The purpose of this blog is to to provide a forum for people to submit their photos of lowercase L sightings, and to discuss the psychology of the lowercase L offender. And if you are one of those people guilty of writing all-caps signs with lowercase L’s, we welcome and look forward to understanding your unique perspective in this matter.
[W]hen people create handwritten signs, they sometimes choose to capitalize every letter except the letter “L”. …. [H]aving lived in NYC for ten years, I have seen the lowercase L rubbing shoulders with uppercase company more often than you might imagine. So often, in fact, that I wanted to bring the case of the lowercase L to the attention of the public.
I have browsed the site and looked at many examples of this misuse of the lowercase L and I’m simply baffled. It must be something connected with native English-speakers because I haven’t noticed this phenomenon either in Italy or in Spain.
In his book ‘Digital Formats of Typefaces’ from 1987 Karow revealed one of the last secrets of perfect roundings in letters digitized with Ikarus: the transitions from curves, named clothoids in the technical terminology. Besides that, Ikarus made it easy to construct letters as it allowed to define modules. And just these two approaches — precision and modularity — enabled Albert-Jan Pool to create the best possible DIN round version, the 5-weight family released this month as FF DIN Round.
At the end of the article there is a link to download the PDF. It’s well worth having in your type-related digital library.
Diego Petrucci, de Il Mac Minimalista, mi ha intervistato brevemente. Lo ringrazio di cuore per l’interesse, i complimenti e la pubblicità. Consiglio di seguire il suo blog, che è ben scritto nella forma, e tutt’altro che banale nei contenuti.
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A brief interview (in Italian) with yours truly atIl Mac Minimalista. My thanks to Diego Petrucci, curator of the blog, for his interest and appreciation, and for the link love.
A very detailed review of the show’s mid-century style from none other than The Mid-Century Modernist.
I’ve not seen a single episode of “Mad Men”, but I’ve read/seen/digested enough tweets or posts to have seen at least two seasons worth. At least.
I have seen every episode of Mad Men (it’s my second favourite series after Lost), and if you’re a fan of the series, or if you’re just into that period, this review is a great read. Don’t miss the Mad Men Furniture gallery, either.
I don’t know how I could miss this wonderful piece by The Guardian that was published on July 5. I’m a fan of Clay Shirky. As the author of the article Decca Aitkenhead writes, his conversation is warm and discursive, intently engaged yet relaxed – but it’s his rhetorical fluency which bowls you over. The architecture of his argument is a Malcolm Gladwell-esque structure of psychological and sociological insight, analysing contemporary technology with the clarity of a historian’s perspective and such authority that were he to tell you the sun actually sets in the east, you might almost believe him.
Read the article, if you haven’t already. Highly recommended.
The beta version of Wolfram|Alpha Widgets is here! What are Wolfram|Alpha Widgets? They’re free, Wolfram|Alpha-powered mini apps that are easy to make, customize, and share on your blog, website, and social networks. And they’re the next step toward our goal of making the vast knowledge and computational power of Wolfram|Alpha available to everyone, everywhere.
In the Wolfram|Alpha WIdgets home page, they further explain what widgets are:
Widgets are mini-apps built on top of Wolfram|Alpha queries. You can build your own, or find useful widgets in the Widget Gallery. Share them in Facebook, Twitter, email, or anywhere else.
It’s a cool idea. Too bad the widgets are Flash-based, though.
On a related note, while I was at the AT&T store today the salesperson casually said, “Bad coverage in your apartment, eh? That’s a shame.” To which I replied, “Yes, AT&T sucks. If I didn’t have an iPhone, I wouldn’t use you guys.” He thought on this for a moment and then said, simply, “Yeah.”
Minutes later, I walked into the Apple Store to pick up a Magic Trackpad (verdict: excellent). While the salesperson was ringing me up, he glanced at the AT&T bag and asked if I had purchased anything fun. I told him no, I had to buy a MicroCell because AT&T has a shitty network. He said, “I’m sorry you’re having problems. Did you ask them to look into network issues in your area?” I said no. “Do you want me to take you upstairs to have a Genius check your phone?” I said no. “I’m sorry to hear about this. AT&T coverage in New York City is generally good, but there are weak spots. Where do you live?” At this point, I thanked him politely for offering his help but assured him it wasn’t his problem to deal with.
AT&T store: Yeah, we suck. Go screw. Apple Store: What can we do to help you, even if your problem is with AT&T?
Have you noticed the difference in treatment of the two stores? Your mileage will surely vary, but I too have always been treated splendidly by Apple’s customer care service.
An interview with game designer American McGee and story collaborator R. J. Berg about the upcoming Alice: Madness Returns, the long-awaited Alice sequel.
McGee: For the first game, the idea was to make a solid platformer. The other tenets were the art, which at the time was really out there in terms of its ability to present art as a core of the experience. R.J. wrote the first game’s story, and he’s writing the story for Madness Returns. I think if you ask anybody about the way that story is presented in the title, you’ll find that that was one of the things that was really unique about it. At the time with PC gaming, the Half-Lifes and things like that hadn’t hit just yet. And so we felt, I think our audience felt, that we really nailed it in terms of how we delivered story and got the player immersed in the game.
