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Gerry Kowarsky
02-08-2005, 03:06 PM
I was looking at printer specifications the other day, and I began to wonder whether built-in fonts are a selling point for printers any more. In the office environment where I work, we have a mix of networked PCL and PostScript printers, but I don't know of anyone who uses anything other than the fonts that come with Windows, Microsof Office, or (in a very few cases) Corel Draw. Is this common, do you think?

Shane Stanley
02-08-2005, 06:42 PM
With the arrival of versions of fonts with expanded character sets, embedded fonts are more likely to cause problems. I know they can with InDesign, for example.

Shane

ktinkel
02-09-2005, 08:13 AM
I was looking at printer specifications the other day, and I began to wonder whether built-in fonts are a selling point for printers any more. In the office environment where I work, we have a mix of networked PCL and PostScript printers, but I don't know of anyone who uses anything other than the fonts that come with Windows, Microsof Office, or (in a very few cases) Corel Draw. Is this common, do you think?I shouldn’t think so. Among other considerations, the printer fonts are still the originals, right? But the user may be using a newer version, with enhanced spacing, the euro character, etc. — having an older font subbed in would be kind of a shock! (But perhaps newer printers have newer versions of the fonts — I don’t know.)

Besides, the LW35, once so popular, have been supplanted in everyday computing life by Verdana, Tahoma, Arial (not Helvetica), Georgia, and so on. Times is about the only holdover. So they don’t do anything useful. Better have more RAM in the printer and be done with it.

The more I think about this, the more I think you should probably try to find a printer with no fonts in it. Don’t know if you will find a PostScript printer that way, though.

Gerry Kowarsky
02-09-2005, 11:01 AM
The printer fonts are still the originals, right?

In HP and Adobe PS printers, the fonts are not the originals, but the compressed versions. If built-in fonts don't matter any more, it's kind of ironinc that HP and Adobe scarfed up Elseware and Ares for their compression technology so more fonts could be stored in less memory. I think HP's bundle is up to 145; Adobe's, to 160.

The more I think about this, the more I think you should probably try to find a printer with no fonts in it. Don’t know if you will find a PostScript printer that way, though.

I think you are right on both counts.

Gerry Kowarsky
02-09-2005, 11:03 AM
Good point. It's hard for me to see any advantage to bundled fonts any more, and as you say, there are disadvantage.

DickM
02-11-2005, 06:19 PM
Yes, I agree.

I think the built in fonts are a disadvantage in an office environment. They all show up in the application font choice list but don't display properly unless the fonts have been installed in Windows. Try explaining this to 99% of the users!

There are also a number of printer driver settings for substitutions that also cause more problems than they solve.

It gets really messy if the user prints to more than one network printer (e.g., color, b/w, multi-function) that have different internal font sets.

IMO if you have to install the font in Windows to see it on screen, there is negligible performance benefit to having it resident in the printer and you might as well just download everything. I almost wish there were a setting in the driver to turn off the internal fonts <g>.

LoisWakeman
02-17-2005, 02:03 AM
KT,

I can take or leave most of the printer fonts (Helvetica, Courier, Times etc) but am very fond of Palatino though, and I don't think that comes as standard with Windows for example.

DickM
02-17-2005, 05:38 AM
Book Antiqua is the Windows TrueType equivalent [knock-off] of Palatino.

ktinkel
02-17-2005, 06:37 AM
I can take or leave most of the printer fonts (Helvetica, Courier, Times etc) but am very fond of Palatino though, and I don't think that comes as standard with Windows for example.Not exactly, but Book Antiqua (a notorious knockoff of Palatino that caused quite a stir in the type industry) was distributed with Windows 3.1 (and a few thereafter).

Then Microsoft worked with Linotype and Hermann Zapf (the foundry that owns the Palatino trademark and the man who designed the face) to produce Palatino Linotype, which I believe was distributed with Windows or perhaps with MS-Office.

Aside from those possibilities, if you ever bought Bitstream’s 500-Font CD for Windows (which had a list price of $50 and was often discounted to $35, so quite a bargain), you should have the Bitstream knockoff of Palatino, Zapf Calligraphic.

So depending on how much of a packrat you are, you may actually have a Palatino somewhere in your office!

I am just curious to see whether I can show those fonts here (for those who have them active on their systems).Is this a clone of Palatino (Book Antiqua)?
Let’s see what that does. I have the font, so see it. How about you?

Hugh Wyn Griffith
02-17-2005, 05:46 PM
This is Palatino Linotype in my Word 2000 although I’m not sure it comes from that

Book Antiqua



This is Palatino Linotype in my Word 2000 although I’m not sure it comes from that



This is Palatino Linotype in my Word 2000 although I’m not sure it comes from that




The words Book Antiqua in Palatino Linotype

This is Book Antiqua in my Word 2000 although I’m not sure it comes from that


If that is of any relevance?

I see it does not hold font size on pasting in from a Word document but one can correct size here.

JVegVT
02-18-2005, 03:27 PM
Palatino Linotype TrueType came with Windows XP. Book Antiqua never came with Windows to my knowledge and certainly not with 3.1 or 95. It did come with Office and several other Microsoft programs and was included in the first Microsoft TrueType Font Pack (with no kerning pairs) back in early Win 3.1 days.

I didn't see Palatino or Book Antiqua in your test, but I'm in Linux and don't have those installed. If I think of it, I'll install Palatino and check again.
--Judy M.

skyline
02-20-2005, 10:13 AM
Your Palatino didn't come through on my 'puter. We have Palatino, but it's the Windows Postscript Type 1 version. Does it need to be the TrueType version? We have very few TrueType fonts active.

Also, we use Adobe Type Manager 4.1 Deluxe, on Win 2000 Pro.

ktinkel
02-20-2005, 11:26 AM
Your Palatino didn't come through on my 'puter. We have Palatino, but it's the Windows Postscript Type 1 version. Does it need to be the TrueType version? We have very few TrueType fonts active.It isn’t a problem with the font format but the name must be exactly the same as the font you have on your system.

There are many versions of Palatino (even more if you include knockoffs and lookalikes), each with its own name. The browser has to find the exact font on your system that was specified on the web page or it won’t open it.

Let’s see if you can see this Palatino:Palatino
I used the name Palatino, which is the menu name for the Adobe font on the Mac. If that is the Palatino you have, and if it uses the same name in Windows as it does on the Mac, you should see Palatino there.

