved, lengthened, and straightened. To adjust the size and position of the planets, you must adjust the line that connects them.

The best way to understand topics and subtopics is to experiment with them on the Prezi Next canvas. For advice and instructions, take the TeachMePrezi online course, Transition to Prezi Next. It is designed specifically for Prezi Classic users who need to get up to speed on Prezi Next.

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