Peculiarities of this Website

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It has come to my attention that some people are actually reading this website. From an author's point of view, this is most worrying, as certainly they will find problems. The only truly accurate text is an invisible one. This website is, moreover, a very peculiar one when read with conventional assumptions. So here are a few comments about things that you may find puzzling.


First, of course, if you find what you believe to be a genuine error of fact (vs. a difference of opinion), please let me know so that I may fix it. There are errors on this website. I may be reached at:

Broken Links

There are many links within this site (that is, links, to other material in the site as opposed to links to external things) which do not work. That's frustrating, I know. Some of them are genuine broken links - at times I forget to upload the content that should be there. But sometimes the link is "broken" simply because I haven't written the content yet.

By way of explanation, this website is simply a public subset of my own personal notebooks. (Yes, I keep pretty elaborate digital notebooks.) When I'm writing about subject A, often I need to refer to subjects B, C, and D about which I intend to write in the future. Since as a matter of principle this is a structured site, this means that I have to code references (links) to B, C, and D. But it may be years before I get around to writing their content.

This also explains why some areas have a great deal of content and others nothing at all. When I encounter a field, I try to sketch out its entire scope. That's reflected in the organization of the Notebooks/website. In certain sub-fields I spend years gathering material and presenting it. Others I ignore completely - but the stubs indicating that they exist remain.

If it matters to your work/research, ask me. I'm always glad to know about genuine broken links, and it isn't a bad thing to be reminded of areas which need further work.


This site really is organized - it just may not be the organization you need.

First, it is organized as a hierarchy. If you've got an old-fashioned computer programming background, it is maintained in, and mirrors, a hierarchical file system. An item on this website is in a particular category. That category is a sub-category of another, and itself in turn has sub-categories, and sub-sub-categories, etc. This is as opposed to the free-form "websites" (so called) which are build around blogging software. Their organization, sadly, is a form of New Medievalism. So wherever you are in this website, you're there because it's a part of something else.

Second, is is organized around machinery. So for example when I discuss printing type, I don't arrange things in terms of history, or graphic design, or the book arts, or even the practices of printers ancient and modern. I organize it around type casting machinery - Barth type casters, Linotypes, Monotype Composition Casters, and the like. If you can't find something, ask yourself "what machine made it?" and that's where it will be.

Third, I tend to separate the literature of a given subject from its practical treatment. This actually works to your benefit. I'm much better at bibliography than I am at practical shop work, so the "Literature" sections will tend to be much more complete.

For one area, the Typefoundry and Press, I do try to maintain a Topic Index.

Or ask google: search terms go here 

Citation Style

The method I use for citations of bibliographic references is not standard in, or correct for, any academic field of which I am aware. I just made it up. But it solves various problems for me and turns out to be quite useful.

I enclose references in braces ("{" and "}") with a short identifier and then usually hyperlink to the bibliographic entry itself (where this form is repeated).

So for example: {Annenberg 1994}.

{Annenberg 1994} Stephen O. Saxe [additions, intro], Elizabeth K. Lieberman [index]. Type Foundries of America and their Catalogs New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 1994.

Sometimes I'll use these citations inline in texts while at other times I'll include them parenthetically after a particular point. I'm inconsistent; sometimes I have put the braces within the hyperlink and sometimes outside of it.

This solves the following problems:

This leaves only braces, used in a style similar to that of bibliographic references in the sciences.

Visual Presentation

You may well not like it. It's my fault. I won't change.

The visual presentation of this site isn't what I would do in an ideal world, but it is straightforward and consistent. Modernization isn't the answer. Typographical design reached a high point in 1885, and it's all been downhill ever since. Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling you something.

There aren't any ads because I pay for the web space in which to present this site. It isn't that expensive, really (about $150/year in 2016). Advertisements have no place in scholarly publication.