PowerPoint Zoom Navigation Curiosity (Dont Call It A Bug)

Here’s a strange one for you! I discovered a curious behavior in Microsoft PowerPoint that looked like a bug to me. But with the help of my friend and Microsoft PowerPoint MVP Nolan Haims, I found that Microsoft considers it intentional designed behavior. Take a look and see what you think.

As is so often the case with software functionality, it’s easier to show than to describe in words. I made a short video to clearly demonstrate the situation:

If you have trouble seeing the video in this post, you can watch it on YouTube at https://youtu.be/euw4O6P5ZV8

The first three minutes of the video are an introduction to the use of Sections in a PowerPoint presentation and how to use the Insert Zoom Summary navigation slide to allow non-linear access to the different sections in your file. If you are a power user and know all about that, feel free to scrub forward to the 2:59 mark for the interesting part.

In a nutshell, the Zoom Summary slide inserts thumbnail images that hyperlink to target slides in your presentation and then return to the Summary slide. If you place any element of text or graphics that overlaps a thumbnail image on the Summary slide, the overlapping visual is shown on all slides in the section when selected from the Summary slide. If you visit the slides through other types of navigation, their display is unaffected.

This is one of those conditions that most people are unlikely to ever hit. But if it happens to you, you’ll want to know what’s going on, and hopefully this demo will help.