[OS X TeX] Design Possibilities (was ... the faint of heart)

William F. Adams wadams at atlis.com
Wed May 5 12:08:32 EDT 2004

On Wednesday, May 5, 2004, at 11:31  AM, Eric Steed wrote:

> I just ( recently ) bought Creative Suite Premium, although
> I need to enroll in a course at the local University to use
> it. A Friend of mine politely pointed out that I've been, for
> the most part, away from Design during the critical years
> 1983 - 2002 ( After it's digitization beginning in 1969 ).

Believe me, there're a lot of people who'd have a lot more hair and be 
far more relaxed, possibly even happier, if they'd skipped this 

> This makes it all a bit 'challenging' <Grin> Although, as
> I was there in it's 'formative years, say 1869 - 1969, I
> have some advantages- I know better 'from whence it
> came.'

Design isn't about tools, but aesthetics and concept --- tools help in 
the realization, but one can make any tool work (given sufficient time) 
--- Robert Bringhurst used XyWrite (_not_ XyVision) to create the 
lovely ``letterfall'' frontispiece in the first edition of his 
_Elements of Typographic Style_).

TeX allows one to leverage computer processing power which is cheap --- 
if it takes us six weeks to code up a TeX system to typeset a several 
GB XML database, the pay-off is huge when we can set TeX to process on 
it overnight and come back in the morning and find a 2,200 page, 
paginated .pdf waiting for us.

That said, people fussing over digital toolsets is like the old masters 
going around sniffing each other's canvases trying to puzzle out the 
other's paint mixture.

That said, as Mir Ali of Herat said:

``A calligrapher needs five things, viz.:

           a fine temperament
           understanding of calligraphy
           a good hand
           endurance of pain and
           a perfect set of implements''

Donald E. Knuth's reward for finding a bug in TeX: the program when 
last paid out was $327.68 --- back when I cared about this sort of 
thing, I used to have to pay for the long distance call to inform Corel 
or Adobe of a bug in their software. I guess it paid off, I did manage 
to make the FreeHand MX beta test team, wait, they wouldn't listen to 
anything I told them re: type and font handling. Never mind.

Instead, go to http://scripts.sil.org/xetex download the latest XeTeX, 
set your personal script to xetex in TeXshop and your format to Plain 
and typeset the following:

\overfullrule 0pt

\font\body="Zapfino" at 10pt \body
\font\title="Zapfino:Stylistic Variants=First variant glyph set" at 12pt
\font\author="Zapfino:Stylistic Variants=Second variant glyph set" at 

A Calligrapher needs five things}

           a fine temperament
           understanding of calligraphy
           a good hand
           endurance of pain and
           a perfect set of implements

\hskip72bp        Mir Ali of Herat, died 1556}



William Adams, publishing specialist
voice - 717-731-6707 | Fax - 717-731-6708

Please see <http://www.esm.psu.edu/mac-tex/> for list
guidelines, information, and LaTeX/TeX resources.

More information about the MacOSX-TeX mailing list