Michael Rowley
02-20-2005, 12:09 PM
KT:

The Windows TT version is called 'PalatinoLinotype'. Your Palatino came out as Verdana on my monitor (with and without my Palatino Linotype activated).

ktinkel
02-20-2005, 01:08 PM
The Windows TT version is called 'PalatinoLinotype'. Your Palatino came out as Verdana on my monitor (with and without my Palatino Linotype activated).Well, that is one Windows TT version — not positive it is the only one.

As I said in the message, only Adobe’s Palatino should show up. If you do not have that font (or if its name is different in Windows than on the Mac), no matter how many other Palatino fonts you may have, you will not see it.

Michael Rowley
02-20-2005, 01:46 PM
KT:

'Adobe’s Palatino should show up'

I should have said that 'PalatinoLinotype' was the font's Postscript name; the copyright is held by the Heidelberger, just as that of the Adobe version is. I don't know if your Mac uses the Postscript name: Windows does.

ktinkel
02-20-2005, 02:01 PM
Adobe’s Palatino should show upI should have said that 'PalatinoLinotype' was the font's Postscript name; the copyright is held by the Heidelberger, just as that of the Adobe version is. It is true that Linotype owns both Palatino trademarks, but Palatino Linotype is a different design from the older Palatino that Adobe licensed from Lino. Hermann Zapf worked with Monotype and Microsoft to develop the new font, in part to show off the new OT technology. You can buy both or either of these fonts today, and they will not automatically sub for each other, as they are completely different fonts.

I don't know if your Mac uses the Postscript name: Windows does.If I owned Palatino Linotype, it would have that name. The Palatino I have is different, and its menu name is simply “Palatino.” If you had the older Lino Palatino, it would probably also be called plain old Palatino in menus. I was trying to determine that in my earlier message — the one that included the specimen of Palatino.

Trademark (not copyright) ownership doesn’t have anything to do with menu names. In fact, font companies deliberately give their versions of a face a unique menu/printer name, as it is annoying, even hazardous to the layout to allow one font to overwrite another one.

Beyond that, Palatino Linotype is an OT font with TT outlines. I don’t think it has a “PostScript name.”

Michael Rowley
02-20-2005, 02:37 PM
KT:

'Palatino Linotype is an OT font with TT outlines. I don’t think it has a “PostScript name.” '

I don't know. But that's the Postscript name according to ATM; I see no reason not to believe it. Mine's version 1.40 and is supplied originally by Linotype. There's no reason why 'Palatino' from Linotype should be exactly the same as 'Palatino' from Adobe, which were both supposed to be based on the original cut for Stempel, which was called simply Palatino. I suppose the newer version is called 'Palatino Linotype' to avoid confusion.

There are three other fonts based on, and largely similar to Palatino; with 'Palatino' and 'Palatino Linotype' that makes five designs acknowledged (more or less) to be based on the 'original' Zapf design, some of which were tinkered with by Zapf himself.

skyline
02-20-2005, 03:35 PM
It isn’t a problem with the font format but the name must be exactly the same as the font you have on your system.

There are many versions of Palatino (even more if you include knockoffs and lookalikes), each with its own name. The browser has to find the exact font on your system that was specified on the web page or it won’t open it.



Let’s see if you can see this Palatino:Palatino


I used the name Palatino, which is the menu name for the Adobe font on the Mac. If that is the Palatino you have, and if it uses the same name in Windows as it does on the Mac, you should see Palatino there.


Yes, this time it shows up as Palatino.

ktinkel
02-20-2005, 04:57 PM
Yes, this time it shows up as Palatino.Okay. Now we know something: Adobe’s Palatino has the same menu/printer name on both Mac and Windows.

Whew! <g>

Don’t always know much — it is very nice to pin something down!

Hugh Wyn Griffith
02-20-2005, 05:23 PM
On my system with XP Pro and no Adobe it looks very un-Palatinoesque!

Palatino


In your message which I copy pasted it from it looks like a thin sans but it's Italic in yours when copied and not when pasted in here.

I do have the MS Palatino Linotype.

I wonder if those reading this message who saw KT's as Palatino will see this as Palatino also?

ktinkel
02-20-2005, 05:36 PM
On my system with XP Pro and no Adobe it looks very un-Palatinoesque!

Palatino


In your message which I copy pasted it from it looks like a thin sans but it's Italic in yours when copied and not when pasted in here.

I do have the MS Palatino Linotype.

I wonder if those reading this message who saw KT's as Palatino will see this as Palatino also?You will only see my entry as Palatino if you have the Adobe Palatino font active on your system. Otherwise, not.

Browsers are very narrow-minded. Get the right alpha-string, get results. Else, nope.

curveto
02-20-2005, 06:05 PM
Viable point. Internet links aside, network transports are fast enough that old school needs like resident fonts, opi/dcs and other forms of (what are really) compression are unnecessary.

External references actually get in the way of things like transparency (where the analysis requires that all of the data be present at the point of analysis).

All that said, memory still helps. I added 512k to my Xerox and it uses it to run most .ps jobs at (or very near) engine speed.

JR

Paul
02-20-2005, 06:27 PM
I used the name Palatino, which is the menu name for the Adobe font on the Mac. If that is the Palatino you have, and if it uses the same name in Windows as it does on the Mac, you should see Palatino there.

I saw Palatino, but I do not have the Adobe font installed. What is installed is the URW imitation that Lexmark supplied with an Optra R printer.

DickM
02-20-2005, 07:21 PM
Kathleen,

Your latest Palatino "works" just fine on my WinXP, ATM Lite, with T1 Palatino "active."

Hugh Wyn Griffith
02-21-2005, 07:08 AM
Understood!

Hugh

ktinkel
02-21-2005, 08:45 AM
I saw Palatino, but I do not have the Adobe font installed. What is installed is the URW imitation that Lexmark supplied with an Optra R printer.Really? What is the name you see in font menus?

ktinkel
02-21-2005, 08:47 AM
Your latest Palatino "works" just fine on my WinXP, ATM Lite, with T1 Palatino "active."That seems to cinch it — it uses the same menu name on both platforms.

How amazingly intuitive! <g>

Paul
02-22-2005, 11:07 AM
Really? What is the name you see in font menus?

Palatino.

