Re: style guidelines

Subject: Re: style guidelines
From: Stan Brown <stbrown -at- NACS -dot- NET>
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 1996 20:55:54 -0500

Responding to a question from Ruth Glaser <ruthg -at- goretek -dot- com>, quoth
Ian Macdonald <imacd -at- PC -dot- JARING -dot- MY>:
Subject: Re: style guidelines

>>Does anyone have an opinion/rule of thumb regarding a maximum number of
>>paragraph tags/fonts to use in a document?

>Using fonts: in general no more than two in a document. All headings should
>use the same font with size and style attributes to show levels, all body
>text elements (body text, lists, etc.) should use the same font. Special
>fonts can be used in special situations, for example, courier to format
>actual data entry, or code examples.

Sound advice, but I'd like to suggest an even stricter standard. A
heading should vary no more than one element from the next less
significant heading level (or from text). For instance, if the text is
11-point Times, the lowest-level heading might be 11-point Times
italic, or 11-point Times bold; but it should not be 12-point Times
bold or italic. Vary size or emphasis, but not both.

You can also position headings in various ways to handle different
levels without creating a Christmas-tree effect.

This advice is adapted from Robert Bringhurst's _The Elements of
Typographic Style_, a terrific book in my opinion. He discussed this
topic at length, and gives two different extensive examples on pages
64 and 65 of his book.

Stan Brown, Oak Road Systems Cleveland, Ohio USA +1 216 371-0043
email: stbrown -at- nacs -dot- net Web:

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