Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Bin Roman

Here's a tip if you're trying to remember which house number your typographer friend lives at. Look for the serifs.

(bin: Reading Borough Council; design: Martin Andrews).

Five is an odd number

This must be the oddest 5 I've seen... on the former Robinson and McKewan factory in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter.

Wish I'd thought of this

Have a look at these brilliant uncropped road signs. I'm not web-literate enough to know who to credit but here's a link:

Monday, August 25, 2014

Boingo email fail

I've been subscribing to Boingo the wifi service that connects you to hotspots which would otherwise want to charge you. I don't seem to need it that often, but £3.95 a month is OK as insurance. But I just noticed on my bank statement that £3.95 is now £5.95, a 50% hike. 

So I've searched my emails for their notification, and found it in trash. It is headed 'Boingo Mobile: More Hotspots, More Secure, More Value' and I trashed it because it appeared to be a marketing newsletter.

It does tell me about the price hike... near the end of the email which I stopped reading after the title. Loss of trust --> do I really need it? --> cancelled.

I'm also wary of products I can't pronounce. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Visualisation of under the street

They are digging up the streets in the centre of Reading, and guys with spray cans have been creating a nice visualization of the project on the pavement.

Embiggen – a new word marches on

If you look carefully at this clip from the Daily Telegraph web edition, under the picture it says 'Click to embiggen'.

I'm curious about this choice of word – is it possibly a little sardonic, given the topic?

It's not one I've seen before, so I looked it up. Apparently, it started in a 1996 episode of the Simpsons: read about it on the Future Journalism Project's blog.

There's no doubt we need a single word for 'make bigger'. Somehow 'enlarge' always sounds more written than spoken.
In our studio we used to use the verbs 'to bigger' and 'to smaller' when discussing type size, as in 'Can you try biggering the headline there?'.

Monday, August 18, 2014

'Write as you would speak.' But not you, man on the train.

One end of a phone conversation, heard on the train:
"We need to discuss which people we can leverage in each work stream in terms of capability uplift."

Apparently people really do say things like that, aloud, to other people, throwing into doubt the traditional advice on clear writing: 'write as you would speak'.