PowerPoint 2002 (XP) vs 2000 vs 97
What features are new to PowerPoint 2002 (XP)?
What happens to them when you open the presentation in an earlier version?
Versions of PowerPoint from 97 on use the same file format. Features introduced in later versions aren't necessarily supported in earlier versions, but earlier versions do a good job of "degrading gracefully" as MS puts it. In other words, though they may not be able to support a feature fully, they attempt to mimic it as well as they can and certainly don't crash and burn when they run into something they don't support.
The following table summarizes the differences from 2002 to 2000 to 97. "Same" in the 97 column means "Same as PowerPoint 2000".
|PPT 2002 Feature||In PPT 2000||In PPT 97|
|Password protection||Password protected files won't open||Same|
|Multiple masters||Multiple masters display properly; editing presentation may result in loss of multiple masters (SR1 prevents this)||Same, but no SR patch available|
|Animation effects||Animation converted to equivalent PPT2000 effect or lost||Animation converted to equivalent PPT97 effect or lost|
|PowerPoint native tables||Supported||Converted to group of shapes; appearance maintained|
|Voice narration||Supported||Media player plays sound as WAV file; not recognized as narration, not synched|
|Picture rotation||Metafiles lose rotation; bitmaps snap to closest 90 degree rotation increment||Same|
|Transparent solid fills||Not as smooth-looking||Same|
|Transparent fill effects||Lost; fill becomes opaque||Same|
|Transparency on lines||Lost; line becomes opaque||Same|
|Adjustments (brightness/contrast) on picture fills||Lost||Same|
|Fill rotated with shape||Lost; fills don't rotate||Same|
|Antialiasing (text/graphics)||Not supported; text/graphics appear less smooth||Same|
|Automatically numbered lists||Supported||Not supported; appear as bulleted lists|
|Picture bullets||Supported||Not supported; appear as regular text bullets|
|Animated GIFs||Supported||Not supported; appear as static pictures|
|Diagrams||Converted to group of shapes; appearance maintained||Same|