One of a variety of marks or symbols used with letters and phonetic symbols to indicate pronunciation or various special meanings, for example, to distinguish between words that would otherwise look and sound the same. Originally, referred to marks affecting only pronunciation; graphic arts professionals commonly use this term to refer to all diacritics. An accent may appear above, below, adjacent to, connected to, or through a letter. See also diacritic.
See lining numerals.
In type design, the position of a character (or part of a character) in relationship to other typeface elements. Often used to describe a character's vertical position, especially in relationship to the baseline. In typesetting and graphic design, also used to de-scribe a character's position both horizontally and vertically in relation to other characters or graphic elements.
alignment line, alignment guideline
A line indicating where characters appear to line up or be positioned, serving in type design as a design aid. Also sometimes referred to in an imaginary sense. Horizontal alignment lines indicate the height of characters or character parts; they include the capital (cap) line, ascender line, mean line, baseline, descender line, and lines for other typeface elements such as diacritics and serif heights. Type designers also sometimes use vertical alignment lines, for example, to aid in spacing letters or positioning diacritics. See also ascender line, baseline, capital line, descender line, mean line.
Typefaces stored and reproduced through a method in which information is in a continuous form, as opposed to digital typefaces, which are represented in a computer by series of discrete numeric values. Metal type, early technologies of phototype, and hand-drawn characters are all considered analog type. Also, any physical representation of type, as opposed to a coded representation that exists as a series of discrete numeric values. In the U.K., analogue. See also digital type.
The juncture of two converging strokes, usually at or near the top of a character, as in A, M, N, W, and w. See also vertex.
Short horizontal or oblique strokes projecting from a stem, as in the letters E, F, L, T, and Y and the upper right strokes of K and k. Some authors use this term to refer only to horizontal strokes projecting from a stem.
The part of a lowercase letter that extends above the x-height, usually continuous with a main stroke. The letters b, d, f, h, k, and l have ascenders; i and j do not. (The letter t, which has a shorter projection above the x-height, is often not classified with other ascending letters.) The old-style numerals 6 and 8 also have ascenders because they extend above 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 9.
See kp height.
See k height.
A horizontal guideline indicating where the tops of ascenders appear to align. Often referred to in an imaginary sense.
The American Standard Code for Information Interchange, a computer coding system established by ANSI, the American National Standards Institute. In this system, numeric values are assigned to various characters, thus enabling personal computers to process text and exchange information with software programs and other devices such as printers.
The standard ASCII character set is universally used among personal computer and software manufacturers and contains 128 characters, of which 96 are printable; these include letters, numerals, punctuation marks, and miscellaneous other symbols. The remaining 32 characters are control codes representing instructions such as backspace, tab, or carriage return. An extended ASCII set contains an additional 128 characters that vary in selection according to the computer manufacturer or software developer. Among other symbols, this set often contains characters necessary for setting a variety of different languages that use the latin alphabet. See also character.
A design feature of rounded characters, formed by the thinning of their strokes. In old-style typefaces the axis is said to be inclined, in transitional and modern designs, it is usually said to be vertical. See also stress.