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Mark Simonson

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Mark Simonson
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  • Re: Graphology

    Mysticism is not a way to know about the world except by accident, although its existence tells a lot about how the human brain works.

    Human beings are not perfectly rational creatures. Perfect knowledge is not necessary for survival. Our brains our subject to illusions, just like our senses, but it is more difficult to detect because our brain is the thing we use for detecting things. Our desires, emotions, and existing beliefs play into this as well. Hence, we easily and naturally adopt unsupportable beliefs about the world. In other words, mysticism.

    The scientific method is a workaround we discovered that enables us overcome our cognitive shortcomings. Science allows us to transcend mysticism, not the other way around.
  • Re: The vinyl records of font formats

    Vinyl is not lossless. Recording engineers had to boost certain frequencies just to get an LP to sound reasonably close to the original tape recording. Think about it: As the needle follows the groove toward the middle of a record, the frequency response drops substantially because the speed at which the vinyl passes under the needle gets slower (the disc rotates at a constant speed, but the length of the groove for each rotation gets shorter and shorter, the bumps for the same frequencies have to get closer together). People making LPs had to take this into account, so you had to avoid putting music with a lot of high frequencies toward the center of the record.

    In the LP era, serious audiophiles bought reel-to-reel decks.

    That said, low bitrate digital recordings are definitely worse than vinyl. Above a certain bitrate, though, most people can't hear the difference compared to a CD, which is a lossless, uncompressed recording. Definitely not on consumer-grade equipment. It's not unlike JPEG vs uncompressed TIFF.
  • Re: The vinyl records of font formats

    I went to a high end consumer audio show recently, and almost all the exhibitors were demonstrating their equipment using vinyl records as source, not digital. I doubt audiophiles would drop six figures on a second rate sound system.

    Essentially, people who prefer vinyl prefer the way it distorts sound, whether they realize that's what it is or not.

    There are also a lot of psychological and subjective factors at work in the high end audio business. When you pay a high price for something, research shows that you will believe it is better than if you paid a much lower price for the exact same thing. The type market is not immune to this, either.

    We human beings are not as rational as we think we are, but we excel at rationalization.
  • Re: The vinyl records of font formats

    Also, FWIW, the idea that vinyl records are superior in fidelity to CDs is also a myth. Some people prefer the sound of vinyl, but it's not capable of reproducing sound as accurately as CD.
  • Re: Extracting FEA from a opentype font

    Sorry, but that's like trying to extract the source code from a compiled binary app.