Coming back now to the story in Madness Returns, we’re once again focused on these things: really good story, solid third-person platforming gameplay, adventure, action, exploration and puzzle solving.
The whole iPhone 4 antenna debate seems in a sort of deflating stage now, thankfully. And I won’t say anything more about it. Four pieces are worth linking and remembering, though, and you should read them if you missed them.
“And anyone who thinks now that Apple is a big company that they should start acting and behaving more like other typical companies — well, they’re going to be disappointed. I’m not sure there are any companies that reach this size that are “typical”, anyway. Microsoft, Intel, Google — all very distinctive, even idiosyncratic.”—John Gruber
I completely agree with John Gruber when he writes:
I don’t think there’s even a question that the iPhone 4, because of its external antenna, is susceptible to a different type of signal attenuation than all phones with internal antennas. To drop the signal with other phones, including the iPhone 3GS, you have to grip them such that your palm is interfering with the antenna. The iPhone 4 is susceptible to this too, but also susceptible — sometimes — to attenuation from the light touch of any skin at all that bridges the antenna gap.
That doesn’t mean the iPhone 4 suffers from more or worse attenuation than other phones. Apple made the case that it does not. But it is different, and for whatever reason, Apple didn’t want to address that directly.
What I took away from the press conference is that Apple believes the iPhone 4 antenna is better than the previous iPhone antennas, but it has a more sensitive “weak spot”. And, that more sensitive weak spot is inherent to the external antenna design. In short, that it’s a trade-off — better signal quality overall, better aesthetics, more structural rigidity, even better battery life because there’s room for a bigger battery without an internal antenna. The trade-off is that all of those benefits come at the expense of a more sensitive “weak spot”. (I put that in quotes because it’s Jobs’s term for the infamous lower-left gap in the antenna frame.)
But Jobs never used the word “trade-off”, and clearly didn’t want to. I think he should have.
"Constructed by the editors and staff of The Variorum Edition of the Poetry of John Donne, the Center for the Study of Digital Libraries, and the Cushing Memorial Library and Archives at Texas A&M University, this web site is dedicated to the presentation of high-quality digital images of the early printed editions and selected manuscripts of John Donne’s poems.”
How is it that Hi-Fi—or High End Audio—once the domain of doctors and attorneys, celebrated in magazines like Playboy and Esquire, essential element of bachelor-pads and dorm rooms alike, has come to be viewed as the realm of obsessives, a perverse diversion that requires defensiveness on the part of the “victim” of this illness? When was the last time you heard someone defend the purchase of a large flat-screen television, or a home theater system?
Everyone understands the desire to create a greater sense of immersion in films and sports-events; why is it hard to understand the desire for the same sensation with music alone?
As a bit of an audiophile myself, I can’t but agree. The whole piece is a must read.
St Marie is a lovely typeface by Stereotypes, available under the terms of a Creative Commons License. The download package includes the .otf file for offline designing, as well as the .eot, .svg, and .woff formats for font embedding (demo).
Summary: A study of people reading long-form text on tablets finds higher reading speeds than in the past, but they’re still slower than reading print.
I’ll summarise some interesting bits taken from the article:
We ran a within-subjects study, testing each user on all 4 reading conditions — printed book, PC, iPad, and Kindle — rotating the sequence in which we exposed users to each device.
On each device, we asked each user to read a short story by Ernest Hemingway. We picked Hemingway because his work is pleasant and engaging to read, and yet not so complicated that it would be above the heads of users.
We recruited participants who like reading and frequently read books. This is obviously a biased sample compared with the entire population, but we felt that narrowing the target audience was reasonable for a study of e-readers.
The iPad measured at 6.2% lower reading speed than the printed book, whereas the Kindle measured at 10.7% slower than print. However, the difference between the two devices was not statistically significant because of the data’s fairly high variability. Thus, the only fair conclusion is that we can’t say for sure which device offers the fastest reading speed. In any case, the difference would be so small that it wouldn’t be a reason to buy one over the other. But we can say that tablets still haven’t beaten the printed book: the difference between Kindle and the book was significant at the p<.01 level, and the difference between iPad and the book was marginally significant at p=.06.
After using each device, we asked users to rate their satisfaction on a 1–7 scale, with 7 being the best score. iPad, Kindle, and the printed book all scored fairly high at 5.8, 5.7, and 5.6, respectively. The PC, however, scored an abysmal 3.6. Most of the users’ free-form comments were predictable. For example, they disliked that the iPad was so heavy and that the Kindle featured less-crisp gray-on-gray letters. People also disliked the lack of true pagination and preferred the way the iPad (actually, the iBook app) indicated the amount of text left in a chapter. Less predictable comments: Users felt that reading the printed book was more relaxing than using electronic devices. And they felt uncomfortable with the PC because it reminded them of work.
After some internal debate, I decided to switch to this new Tumblr theme, which seems more in line with the looks of my new weblog, The Quillink Observer. As you may have noticed, some photos in old posts appear too stretched and pixelated. It seems to be a small issue with this theme — another user brought the matter up and the developers replied that they’ll look into it. Apologies, for the time being.