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Of points and picas
Sunday, May 6, 2007   10:17 PM

I find that writing my notes in layout jargon (e.g. text_1 rather than the first paragraph) reduces the number of errors I find on the second pass. Much easier than having layout learn my language.

I probably wouldn't go this far, but recently one of the more senior layout people took a few minutes to explain points and picas to me. She also said that, from what she's seen, the capital letter in a font seems to be 2/3 of the point size in height and the lowercase letters will reduce to 1/3.

Here's her sketch, with charming floating I-dots:

On the rare occasions where I've needed exact measurements, our company has printed a variety of rulers out on a transparency so that you can take measurements from docs set at 100%.

[Update: apparently these are known here as acetates. Metonymy!]


Ah, yes. The old pica/point/inch nexus. It's very interesting indeed. We should get drunk and discuss this all sometime. Especially when you trough leading into the mix, it's a wild, wild world.

posted by Anonymous Graham at May 7, 2007 2:07 PM  

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