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At the ‘micro’ level, the ways in which the features of a document interact make it hard to give advice about a particular feature. The ‘right’ space between lines of type depends, among other things, on the particular typeface, its size, the length of line, the word-space settings (justification or fixed-space settings) the line-end strategy (hyphenation), the text-block's relationship to the page and other graphic elements on it...

The right result

Getting the result right demands

Despite a century of research into legibility, readability, comprehension and effective learning strategies, we don’t know enough about what makes good documents. Thorough briefing, planning and document testing are important, but they are not enough.

Good documents are still partly an act of magic. They are made by skillful writers and designers, and not simply by reference to research results or general guidlines alone.

Noel Coward was famously asked by amateur actors how they could improve their performances. ‘Speak up, and try not to bump into the furniture’, he is said to have offered. Our briefings offer advice at the same level. We hope you find them useful.

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