Last week I wrote about how you can save and share effects you've added to the Effects panel (so the effects can be used in other projects or by other developers). I'd like to stick with the Effects theme for another week. If you've used the Effects panel, there's a good chance that you've missed a useful feature--it's often overlooked by even veteran developers.
The most common way to preview an effect or a slide animation is to either Preview the project, the next 5 slides or from the current slide (these options are all found via File > Preview).
If all that I really need to see is a quick preview of a slide containing effects or animations, it seems reasonable that choosing File > Preview > Play this Slide would be the perfect preview option (the others are simply overkill). If you use the Play this Slide option, you will see slide objects such as captions and the mouse pointer transition and appear on the screen based on the Timing you set up. However, you won't see any effects, videos or slide animations, which kind of renders Play this slide useless.
There is a wonderful alternative to prevewing a single slide, but it's not obvious. Take a look at the Effects panel and you'll see a button unique to the Effects panel: Live Preview.
Click the Live Preview button and you will see an honest-to-goodness preview of any and all slide effects. Nice! But even better... Live Preview accurately previews slide animations and videos. Give it a shot and let me know how Live Preview works for you. I'm betting you'll kick Play this Slide to the curb like I did.
Note: You will need to add at least one effect to a slide object to use Live Preview. Without at least one effect, the Live Preview button is disabled.