Edit: If you’re interested in alternative fonts that look nice try:
The hatred of Comic Sans is well documented elsewhere. Today I am going to inform you all of the special science rage I get whenever I see Comic Sans used in any sort of professional science setting.
Last month I went to the American Chemical Society’s fall meeting in Denver, CO. I learned a great deal, some some amazing presentations, some meh presentations, and then some gouge-my-eyes-out-with-a-pipette awful presentations. I also saw way, waaay, waaaaaaaaaay too many presentations using the infamous Comic Sans font. Even just walking by doors to other sessions I spied nearly 1 out of every 4 presentations as using Comic Sans in some way.
Now let me put it to you straight. Every font has its appropriate uses – even Comic Sans. Say for instance you’re making an invitation to your three year old son’s birthday party. Comic Sans is probably fine. Maybe you’re making a flyer for puppies that are up for adoption. Also a fine use of Comic Sans.
But if you are going to give a professional scientific presentation in front of your peers from across the country where you want to impress them and show them what kind of researcher you are and how awesome your results are – Comic Sans is not the font you want to use. It makes you look like you have no clue as to what you’re doing. And you do want to impress these people – they could be future bosses or people who you want to do a collaboration with or maybe even will be on the reviewing committee for your next big grant proposal to the NSF.
Some people will say “hey, maybe I like comic sans!” and to them I will say that I like cute pictures of kittens as well but I wouldn’t put them in my science presentation.
I made a helpful comic to show you the difference. Enjoy. (Click to embiggen)