Today, Mr Vinod, my graphic design teacher gave a lecture/presentation about “Digital Typography”, about future of book publication, eBooks. I thought it’s worth sharing with you.

Static & Motion Typography

First he talks about static and motion typography.

Static typography are those on magazines, books, newspapers, websites, etc…
BBC Website (Static Typography)

Motion typography like those flash advertisements on websites, motion type, kinetic typography, opening/end credits in movies, etc…

Early Typography on Screen

One of the earliest digital fonts to appear on screen was Digi Grotesk S, designed for Dr.-Ing. Rudolf Hell’s cathode-ray tube typesetting machine. That font was a copy of a popular font during that time.

Then came personal computers. Apple’s Lisa was one of the earliest personal computers with graphic user interface. Since then, designers doesn’t have to go thru the typographers or printers to do their layout design. They can just do it on the computer.

Since the start of computers and internet, people start to read on screen more than reading on paper. We read online, surfing the web, we check mails, Facebook, Twitter, read blogs, WikiPedia, check the stock market, and so on, all on the computer. And technology these day has allow us to even do all the above on our mobile phones. Everything on screen.

Some of you might say that reading on screen is tiring to the eyes, but they’ve developed a device with matt screen, so that it’ll be more like reading on paper surface. Amazon’s Kindle is a device that allows us to read ebooks everywhere.


It is rumored that Apple might be coming out with a device to read eBooks, just like Amazon’s Kindle. Read more about it here.

The Designer’s Job

We, as the designer, has to start designing for both medium, on paper and on screen. Adobe’s InDesign CS4 has a feature where we can create links on the document, and just export them as .swf files, so that we can navigate around the book.

Since .swf files allows us to add animated objects to it, and interact with the file, future designers can design and animate their visuals on their ebook. This will be like the pictures on the newspaper in the Harry Potter movies.

Here’s a Classic Rock magazine cover that features Pink Floyd, in 3D.