The printer has PostScript emulation and all of the PS 35 font names match. It also has PCL emulation and for that the font names match the HP names, I think.

tphinney
02-23-2005, 06:18 PM
TrueType fonts, and TT flavored OpenType fonts, do have a PostScript FontName. Although I haven't tried it, I suspect that if you managed to make a TT font without one it might fail to print on any PostScript device.

Palatino Linotype is based on the same outlines as the Adobe version of Palatino, so while it is very much a "different font" it is also very much "the same design," discounting its extended character set. This is actually rather unfortunate, in my mind. There are some very nice subtleties in the original metal Palatino that are not present in the Adobe/Linotype version.

Some years back, due to lack of storage space, Adobe was tossing out old binders recording the testing results of fonts in development. I saved the binder showing the original development of Palatino in the mid-80s. I wished I'd managed to get the Times and Helvetica binders before they were tossed - it would have been fascinating to see the errors that they had when coding the fonts by hand, specifying the on- and off-curve points simply by number without a WSYIWYG editor, and then correcting the resulting errors.

T

tphinney
02-23-2005, 06:22 PM
In 1992-93 Adobe revised all its Windows Type 1 fonts to ensure that was true. However, it is only guaranteed for the "base font" within a style-linked group. If you access, say, Palatino Italic on Mac directly on the font menu, without using the italic style, most Windows apps won't recognize the menu name as being the same as their Palatino +italic. (The key exception being a bunch of high end graphics apps, and I am not sure about Web browsers.)

T

donmcc
02-23-2005, 09:34 PM
Some years back, due to lack of storage space, Adobe was tossing out old binders recording the testing results of fonts in development. I saved the binder showing the original development of Palatino in the mid-80s.

T

If such a thing ever happens again, you might want to contact a design school (perhaps RIT in Rochester) which might take over such documents for their historical value. I can image any of a half dozen masters or doctoral theses that might have been founded in such documents.

Adobe was creating history in those days, and they threw it in the garbage.

Don McCahill

tphinney
02-23-2005, 09:54 PM
I did my first Master's degree at RIT, and was a graduate assistant at the Cary Library. I agree that RIT would have been a good choice if they would have been interested. It was unfortunate, and some typographic history was lost. I don't think every binder was of historical interest (and there were literally hundreds and hundreds), but there were a few that should have been saved.

ktinkel
02-24-2005, 05:38 AM
In 1992-93 Adobe revised all its Windows Type 1 fonts to ensure that was true. However, it is only guaranteed for the "base font" within a style-linked group. If you access, say, Palatino Italic on Mac directly on the font menu, without using the italic style, most Windows apps won't recognize the menu name as being the same as their Palatino +italic. (The key exception being a bunch of high end graphics apps, and I am not sure about Web browsers.)

THmmm. I have old memories (or know people with old fonts, and that is surely true!). Since service bureaus, printers, Adobe and other foundries have long encouraged us to select fonts by name (not by applying styles to the base fonts) it almost ensures lots of confusion and mal-fonting.

But OpenType cures all — right?

tphinney
02-24-2005, 08:51 AM
Hmmm. I have old memories (or know people with old fonts, and that is surely true!). Since service bureaus, printers, Adobe and other foundries have long encouraged us to select fonts by name (not by applying styles to the base fonts) it almost ensures lots of confusion and mal-fonting.?

Yes indeed. At least, if you want cross-platform docs in typical office applications, like Word.

I've been pointing this out pretty clearly in my 8 years at Adobe, but I know I'm just one voice speaking out against the "conventional wisdom" of the ages.

The problem with using styles on base fonts is that you *could* get a faux bold or italic, if you're not careful. But on Windows in those low-end apps, it's the *only* way to get at those style linked fonts.

But OpenType cures all — right?

Sadly, no. OpenType still has to operate within the constrints of the OS. It allows for some new cross-platform naming, but cannot enforce use of said names and has to also work "the old way" for compatibility. So, if you're using a Windows office app that uses the normal system calls today, OpenType fonts work just like regular Windows fonts....

Cheers,

T

Michael Rowley
02-24-2005, 11:10 AM
Thomas:

'But on Windows in those low-end apps, it's the *only* way to get at those style linked fonts'

What do you characterize as 'low-end'? Using Word (say) for Windows, it shows all the fonts you have active, except for the ones that have links to their variants, such as (and particularly) italic and bold. If you have fonts of a family that includes light, medium, bold, and perhaps extra bold or black, it gets a bit complicated, since Windows will obligingly supply a 'bold' version of each, but all except one (medium, say) will be faked.

The habit of font suppliers of selling sets of roman, italic, bold, and bold italic (perhaps some will shudder here) has probably contributed most to the habit of word-processor suppliers making the roman, italic, etc. available as 'font styles', which can be turned on or off with a key stroke.

I haven't mentioned small capitals, but the font suppliers are also guilty of not providing them, even for fonts for which concepts such as bold or bold italic are foreign. In simply making ordinary roman capitals smaller when you press the 'small caps' key, the program makers are also guilty, but perhaps only of beings accessories to the original crime.

Adobe and some others are now making up for their original sinfulness by supplying OT fonts and by giving clear instructions about their larger sets, though we non-typographers may have some difficulty about following (or remembering) those instructions; we have been led to long on false paths!

dthomsen8
04-23-2006, 04:29 AM
I shouldn’t think so. Among other considerations, the printer fonts are still the originals, right? But the user may be using a newer version, with enhanced spacing, the euro character, etc. — having an older font subbed in would be kind of a shock! (But perhaps newer printers have newer versions of the fonts — I don’t know.)


I have not given any thought to the built-in printer fonts in my HP printer in many years, but this old thread made me think about it. I have an old printer book which tells me all about it, though.

My HP LaserJet 4 Plus continues to chug along just fine, thank you, and if it ever broke beyond repair, I would seek out a used HP LaserJet of the same vintage. They just keep churning out black and white printouts reliably and cheaply. The local repair place sells refilled cartridges at a good price, with a guarantee of free repairs if the refills cause a problem. Newer is not always better, and sometimes far more expensive.

iamback
04-23-2006, 07:23 AM
My HP LaserJet 4 Plus continues to chug along just fine, thank you, and if it ever broke beyond repair, I would seek out a used HP LaserJet of the same vintage. They just keep churning out black and white printouts reliably and cheaply.Couldn't agree more - I have the 4M and it's just keeping going strong! Was expensive at the time, but that's long written off now. I never thought it would keep going so long - must be well over 10 years now - so long ago I forgot!

