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Old 27th September 2008, 09:25 PM   #1
David TJ
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Lightbulb Some text slightly overwriting margin

What might cause text occasionally to slightly overwrite the left-hand margin? I have a spread of perfectly good unjustified book text in which, naturally, the left side of the text ranges left. But over the whole spread there are, mysteriously, 3 lines that protrude slightly into the left margin. The most extreme example is a line starting with the word "yes" set just like that, within inverted commas (quotation marks). The entire opening quotation mark protrudes into the left margin. Does anyone have any idea what might be causing this to happen?
 
Old 27th September 2008, 09:41 PM   #2
Patrick Connor
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

The feature is called "Optical Justification" It actually lines the text up more than without it (visually but not technically)

See this thread https://www.serif.com/forum/ViewThre...d=33531#220933
or this thread https://www.serif.com/forum/ViewThread.asp?Thread=35155
or this thread https://www.serif.com/forum/ViewThread.asp?Thread=39811.

You can choose to turn it off, or adjust the amount it happens and on which characters.

Patrick Connor
Production Manager
Serif Europe

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Old 27th September 2008, 09:41 PM   #3
Patrick Connor
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

snap (or jinx depending on your locale)

Patrick Connor
 
Old 27th September 2008, 09:58 PM   #4
Bhikkhu Pesala
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

On:27/09/2008 20:25:01 - David TJ wrote:
Quote:
Does anyone have any idea what might be causing this to happen?
Congratulations! You have just discovered the Optical Justification Feature https://www.serif.com/forum/ViewThre...d=39811#259945. See the linked thread to learn more about it. If you don't want to use it, edit the Paragraph Style to turn it off, under, Character format, spacing, optical justification.

The margins will actually look straighter in print and print preview with Optical Justification on, unless your text frame has a border, or is near to a straight edge such as a graphic or table.

With View Frames on the margin also looks ragged. The new "Trimmed Mode" (icon bottom right) will hide frames and guidelines.

Turn off Optical Justification for the Normal paragraph style, but leave it on for Body Text. The Normal paragraph style is used for almost everything by default, including Artistic Text, for which OJ was never intended.
 
Old 28th September 2008, 06:02 AM   #5
Mike Koewler
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Lightbulb Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

David,

Welcome to the Serif Forum.

Congratulations! You have just discovered the most ludicrous decision Serif made when setting defaults for X3. Since 98 percent of the people who do page layout do not use Optical Justification, why Serif decided to make it the default escapes logic.

Methinks it was a hair-brained idea that since practically no one would look to see if this "feature" was added, Serif made sure no one could miss it.

Mike
 
Old 28th September 2008, 02:09 PM   #6
Bhikkhu Pesala
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Until the release of PagePlus X2, there were no budget priced programs that had any feature to opticially justify the margins. Even PageMaker 7.0 doesn't have it AFAIK. InDesign CS2 and Quark Exprress (only after version 8) do have the option to use Optical Margin Alignment, which Serif calls Optical Justification. Little wonder, then, that very few users know what it is, or how to use it, and when not to use it. You certainly won't find it in word-processors like Word, which is still used by many users instead of a proper DTP program.

It was made the default to ensure that it got noticed. In hindsight, it would have been better to make it the default only for body text, as the Normal text style is used for every new text frame, for tables, and for Artistic Text. Optical Justification is designed for use with body text, or wherever a block of text is bordered by empty white space. It is not needed for headings, but it may be used effectively with drop capitals, especially where they begin with quotation marks.

If the text is in a normal table with grid lines, in columns with narrow gutters or a column separator rule, or next to graphics then Optical Justification should be disabled.

The default styles can be modified according to individual preferences. After modifying the text styles, from the Tools menu, Save defaults to apply the new styles to all new documents.

I hope that in PPX4 we will have different default text styles for text frames, tables, and artistic text so that suitable defaults can be assigned to each different text object.
 
Old 28th September 2008, 06:37 PM   #7
Al Rogers
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Pesala, I always felt you protested a bit too much about the merits of optical bl**dy justification when the mainstream publishing industry has managed to operate without it quite happily for several centuries and I've never noticed traditional columns of type appearing "ragged" without it. Your zealous and persistent advocacy has worn me down, though, and I plan to use it my next publication to put your theories to the test. If the client asks for his money back, I'll forward the bill.

Even hot lead had to give way as times changed. OJ could just be the way forward. However, it certainly shouldn't be the default setting without a large coloured flag appearing when you start a new document saying something like: Warning. Optical Justification. Are you really sure you want to proceed?

