European vs. American paper sizes

Subject: European vs. American paper sizes
From: geoff-h -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 1997 16:58:24 -0600

Harvey Kaniel wondered if he could make one version of a
document work on both North American (8.5X11) and European
(metric) paper, which is taller and narrower.

You can certainly use a least common denominator approach
and design something that fits tidily on both paper sizes:
the result will appear a bit too narrow on North American
paper (because it must fit on the narrower width of
European paper) and a bit too short for European paper
(because it must fit on the shorter North American paper).
That's the easiest approach because all you need to do is
change the page size and the margins before you print the
files. This works because the printable area on the page
doesn't change between versions.

The only drawback to this approach is that you're not
making optimal use of white space on either version, and
white space should be designed, not an accident. On the
other hand, the paper sizes are close enough that this
shouldn't pose a serious problem.

--Geoff Hart @8^{)} geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca
Disclaimer: Speaking for myself, not FERIC.

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