Michael Rowley
04-23-2006, 12:02 PM
Marjolein:

My old Brother HL8 (for which Brother still provides drivers!) had no built-in fonts to speak of, for it was built before TrueType fonts became generally available. It lasted me for over 10 years and eventually succumbed to senile dementia, although the print machine was still working perfectly (now it prints only the first page: and goes on printing the first page until you switch it off).

I don't believe in using built-in fonts: the recipient of the file is unlikely to use exactly the same fonts. I don't know whether later versions of a font have altered metrics (unlikely, I should think), but they do tend to have a bigger collection of glyphs.

iamback
04-23-2006, 01:41 PM
It lasted me for over 10 years and eventually succumbed to senile dementia, although the print machine was still working perfectly (now it prints only the first page: and goes on printing the first page until you switch it off).:D I never heard of printers with senile dementia - but that describes it very well. How frustrating it must be to forget what you just did and do it all over again - just in case. Can it still count? As in for a print job of 7 pages print 7 first pages? :p

Michael Rowley
04-23-2006, 02:45 PM
Marjolein:

As in for a print job of 7 pages print 7 first pages?

No, unfortunately, otherwise I could still use it for one-page jobs. It just keeps printing the first page until you cut off its lifeline (electricity). My diagnosis of senile dementia is based on the certainty that an electronic component has failed. Possibly the component could be replaced, but at considerable cost, and I would still have a printer that printed one side of the paper only, had a resolution of only 300 d.p.i., and was rather slow. I now have an HL-1850, still monochrome but with automatic duplex and a normal resolution of 600 d.p.i. or an enhanced resolution of 1200 d.p.i.

Steve Rindsberg
04-23-2006, 04:55 PM
If it ever comes to pass and you'd rather drive a ways than pay, give me a shout. I've got two LJ 4Vs that I don't really use any longer. One's just been into the shop for an overhaul, the other needs some work on the feed mechs. Both PostScript.

Big honkers. They go up to Ledger size and then some.

Michael Rowley
04-24-2006, 06:45 AM
Steve:

They go up to Ledger size and then some

Translate, please, for us Europeans that can only understand alphanumeric codes (letters up to C, numbers up to 6 or 7).

ktinkel
04-24-2006, 07:31 AM
Ledger size . . .

Translate, please, for us Europeans that can only understand alphanumeric codes (letters up to C, numbers up to 6 or 7).I’m not sure ledger size is universally defined. Until the DTP era, ledger and tabloid were both 11X17 inches (but the grain in ledger ran the short way). Mainly, it was the size used for accounting journals.

However, a copier I had in the 1980s had a maximum sheet size called ledger that was 10 X 14 inches. I suspect that is what Steve is referring to.

Michael Rowley
04-24-2006, 08:05 AM
KT:

Until the DTP era, ledger and tabloid were both 11X17 inches

Thank you for that. In the mean time, I have thought to look up the very comprehensive guide to the ISO sizes, and found this:

"Hints for North American paper users

The United States, Canada, and in part Mexico, are today the only industrialized nations in which the ISO standard paper sizes are not yet widely used. In U.S. office applications, the paper formats “Letter” (216 × 279 mm), “Legal” (216 × 356 mm), “Executive” (190 × 254 mm), and “Ledger/Tabloid” (279 × 432 mm) are widely used today. There exists also an American National Standard ANSI/ASME Y14.1 for technical drawing paper sizes A (216 × 279 mm), B (279 × 432 mm), C (432 × 559 mm), D (559 × 864 mm), E (864 × 1118 mm), and there are many other unsystematic formats for various applications in use. The “Letter”, “Legal”, “Tabloid”, and other formats (although not these names) are defined in the American National Standard ANSI X3.151-1987."

ISO A3 is slightly wider (297 mm x 420 mm) than ledger, but since the printer engine was probably Japanese, it is very likely that Steve's big printers were designed for A3.

It's rather a pity that North America has not adopted the ISO sizes; your system of getting paper weights would probably have baffled Einstein.

ktinkel
04-24-2006, 08:23 AM
It's rather a pity that North America has not adopted the ISO sizes; your system of getting paper weights would probably have baffled Einstein.ISO sizes undoubtedly make more sense, but we have several industries that would have to change things, and they prefer not to.

Besides that, things are too boringly uniform as it is; I would like to see more variety, not less. So maybe our way isn’t that bad. ;)

donmcc
04-24-2006, 10:17 AM
It could be worse, we could still be using quarto, octavo and the like for paper sizes.

Steve Rindsberg
04-24-2006, 12:47 PM
Ledger = 11x17 or 17x11 if you turn the printer sideways.

The 4V also takes a slightly oversize sheet so that you can print 11x17 full bleed then trim.

This translates some of the common sizes:
http://www.rdpslides.com/psfaq/FAQ00091.htm

Steve Rindsberg
04-24-2006, 12:50 PM
Sheesh. It *figures* that we'd have several "ledger" sizes.

Let me restate then. In HPenglish, that'd be 11x17".

Michael Rowley
04-24-2006, 01:44 PM
KT:

So maybe our way isn’t that bad

You can get various shapes out of the ISO sizes: they ratio of one by root two isn't sacrosanct. But one of the important aspects of the ISO sizes is that the basic weight is that of a square meter of paper or card. We wouldn't mind so much if USA stuck to a system of measurement that has become obsolescent over the past two hundred years, if only there was some relation between actual area and weight.

we have several industries that would have to change things

Which industries, what things? (If I may ask.)

Michael Rowley
04-24-2006, 01:55 PM
Steve:

This translates some of the common sizes

Thanks. Note that 297 mm (A4 height, A3 width) is almost exactly 11 2/3 in, not as given. That was (is?) used for continuous stationery as used for printing to A4 size.

donmcc
04-25-2006, 03:59 AM
Which industries, what things? (If I may ask.)

Well, stationery industry, of course. Then there are ancillary things like the makers of file folders, trays, etc. File cabinets would (might?) need to be different sizes, and if so then you get into a massive job of dealing with new size and old size documents.

Nothing would be impossible to overcome, but it would be a hassle, and has been judged "not worth it" by the powers that be.

