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In 1999, two graphic designers from Indianapolis raised a stir when they tried to discourage the use of Comic Sans MS, the silly-looking font designed by Vincent Connare and modeled after the text in American comic books. The designers observed that a font is the orthographic (written) equivalent of one’s tone of voice, and that Comic Sans was essentially like a squeaky-helium voice but in text.

Flash forward to 2011 and a recent study from Princeton University that suggests ‘funky fonts’ such as the aforementioned typeface as well as Bodini MT may in fact boost learning and long-term retention of information.

(What’s the origin of  “funk” and “funky?” Find out, here.)

The study presented information about three fictitious alien species to 28 volunteers. The text consisted of a strange alien name along with seven individual characteristics for all three alien species. Some of the volunteers received lists that were typed in an easy-to-read font such as Arial, while others received lists that were typed in a hard-to-read font such as Comic Sans MS or Bodini MT. Each volunteer was allotted 90 seconds to memorize which characteristic matched which species. Those who read from the hard-to-read lists got 86.5 percent of the questions right.

Another study involved 222 high school students who, over the course of several weeks, received assessment tests in both hard-to-read fonts and the traditional easy-to-read fonts. The students who learned with the ‘funky fonts’ scored higher.

Conventional wisdom tells us that the easier it is to learn something, the easier it will be to remember. Both studies, suggest that disfluency, an interruption of the smooth flow of speech, actually enhances the learning process. How can this be? In a nutshell – it is the increased level of difficulty that makes information stick.

A related phenomenon is when you can comprehend the meaning of words in a sentence even when the interior letters of each word are scrambled. Learn what this ability is called and how it works, here.

Are there words or concepts related to how you understand meaning that you would like us to explore? Let us know, and we’ll do our best.

Tagliani?ˆ™s day ends early with a crash

SouthtownStar (Chicago, IL) May 30, 2011 SPEEDWAY, Ind. ?ˆ” Pole sitter Alex Tagliani?ˆ™s day at the Indianapolis 500 ended too early. Tagliani ran into the wall on lap 147, damaging the right front suspension on his No. 77 Bowers and Wilkins car.

?ˆ?We were losing the rear of the car and I had to change all the tools I had with me in the car like the shocks,?ˆ? said Tagliani, who led 20 laps. ?ˆ?I had to protect the rear. There was a flat spot into the pits and I had locked the tires. I was really loose today and the car was on the edge.?ˆ?

Tagliani was vying to become the second Canadian since Jacques Villeneuve in 1995 to win the prestigious race. see here bowers and wilkins

Danica?ˆ™s race Danica Patrick led 11 laps after starting the race in the 25th spot and finished 10th. It was the first time Patrick led a lap at Indy since her rookie year in 2005.

Patrick lost the lead with 10 laps to go when she had to pit for four tires and fuel. Patrick said she stayed out as long as she could without pitting, knowing it would come down to fuel mileage.

?ˆ?I had to take that chance,?ˆ? said Patrick, who denied a published report this week that she would switch to NASCAR next season. ?ˆ?I picked up a (tire) vibration. We tend to pick up a vibration at the end of every tire life.?ˆ?

Not that bad E.J. Viso crashed on lap 28 after the IZOD IndyCar series?ˆ™ first double-file restart on an oval track this season. Viso said the new restart rule had nothing to do with his crash into the Turn 1 wall.

?ˆ?I ran behind (rookie James) Hinchcliffe and went to the outside to avoid him,?ˆ? Viso said. ?ˆ?He got into my right rear tire and it had nothing to do with the restart. I love the new system.?ˆ?

The crash destroyed the right side of Viso?ˆ™s car.

Hinchcliffe was able to stay in the race until he crashed into the wall on lap 100.

Simona?ˆ™s day ends early Swiss driver Simona de Silvestro was the sentimental favorite Sunday after suffering serious burns to her hands and part of her face during a firey crash in practice last week. De Silvestro was fortunate enough to be cleared to drive two days later, but her Indy run ended early. De Silvestro, who hit the wall in Turn 1 and bent the upright and the suspension on her No. 78 Nuclear Clear Air Energy/HVM Racing car, only ran 44 laps and finished 31st. Her car had to be pushed down pit lane and toward Gasoline Alley. go to website bowers and wilkins

Losing wheels IndyCar series points leader Will Power lost a rear left tire after a pit stop on lap 20.

