by | Feb 10, 2011 | Techniques

Just give me the word count willya?

Give me a word count, and I can pretty much decide a lot of things:  time-to-complete-narrration, time-to-complete-editing, my cost, YOUR cost…a lot.

And you wouldn’t think it would be that hard to get the word count.  I mean, just about everybody uses MS Word in one form another, and all versions of Word do a fine job of providing a word count.

Ah, but what about a PowerPoint Presentation?  Power Point doesn’t do word counts.  You could export the text to Word, but even that doesn’t work for the project I’m working on.  The narration for this project comes from the presenter NOTES.  And extracting the NOTES out of a .ppt file to somehow get a word count was beyond me.

Luckily it was not beyond a couple of my colleagues, who gladly offered formulas, even macros to get the job done.  Maybe it’ll help you too.

Here’s Sherill Stewart’s Solution:

There is, unfortunately, not a terribly easy way to get the word count from the notes section in a PowerPoint presentation.  The one thing you may try this:

  • Click the File tab, then click Save & Send.
  • Under File Types, click Create Handouts, then under Create Handouts in Microsoft Word, click Create Handouts.
  • In the Send to Microsoft Office Word dialog box
  • click the page layout that says “notes below slides”
  • It will then open in Microsoft® Word where you will then be able to use the much more robust WORD COUNT feature found in Word.
  • NOTE: The word count will include the slide names, but if you do a little math, you should be able to easily subtract that particular word count.

Now, here’s Andrew Swingler’s solution:

(Attached is the macro you need to run on your PowerPoint file.  It will export the notes (only) and open them in Word from where you can get an accurate word count.) (Editor Note:  the macro is not attached to this blog article.  Contact Andrew Swingler , or write me at [email protected], and either of us can send it to you.)
(The following assumes you’re running PPT 2007/2010)
The first thing you need to do is save your PPT file in macro-emabled format – do “save as” and use type “Powerpoint macro-enabled presentation *.pptm”.
Now go to the ‘View’ tab and click on ‘Macros’.
Put in a name for the macro (it can be anything – we’ll overwrite it in a moment) and press ‘Create’.
Remove the existing two lines of auto-generated code and instead paste in the contents of the attached file.
Press the Save’ button and close the “Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications” window.
Click on ‘Macros’ again and press ‘Run’.
put in the full path where you want to save your file.  This must be a writeable location.  The filename MUST end in “.TXT” (so for instance you could use “c:\temp\pptword1.txt”.
Word will open.  If you’re using Word 2010 it will auto-convert for you and you’re done.  If you’re using Word 2007 you will be prompted to convert – just press <Enter> and it will convert it for you and you’re done.
I have not checked this out entirely, but from the look of it, these formulas seem pretty convincing.
Let me know how it goes.
Thanks Andrew and Sherril!!!




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