Interestingly, Canada went metric in the 1970s, but did not adopt the Euro paper sizing, presumably because of the tight interweaving of our economy with that of the US. It is okay for us to use Celsius thermometers and mark the highways in kilometers, but paper crosses the border and must be consistent, I guess.

Michael Rowley
04-25-2006, 05:04 AM
Don:

Well, stationery industry, of course

I'm not sure that there is any 'of course' about it: I was surprised to find (I lived in Germany) that in England they had gone over to the ISO sizes. In practice, most folders and filing cabinets are still dimensioned to take foolscap ('legal') though. How much manufacturing equipment woul need replacing earlier I don't know, but I should imagine, very little. Paper manufacture is not affected (the market is international), nor is printing. Still, the needs of stationery suppliers might not be the only factor.

ktinkel
04-25-2006, 05:26 AM
I'm not sure that there is any 'of course' about it: I was surprised to find (I lived in Germany) that in England they had gone over to the ISO sizes. In practice, most folders and filing cabinets are still dimensioned to take foolscap ('legal') though. Maybe. Most of my file cabinets are designed to fit U.S. letter sheets (8.5 X 11 inches) and when I receive a letter from England it sticks a bit out of the folder.

You underestimate the annoyance and the cost, I think. On the other hand, there might be sufficient benefit to make ISO sizes work, but there is no political will (or business interest) even to try.

iamback
04-25-2006, 10:00 AM
You underestimate the annoyance and the cost, I think. On the other hand, there might be sufficient benefit to make ISO sizes work, but there is no political will (or business interest) even to try.I guess it's the latter that matters: no interest. Or no political will, maybe. But why not? It's not as though the rest of the world is going to adapt to US sizes, rather the other way round.

After all, we changed over from non-systematic sizes at one point, so it's certainly possible for the US (and Canada), too.

Paul
04-25-2006, 01:23 PM
I was wondering about this myself -- I'm preparing to sell, or perhaps give away, a laser printer, and I wasn't sure that I could lay hands on the font diskettes that came with it. Then it occurred to me that the next user might never use the resident fonts anyway, and so wouldn't need to install screen fonts for them.

It was easy, on the other hand, to find the printer installation diskettes, even though they are not for any current version of Windows. Even if they were, it would be best to download the drivers from the manufacturer's web site.



I was looking at printer specifications the other day, and I began to wonder whether built-in fonts are a selling point for printers any more. In the office environment where I work, we have a mix of networked PCL and PostScript printers, but I don't know of anyone who uses anything other than the fonts that come with Windows, Microsof Office, or (in a very few cases) Corel Draw. Is this common, do you think?

Steve Rindsberg
04-25-2006, 05:15 PM
>>Note that 297 mm (A4 height, A3 width) is almost exactly 11 2/3 in, not as given.

11/16 = .687
2/3 = .666
10/16 = .625

But assuming 1 millimeter = 0.0393700787 inch, 297 is 11.6929..." so closer to 11/16 (.687) than 2/3 (.666)

In any case, I don't believe I've ever seen a ruler marked in thirds of inches; sixteenths is more common and 11/16 is the closest approximation. It's been a while since I converted the PPD to this table but I'm guessing that's why I picked the value shown (and made a point of mentioning that metric to inch conversions were approximate).

Not quite as approximate as the "1=2.54mm" conversion factor quoted at the top of the page though ... I'm off to change that.

Franca
04-25-2006, 06:11 PM
You will only see my entry as Palatino if you have the Adobe Palatino font active on your system. Otherwise, not.

Browsers are very narrow-minded. Get the right alpha-string, get results. Else, nope.Yep. No Palatino showing here. That's because my "Palatino" is Zapf Calligraphic. http://desktoppublishingforum.com/bb/images/smilies/wink.gif

annc
04-26-2006, 03:12 AM
Not quite as approximate as the "1=2.54mm" conversion factor quoted at the top of the page though ... I'm off to change that.No need to worry – anyone accustomed to that particular conversion will most likely have made the correction without even thinking about it. If they did stop to think, they're probably of the pedantic curmudgeon persuasion, and look for errors wherever they travel. ;-)

donmcc
04-26-2006, 11:11 AM
I'm not saying it can't be done. But it would involve hassles the average person wants to avoid. I was interviewing with a lady the other day who had a collection of business cards in a little book. Well, if the cards standard size would change (and I assume there is an A or B size for cards) she would have to get a second book, and have all the new cards in each.

A hassle, not a complete barrier, of course.

ktinkel
04-26-2006, 11:55 AM
I guess it's the latter that matters: no interest. Or no political will, maybe. But why not? It's not as though the rest of the world is going to adapt to US sizes, rather the other way round.

After all, we changed over from non-systematic sizes at one point, so it's certainly possible for the US (and Canada), too.It would be easy to say that the Dutch (and most other Europeans) have more sense than we do, but I won’t say it. Not here and now, anyway! ;)

But for years we were our own best market, and everything worked fine. Globalization changes the marketing environment somewhat, and I would not be astonished to see North American paper and print industries shifting to DIN standards in the not-too-distant future. Probably under a different administration than this one, though.

Michael Rowley
04-26-2006, 03:23 PM
KT:

Most of my file cabinets are designed to fit U.S. letter sheets (8.5 X 11 inches)

I didn't realize that US filing cabinets come in two sizes: yours, which only takes letter size, and those that can accomodate foolscap (legal) size. We, in general, have the foolscap one and one that only takes up to A4.

The question of annoyance and cost is one only someone in the industries concerned can answer. In Britain the paper users may have decided that ISO papers sizes gave a better choice of suppliers, since Britain trades a great deal with other European countries; the manufacturers of filing cabinets were easy, since they make the sizes preferred in every country. USA doesn't seem interested in export, so its manufacturers may prefer to supply only the home market. On the other hand, two of the biggest suppliers of stationery needs in Europe are Staples and Viking, both US companies.

Michael Rowley
04-26-2006, 03:53 PM
Steve:

You're quite right that 297 mm is approximately 11.692913385826771653543307086614 in (if Windows Caculator is right), and I must apologise for being misleading when I claimed that 11 2/3 in is the best approximation using common fractions; but a standard typewriter line happens to be 1/6 in. That's why 11 2/3 in was chosen for A4 continuous stationery; rulers don't come into it. But if you would look at a traditional wooden ruler, you'll find that there is a scale graduated in 1/6 in, though I think you'll find it on the face opposite the one graduated in 1/10 in and 1/8 in. Of course, a printer's rule would be near enough.

