When making visual documents to illustrate key data and information, strive to be clear and deliver a presentation without ambiguity or distortion. Try to create slides so that the audience can, by taking a glance, identify the main structures of the document. Furthermore, the slides must allow the public a quick understanding of the diagrams exposed. In this article, we will give you a complete guide about the technical topic for the presentation.
Table of Contents
The technical topic for presentation: Prepare presentation
The absurdity of modern presentations would be evident to us if only we hadn’t been marinating for so long. Try to remember the last presentation you attended: the presenter projected a slide full of text on the screen and started talking. Did you read and understand that slide? No, you had to decide what to give up. Now try to remember the last presentation you made. I bet you made the same mistake. Why project slides that prevent the audience from listening to you? If you want the audience to listen to you, why do you show slides they won’t have time to read? […]
If you want to be a good speaker, you need to realize that a slide with more than twelve words is usually counterproductive. This means you’ll have to prepare better than most of your peers, who blab to fill the time as the audience scrambles over their slides. How to get rid of excess words? First, you should try to express all ideas through pictures. Use the text only when the illustrations do not help you. As an exercise, try to prepare an entire presentation in which the only text on the slides is the title, plus possibly a couple of legend words for each image. Even if you can’t (neither can I), you will learn a lot by trying.
Get rid of the idea that the slides are there to remind you what to say. At one time, the speakers carried notes with them. Today they project the slides (in the form of bulleted lists) and let the audience read them. This is an act of violence against the public. Instead, go back to using cards. Some programs allow you to write notes that will only appear on your laptop screen.
Minimize the words and maximize the images
The purpose of the slides is not to remind you what to say. Bulleted lists make the public bored. Here are some other tips:
- Most of the conferences I attend use too small fonts. Your academic colleagues are nearly all nearsighted. I use size 38 for text and 42-50 for titles. An essay speaker rarely puts more than twelve words per slide, so there’s plenty of room.
- Slides, unlike printed documents, do not need margins. Nonetheless, many presenters leave large blank bands on the sides of each slide. They seem to scoff at the audience: “I could have used a more readable font and larger images, but I decided to do more work to make my slides unreadable.”
- Use only sans serif fonts. They are easier to see from the back of the room. The mathematical characters that usually have graces are an exception.
- Simplicity is the best expression of aesthetics. Your audience has little time to absorb the slide content, especially with you babbling non-stop. Some put additional material such as logos, the title of the technical topic for a presentation, or the conference’s name on each slide. Could you not do it?
- One of my favorite tracks on the formula slides is to add arrows and labels that point to the formula variables to remind the audience of their meaning. Few remember the terminology used in a previous slide.
The technical topic for presentation: Make the presentation
No matter how beautiful or elegant your tables, graphs, or diagrams are – they are only worth enough if the public can read them. Consequently, one must strive to achieve full readability on each slide. As a rule of thumb, prepare your presentation so that you can read everything easily and within 2 meters of your computer screen.
Use easily readable fonts.
- Size: Fonts with 22 points or more are best.
- Character style: Use a Sans Serif font. Bold text can, in many circumstances, improve visibility. Pay attention to narrow fonts as they may be the least legible if put in bold. Some Sans Serif fonts used in Microsoft products are Arial, Mangal, Tahoma, Tunga, Verdana. Other characters are Humanist, Optima, and Swiss (Helvetica). Some font styles to avoid are (Times New) Roman, Courier, Complex, and Italic.
- Highlights: Highlight with color, bold, underline, or other means. Never use all capital letters as they make reading more difficult.
- Contrast: Always use those colors that allow the data and other information to stand out clearly in the background.
Use a background that provides sufficient contrast to display lines, information dots, numbers, and characters within the slide. A light background always works with dark lines, dots, and characters. A light pastel has an added advantage: materials from other programs (such as Excel charts, for example) can be copied directly onto the slide without changing the original material’s colors. Avoid using pure white, as it can cause annoying light coming from the screen. Adding a soft tint to pure white is a good solution.
A dark background works well with light-colored lines, information dots, numbers, and fonts with a light color. However, be careful as some colors give the impression of being “light”, such as red, but do not give a good result compared to a dark background. The best solution for displaying information on a dark background is always to use white or soft yellow.
In both cases, use a single, uniform colour for the background. Avoid using patterned or gradient backgrounds. These formats can interfere with the information you want to show. It may be possible to read the information on some slides, but these backgrounds may interfere with the clarity of the slide’s information.
The technical topic for presentation: Slide content
Each slide contains a single point of interest:
Use a slide to present a single concept. For more points, use more slides.
Limit the amount of information on each slide:
Too much information can distract viewers. Here are some examples:
- Complicated tables with too many rows and columns of raw or abstract material.
- Charts with many intersecting lines or with many grouped stripes
- Several points on the same slide
- Too many bullets and sublists
- Using entire sentences or long sentences in place of keywords
- Footnotes and Source References
Use slides to show information: You are
making the written text available to the public while talking about it. Use your slides to display data with tables, charts, maps, diagrams, or figures as you present this information.
Give each slide a title that informs and indicates the slide’s content. Be brief but avoid using single-word titles such as “Introduction”, “Background”, “Methods”, and excluding their derivatives (such as “Methods II”, “Methods III”, etc.), “Results”, or “Discussion”. The titles that tell the public what, where, who, and when is good. You can also use the title space to ask a question. For example: “Which age groups were most at risk during the typhus infection period?” Titles are usually described in a larger and heavier font than the body of the text.
When you copy charts or diagrams from one program to another, remove the title from the original and rewrite it at the top of the slide. This will help you have the slide title with a similar font, color, and size to the rest of the slide and technical topic for presentation.
