A Basic Guide to Presentation Software Terms for AEC Marketing Professionals
Creating a professional presentation, complete with a brand-supporting aesthetic and high-quality printouts, is a skill in and of itself. If you are in charge of creating the presentation, you should know these terms! Likewise, if you are presenting, you should be familiar with all of the following so you can check all the boxes and navigate your presentation.
CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Key/Black): A color mode best for printed products. When going to print, transfer your documents to CMYK and test-print the results to tweak colors as necessary.
DPI: Dots per inch; the higher the DPI, the higher the quality.
Design Theme: Predesigned formatting options that guide the look and feel of the presentation, providing a consistent aesthetic. Typically includes a color scheme and other unified design elements such as bullets, fonts, images, and navigation bars.
Embedded Hyperlinks: Text or graphics that are coded to “jump” to another location, typically a website. These tend to look more professional, but are not useful in print.
Grayscale: Black, white, and gray coloring; a simple solution to color stress that, while simple, can look low-quality if the original was created in color. Start your documents in grayscale if you do not plan to print in color so that you can keep your images high-contrast and crisp.
Handout (printing): When printing a presentation, double-check the modes and make sure to print in “handout” mode or similar—or else you might end up printing your full-page slides.
Layout: The particular design of a single added slide as provided by a theme; allows for diverse setups and orientations when providing pictures, text, graphs, or a combination.
Notes Master/View: This allows the presenter to see the notes they have included on each slide; distinct from presentation mode.
Presentation Mode: The digital view of the final product without webpage or application distractions.
Print-ready: Files with all specifications necessary to produce high-resolution printed output, from color modes to DPI.
RGB (Red, Green, Blue): A color mode best for screen display. Template: A file for presentation applications that provides a set theme, layout items, and graphical items for a cohesive aesthetic.
Transition: An animated layer exclusively for presentations where one slide shifts to another slide; be careful and professional with the transitions you use. Best used sparingly.