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The Design of Everyday Things Paperback – September 19, 2002
There is a newer edition of this item:
"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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"Provocative." -- Time magazine
"This book is a joy--fun and of utmost importance." -- Tom Peters
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However, the publisher's stinginess in neither providing adequate gutter margins (between pages) nor adequately accommodating for the thickness of the book by adjustment of type placement on the page is a perfect illustration of the very design failures under discussion.
The type has to be read curved & distorted over the waves of too thick pages rushing toward the spine. Oddly, more than adequate margins have been provided on the outer edges of each page - presumably for annotation. As such, the publisher might include a note in each succeeding edition suggesting how well this exemplifies the issue. That way there would be no need to fix the problem. I might even suggest the coinage of an near-eponymous term for this: "Normandizing".
- The pages are all set to justified text and a serif font, which are not only more difficult to read in general, but can severely impede dyslexic readers.
- The headings and subheadings are all mangled and frequently cropped, making them unreadable.
- The black and white photos are difficult to make out even on my desktop computer.
I don't know if the publisher decides the typesetting and imagery or if it's decided on by Amazon, but considering how much of the book is dedicated to making everyday things usable and useful, someone should seriously reconsider the design choices made here, so that the experience of reading The Design of Everyday Things can also be useful and usable.