The words inside the slide
Avoid presenting data and information in text form if you can present it in the form of a table, diagram, graph, map, or figure. When you are forced to use text to present a list of objects, explanations of circumstances, conclusions, or recommendations, limit the text’s length to 7 lines of 7 words per line. Use only keywords and only those that are appropriate to the audience. Don’t use judgments. Don’t just read the contents of the slide, but talk about every point.
Only go to the points where the logical speech can be interrupted (where the reader takes a mental breath). Be brief when you can. Use acronyms and symbols to reduce the amount of text within slides if space is limited. Avoid numbering items and use bulleted lists instead. A recognized hierarchy is round, dash, triangle.
Bulleted lists are the standard format on most slides. Their purpose is to organize the keywords. For the effective bullet points:
- Follow the order of the text
- Consistency in the verbal forms
- Consistency in the list style aimed at all levels
The technical topic for presentation: Tables
A well-organized table will give the same results as other visual systems, even on a conference room screen. Try to follow these guidelines:
- Make sure that the numbers are round and two-digit.
- Column numbers for main comparisons.
- Sort the numbers in columns by size.
- Make sure that the numbers are aligned (for example, by the decimal point).
- Make the numbers (columns and rows) close together for comparisons.
- Show statistics summaries in columns and rows.
- Avoid entering confusing data as it may require some calculations in mind by the public.
Some authors present information in the form of lists using bulleted lists. The data in this type of list can be easily converted into a clear two-column table that is easier to understand.
Several diagrams are available in the form of histograms, aerograms, circle diagrams, box diagrams. Histograms and circle diagrams are best for most information. They are perfect in the presence of figures, accounts, or other statistical data summarized and applied to nominative variables such as race, occupation, food is eaten, etc. Avoid using aerograms because they are not very functional tools if you need to present information. A clear two-column table or histogram can present the data in the most understandable way possible and on every occasion. Histograms divided into minor units, or sub-components, do not render the same way and lose clarity:
Use charts to present a large amount of data in a small space. Graphs are often effective when you need to simplify a set consisting of many data. Simultaneously, they allow the user to observe everything from the details to the general image. Graphs with Cartesian axes, cloud diagrams, histograms, etc., are common examples of graphs. Charts work well if you need to distribute by age and gender, for figures and calculations over time, and for other cases where the x-axis (the risk factor, the independent or explanatory variable) is continuously graduated. Additional. Ensure that the line containing the information is thick enough and the data points are large enough so that they are seen clearly and easily. Other less relevant lines such as axes, points to mark, etc. they may be smaller.
Be careful when creating charts through Excel or Powerpoint. However, most of the options (including axis charts) are charts that do not give correct numerical graduation along the x-axis. However, it remains good advice to use the XY diffusion system when creating the graphs within these programs. If you are preparing the graphs with another program and then copying them into Powerpoint, prepare the background for the “diagram area” and for the “graph area” as “empty” (transparent) in the original. This will allow the background of your chart to be the same color as the slide background.
the technical topic for presentation: Maps
Try to present the distribution of cases, figures, or other spatial data with maps. For the distribution of buildings or other human-made structures, use a plan or other diagram. The maps simultaneously show spatial relationships such as distance, position, and direction between diseases and spatial data. Consequently, these types of maps should have at least a graduated scale. You often have to insert some location markers such as longitude and latitude or a miniature map showing the area’s location.
Drawings or diagrams
If you need to create a drawing or diagram of a chain drive, a food production process, some measuring equipment, etc.:
- Try to make it as simple as possible.
- Do not use a large number of shapes or colors to highlight different qualitative elements within the diagram. If they are too many, they will certainly confuse the public.
- Use short, clear labels.
- Beware of the legend as the viewer will have to look at both the diagram and the legend several times.
- Use the basic rule that the basic structure must catch the eye at first glance.
If you decide to use photos to illustrate an important point or situation, you should fit the photo perfectly into the slide. The crucial details will be perfectly visible to the public. Try to label the most important things in the photo. You can use a title at the top of the slide if the photo’s background colors create an annoying contrast with the title itself.
Create slides that help the reader focus on the data:
The easiest step to do this is to remove all extraneous material from the slide. Avoid the following effects in the presentation of your slides. These only serve to interfere with the correct and rapid interpretation of the data.
- 3D effects
- Clip Art and other interactive cartoons
- Frames not necessary
- Decorative outlines, separators, etc.
- Grids on the graphs
- Grids on the tables
- A big and annoying logo in contrast
Remember that you only have 10 minutes to get to the center point, and any distraction can decrease the time and space you have available. You may think that decorations can make your presentation unforgettable. They do: people remember external decorations rather than data and content.
the technical topic for presentation: Use the flyers
Getting viewers to have a flyer is very helpful. Flyers can help communicate data or other information that is not shown on the screen or that would be too small to be perceived from a distance. In some cases, a flyer is preferable to a slide. They should be distributed before starting the discussion so that the audience has time to review them while presenting the technical topic for presentation. You can refer to the flyer as you speak. You may think that the flyer distracts them from the conversation. But it is always better that they look at the flyer rather than a newspaper. In conclusion, you don’t have to copy slides onto flyers. Flyers should be designed as a supplement to your words, not a duplicate.
Always conclude your presentation by thanking you. This isn’t about presumption – after all, you’re doing the audience a favor – but if you don’t alert the audience when it’s time to clap, they’ll be confused and irritated. Like most social rituals, the thank you-applause sequence is beneficial to both parties involved. Don’t ask if there are any questions until you’ve asked.
That’s all! The rest, especially aesthetics, is learned through the practice and judgments of others. I could go on, but trying to teach more would end up teaching less. The same goes for you.