Leaping Off the Page: The Future of Type.
BY Ben Greenman
The recent success of the 3-D version of James Cameron’s Avatar and the announcement of 3-D television channels from networks such as ESPN and Discovery represent the leading edge of a new revolution. Media that were, for years, imprisoned in two dimensions can now participate fully in three. To keep pace in this climate of innovation, we are proud to announce our groundbreaking new 3-D print edition.
Powered by revolutionary stereoscopic typography developed exclusively, this new technology will usher in a heretofore unimagined era in reading. This piece, the first ever printed with our proprietary 3*TYPE process, should serve as both an introduction and a primer. You may notice that certain words words are printed twice twice, first in roman and then, immediately afterwards, in boldface. You may also notice the offer, at right, for a special pair of glasses glasses. Order them—or, if you have them already, remove them from their plastic casing and put them on; you will notice that when viewed through these glasses, the doubly printed words appear to leap leap off the screen screen.
At first, the effect may be disorienting, so we recommend that you enter this brave new world slowly. Compare these two simple sentences:
He lunged at her with the icepick.
He lunged lunged at her with the icepick icepick.
Thrilling, huh? From this moment on, nothing will ever be the same. Pieces on this site—a few at first, and then more and more—will be printed using 3*TYPE. Characters and scenes that were static upon the page will now extend into your living room. It may be hard to imagine how exciting this will be, just as it would have been difficult for a caveman to imagine an iPod or a microwave oven.
This will of course necessitate a slightly different approach, creatively, but we are determined to meet the challenge of this exciting technology. Writers will now be encouraged to fashion descriptions of scenes and subjects that maximize the third dimension. You may have already noticed the difference, as in a piece last week about using cats as guide animals. Originally, the first sentence was as follows:
Dr. Jack Goyer has believed that cats could be trained to the level of dogs for more than forty years, since he was a child in Baltimore.
To make the most of this new 3-D technology, this is how it now reads:
Some cats pounce pounce, some bound bound, some spring spring, but as Dr. Jack Goyer stands in his lab, pointing pointing a finger at one of those cats, it is, for the moment, still.
The applications of 3*TYPE are endless. Imagine sports reporting (“Lincecum fired fired a vicious fastball fastball toward home plate”), the science page (“NASA unveiled its new deep deep field field telescope”), or even a gossip column (“Wilson was seen leaving the restaurant with a buxom buxom blonde”). With 3*TYPE, your reading experience will never be the same. Welcome to the onrushing onrushing future.
SUGGESTED READSMonologue: I’m Comic Sans, Asshole.
by Mike Lacher (6/15/2010)
Letters From the Hellbox: Gutenberg and How Typography is Like Music
by Martin McClellan (9/25/2009)
Letters From the Hellbox: Caslon, Baskerville, and Franklin: Revolutionary Types
by Martin McClellan (10/30/2009)
RECENTLYLost Scenes from Generic Hipster Indie Romance Films Found in 2076 During a Museum Restoration of an Old MacBook Air and Subsequently Adapted for the Stage During Heritage Week at a Camp for 7th and 8th Graders Later That Summer
by Bethany Billman (7/22/2014)
McSweeney’s Quarterly Presents: The Road to 50
by McSweeney's (7/22/2014)
I Like Big Brass and I Cannot Lie: Confessions from the Tuba World: Enough Tuba Talk—Let’s Listen
by Elizabeth Eshelman (7/22/2014)
POPULAROur Band Only Sold One Copy of Our Album and We’d Like it Back
by Jake Tuck (6/26/2014)
List: Lines from The Princess Bride that Double as Comments on Freshman Composition Papers
by Jennifer Simonson (2/23/2012)
Client Feedback On the Creation of the Earth
by Mike Lacher (5/30/2014)