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Tutorial for Tools 001 – Gauges

Using Gauges

Use this gauge to indicate the results of a survey, opinions, or other type of measurement. Multiples of this framework can be used to construct a dashboard.

Select the gauge framework from within the series that best reflects the results you want to convey.

As you can see by the thumbnail for this series, there is a grids behind the gauges. The download contains from 2 to 10 sections in the grids. Choose the one that best delivers your message and delete the rest of the pages. When you move the ranking circles left and right, hold the shift key down so they stay on a true horizontal line. You can lengthen or shorten the ranking field (the line that goes from zero to the ranking circle) in the gauge easily by stretching it or shrinking it using the handles. You may need to zoom in to get the middle handle on the right-hand side of the indicator line. The indicator line is actually a field, but it looks like a line.

Use a legend to identify the meanings of the numbers or use a double-headed arrow to establish ranges of high/low, unacceptable/acceptable, fast/slow, or other two-word combinations that identify the two extremes of a range.

You can also create a ranking system as shown below (numbers with a legend work – see example below). Just remove the grid lines and replace with the numbers and words if you like that better. use this method if you stack many gauges that measure different things and, therefore, have a different sets of numbers and words.

Once you have identified the best-suited PowerFramework, download it to a specific location on your computer so you'll be able to find it (the desktop is always a good choice).

Customizing Gauges

Adjust size

If you want to change the size/shape of the PowerFramework, be sure to group it and resize the entire group. Once resized, ungroup to proceed with other customizations.

Color variations

Select color from your document's color palette or a complimentary color so that the PowerFramework will reflect the color scheme of the rest of your document. Select "No line" if you want to eliminate the outline of the object, or change the line point size if you want thinner or heaver lines.

3D variations

3D doesn't work terribly well with this tool; but if you believe that 3D would add the continuity you need, be sure to use a very short depth (3 points or thereabout). Be aware that applying a 3D effect will change the color of your object(s).


Be very conservative with your shadows as well. Use a very tight shadow colored very lightly. You don't want design enhancements (shadow effects) to encumber clarity. If you do use a shadow, reorder the pieces of the gauge so that it appears correctly on the page.

Gradients, patterns, and pictures

Gradients, patterns, and pictures can be added as fills from the "Fill Effects" menu.


Animations should be selected that will enhance the meaning of the message, not merely to add interest to the slide. Getting the ball and line to move in sync is an advanced endeavor. Even then it takes a bit of time to work out the timing settings. Unless you're really good at animating, it's probably better to use your production time in other areas of the document.

Series that relate to this tutorial:

TO001 – Tool 001 – Gauges

Possible use example

Links to instructions for getting the framework into your presentation

  1. Determine the best file type for your needs
  2. Download the file
  3. Import the framework into your presentation
    1. Importing a PPT file
    2. Importing a EMF or PNG
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