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Subject:Re: wide side margins & Andrea's comments From:Chuck Martin <techwriter -at- VNET -dot- IBM -dot- COM> Date:Thu, 31 Mar 1994 15:59:55 PST
I think that the wider margins, as well as the things we put in them,
serve a useful purpose and are not just there to look pretty. It's about
time graphics designers looked a page designs; if you saw some of the
old manuals here you'd see page after page of gray matter: two column
text from side to side and top to bottom, with only small break for
same-font-size headings. headache city.
The wide margins, margin definitions, margin graphics, other white
space, and other page design methods are there to make the information
on the page more findable. That is, after all, the goal. I don't want
users to spend their time scanning down paragraph after paragraph of text
in search of the answer to some question--and the user doesn't want that
Those wide margins have one other purpose: it keeps the lines of
reasonably sized text to that 2.5-3.5 alphabet standard we all know
so well. Rather than making short lines by putting two colums on a page
and filling it up totally.
The most exciting thing for me is that it opens it up for the
margin definitions and margin graphics. While it's been an interesting
discussion on the margin definition subject, I'm high on the margin
graphic as a very helpful retrievability aid. It'a also a good place
to extend higher level headings and put lower level headings.
techwriter -at- vnet -dot- ibm -dot- com