The ration 1 in : 25.4 mm was that agreed by USA and Britain in 196?, and is exact. There is no exact equivalent of 1 mm. Before that date, you had to specify USin or UKin, although the difference between them was b.a. (except to General Motors, Ford, et al.)

Steve Rindsberg
04-26-2006, 05:44 PM
But it's so easily fixed. How could I not?

Not to say that I lost a great deal of sleep over it ...

Steve Rindsberg
04-26-2006, 05:51 PM
>> but a standard typewriter line happens to be 1/6 in. That's why 11 2/3 in was chosen for A4 continuous stationery;

That makes good sense.

>>rulers don't come into it.

If I'm choosing the units for my table on my web site, they do, sir.

>>But if you would look at a traditional wooden ruler, you'll find that there is a scale graduated in 1/6 in, though I think you'll find it on the face opposite the one graduated in 1/10 in and 1/8 in.

Different countries, different traditions, different rulers, I suppose. I don't believe I've ever seen a ruler like that here, though I've got a fair number of them that include a pica scale.

>>The ration 1 in : 25.4 mm was that agreed by USA and Britain in 196?, and is exact. There is no exact equivalent of 1 mm. Before that date, you had to specify USin or UKin, although the difference between them was b.a. (except to General Motors, Ford, et al.)

That's interesting ... didn't know that.

iamback
04-26-2006, 09:40 PM
You're quite right that 297 mm is approximately 11.692913385826771653543307086614 in (if Windows Caculator is right), and I must apologise for being misleading when I claimed that 11 2/3 in is the best approximation using common fractions; but a standard typewriter line happens to be 1/6 in. That's why 11 2/3 in was chosen for A4 continuous stationeryWell, if it's 11 2/3 inches instead of 297 mm it's not A4 in any shape or size.

If there is such a thing as "A4 continuous stationery" it's going to be 297 mm high (and 210 wide; or vice versa) or else it's "Something else continuous stationery" or "just about but not quite A4 continuous stationery" - whatever "continuous stationery" is!

ktinkel
04-27-2006, 05:51 AM
I don't believe I've ever seen a ruler like that [with 6-to-the-inch gradations] here, though I've got a fair number of them that include a pica scale.There are even rulers now that measure picas as exactly 1/6 of an inch, as is now standard use. Darned few of them, though.

My favorite is The Little Imp DTPrecision, and it has conventional inches (to 16ths), metric, points, agates, decimals, and modern picas. It is transparent, and highly useful.

Michael Rowley
04-27-2006, 08:15 AM
Marjolein:

if it's 11 2/3 inches instead of 297 mm it's not A4 in any shape or size

The difference between 11 2/3 in and 297 mm is only 0.03 in. The tolerance of A4 is considerably greater than 0.03 in (2 mm, I think, without looking it up). So sheets with a height of 295-299 mm are within specification for ISO A4. (The tolerance of DIN A4 is half the value for the ISO A4. These tolerances have to be allowed for paper.

'Continuous stationery' may not be the right term, since I'm not a stationery expert and it's years since I've used it, but how else can you describe stationery that's advanced by sprockets that engage perforations at the sides and comes in long lengths folded in boxes?

Michael Rowley
04-27-2006, 10:13 AM
[Afterword] Marjolein:

Here is the corrected version of the tolerances, taken from Markus Kuhn's very informative paper:

'The allowed tolerances are ±1.5 mm for dimensions up to 150 mm, ±2 mm for dimensions above 150 mm up to 600 mm, and ±3 mm for dimensions above 600 mm. Some national equivalents of ISO 216 specify tighter tolerances, for instance DIN 476 requires ±1 mm, ±1.5 mm, and ±2 mm respectively for the same ranges of dimensions.'

I'd overstated the DIN tolerance for A4, which is 1.5 mm, not 1.0 mm; that's twice the difference between 11 2/3 in and 297 mm.

Michael Rowley
04-27-2006, 10:23 AM
Steve:

That's interesting ... didn't know that

It was actually in 1958 that the US & UK inches were unified by agreement of the US, UK, and Commonwealth governments. The difference between earlier equivalents and 25.4 mm was generally negligible, but enough to make a difference in automotive engineering, for example. (I'm relying on Wikipedia for the date: I thought it was a little later.)

donmcc
04-27-2006, 11:10 AM
'Continuous stationery' may not be the right term, since I'm not a stationery expert and it's years since I've used it, but how else can you describe stationery that's advanced by sprockets that engage perforations at the sides and comes in long lengths folded in boxes?

In North America we generally call it fan-fold paper, or even "computer paper."

It is much less common now that dot matrix printers are dying a slow and well deserved death.

Steve Rindsberg
04-27-2006, 12:45 PM
The one that amuses me the most has inches and 6-to-the-inch picas on one side, agate and more inches on t'other.

It's a C-thru and thru it you most definitely cannot C. It's made of stainless steel. <g>

Michael Rowley
04-27-2006, 01:13 PM
Don:

In North America we generally call it fan-fold paper

I've not heard of that, but then I'm not in Canada, Mexico, or the USA. But still, 'fan-fold' doesn't seem appropriate; I'd think of it more as a Leporello fold, or perhaps 'concertino'.

Matrix printers were valued by offices that had to produce many copies in as short a time as possible (and our newsagent still uses one to produce his bills; but the business is owned by a Scotch firm and even uses envelopes, old stock, that are definitely not ISO).

iamback
04-28-2006, 12:13 AM
Marjolein:

if it's 11 2/3 inches instead of 297 mm it's not A4 in any shape or size

The difference between 11 2/3 in and 297 mm is only 0.03 in.That doesn't matter. A4 is a standard with a defined size of 279x210 mm. Its size is not expressed in inches (nor can it be accurately expressed in inches).

The tolerance of A4 is considerably greater than 0.03 in (2 mm, I think, without looking it up). So sheets with a height of 295-299 mm are within specification for ISO A4.Tolerance is another matter. But the definition is 297mm not any amount of inches. A series (and B series and C series) are metric - and so are the tolerances: :)
The allowed tolerances are ±1.5 mm for dimensions up to 150 mm, ±2 mm for dimensions above 150 mm up to 600 mm, and ±3 mm for dimensions above 600 mm. Some national equivalents of ISO 216 specify tighter tolerances, for instance DIN 476 requires ±1 mm, ±1.5 mm, and ±2 mm respectively for the same ranges of dimensions.International standard paper sizes (http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~mgk25/iso-paper.html) has it all...

