"This may seem like a lame question - placing the new graphic within a PowerPoint slide to produce a PowerPoint presentation - once that is done, a PC is connected to a projector with the projector used to project the image on the screen, correct? Do you have a projector recommendation (brand, type)?"
You hook the projector to the external monitor plug on a laptop or the regular VGA plug on a desktop computer. The projector simply turns a screen or white wall into the screen.
On the laptops you usually have to press some sort of function key and press the external monitor key (usually one of the function keys). Your computer should cycle between laptop screen, both screens and projector only.
If your screen is 1024x768, make sure your projector can do that. Most can. Older ones may be limited to 800x600.
Lumens (brightness) are important. In a small room with the projector only a few feet from the screen, 1200 lumens is enough. In a larger room, 1500 is my minimum.
I have used Infocus, Panasonic and Epson projectors. They have all worked nicely.
If you don't know PowerPoint but do know Excel, you may want to simply place your spreadsheets on tabs of a single workbook. You can adjust the zoom for each tab separately to highlight the area you want. The projector doesn't care what you use and changing from sheet to sheet will only require clicking on tab at the bottom of the screen.
Make sure you rehearse your presentation with the actual equipment and spreadsheets you are going to project. Do it in the same room if possible. Things like sunlight and remote power outlets can create problems. You don't want any equipment surprises during the presentation.
You've really provided some excellent tips on this issue - now I'm not completely lost - I like the idea of working directly with Excel and a projector - I'll get a projector first and practice the entire presentation.
Thanks. so much!