Re: Metric Typography Units

From: Gregg Reynolds (
Date: Thu Jan 14 1999 - 15:53:42 EST

Markus Kuhn wrote:

> Typography really should only use metric units like *any* other modern
> field of science and technology. There is absolutely no need for special
> length units in typography.

Markus: I'm not sure if you're kidding or not. You might want to find a copy
of "Counterpunch" by Fred Smeijers (Hyphen Press, 1996) and maybe Bringhurst
while you're at it ("The Elements of Typographic Style"). Typographic UOMs are
aesthetic, and typography is no more a field of science and technology than is
painting or sculpture. The UOMs are designed to work together, and they allow
designers to think in terms of proportions, not absolute numbers. There's a
reason traditional typography specifies measure in terms of picas instead of
meters: they're related to points, and therefore to the letterforms used to
organize the typographic line.

- gregg

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