'Continuous stationery' may not be the right term, since I'm not a stationery expert and it's years since I've used it, but how else can you describe stationery that's advanced by sprockets that engage perforations at the sides and comes in long lengths folded in boxes?Oh, that! But I've never had any that was labeled as "A4" simply because the size isn't A4 even if it's close and won't be a problem in filing systems (as long as you remove the sprocket strips). I must still have some lying around somewhere but I don't know where it hid itself. :)

ktinkel
04-28-2006, 05:57 AM
The one that amuses me the most has inches and 6-to-the-inch picas on one side, agate and more inches on t'other.

It's a C-thru and thru it you most definitely cannot C. It's made of stainless steel. <g>I have a bunch of C-thru rulers, the plastic ones you can more or less see through. But the picas are all the old style, which can get confusing sometimes.

Paul
04-28-2006, 07:21 AM
The ruler that I have is "the little imp" DTPprecision, which has 72-to-the-inch points. It is marked ininches, centimenters, points, agates, decimal (inches), and picas, and has metric conversion ratios and a point-size matcher in the center. There are also sample rules in various point sizes at one end.

It is almost transparent, that is, it's yellow (a small section next to the point measurements is fully transparent). What is inconvenient about it is that it is too long to fit in a desk drawer: it measures out to 15 inches and is almost 17 inches long.

Michael Rowley
04-28-2006, 08:08 AM
Marjolein:

A4 is a standard with a defined size of 279x210 mm

I'm afraid you're talking nonsense, metrologically. The ISO standard gives the width and height of an A4 sheet, and as ISO is an international body using SI units, it expresses both in those units in the usual manner: physical quantity = numerical value x unit. The physical quantity (here, width or height) does not change if the unit is altered, but of course the numerical value has to change too. How much it has to change in the case of altering the unit from millimetre to inch is determined by the exact relationship, 1 in = 25.4 mm.

In actual fact, since the Japanese designers of whatever mechanism is used to advance the paper use SI units, they probably used 1 in = 25.4 mm in their calculations.

iamback
04-28-2006, 09:35 AM
Marjolein:

A4 is a standard with a defined size of 279x210 mm

I'm afraid you're talking nonsense, metrologically. The ISO standard gives the width and height of an A4 sheet, and as ISO is an international body using SI units, it expresses both in those units in the usual manner: physical quantity = numerical value x unit.And since when is an inch an SI unit?

Michael Rowley
04-28-2006, 10:55 AM
Marjolein:

And since when is an inch an SI unit?

Never; but no one has implied that it was. The inch however is a well-defined unit of length, related directly to the metre; in the USA, it was defined by Congress in 1866 (?) in terms of the (then) metre; in the UK it was not defined in terms of the metre until (I think) the Weights and Measures Act 1963. The inch is a perfectly respectable unit, just a little inconvenient.

terrie
04-28-2006, 01:11 PM
marjolein: Its size is not expressed in inches (nor can it be accurately expressed in inches).Sorry...I just can't resist:

A4: mm = 279x210mm inches = 11.693 x 8.268

Terrie

iamback
04-28-2006, 03:37 PM
Sorry...I just can't resist:

A4: mm = 279x210mm inches = 11.693 x 8.268 That is not accurate but rounded: 279 / 25.4 = 11.692913385826771653543307086614 - and no doubt with more digits after the decimal point but that's only as far as the windows desktop calculator goes. :) Close, but not accurate.

iamback
04-28-2006, 03:44 PM
Marjolein:

And since when is an inch an SI unit?

Never; but no one has implied that it was.Actually you did, when you stated:The ISO standard gives the width and height of an A4 sheet, and as ISO is an international body using SI units, it expresses both in those units in the usual manner: physical quantity = numerical value x unit.

The ISO uses SI units only. Thus the size of an A4 sheets is expressed in millimeters only. Not in inches.

That an inch is well-defined and its relationship to a meter as well, is a convenience of course - but the conversion, and even the possibility of a conversion, are not part of that ISO standard.

Inches play no role whatsoever the definition of the A, B and C series of paper/envelope sizes in the ISO standard.

Michael Rowley
04-29-2006, 08:07 AM
Marjolein:

Actually you did

I would never imply that any quantity is dependent on the units used for its measurement: ISO uses exclusively the SI base units or appropriate derived units and deprecates explicitly the use of the inch (in its ISO Standard Handbook, Quantities and Units), and so do I; but ISO does not presume to prohibit the use of Imperial or US Customary units (or any other unit).

The length 297 mm (not 279 mm!) is, as you have pointed out to Terrie, only 'approximately' equivalent to 11.69... in, but as it would be absurd to give the numerical value in inches to more significant figures than the mumerical value in millimetre, particularly as the stated tolerance is plus or minus 2 mm, two decimal places is quite sufficient.

iamback
04-29-2006, 04:05 PM
it would be absurd to give the numerical value in inches to more significant figures than the mumerical value in millimetre, particularly as the stated tolerance is plus or minus 2 mm, two decimal places is quite sufficient.Exactly. :) The real absurdity here is specifying an ISO (hence metric) size in inches. That's why it's specified in millimeters! No decimal places needed at all. :D

Gerry Kowarsky
04-30-2006, 05:44 PM
Even if they were, it would be best to download the drivers from the manufacturer's web site.
If it's an HP printer, you could probably download the fonts, too.

iamback
04-30-2006, 09:52 PM
If it's an HP printer, you could probably download the fonts, too.Which reminds me: I once - in a former life, almost - had stationery designed for me for which I specified Palatino. Not just because I think it's a classy serif font, but also one of the collection built-in my HP 4ML printer, so I could print my letters in the exact same type as the letterhead. (What do you call a letterhead when it's not at the "head" but to the side?)

annc
05-01-2006, 02:48 AM
Which reminds me: I once - in a former life, almost - had stationery designed for me for which I specified Palatino. Not just because I think it's a classy serif font, but also one of the collection built-in my HP 4ML printer, so I could print my letters in the exact same type as the letterhead. (What do you call a letterhead when it's not at the "head" but to the side?)Ah – you remind me of an article on ligatures I once wrote for the newsletter of my Macintosh users' club. As may be expected, I mentioned in the article that Palatino didn't need ligatures, and for some unknown reason (maybe a subliminal message in my article) the editor chose, for the first time ever, to set the entire issue – including my examples – in Palatino...

