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Week 3-4 | History of Design


German inventor Johannes Gutenberg developed a method of movable type and used it to create one of the Western world’s first major printed books, the “Forty-Two-Line” Bible.

Process – link to Gutenberg process of printing.

Early Typographers –  

The years between the mid-15th century and the early 18th century proved to be a time of many changes and developments in the world of typography. Great examples of diverse type and type history.


There are thousands of different typefaces and fonts available to designers, printers, publishers, artists and writers (as well as the general public) today. There are all types of display and text typefaces and everything in between. Most are available in a digital format from a variety of type foundries and can easily be used, and exploited, with modern computer technology. The vast amount of type available makes specific classification of every one nearly impossible and somewhat frivolous. However, it is important to have an understanding of the basic styles of typefaces to help narrow down the research and selection of the correct typeface.


Claude Garamond

Claude Garamond – born c. 1480 in Paris, France, died 1561 in Paris, France – type founder, publisher, punch cutter, type designer.

William Caslon

Caslon is the name given to serif typefaces designed by William Caslon I (c. 1692–1766) in London, or inspired by his work.

Giabattista Bodoni

Giabattista Bodoni – born 16. 2. 1740 in Saluzzo, Piedmont, Italy, died 30. 11. 1813 in Parma, Italy – engraver

Frederic Goudy –

Frederic William Goudy – born 8. 3. 1865 in Bloomington, USA, died 11. 5. 1947 in Malborough-on-Hudson, USA – type designer, typographer, publisher, teacher.

Hermann Zapf 

German designer Hermann Zapf created the following fonts:
Aldus® (1954), Aldus Nova (2005), Aurelia™ (1983), Comenius® Antiqua BQ (1976), Edison™ (1978), Kompakt™ (1954), Marconi®(1976), Medici® Script (1971), Melior® (1952), Noris Script® (1976),Optima® (1958), Optima nova (2002), Orion™ (1974), Palatino™®(1950), Palatino nova (2005), Palatino™ Sans (2006), Saphir™ (1953),Sistina® (1950), Vario™ (1982), Venture™ (1969), Virtuosa® Classic(2009), Linotype Zapf Essentials™ (2002), Zapfino® (1998), Zapfino Extra (2003), ITC Zapf Chancery® (1979) ITC Zapf International® (1976),ITC Zapf Book® (1976), Zapf Renaissance Antiqua™ (1984–1987), ITC Zapf Dingbats® (1978).

Adrian Johann Frutiger

Adrian Johann Frutiger (Swiss German pronunciation: [ˈfrutɪɡər]; 24 May 1928 – 10 September 2015) was a Swiss typeface designer who influenced the direction of type design in the second half of the 20th century. His career spanned the hot metal, phototypesetting and digital typesetting eras. Until his death, he lived in Bremgarten bei Bern.

Frutiger’s most famous designs, Univers, Frutiger and Avenir, are landmark sans-serif families spanning the three main genres of sans-serif typefaces: neogrotesque, humanist and geometric. Univers was notable for being one of the first sans-serif faces to form a consistent but wide-ranging family, across a range of widths and weights. Frutiger described creating sans-serif types as his “main life’s work,”[7] partially due to the difficulty in designing them compared to serif fonts.

Max Miedinger

Max Miedinger (24 December 1910 – 8 March 1980) was a Swiss typeface designer. He was famous for creating the Neue Haas Grotesk typeface in 1957 that was renamed Helvetica in 1960. Marketed as a symbol of cutting-edge Swiss technology, Helvetica achieved immediate global success.

Between 1926 and 1930 Miedinger trained as a typesetter in Zurich, after which he attended evening classes at the Kunstgewerbeschule Zurich.




Celebrating Linotype, 125 Years Since Its Debut

Around for a century, Linotype machines were made obsolete in the 1970s by changing technologies — but they have not been forgotten

To embark on Linotype was to embark on greatness. Linotype machines powered newspapers, factories, a whole industry that was as American as any and existed for a century, at least until the tides of technology wiped it out as an occupation in the 1960s and 1970s — and now, Linotype is nearly extinguished from American memory. Yet Thomas Edison, it’s said, called the machine the Eighth Wonder of the World (no faint praise from the man who invented the light bulb). This fabled technology, this wonder, once occupied the imagination of countless people in our nation’s past.




Pioneers of the Internet

The Internet wasn’t just designed by one person or one team at one time.  As more and more people peeled back the frontiers of information technology, they contributed to the understanding and development of what we all now take for granted.  The Internet is here to stay, but there were times when it was a fragile thing that only a few people could envision.  The following people are visionaries, inventors, researchers and programmers who, in the early days of the internet, dreamed big and pioneered the technologies and programs behind all the standard Internet operating tools of today.