typesetting in LaTeX has various advantages for writing scientific articles or even a thesis... but building a presentation is a bit trickier... so, a possible workflow, to avoid resorting to powerpoint..

## making a "masterslide"

the theme of your presentation.. beamer has a few of these built in, but to be honest, most of them are a bit ugly (at least imo).. and also, you can spot the default ones a mile off, which I guess isn't really a good thing..

\documentclass[xcolor=x11names,compress,professionalfont]{beamer}
\usepackage{tikz,amsmath,siunitx}
\usepackage[light,condensed]{kurier}%a nicer font
\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}

%\usepackage[absolute,showboxes,overlay]{textpos}
\usepackage[absolute,overlay]{textpos}

%define some new colors
\definecolor{c1}{RGB}{0.0,204.0,255.0}%{{{
\definecolor{b1}{RGB}{31,65,136}
\definecolor{g1}{RGB}{0,100,0}

%set colors for the headings & items
\setbeamercolor*{normal text}{fg=black,bg=white}
\setbeamercolor*{example text}{fg=black}
\setbeamercolor*{structure}{fg=b1}
%}}}

\setbeamertemplate{footline}{ %{{{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture,overlay]
\node[xshift=-1.9cm] at (current page.south east)
{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture, overlay]
\includegraphics[width=1.75cm]{figs/files/tyndall_logo};
\end{tikzpicture}
};
\node at (current page.south west)
{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture, overlay]
\draw[color=b1,fill=b1] (0.845\paperwidth,0) -- ++(-0.1627cm ,+0.15cm)
-- (0,0.15cm) -- (0,0) -- cycle;
\end{tikzpicture}
};
\end{tikzpicture}
}%}}}


\documentclass[xcolor=x11names,compress,professionalfont]{beamer}


as we're using a sans-serif font for the presentation, LaTeX will attempt to render mathematics in this font, which we don't really want (it looks a bit strange).. so, including professioinalfont here sorts it

%\usepackage[absolute,showboxes,overlay]{textpos}
\usepackage[absolute,overlay]{textpos}


we'll be using the textpos package to place text on the screen, possibly not the best approach, but it works.. using showboxes makes the placement of text a lot easier when you're working on a draft, also, using absolute positioning makes things a lot less confusing, it's relative by default afaict

\setbeamertemplate{navigation symbols}{} %get rid of the navigation symbols


these seem to serve no purpose other than making the audience aware you've used beamer to make your presentation, which i guess isn't a bad thing, but they do look a bit silly

anyway, using the header above should produce something looking like:

## creating content

there seems to be a few different approaches to this, i'm pretty confident my approach isn't the best, but as i mentioned already, it works.. firstly, splitting your content into multiple .tex files makes things much easier, mostly because we can do something like:

%\includeonly{titles}
\includeonly{intro}
%\includeonly{fp_dynamics}
%\includeonly{fp_statics}
%\includeonly{fp_static_abs}
%\includeonly{two_mode}

\begin{document}
\include{titles}
\include{intro}
\include{fp_dynamics}
\include{fp_statics}
\include{fp_static_abs}
\include{two_mode}
%\include{postscript}
\end{document}


in our main .tex file.. in this instance our latex compilation only pulls in the intro section, which speeds things up a lot, particularly if your presentation contains lots of images and stuff

the nature of LaTeX means creating composite slides is very easy, especially for keeping stuff in the same place in consecutive slides..

\begin{frame}{first topic}

\only<1>{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture,overlay]%{{{
\node [ xshift = 0.75cm ] at (current page.west)
{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture, overlay]
\includegraphics[width=6.0cm]{figs/first_picture};
\end{tikzpicture}
};
\end{tikzpicture}%}}}
}

\only<1->{
\begin{textblock*}{5.5cm}(6.5cm,1.25cm)
\begin{itemize}
\item first item
\item second item
\end{itemize}
\end{textblock*}
}

\only<2>{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture,overlay]%{{{
\node [ xshift = 0.75cm ] at (current page.west)
{
\begin{tikzpicture}[remember picture, overlay]
\includegraphics[width=6.0cm]{figs/second_picture};
\end{tikzpicture}
};
\end{tikzpicture}%}}}
}

\end{frame}


now, this should be more or less self explanatory, but here, we're showing a picture and a few itemized pieces of text on the first slide, and then, on the second slide, we keep the text the same, but show a different image.. there's really not a whole pile more too it..

## compiling ALL the things

latexmk -pvc -pdf tex_file_containing_all_the_include_and_includeonly_bits


should compile and open your document, and the -pvc flag makes sure your pdf gets updated every time you make a change in your .tex file.. the -pdf flag is assuming your graphics are pdfs, obviously if you're using eps or ps graphics you'd use -ps instead

### acrobat reader is a bit of a mess

whilst this isn't really news to anyone.. given that the usual pdf reader found on windows machines you'll likely be using to give your presentation, it might be worthwhile running

gs -dSAFER -dBATCH -dNOPAUSE  -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -sOutputFile=output.pdf input.pdf


as suggested here, due to a bug in acrobat reader

## the difficult part

creating interesting content