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Counqueror WormWhen was the last time you saw, used or otherwise thought about a letterpress? They still exist, mostly in mythology and the occasional history museum (true story). And apparently, one can also be found somewhere in Philadelphia.

Designer Jason Santa Maria, whose blog I read regularly, took a class in the (almost) lost art of letterpress. It’s a great story about a designer going back to the basics.

When the prints went up for sale on the oh-so-quirky-gotta-check-it-out Swap Meat, I had to get one. It is beautiful.

And then I got to thinking…what odd-ball item would I swap? How about you? I just might send you this piece of history if you make it good!


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There’s an old saying goes something like this: “You’ve got to know where you came from to know where you’re going.” I’ve found that that mantra helps me in my professional as well as personal life. Well, I’d like to argue that the same goes for type and the use of typography.

Those of us who spent some of our formative years in design classes had the history of design and the graphic design basics drilled into our heads. For me, part of that history included the appropriate use of type.

We’ve often thought about pulling together a timeline containing all of the pertinent moments in typography, and well, wouldn’t you know it, someone has already pulled one together. Recently, one of my co-workers sent me a link to the following typography timeline.

The Typography Timeline

To view the timeline, click on the Explore the Interactive Timeline link in the lefthand column. Then click the link to Open the Typography Timeline.

I can’t be sure of its provenance, but my guess based on the URL is that it comes from the fine folks at Tyne Metropolitan College in the UK.


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X-Ray MagazineFor those of you who are fans of all things Quark, you’ll be happy to hear that the definitive QuarkXPress publication, X-Ray Magazine is once again being published in PDF format.

This issue covers a wide range of topics, from using AppleScript with images to a review of 7 common Quark XTensions.

Download the newest issue of X-Ray here (PDF, of course).

As a related issue, if you rely upon XTensions to auto-activate fonts in QuarkXPress , be sure to check out the following page for the most current versions compatible with version 7.


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Pete Jeram talks with a customer at the 2007 DAM SymposiumThe Henry Stewart Digital Asset Management Symposium is a yearly event that focuses on the asset management challenges of workgroups and enterprise level installations. We were happy to announce the forthcoming release of our Portfolio 8.5 suite of products yesterday at the event.

The Extensis booth at the 2007 DAM SymposiumAdobe is out in full force at the symposium, promoting their recent release of CS3. During their keynote presentation yesterday, they talked a bit about the integration of partner applications with Creative Suite products, Portfolio Project Sync included. I’m happy to report that a number of audience members stopped by our booth to let us know how happy they were with Portfolio’s new connection into CS3, and that it sounded like we were farthest along with the integration.

Davin Kluttz presents the new features of Portfolio 8.5Extensis Product Manager Davin Kluttz presented a sneak peek at the new features of Portfolio 8.5 in Adobe’s private meeting room today. If you’re still at the event and missed his presentation, be sure to stop by the Extensis booth for a quick rundown of the new features. If you’re not at the event, stay tuned to the blog in the upcoming weeks for complete details about what will be included.


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Here’s another tip that will help you to use Suitcase Fusion most effectively in your workflow.

Suitcase Fusion Tip #2
Collecting fonts for output


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Adobe Photoshop CS3If you work with Photoshop on a daily basis, you likely know how difficult it can be to work with files that seem to pull the performance of Photoshop to a hair-pulling crawl. While Adobe has worked hard to improve performance by creating Intel-native versions, there are still many other things that you can do to put a little pep in Photoshop’s step.

On of our technical support representatives, Carl Anderson, recently brought a couple of Adobe knowledge base articles that focus on this very issue to my attention.

One of their specific recommendations relates to font management:

Your computer may operate slowly if there are too many active fonts on the system. Font management software allows you to deactivate the fonts you aren’t using to speed up the computer. Turning off the WYSIWYG font preview list will also speed the processing of fonts in Photoshop.

This is one of many helpful recommendations for improving the responsiveness of Photoshop. Read the entire articles for many more tips.

Of course, if you aren’t currently taking advantage of the benefits that font management brings to your workflow, might I recommend that you check out our complete line of font management products.


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Quark Symposium 2007Today we announced our sponsorship of the Quark Symposium 2007 Conference Series. This North America series includes presentations, product demonstrations and hands-on training for Quark products.

The free symposium features sessions for designers, production managers, and output providers. You can participate in sessions covering design best practices, typography and color management.

Here are the dates and locations of the tour:

  • New York, Metropolitan Pavilion, May 9, 2007
  • Montreal, Hyatt Regency, May 16, 2007
  • Houston, Hyatt Regency, June 6, 2007
  • Orlando, World Marriott, June 19, 2007
  • Los Angeles, Westin Bonaventura, June 28, 2007
  • Chicago, Navy Pier, October 30, 2007

For conference registration and more info:
http://www.quark.com/about/events/symposium/

This symposium is FREE to attend, so check it out.


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A UK newspaper, The Guardian, used to print special sections on different countries around the world. In their April 1, 1977 edition the supplement was about a fabulous place called San Serriffe. Twenty-two years later, the Guardian returned to San Serriffe to see how things had changed since free elections were held after General Pica was no longer in power. It’s a pretty interesting article on these two little islands, locally referred to as Upper and Lower Caisse. You also find out a bit about the capital city, Bodoni, and even get a peek into their government.

Are you rolling your eyes at this yet? You should be. It really did from the Guardian in 1977, but as an April Fool’s joke, and it’s rated as one of the top 100 ever by the Museum Of Hoaxes. I was reading this article listing the best April Fool’s Day hoaxes ever, and I thought the tropical isles of San Serriffe were too amusing not to share.

What I like best about the whole thing is that it was the Guardian, an otherwise reliable news publication, and that they went back years later. I like knowing when an organization has a sense of humor (I guess since they’re British they’d have a sense of humour though). Like when Burger King announced The Left-Handed Whopper, my opinion of them improved. They still aren’t my favorite drive-through food, but I have been known to eat there so it was nice to know they can be funny.


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Ever had a PDF and you just wanted to have the text available for some other purpose? Well now you can, right from Adobe in one simple step!

You can either point to a URL for a PDF available on the Internet, or you can attach the PDF to an email. To get plain text, email pdf2txt@adobe.com. If you want an HTML version, email pdf2html@adobe.com.

It’s that easy!

I found this handy dandy tip thanks to Steve Rubel who is using it as part of his Gmail = Personal Nerve Center series, which I found because I adore Gmail and I am always on the lookout for a good hack or two or 30


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We launched a new print advertisement today which is fun, playful and in the vein of our past creative ads. It’s an advertisement for Suitcase Fusion, that takes a playful look at fonts.

Extensis Font Cows Ad

To be honest, I didn’t see the cows at first. Did you? I think that everyone that I show the ad responds just a little differently. I think that this is a sign of a fun and effective ad.

You’ll be able to see this one in the flesh in:

We’ve published a number of other fun ads in the past. I showcased a few of them in this post.


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