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In Keynote I use a lot of animations to illustrate my scientific presentations. Often, I find myself wanting to move an object (and/or scale and rotate it), and have it remain in its new position when I advance to the next slide.

To do this, I end up making a new slide, and then creating a new copy of the object, positioned at the approximate location of where its action builds finished. Since I have to position it manually there's often quite a bit of fiddling around involved in getting the build to line up with the object's position on the new slide.

So I'm wondering if there's a way to do that automatically. In other words, I want to create a new slide that's a copy of what the previous slide looks like after all the builds are completed. Or alternatively, I want to create a copy of an object, but scaled and repositioned to line up with its location after all of its action builds.

Is it possible to do that in the current version of Keynote, or is my fiddly workaround the only way?

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Here's a self-answer, which I didn't know about when I wrote the question. Keynote has a "magic move" feature, which allows objects to move from initial positions on one slide to final positions on the next. This is a bit more limited than using action builds, because you don't have control over build order. (Objects always all move simultaenously, and the moves must all take the same duration.) However, you can use it in combination with action builds, in which case the "magic move" transition will animate the objects moving from their final positions on the first slide to their initial positions on the second.

You can also simply chain 'magic move' transitions together, building an animation up out of multiple slides. In some ways this is easier than building the animation up out of actions, though it does have the disadvantage that if you want to make a change you have to manually change every slide in the animation.

I've found that with a bit of careful thought I can achieve all the effects I want in a fairly convenient way.

To use this feature, you have to use CMD-D to duplicate a slide, then move the objects to where you want them on each slide, and then select "magic move" as a transition effect between the two slides. For more details, see the link above.

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