Since 2000, the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences has offered access to it's 36" and 42" wide format Hewlett-Packard printers (that are associated with the GIS Laboratory) to the Division of Science and Mathematics at Queens College. Between then and now, we have assisted with the production of over 250 posters. The purpose of printing to the wide format printer has been limited to Division presentations for scientific and mathematical conferences. The School offers this service with the expectation that replenishment of materials from all users will continue on a regular basis. To aid in the use of the printer, we have setup the following protocols and form:
Preproduction work should be completed at least 2 weeks before the printing of any poster to ensure availability of the printer and technicians.
- All presentations should be produced in Powerpoint 98 or later.
- All should be ready to be viewed on a PC (Mac users should be aware of how to use the "pack and go" features of powerpoint)
- Mac users can also setup a PDF file with the correct page dimensions
- All slides that will be used in the presentation should have their corresponding paper size setup through the Page Setup menu command.
- One of the maximum dimensions for the wide format printer available is 36 inches. The second dimension can be as long as Powerpoint permits (maximum of 56 inches).
- 1.5 inch margins should be given to the presentation to ensure that none of it will be cropped.
- When bringing images and charts into powerpoint, avoid using OLE to bring in images. Linked objects can cause documents to become distorted and even lost during the printing/transfer process.
- Imagery coming from "Macintosh formats" can have unpredictable results due to different formats having unrecognizable header information - causing these files to not be recognized by the printer. Whenever possible, switch over to "web friendly" formats with a maximum resolution of 150 pixels per inch - jpeg and gif formatted files tend to work fine.
- Avoid enlarging web imagery as the images will become pixelated and distorted. This can be checked by enlarging the view to 100% in Powerpoint to see if there is any distortion
- Avoid large swaths of color in the background of the poster - it will use up the limited inks that are available quickly. It will also cause the printing process to slow down to a crawl (posters can print up as fast as 15 minutes and can take as long as 2 hours).
- Put the presentation onto one of the following types of removable media - CD-R, Zip, 1.44 MB floppy disk. Make sure that the disk is PC formatted.
The printers are manned on a need only basis by the two College Laboratory Technicians in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences Department. The printers and staff are available for printing only from 9 AM to 4 PM Monday through Friday. All printing jobs will be worked on by appointment only. Appointments need to be made at least 2 weeks in advance. Fill out this form and send it out as early as possible. Walk-ins and urgently needed posters will only be produced on an availability basis of the technicians only.
Upon receipt of the form, the faculty member will be contacted to confirm the printing time and date. The School of Earth and Environmental Sciences does not have the funds to replenish materials on a regular basis. Therefore, depending on the workload requested, we may ask for the reimbursement/replenishment of printing materials. During the confirmation, the pricing for replenishment will be settled.
A technician and at least one of the author's will need to be present during the printing process to ensure the desired outcome. A neighboring lab for minor corrections to the presentation is available only during non-scheduled teaching hours.
Each poster will have its own nuances (and possible problems) to deal with, depending on the complexity of the graphics as well as splashy undertones - so nailing down a time frame can be tricky. No problems usually mean about 20 minutes a print. We have also worked on a single poster for a complete day - and still, we were not successful.
By default, the type of paper to be used will be 36" wide, high gloss photo paper. Other printer compatible paper types are available only by self-purchase.
The School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and technicians that are employed by the School do not guarantee and are not to be held responsible for the finalized printing, quality of product, or quality of paper at any time. The School will not be responsible for data lost during processing. The School of Earth and Environmental Sciences reserves the right to deny printing of materials based on content. The School also reserves the right to stop a printing session at any time for unforeseen circumstances.