Powerpoint is Microsoft’s program that is used for making graphical screen presentations for lectures and classes. At this point, the word PowerPoint is almost a generic term like Xerox or Google and many people know what PowerPoint is without even thinking. The PowerPoint program itself is a part of Microsoft’s Office Suite of programs
The difference between PowerPoint and Keynote is that Keynote is Apple’s program for doing the same sort of thing as PowerPoint – making graphical screen presentations – but it’s made by Apple as part of the iWork group of programs (which includes Pages, Numbers and Keynote) and only runs under OS X.
But there is a way around that. With Keynote, you can make a presentation on your iMac and save it as a PowerPoint for your conference. Keynote can export your presentation in PowerPoint format, so it will run as a PowerPoint presentation on Windows.
So you can effectively make a PowerPoint presentation on your iMac without Windows or PowerPoint and be able to use it at the conference where the technicians will use a Windows PC with PowerPoint and a projector. Look for “Export” in the Keynote help to see how to export your presentation from Keynote as a PowerPoint.
Of course, you can always use Keynote to show your presentation on a Mac, if that or another conference uses a Mac and OS X for the projector. If the conference organizers say they can show Keynote presentations, than you don’t need to export as PowerPoint.
And there’s yet another option that might come into play from time to time: Office is made in different versions to run on both Windows and OS X, so a Mac that has Office installed can run Keynote as well as PowerPoint.