Al
 
Old 28th September 2008, 07:27 PM   #8
Luciano (digital)
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Hi to all,

I would like to point out that there is a third way, you can use OJ with a reduced percentage of "offset".

I reduced original values to one fourth -- one fifth; e.g. for characters with 100% I use 22%, for characters with original value at 50% I use 10% and so on.
Try this option, I believe you will get good results; original values might appear excessive ( and I believe they are), but reduced value look good.
I also have added a 8% for "C"


Luciano (digital)
 
Old 28th September 2008, 07:30 PM   #9
Bhikkhu Pesala
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Al, your post overlaps the margin of basic good manners. You can use OJ or not as you like. If you cannot discern what looks good from what does not, that is not my responsibility.

In fact, OJ predates computer typesetting. It was the limitations of early computer software that meant such refinement was not possible. Modern PCs and good software can do the processing easily, but it still requires some knowledge or just an eye for detail on the part of the typesetter to use it appropriately.

This is from Micro-typographic Extensions of pdfTEX in Practice http://www.tug.org/TUGboat/Articles/tb25-1/thanh.pdf
Quote:
Margin kerning Margin kerning is the term used for slight shifting of certain characters at the margins so the margins look smooth. This technique is sometimes called hanging punctuation, as it is useful mostly for punctuation marks such as comma, period and the like. However, margin kerning is a more general concept, as it can be usefully applied to certain letters as well.

Margin kerning in principle is quite similar to general kerning. Kerning is the adjustment of space between certain letters to make the text look good,
while margin kerning deals with space between letters and the margins of text. Hence, similar to kerning, margin kerning is also a question of taste: to one person margin kerning makes things look better, to another, it makes no sense. Still, this technique used to be quite common in traditional typography, and its disappearance probably has more to do with
its difficult deployment in DTP systems than any change of taste.
Take a look at the attachment. The paragraph does not have OJ applied, yet it does use optical justification on the italics. Thus OJ is actually built-in to a well designed typeface. You would be complaining if it was not.
 
Old 29th September 2008, 08:59 AM   #10
Al Rogers
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Pesala, Sincere apologies if you took my post to "overlap the margin of good manners". I'm widely accused of being overly well-mannered and I can offer to excuse for this apparent lapse.

Perhaps you thought I was being facetious isuggesting I would use OJ. I wasn't. I will, based almost entirely on your support of the technique as a clearly knowlegeable and skilled typographer. The final comment about the bill was intended light-heartedly. I obviously didn't flag this up clearly enough.

I was extraordinarily annoyed by your suggestion that: "If you cannot discern what looks good from what does not, that is not my responsibility." I most certainly can distinguish between them. I said I did not see traditional columns as appearing "ragged" without OJ. That's a completely different thing and based on my personal view, as is your position.

Your interest in and knowledge of typography is admirable, Pesala, as is you deep knowledge of Serif products. I read your every word, take it on board and try to apply it to my humble efforts. As I will with OJ. Carry on the good work.

Al

 
Old 29th September 2008, 02:02 PM   #11
Jack Jacobs
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Why is this thread sticky - red pin?

Jack J.
 
Old 29th September 2008, 10:14 PM   #12
Patrick Connor
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Because it is becoming a frequently answered question. So it saves the forum regulars from repeating themselves, and means more lurkers and occasional visitors will see it. Many may not have noticed or may have not asked for fear of looking stupid.

I think as so many users think it is broken that the sticky is helpful. More helpful would be to write a proper FAQ or link to the support pages, but that would take longer than I have

Patrick Connor
Production Manager
Serif Europe

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Old 30th September 2008, 06:20 PM   #13
David TJ
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Lightbulb Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

I just wanted to say thank you to all you guys for this help. I had no idea I was starting such a high-level discussion! It's awesome to come across such an intelligent group of people in one forum, and I'm really delighted to have found this facility.

Just to set my own context: I may sound like a novice (which I certainly am PagePlus-wise) but in fact I was active in DTP circles for many years, from 1989 to 2000. For many years I was professionally very busy using Corel Ventura (going back to the old GEM days, even) to produce books for American Express, Mitchell Beazley, Reed Publishing, Classic fM and others. Later on I got into Quark on the Mac. But then I got completely swung over sideways into web-editing, and my only, though rather extensive, DTP work in recent years has been low-level newsletter stuff using MS Publisher. All of a sudden a very high-end project has come up and I am plunged back into proper DTP again - for the first time for some 8 years. I had forgotten how long it takes to crack the mindset of a properly deep professional program - hence what may seem like a succession of basic questions (there's more to come, probably!). But I'm sure I'll get up to speed pretty fast, and it will be great to be part of this community.

