Re: Justified or Not

Subject: Re: Justified or Not
From: "Michael West" <mbwest -at- bigpond -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 1 Sep 2000 10:14:48 +1100

> Christi Carew asked :

> >Has there been a study on why "Justified text is the right choice in some
> >circumstances (especially multiple columns

Dick Margulis answered eloquently, and to his answer I
would like to append the following:

I completely agree with everything that Dick Margulis wrote
on this question, and I admire the passion and clarity with
which he wrote it.

However, getting back to the question, yes there ARE
physiological reasons why justified text usually works better
in long, narrow, close-set columns, and why ragged-right
works better in wider, loosely-set columns -- usually. The
reasons are readily available in standard reference works
on typography and publication design, so I won't summarize
them here.

But I would encourage interested readers to look for books
by authors like Roger C. Parker, Jan White, Daniel Will-Haris,
Frank J. Romano, Edward Tufte, and Sumner Stone.

Also, visit a good bookshop and browse through the graphics
and typography books. This is a rich tradition going back
centuries, and it makes the whole history of desktop publishing
look anemic and paltry by comparison.

Christi asks for a "study." Christi, the best study you can get is
your own study of what the masters have done, and what your
own eyes tell you about what succeeds and what fails, and why.

Michael West
Melbourne, Australia

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