What really hurt was that apparently nobody noticed.:eek:

iamback
05-01-2006, 05:30 AM
What really hurt was that apparently nobody noticed.Ouch!

ktinkel
05-01-2006, 05:31 AM
. . . had stationery designed for me for which I specified Palatino. Not just because I think it's a classy serif font, but also one of the collection built-in my HP 4ML printer, so I could print my letters in the exact same type as the letterhead. (What do you call a letterhead when it's not at the "head" but to the side?)That is actually not a great idea — it diminishes the authority and specialness of the heading, which is in effect a logo for the sender.

I know people do it, but it makes the entire page look more like an ad than a piece of correspondence.

“Letterhead” refers to the sheet that has the whole name and address printed on it, wherever that may be. That makes it distinct fromm plain paper or “second sheet,” which typically has just the name, often in a smaller size.

If you go to a printer and ask about letterhead, the printer will know at once what size and quality of paper you need, so it is also an identifier for a particular class of work.

iamback
05-01-2006, 05:44 AM
That is actually not a great idea — it diminishes the authority and specialness of the heading, which is in effect a logo for the sender.Whyever not? There was a very distinctive logo (which you can still find on an old site of mine) - but the address data was set in Palatino.

I know people do it, but it makes the entire page look more like an ad than a piece of correspondence.It didn't look anything like that!

“Letterhead” refers to the sheet that has the whole name and address printed on it, wherever that may be. That makes it distinct fromm plain paper or “second sheet,” which typically has just the name, often in a smaller size.Thanks - I wasn't sure of the English terminology.

ktinkel
05-01-2006, 06:26 AM
Whyever not? There was a very distinctive logo (which you can still find on an old site of mine) - but the address data was set in Palatino.That is another thing than setting the logo in Palatino, then using the same font for the letter itself.

You may not be jarred by this, but on some level many readers may be.

Michael Rowley
05-01-2006, 07:17 AM
Ann:

As may be expected, I mentioned in the article that Palatino didn't need ligatures

This was pre-OpenType, I take it: Linotype Palatino has the standard set now.

iamback
05-01-2006, 08:13 AM
That is another thing than setting the logo in Palatino, then using the same font for the letter itself.Sure, but that is not what happened. And I never suggested the logo was in Palatino did I? The logo actually did not contain a trace of Palatino - only one word in some other (sans serif) font that I don't know the name of, slightly modified even, but which matched the graphic nicely.

You may not be jarred by this, but on some level many readers may be.Jarred by what? Not having the one word appearing in the logo match the rest of the text in Palatino? The logo (and other small graphic elements) was deliberately so it would stand on its own and could be used online (which I know and knew then would not be the case with Palatino: that was for print only).

ktinkel
05-01-2006, 08:20 AM
I obviously misunderstood — I thought you said you had a letterhead set up in Palatino. So never mind the rest of it.

:)

ktinkel
05-01-2006, 09:05 AM
This was pre-OpenType, I take it: Linotype Palatino has the standard set now.The older Palatino had two ligature characters (fi and fl), though only in Mac fonts. If it didn’t and one were to change a document from some other font that did need the ligs to Palatino, empty boxes would appear where the ligs had been entered in the file.

But the typeface does not need ligatures. There are five in Palatino Linotype: ff, fi, fl, ffi, and ffl, and they do look a little bit different than the individual characters, but I would say it took extra effort to make them so.

Because the f doesn’t kern in the Palatino design, it really doesn’t need ligs.

Michael Rowley
05-01-2006, 10:46 AM
KT:

The older Palatino had two ligature characters (fi and fl), though only in Mac fonts

As far as I know, the Mac OS has never had any special fonts, just PS or TT fonts (apart from the GX system). The Mac has always had the fi and fl ligatures, but so did the same fonts used by Windows; only Windows had no way of invoking them, since they weren't in the Windows range of 256 numbers until Windows 2000: but they're there, even in older fonts, whether they're needed or not. The present Linotype Palatino has five f ligatures (just slightly closed up letters) plus the usual two st ligatures.

Gerry Kowarsky
05-01-2006, 01:15 PM
Which reminds me: I once - in a former life, almost - had stationery designed for me for which I specified Palatino. Not just because I think it's a classy serif font, but also one of the collection built-in my HP 4ML printer, so I could print my letters in the exact same type as the letterhead.
Getting back to the question of whether printer fonts matter any more, would you make the same choice today?

iamback
05-01-2006, 07:12 PM
Getting back to the question of whether printer fonts matter any more, would you make the same choice today?Oh - good question.

I still like Palatino - but my printer is getting old (still going strong, but I don't know for how long). Assuming it would need to be replaced, I wouldn't pay extra for built-in fonts, and would be one reason less for choosing Palatino. So then what? If I had to make the same choise today, I'd probably go for a sans-serif font. Maybe even my old-time favorite Futura.

Anyway, I guess the point is (If I still have a point with my sleep-deprived brain) my choice for a font to be used for addess data on a letter head (and business cards) would no longer be inflenced by the possibility of built-in fonts at this moment. But if I'd get a new printer (without paying attention to fonts when buying it) before having stationery designed, and I'd find at that moment that it actually does have built-in fonts... maybe.

What seemed advanced and exciting at the time I bought my current and still-trusty printer no longer seems to matter all that much to me any more. But if it happened to be present, I might take advantage of it. Postscript support is another matter though... unless it would cost a huge amount extra (as it did at the time I bought this printer).

(It's getting light - better be off to bed! zzzzzzzzzzz)

dthomsen8
05-02-2006, 03:27 AM
I still like Palatino - but my printer is getting old (still going strong, but I don't know for how long).

Look around for a printer repair shop in Amsterdam. We have an excellent repair shop specializing in HP printers here in Philadelphia. They maintain a stock of repaired HP printers for sale, too.

The real limiting factor may be the availability of cartridges, but there are millions out there being refilled, and there are still HP branded cartridges sold new. That alone tells you that there are a lot of old HP printers still going strong.