TYPEWRITER REPLACES TYPESETTER IN NEW METHOD OF COMPOSITION (Jul, 1934)

TYPEWRITER REPLACES TYPESETTER IN NEW METHOD OF COMPOSITION

PROMISING a new departure in the methods of printing books, newspapers, and periodicals, a recent invention enables any typist to produce perfectly aligned columns of copy with an ordinary typewriter, since it corrects the usual irregularity of the right-hand margin. The resulting copy may be reproduced by standard photo lithographic methods, eliminating the need for present-day typesetting, matrix, and stereotype equipment. A sample of the new typewriter printing is shown in the center illustration above.

According to the inventor, girl typists, by the system, can do the work of linotype operators employing equipment costing thousands of dollars. The invention that makes this possible is a patented paper sheet that is slipped in a typewriter and written upon in the usual way, with no special effort at alignment. The writing falls upon parallel horizontal strips of a tough, thin, and finely-crinkled tissue, which are affixed to a paper backing with a special cement that remains permanently plastic. After the sheet is removed from the typewriter, each strip in turn is grasped at the right-hand end with tweezers, lifted from its backing, stretched to an alignment mark, and stuck down again. For practiced hands, this operation is simple and rapid. The type itself is not distorted, since the fibers of the tissue tend to lock together where a type bar has made an impression, and the stretching of the tissue occurs in the spaces between individual letters and between words.

5 comments
  1. Buddy says: October 31, 201111:46 am

    Ingenious! You would never get away with “girl typists” today…

  2. Buddy says: October 31, 201111:47 am

    Meant never get away…

  3. GaryM says: October 31, 201112:48 pm

    Copy produced that way would have looked at cheap as it was.

  4. Daniel Rutter says: October 31, 20117:27 pm

    Yeah, you can see it in the sample clipping. Presuming the special paper actually consistently worked then the invention is quite ingenious, but the result is just stretched fixed-with text, not the proportional fonts of proper publications.

    Every “i” in the sample clipping starts out taking up as much space as, say, a capital “m” or “w”, and stretching it out just makes this worse. Compare this with the word “COMPOSITION” in the article’s headline; there, “M” is wider than “O”, which in turn is wider than “S”, which is wider than “I”, as must be the case for “professional”-looking typesetting.

  5. Stephen Edwards says: November 1, 20112:03 pm

    That’s about the ugliest typesetting idea I’ve ever seen. Not only are you stuck with an ugly monospaced font with potentially awkward hyphenations, the shape of the letters is potentially different on each line. Badly ragged right typewriter copy would be more readable.

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