Power pitted on the race?ˆ™s first caution, but when he pulled out of his pit stall the tire flew off. Power had to circle the track before re-entering pit road while his car threw off sparks near the tireless left rear brake.

On lap 62, rookie Jay Howard lost his right rear tire in the warm-up lane near Turn 2 leaving pit road. That brought out the race?ˆ™s third caution.

Bowling Green, Ky., tobacco farmers begin last season of burley auction sales.

Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News November 17, 2004 By Robyn L. Minor, The Daily News, Bowling Green, Ky. Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News Nov. 17–Today began what is the last season of a Bowling Green tradition — burley auction sales.

Brannen’s Warehouse No. 6 had farmers milling about, speculating what will happen and how long it will take to get the tobacco buyout in place.

Congress approved a plan in October that will eliminate the price support and quota system, with sales being contracted directly with tobacco companies.

There wasn’t a lot of optimism among farmers about the future of tobacco, with or without the quota system.

“There is not a lot we can do about,” said James C. Rose, a Warren Countian who has been growing tobacco for 40 years. “I probably won’t grow any more after this. I’m 76 and it’s time to quit.” Rose was leaning on a bale of tobacco with his friend, Paul Wayne Martin, as the auction was going on several aisles away. Martin, also from Warren County, brought about 12,000 pounds to the floor for sale and sold about 2,000 pounds on contract. The contract price was about $2 a pound. bowlinggreenkynow.net bowling green ky

“After this sale season is over, that will go way down,” Martin said.

He and Rose speculated that the average in the future will be between $1.30 a pound to $1.50.

“At $1.50 you can make a little money, but if it goes any lower than that, you can’t,” Martin said.

The auction market has already lost its luster for Robert Mathews of Alvaton, who joined the two farmers.

This is the second year buyers used mini-computers to punch in the price they are willing to pay for tobacco — from $1.95 to $2.10 a pound early in the sale today. There is none of the traditional auctioneer yodeling going on.

“It’s about as exciting as watching paint dry,” said Mathews, who grew about 15,000 pounds of tobacco. After growing tobacco for about 40 years, he said he’s finished.

One of the youngest farmers there, Daniel Grimes, 19, said his family also hasn’t decided if it will continue to grow tobacco after this season.

“We might if we have to,” said Grimes, whose family has just a little more than 3,000 pounds in 1.25 acres.

His grandfather, Fred Grimes, said the family used to grow as much as 10 acres.

The elder Grimes hasn’t been in tobacco for about five years because of heart problems. He was a little sentimental about the sale.

“I kind of hate to see it go,” he said.

Sales opened earlier elsewhere in the state.

On Monday, a Lexington warehouse got as much as $2.10 a pound, with most averaging $1.99. About 210,000 pounds went into the surplus pool, something that will no longer exist when the government program ends.

Kentucky growers sold 2.24 million pounds of leaf Monday for $4.48 million, an average of $199.66 per hundredweight, according to the Federal-State Market News Service. this web site bowling green ky

While farmers likely won’t get as much for the tobacco selling directly to manufacturers, their costs will be somewhat reduced. Farmers will no longer have to pay to rent tobacco quotas from other farmers. In the buyout farmers who also own their quota will receive $10 a pound. Farmers who rent quotas will get $3 a pound; those who own the quotas will get $7 a pound and farmers who own quotas and grow tobacco will get the full $10.

Bowling Green’s auction sales had already dwindled last season to just a few days, with many farmers already choosing the contract sales route. This season the sales will be today, Nov. 29, Dec. 6 and 15.

Manager Jamie Brannen said he’s not sure what’s in store for the tobacco warehouse’s future.

He said his family will try to somehow remain in the tobacco business. What used to be one of the area’s largest auction houses owned by the Bale family in Barren County is now a weigh station for tobacco companies that purchase tobacco from farmers on contracts.

Donald Dunn, director of the Farm Service Agency in Warren County, said his office still is waiting to hear how and when the buyout will begin.

The Associated Press contributed information for this article.

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89 Comments

  1. sales training seminars -  May 23, 2013 - 11:29 pm

    Spot on with this write-up, I actually think this site needs much
    more attention. I’ll probably be back again to read through more, thanks for the advice!

