Events, SharePoint Conference

Using a Flic Smart Button as a PowerPoint Remote

When speaking at conferences, you usually spend a lot of time time asking the organizer questions like “what inputs will you have, will there be a digital switcher, etc.”.  This usually leads to carrying an array of adapters to be sure you’re prepared for those circumstances where there’s just VGA at the podium when you need micro/mini HDMI, DVI, USB to RJ45, and more…

One of the most common requirements is something to control your presentation.  If you’re like me, you often find yourself either running out of USB ports or having large inputs making nearby ports inaccessible or don’t want to carry a USB hub around with you.  At the same time, many conferences don’t provide remotes for controlling your presentations (they have a propensity to “walk away” or someone leaves the session before yours with the input – leaving a hapless remote behind).

A couple of weeks ago, I picked up a Flic Smart Button that we had provided our MVP’s as swag at the 2019 MVP Summit and stashed it away in my desk drawer, not quite sure what I’d use it for.

If you’re not familiar with Flic, check out https://flic.io.

With the SharePoint Conference just a week away, I started to think about ways I could use the Flic Smart Button, but everything I found limited its’ use to a connection with a mobile device…  then I discovered the Flic App for Mac – perfect I thought – I’ll use the keyboard shortcuts action I saw in the mobile app on my MacBook as a way to remote control PowerPoint.

After installing the Flic App for Mac, I couldn’t find the keyboard actions so started to do a little research to find a plugin that would work…  I couldn’t find anything that would do what I wanted it to do so decided to build my own…

It took a little bit of time to get it right, at the same time, simple – but I was able to build a user defined plugin to use with my Flic Smart Button and Mac to act as a PowerPoint remote.

Screen Shot 2019-05-15 at 11.17.09 AM

If you’re interested in using the plugin, I’ve made it available here on Github.

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