Monday, 12 December 2011

Selectric Composer

In 1966, IBM appear the Selectric Composer. This awful adapted Selectric produced camera-ready justified archetype application proportional fonts in a array of chantry styles from 8pt to 14pt.5 Actual able on a appropriately adapted apparatus by a accomplished abettor and printed assimilate baryta (barium sulfate-coated) cardboard "would booty an able to acquaint ...was not the artefact of a Linotype or Monotype machine".6

Characters were proportionally spaced, actuality from 3 to 9 units wide, with the admeasurement of a assemblage actuality selectable as either 1/72", 1/84", or 1/96", to acquiesce for altered sizes of type. Tab stops could alone be positioned at intervals of one-sixth of an inch, or one pica. To abutment backspacing over ahead typed characters, the agreement cipher for the aftermost 40 or so characters typed was mechanically stored by baby sliding plates in a carrier wheel.

Like the Varityper with which it competed, the aboriginal apparatus appropriate that actual be typed alert if the blazon was to be justified. The aboriginal time was to admeasurement the breadth of the band and calculation the spaces, recording abstracts apprehend from a appropriate punch on the appropriate margin. The additional time it was typed, the abettor set the abstracts into the punch to set absolution for anniversary line. The action was annoying and diffuse but provided a way to get camera-ready, proportionally spaced, justified archetype from a desk-sized machine

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