Presentation technology helps a person communicate and display information to his or her audience. Software is often used to compile information for a presentation, and used in conjunction with presentation technology such as a digital projector. Laser pointers or other pointing devices are used to interact with stationary presentation information and direct attention. In addition, a lower tech option called a flip chart is often used to provide a large writing and drawing surface that presenters interact with in view of an audience.
The term presentation software is used to describe computer programs that are used to design and often display presentations. These computer programs typically allow the formatting of information digitally, usually bringing together text and graphics to form a slide show. The products of these computer programs are typically used in conjunction with a projector, so that an audience can easily see the information in real time.
Laser pointers are used during presentations to attract attention to a specific graphic in the presentation. This piece of presentation technology emits a low-powered laser beam that results in a small colored dot appearing on its target. Some laser pointers can be dangerous to the eyes or skin, but many laser pointers are safe for use in presentations. Sometimes, people use wooden pointers or other objects to direct attention in a similar way.
A flip chart is a large piece of paper that is propped for the entire room to view. This piece of presentation technology is not high tech, but it is very versatile and allows a person to display his or her thoughts in a visible manner with minimal chance of technological hiccups. A flip chart is usually presented as a stack of paper attached to the front of a tripod, and used paper can be flipped over the back of the stand like an overly large notepad. Occasionally, flip charts have specialized additions such as locking wheels for the tripod, and some flip charts are designed to be set on a table. Flip charts are typically used in conjunction with pens, pencils, and markers, and the person making a presentation makes adjustments on the paper during the presentation.
Overhead and digital projectors can be used as presentation technology, rather than classroom projects. Normally, overhead projectors use clear plastic sheets and can be printed with information to project. Digital projectors are often used in conjunction with presentation software to display digital information on a large screen.