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I want to create posters for my poster presentation on a conference. What tools or LaTeX classes are available for preparing posters ?

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I have made several conference posters using LaTeX, but I have stopped. If you can, you should absolutely try to use more visual software. Even PowerPoint is better than LaTeX. LaTeX isn't made for designing posters (or presentations) and it shows. –  Ben Dec 14 '10 at 19:46
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I strongly disagree with this comment. (Also, I do not think this qualifies as an answer to the author's question.) LaTeX can and has been harnessed to efficiently produce excellent posters of the highest quality and with minimum formatting hassles. –  Jimi Oke Dec 14 '10 at 19:54
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Actually I have to agree wholeheartedly with this statement; as I’ve said elsewhere, though I use LaTeX for everything else, I strongly feel that presentations (and yes, to an extend posters) are better made in other software. And I’m surprised since my answers didn’t attrackt this much disagreement. –  Konrad Rudolph Jan 31 '11 at 21:33
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Since you have some responses below that seem to answer your question, please consider marking one of them as ‘Accepted’ by clicking on the tickmark below their vote count. This shows which answer helped you most, and it assigns reputation points to the author of the answer (and to you!). –  N.N. Aug 8 '11 at 22:29
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I think this should be CW. –  Caramdir Aug 8 '11 at 22:33

11 Answers 11

The beamerposter package is quite nice.

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In particular, it integrates extremely well with TikZ (after all, it written by the same person). I find that understanding beamer theme definitions is essential to getting the desired output, however. –  Scott Morrison Jul 27 '10 at 16:08
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The beamer-poster package is great. See www-i6.informatik.rwth-aachen.de/~dreuw/latexbeamerposter.php for some examples. –  Rob Hyndman Jul 29 '10 at 8:46
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Here is an example of a custom theme definition I created while in grad. school that you might be able to use as a starting point: svn.sultanik.com/drexelcsposter –  ESultanik Dec 17 '10 at 20:13
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@mbq: Could you perhaps add a really basic example of a poster built with beamerposter? Just a kind of "hello world", so that users can see what it's like right here without having to go to external sites. –  doncherry Mar 17 '12 at 22:50

Elena Botoeva has written a new package for creating posters with TikZ, called fancytikzposter. There are already five templates with different node shapes and colors.

Sample:

Sample posters

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This is not maintained anymore. Instead, a new version is available. –  Vedran Šego Apr 12 at 12:58

baposter is a LaTeX class designed for posters.

Look at the example file included in the class' zip file and you will probably find your way.

A few quick tips :

  • You can position boxes by giving them names with name=abc and positioning other boxes using below=abc
  • You can set the total number of columns in the document by giving "columns=X" parameter in the \begin{poster} parameters.

EDIT - one of the example posters:

baposter example

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Could you perhaps add a really basic example of a poster built with baposter? Just a kind of "hello world", so that users can see what it's like right here without having to go to external sites. –  doncherry Mar 17 '12 at 22:50
    
Baposter has nice templates. The one whose image I have added to this post saved me three years ago. It was my first encounter with TeX, and made a nice poster. –  Pavel May 24 at 11:11
    
I just found that baposter's last update was few months after I used it for the first time (2011), and the package for dowmload is packaged, at least for me. I withdraw my upvote for this project. –  Pavel May 24 at 13:04

Previously, I wasted a lot of time trying to get sufficiently large paper sizes, sufficiently large fonts, etc. And even when I was successful, I had difficulties with PDF previewers that e.g. waste ridiculous amounts of memory if you open an A0 document. Finally I realised that I can simply create my poster in A4 size. Then you just ask that it's printed in A0 size (a single click in Adobe Reader printing dialog; in most cases, even your local university press can do it). You can easily preview your poster by simply printing it on an A4 printer.

I usually use 8pt fonts (\footnotesize) in my A4 posters. It translates to 32pt fonts when scaled to A0, which seems to be a suitable size for a typical conference poster. Nowadays I'm simply using the article class and settings such as

\pagestyle{empty}
\setlength{\parindent}{0pt}
\raggedright

You can use the textpos package to place "text boxes" using absolute coordinates. Other useful packages include color, titlesec, enumitem, and psnfss.

For very large fonts (e.g. poster title), you can use something like \fontsize{26}{30}\selectfont – alternatively, you can use the \scalebox command. For layout tweaks: \hspace, \vspace, \makebox, \parbox, \raisebox. For drawing lines and boxes: \rule.

