Blackletter Type

Type that resembles the calligraphic writing of medieval scribes.


The method of arranging sheets of paper into a book where one sheet of paper is folded into two leaves. It is also the term used for books made this way and is also used as a general term for a sheet or leaf in old books or manuscripts.


A ‘breaker of icons’, i.e. someone who rejects established ideas and values


A graphic symbol that represents an idea or a concept.  E.g. the symbol for infinity?


A written character that represents a word or phrase.  Written Chinese uses characters that are logograms. The use of logograms in writing is called logography. A writing system that is based on logograms is called a logographic system.


A graphic that conveys its meaning through its pictorial resemblance to a physical object. Pictograms can be icons or symbols. Icons look like the thing they represent, e.g. a picture of a plane representing an airport. Symbols represent more abstract ideas, e.g. a green light for go.


The diagonal, vertical or horizontal thick to thin tranisition in the stroke of a letter. Drawing a line between the two thinnest parts of the stroke of the letter ‘O’ will show the direction of the stress. The term comes from the thick and thin transitions of calligraphy.


Highlighting words or phrases with different coloured inks.

Wicked Problems

A term originally used to describe problems in social planning, describing problems which are intractable, complex and effectively impossible to resolve due to incomplete, contradictory or changing requirements. Climate change, international drug trafficking and social injustice are all examples of wicked problems. At best, a design solution can alleviate part of the problem but is unlikely to every resolve the whole problem. Fixing one part of a wicked problem can often create new problems.