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I'm trying to animate a sequence diagram within a PowerPoint presentation. The idea is to animate the flow of data between the various actors of the sequence to explain how a software integrates with the various services it depends on (e.g. service A calls service B to get information on the product).

PowerPoint seems easy to create a single step animation but becomes very hard to manage when multiple items should move on screen at the same time.

On the other hand, Flash seems to be an overkill.

Is there something "in-between"?

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marked as duplicate by Karan, AthomSfere, soandos, gronostaj, Brad Patton Jun 25 '13 at 20:29

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

I don’t know what difficulty you are having managing multiple items moving at the same time, but another user recently found this tip on Showing only the objects belonging to a particular animation step (in PowerPoint) to be useful. – Scott Feb 27 '13 at 22:28
@Scott: you are right. if you put your comment as answer, I'll flag it as accepted answer – Jaepetto Mar 1 '13 at 9:08
up vote 1 down vote accepted

This answer was previously posted in response to Showing only the objects belonging to a particular animation step (in PowerPoint).
You may find the Selection Pane to be useful.  Go to Home –> Editing –> Select –> Selection Pane…  It opens as a panel on the right side of the screen,

enter image description here

so you may need to toggle back and forth between it and the Animation Pane –– AFAIK, you can’t have them both open at once.


  • You can select an object by clicking on its name.  (Objects are given default names when they are created; you can change them.  For example, you might want to give objects names like “Step 5.Rectangle 12”, to make it easier to manage your animation steps.)  Ctrl+Click works as you would expect.

enter image description here

  • You can hide an object by clicking on the eye checkbox to the right of its name.  There are “Show All” and “Hide All” buttons at the bottom.

enter image description here

  • You can easily see and change the stacking order (as in “Bring Forward”) of the objects with arrow buttons at the bottom of the pane.  Even if you do nothing else, bringing the objects that you want to work on to the front will make them easier to select.

betabandido commented that grouping all the objects in each animation step is useful, making it easy to hide them all at the same time.

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