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I have never had any problems opening A0 document. I recommend creating the poster in its true size, since that will enable commands like \vspace{1cm} to do what's expected. –  Ben Jan 30 '11 at 18:48
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Another reason for creating your poster in its original size is that if you use a font with optical scaling, then you will get the correct weight. (Large fonts != small fonts scaled up). See this question for example. –  mforbes Dec 8 '11 at 5:42

I have some advice on this topic elsewhere, which includes pointers to other resources: Using LaTeX to produce conference posters

Myself, I think that the most useful package for a task like this is the textpos package (disclaimer: I wrote that, as a spinoff from the task of laying out posters).

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I've created several conference posters with the a0-poster class you link to, in combination with your textpos package (so thanks!), and been very happy with the results. –  Michael Underwood Jul 27 '10 at 20:30
    
Thank you! I'm glad it was useful. –  Norman Gray Jul 29 '10 at 21:26
    
+1 - ditto to Michael Underwood's comment - thanks. The only additional feature I could want from texpos is for text that is too long to fit in for one block to automatically 'column-break' into an assigned next block. Not really possible in LaTeX though, I suspect... –  Chris Johnson Aug 3 '10 at 21:14
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@Chris: check out flowfram –  Lev Bishop Aug 12 '10 at 13:45

There is also the umbcposter package (similar to baposter). You can download it from: math.umbc.edu/~rouben/umbcposter

The site also provides a good on-line users' guide, as well as a sample poster to get started and a gallery of posters that have used the package.

Here is part of the sample poster provided:

% sample.tex % A sample UMBCposter.% Rouben Rostamian, February 2010

\documentclass[paper=a4paper,landscape,dvipsnames]{umbcposter}
\begin{document}
\newcommand{\mytitle}{
\begin{tabular}{c}
    \LARGE\sc This is the title \\[0.6ex]
    \Large\sl Rouben Rostamian\\
    \Large UMBC
\end{tabular}
}
\posterinit{
%grid,
background style = {left color = Apricot, right color = white},
title = {\mytitle},
right logo,       % use default
left logo,        % use default
box/border style, % use default
box/header style, % use default
box/body style = {bottom color=blue!10, top color=red!5},
box/all rounded,
}
\boxit{col = 0, at top, name=box1}{Title of Box 1}{
\begin{itemize}
    \item col = 0
    \item at top
    \item name = box1
\end{itemize}
}
\boxit{col = 0, below of=box1, name=box2}{Title of Box 2}{
\begin{itemize}
    \item col = 0
    \item below of = box1
    \item name = box2
\end{itemize}
}
\end{document}

enter image description here

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@doncherry: done. thanks for the tutorial on how to write a better answer! –  prettygully Mar 18 '12 at 22:52

a0poster and sciposter are two document classes that are designed to help you make posters. a0poster worked better for me.

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I used a0poster myself for my physics thesis and I loved it. The output was stunning and it was very simple to use. There's a wonderful template and excellent example on Andreas Jung's blog: andreas.welcomes-you.com/projects/a0poster –  Jimi Oke Dec 14 '10 at 19:55
    
Nearly all my posters [1] were done with the \usepackage{sciposter} which I wholeheartedly recommend. If you're interested in the source, just send me an email. [1]: ana.unibe.ch/~haberthuer/posters –  Habi Dec 15 '10 at 15:42

I recently dicovered baposter. It is based on pgf so tikz related things will work fine. The macros are fairly easy to understand and Brain (the author) shows quite a lot of examples.

All I can say that I recently won the poster price at a conference with a baposter designed poster.

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That's impressive, well done! Is your poster available on line somewhere? –  Jake May 10 '11 at 22:57

In the site LaTeX Templates there are three downloadable Conference Posters templates: baposter Portrait Poster, Dreuw & Deselaer's Poster and Jacobs Landscape Poster.

Example: Jacobs Landscape Poster

Description:

This poster template features a clean sectioned look suitable for presenting research at a conference. Important information is highlighted with colored boxes and each section within the poster is clearly separated from the others. The layout of the template contains four columns but this can be changed to accommodate varying amounts of information or figures. Examples of a table, figure, equation, list and bibliography are present in the template to provide a starting point for any requirement you may have for your own poster.

Original Author:

This template was originally created by the Computational Physics and Biophysics Group, Jacobs University and was then modified by Nathaniel Johnston. Finally, it has been extensively modified for this website.

uses

\documentclass[final]{beamer}
\usepackage[scale=1.24]{beamerposter}
\usetheme{confposter} 

enter image description here

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The already mentioned fancytikzposter by Elena Botoeva now merged with tikzposter to form tikzposter 2.0 (Bitbucket wiki, CTAN resource) which is a great solution to build beautiful posters:

tikzposter preview

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The UK TeX FAQ has an entry Creating posters with LaTeX. I also have a tutorial Creating Technical Posters with LaTeX as well as a tutorial on creating LaTeX posters with a GUI. My flowfram package has already been mentioned in a comment. It has an example poster in the samples directory.

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