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Subject:Re. research on justified vs. ragged right From:"Geoff Hart" <geoff_hart -at- hotmail -dot- com> To:techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com Date:Sat, 27 Nov 1999 17:06:41 EST
Holly Turner is <<...looking for research regarding the use of justification
and ragged paragraphs in printed documentation.>>
Don't trust any research you find on this subject that provides blanket
recommendations. Although there are theoretical advantages and disadvantages
to both forms of justification, neither choice is so inherently superior
that it can overcome problems with word spacing, hyphenation, line spacing,
font choice, etc. etc. (Put a bit differently: you can easily produce highly
legible text with either approach, and you can also produce illegible text
with either approach. A little experimentation will prove this beyond any
shadow of a doubt.) The correct answer to you question is that neither
approach is superior, but that both must be applied using appropriate
typography to make them legible. And ideally, you should find out what your
own unique audience finds most appropriate for their needs; it's highly
unlikely any one study related to an audience identical to yours.