Thanks again, everyone.

Cheers,
David
 
Old 30th September 2008, 07:46 PM   #14
Joseph Rotello
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Lightbulb Re:*Some text slightly overwriting margin

Most all of our work over the years, or clients work we get, etc, none of it ever knowingly used, or needed, or seemed to need optical justification.

In PP X3, it IS interesting to see it on a sample page with one section having optical justification turned on/enabled, and another turned off/disabled.

In all cases we are aware of, WITH Optical Justification enabled / on, it looks like h***... yes, it LOOKS wrong, and of low quality appearance...it looks crummy.

I would suggest leaving it off unless it's needed, as it can cause confusions with settings, or how the visual representation compares to the printed, arguments about who is "right" or "wrong" to use or consider it, why some jobs or pages look like it's on and maybe it's not on, etc.

If the potential confusion of optical justification gets in the way, just leave it OFF, and yes, it should NOT always be turned on by default, as most all other low - medium-high end DTP type products seem to disable it by default, for those apps that have it as an option.

Joe
 
Old 29th November 2008, 11:56 AM   #15
Joseph Rotello
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Lightbulb Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

Kudo's on a very good and varied background, David.

I too happened to "enjoy" (I think !) using coded-layout editors, then text-based text editors in CP/M days, then GEM, then Xerox Ventura Publisher, then Pagemaker .... but it's getting a little fuzzy as I think back.

Once I tried using early versions of Quark, I realized that I needed to maintain my sanity, and also stop my daily migraine headaches. That's one of the reasons I spotted a then little-known entity in the very late 1980's called "Serif" or something to that effect, thus began a love relationship that has blossomed to this day.

I have periodically revisited Quark, PageMaker... but although they are OK to visit, I would not want to live there.

Joe
 
Old 20th May 2009, 09:04 AM   #16
KeyWestDan
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Default Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

Although I do not really understand the purpose of the optical text feature, I must say it was a bad idea to make it the default. I have PP5, 11 and now X3. I needed to do a flyer for a city-wide coupon book in a hurry and after I printed out the 500 copies, I discovered that most of the capital letters on the left margin went over the margin as did quotation marks. I thought it was just a screen thing. I had no choice but to use them and it made me look like some kind of a dummy and I am sure affected the number of businesses signing up for ads in my coupon book. I finally figured out how to turn it off reading stuff here. Didn't see anything in the User Guide that was obvious. I wanted to go back to 11 and fix it but of course 11 can't recognize X3 files. Thanks much.
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Old 20th May 2009, 08:51 PM   #17
Geoff Blanthorn
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Default Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyWestDan View Post
Although I do not really understand the purpose of the optical text feature, I must say it was a bad idea to make it the default.
Dan,

Welcome to the Forum.

As you will have noted, you are with the majority! Let's hope this feature is off by default in version X4 when it appears.

OJ is supposed to make the text appear straighter when printed, but it is useless if one uses columns, as in a newspaper, and although it can be adjusted to not do it, I think it looks terrible in all cases when punctuation is stuck out in the breeze. There is also a major problem with bits of characters missing if you have frames up to the margins, where margins are set "from printer".

Geoff
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Old 6th December 2009, 02:28 AM   #18
Ditlev
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Default Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

So I have also had the Experience! And I did not like it either. As I did not know what the feature was called i had to live with it. And I did not think on this forum. In fact I did not know about its existence.
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Old 6th December 2009, 05:38 AM   #19
Geoff Blanthorn
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Default Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

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Originally Posted by Ditlev View Post
So I have also had the Experience! And I did not like it either. As I did not know what the feature was called i had to live with it. And I did not think on this forum. In fact I did not know about its existence.
Ditlev,

The good news is that Optical Justification is OFF by default in X4.

Geoff
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Old 6th December 2009, 07:47 AM   #20
Bhikkhu Pesala
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Default Re: Some text slightly overwriting margin

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ditlev View Post
I did not like it either.
The reason it does not look good in PagePlus is because text frames are on by default. Any straight line close to optically justified text will destroy the optical effect and make it look crooked (on screen). In print, it will look straighter than with OJ off. That is its purpose — and why it is called optical justification or optical margin alignment.

Use print preview, or print out a sample with and without OJ for objective comparison, and see which looks better then.

Optical justification should be turned off wherever a straight edge will be printed close to the edge of the text block such as a text frame border, a table line, or a graphic. Text in columns will still look better with OJ, unless the gutter is narrow as it usually is in newspapers. If there is a vertical rule in the gutter, then it should be turned off.

InDesign: Optical Margin Alignment
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