Text is text is text is text

Pah. Graphic designers.

As we all know, typography isn’t about choosing a font face. If we only have a handful of fonts to choose from, so be it.

Web documents are, well, documents. And HTML5 will make this fact clearer: try writing a document in HTML5 (and it is possible to write HTML5 using section, article, aside etc. etc.) It’s an interesting experience: you can’t get away with throwing in the odd sloppily named div — you have to think carefully about the semantic structure of the page, not the visual structure.

HTML5 is the most exciting thing in web design at the moment.

Web pages aren’t posters. There’s a misplaced reverence for the printed page: the web page isn’t the printed page’s lesser sibling.

[caption id=”attachment_692” align=”aligncenter” width=”590” caption=”Sign boring (from http://www.lifeprint.com/asl101/pages-signs/b/bored.htm)”]Sign boring (from http://www.lifeprint.com/asl101/pages-signs/b/bored.htm)[/caption]

There’s nothing wrong with web pages that don’t look like posters. Even pages that look conventional or boring. The primary purpose of a web page’s design is to make the content readable _and accessible. It’s not to look _nice. That’s why CSS galleries are a complete waste of time: when you look at an image of a web page it’s like looking at a painting. You’re thinking about proportion, tone, etc. You’re not interpreting the information it’s trying to convey.

Typography is not an adjunct of art. It’s sole purpose is to make the page’s content clear. This is possible with Georgia, and even (gulp) Arial.

So it’s good when people redesign their blogs so they look entirely normal. Two columns, a splash of colour and Georgia can take you a long way.

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