As a recent addition to the Buzzword team, it’s become part of my task to do some research about good document design and what it means for a document to look good. To that end, this blog will be the sometimes venue of a few document-crafting ideas that we run into. These posts could be design-related findings in areas we think are important (such as online readability, layout or issues related to font choices, etc.) or they could be ideas for how to use Buzzword tools to make super good-looking documents.
There will also be a case study or two—that is, we’ll bring up a few examples of documents made with Buzzword and walk through the creation process with an eye towards Buzzword’s role in the work flow, from inception to finished product.
For now, to whet everyone’s appetite for document aesthetics, here are a few innocent diversions to get you thinking about the visual elements of a page:
This page allows you to compare fonts, leading, tracking, and colors of text. It’s a great resource if you’re trying to decide on the ideal font for your web site, choose the most readable setting for the leading of a document, or if you’re just curious to see all the different ways to play with text.
2. Typography Workshop
For those who are curious about how letter spacing works. The Typography Workshop quizzes your kerning skills and compares your lettering to the standard. Be warned: if you’re highly competitive, this is a great way to waste an hour trying to get a perfect score.
Very cool tool by Jonathan Feinberg for making a “word cloud” from a block of text. If you have a favorite piece of writing, this is a unique and creative way to visualize it.ﾠ
Finally, we don’t want these posts to be monologues—so we’ve created a section in the forum dedicated to the topics treated here. We’d love to hear your reactions and opinions, so voice them at liberty in the forum or by leaving a comment here. The conversation will be starting up shortly; keep your eyes peeled.
Also, if you’ve made any Buzzword documents that are impressive, stunning, beautiful, visually compelling, or any other interesting visual adjective you think of, by all means share it with us (through Buzzword, of course) at firstname.lastname@example.org—we can’t wait to see what you’ve come up with.