Have you ever started a presentation, gotten into a discussion with your audience, and found that your laptop went into hibernation because you stopped moving the mouse? It has happened to me and it’s embarrassing!
It looks as dead as a doornail!
Mouse Jiggler to the rescue!
Enter Mouse Jiggler. This little program simulates jiggling the mouse, so your laptop doesn’t go to sleep. It even has a “Zen” mode that does the jiggling virtually, that is, invisibly.
The only disadvantage is that there is apparently no way to actually close the program after you minimize it, at least in Windows 7. You have to go to the Task Manager (press Ctrl-Alt-Del and choose Start Task Manager), select Mouse Jiggler on the Applications tab, and click End Task.
Presentation View in Windows Vista and 7
Thanks to Matthew Trump who reminded me about Presentation View in Windows Vista and 7. (Apparently, it isn’t available in Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic or Home Premium editions.)
Presentation View keeps your computer awake, turns off system notifications (but not notifications from your software like Outlook, Skype, or IM), and lets you turn off your screensaver as well as change the wallpaper (in case you have a photo there that you don’t want your audience to see).
To go into Presentation View, press the Windows key + X to open the Mobility Center. You can simply click the Turn On button in the Presentation Settings section. To change the settings, click the Projector icon.
By default, the Windows Mobility Center feature is only available on laptops, notebooks, and tablet PCs. (You can enable it on desktop computers, but this requires editing the Windows Registry.)
Do you find yourself jiggling the mouse to avoid your laptop going into hibernation?
It is easier to adjust the time for the screen saver (via the configuration screen) and set it to 9999 minutes.
Even easier: Use the Winkey and X to set presentation mode to on. This will stop hibernation, system pop ups and allow you to set a neutral background.
If using a Mac, there is a free program on the Mac App store called Caffeine and it works great. Won’t let your computer go to sleep.
Ronald’s tip is the way to go. It is the way I deal with this issue. Costs nothing but a teensy bit of brain power and time to remember to set it.
Too bad I left this tip out of my recently revised book, Presentational Skills for the Next Generation.
I’m not sure I consider this embarassing; I think it’s more likely good practice. Maybe I’m old school, but I learned with an overhead projector and the idea of “visual aids.” If the visual is no longer aiding, it’s a distraction and may be competing with the the speaker (or in this example discussion). I’m not the only instructor I know who blanks the screen during discussion and Q & A.
Of course I also turn the TV off (not just the sound) when company comes to visit.
Walter, I agree that it’s a good practice to blank out the screen (and turn off the TV when company comes–unless they’re coming to watch the Super Bowl!). This happens to me when I haven’t planned it. Someone in the audience asks a questions and I just get involved in answering and the discussion that ensues.
Good Lord! Whatever happened to using the B key?!!?!?
To Ronald: it is just not always possible to change the time for the screen saver. My previous company used rather tight rules what could be changed and what not.
So some cafeine (there is a windows version as well) came very practical.
Right click desktop
Select Screen Saver
Select Change Power Settings
Select When Computer Sleeps
Set this to Never
I have never had a system nod off when giving a presentation. With today’s monitors using a screen saver is a choice not a necessity. I have not used one in years, my laptop computer is never turned off between uses and I have never had a problem because I was not using a screen saver.
This is ridiculous !!
99% of all people looking for this topic are working in enterprises, where GPO settings prevent them from changing screensaver settings (and this btw disables the mentioned option in the mobility center, as well !!).
This is of absolutely no help….
In that situation, you need to contact your IT Department. This is for people who can change settings themselves. That’s a lot more than 1% of people.
What I don’t understand is why there aren’t two additional GPO’s:
1) Let Presentation mode override the general screen saver GPO
2) Only allow presentation mode to be active for X continuous minutes
That way administrators can provide for basic security needs (unattended machines are secured) while allowing users to accommodate business requirements by using presentation mode, with there being a failsafe if the user forgets to turn presentation mode off when they are done (or tries to use it to bypass security policy, but I do try to give people the benefit of the doubt).
My problem on my notebook pro is during the presentation, it goes off presentation and then comes back on again or hangs. Not really the screensaver problem, but most embarrassing during a presentation.
It might be something with your specific laptop, but be sure you keep it plugged in (bring an extension cord if necessary) and check the Power settings. What do you mean by “goes off presentation?” Does PowerPoint go back to Normal view? Or does it seem like a graphic card / power issue?
You can try Coffee_FF to keep computer awake…
My challenge is that, while presenting, the screen goes off the Slide show view back to the Normal view and I’ll have to touch the mouse before it returns to the Slide show view for me to continue with the presentation!
Any suggestions on how to resolve this, please?
Très bien, j’aime beaucoup !!