Monday, June 03, 2013

A2 Posters for Academic Conferences

In "Preparing a Poster for an Academic Conference" I discussed how I went about preparing a standard A0 poster for an academic conference. Last month I was attending an international conference (ICCSE 2013) and wanted to display a poster, in addition to my presentation. But I was traveling extensively and did not want to be burdened with a large poster tube. I fond that an A2 poster (one quarter the area of the usual A0 poster) would fit in an airline carry-on bag. Printed on white polyester and rolled into a tight 10 mm cylinder, it resisted crushing well (the polyester looks like glossy paper, but is much stronger and thinner).

I found that two columns of text in A2 landscape worked well. The simplest way to format this was with the word processor set for an A4 page, which was then enlarged to A2 while printing. I used 10 point for regular text and 12 point for headings, but this was still a bit small when enlarged. 11.5 point text with 14 point headings might be better. Also I included a QR code, which people scanned with their mobile phone for more details on-line.

Perhaps academic conferences should switch to A2 size posters with QR codes as standard. This would allow twice as many posters in the available display space. It would be much more convenient for authors and organizers. It would also force authors to be more succinct in what they say on the poster.

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