    Reply
  2. y4 -  October 24, 2012 - 5:13 pm

    How is Arial easy-to-read when it’s all scrunched up with barely any spacing between letters? Can you tell capital I from lowercase l?

    And how is Comic Sans hard-to-read when multiple studies, including this one, claim that reading in this font improves learning, memory and readability?

    Seems like putting the cart before the horse, mainly due to stigma or fear of being associated with a less professional typeface. Just embrace the fact that Comic Sans is popular because it’s attractive and well-design (i.e. each character is distinct, e.g. you can I from l, and rounded nicely), and not because people claim it’s hideous based on unfounded prejudice.

    Reply
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    [...] for garage sale signs and Chuck E. Cheese coupons (However, this font has been proven to raise test scores!) Century Gothic is an easy fix for designers who want simplicity or who are waiting until 3AM the [...]

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  4. Emilino Emloile -  November 5, 2011 - 3:08 pm

    Being rather obsessed with fonts (just two years ago I would go around naming fonts found on bulletins, signs and books–now I have slightly matured and rarely reveal my inner font-natic) this article very much entertained and interested me. I will remember this! Thank you.

    Reply
  5. Lala -  November 3, 2011 - 1:57 am

    Quite Interesting
    This could help many people memorise things better!!!

    >_< Lala

    Reply
  6. Sonya -  November 1, 2011 - 9:39 pm

    Where was this when my brother was in school?

    Reply
  7. blackntan -  November 1, 2011 - 7:56 pm

    @ MORGAN
    that saying has nothing to do with this article. really.
    and FUNKY used to mean the smell after sex. be mindful of the way you use your words, dictionary.com.

    Reply
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    [...] Clarity — From the heart wit true sincerity. — We Font everything in its place. — Comical Sans are here they tell us — it’s the Brainstorm that’s outa space. [...]

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  9. Garret -  November 1, 2011 - 11:34 am

    I’d love to see a more in-depth study performed by actual typographers. Fundamentally, Bodoni and Comic Sans aren’t “funky;” just a different style than most are used to seeing – we see Helvetica, Times & Verdana a lot more.

    It’s fairly well-known that any time you interrupt the standard, you’re going to have a better time being remembered – that’s why companies have logos with deliberate idiosyncrasies, or why it’s recommended to not use the default Word font for your resume.

    In addition, the study mentioned doesn’t say much about the groups tested; I’d be interested to see how all levels of intellect respond to this premise.

    The brain is a funny animal; I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a particular font or style that is more memorable… It’d certainly be an interesting study!

    Reply
  10. Catherine -  November 1, 2011 - 8:54 am

    Huh. Never knew that. I’ll have to try that myself. That’s interesting!! :D

    Reply
  11. Vikhaari -  November 1, 2011 - 8:15 am

    Interesting!
    The harder the material, that is to be learned, the longer it is taking time to understand and above all, good news, surely, is the longest it retained! Something to know, learn and think about.
    Enjoyed the piece very much.

    Reply
  12. Lauren -  October 31, 2011 - 5:06 pm

    All these smart-people comments make me nervous. Not that I’m not smart. I’m an A+ student. It’s just that I change fonts based on my feelings.

    Reply
  13. Lauren -  October 31, 2011 - 5:03 pm

    So are you saying typing my reports in Comic Sans MC will make my teachers understand it better? Because my teachers say we have to use 12 Arial for all our reports. Plus, did they just randomly send people a email? Or did they fill out a survey or something?

    Reply
  14. Gunner McGoldBaggel -  June 6, 2011 - 6:01 pm

    I have seen the anti- Comic Sans MS commentaries before and they don’t make sense to me. Comic sans is as easy to read as most standard serif fonts (Times, Goudy, Century Schoolbook, Garamond, etc.) and much easier to read than many Grotesque (Sans-Serif fonts; Ariel, Helvetica, Tahoma, Futura, Franklin Gothic, et al) especially in all capital letters.
    For emails Comic Sans MS is my standard font and I find it easier to read, and a bit more fun. But then I also like fonts with personality a couple of examples; Carolingia and Calligraphy FLF, (but they can be difficult to read in less than 14 point).
    Perhaps the point is that the creative personality types like fonts with personality, grace and style while the bureaucratic types that want to control how everyone thinks and reduce society to its most generic forms – don’t.

    Reply
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